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Our Eating Disorder Treatment specialties, at our Tacoma, WA, an outpatient center specializes in Anorexia, Bulimia, Binge Eating, & Orthorexia Recovery.

Eating Disorder Treatment Team | Tacoma, WA

Dawn Delgado, MS, LMFT, CEDS-S

Dawn Delgado, MS, LMFT, CEDS-S

National Director of Operations, Outpatient Eating Disorder

Dawn Delgado, a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, and an EMDR trained trauma specialist. She holds both her CEDS, Certified Eating Disorder Specialist and CEDS-S Supervisor designation through the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals.  Dawn has dedicated herself to working with adolescents and adults recovering from eating disorders and co-occurring mental health issues for over 15 years.

In addition, to her lengthy tenure at Center For Discovery, she has directed and been instrumental in developing residential, partial hospitalization/day treatment, intensive outpatient, and transitional living programs. Trained in EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), she incorporates this form of trauma treatment in her private practice, Inspire Evolve, and into the clinical programming at Center For Discovery.  An active member of the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals (IAEDP), she is a former chair member of the Los Angeles chapter. Dawn has a passion for yoga and travel and has served as a consultant to clinics and hospitals in Bali, Singapore, Java, and Dubai.

Jessica Harris, LMFT, CEDS-S

Jessica Harris, LMFT, CEDS-S

West Coast Assistant Director of Eating Disorder Outpatient Services

Jessica Harris graduated from the University of California, Davis with a Bachelor’s of Art in Psychology and a minor in Child Development. She obtained her Masters in clinical psychology with an emphasis in marriage and family therapy from Pepperdine University in Malibu, California. Over the past 7 years, she has experience working with children, adolescents and adults in various settings including eating disorders. Prior to joining the Center For Discovery team, Jessica worked as the Program Manager of a Residential Treatment Center treating adult women with eating disorders. She has additional experience working with eating disorders at the inpatient, partial and outpatient level of care treating adult and adolescent men and women. During her graduate studies, Jessica worked as a developmental therapist with special needs children and their families assisting them in supporting their child’s communication, relational and social skills needs.  Jessica uses a mixture of cognitive behavioral therapy, family systems therapy, narrative therapy and solution focused therapy.  She is passionate about providing individualized and group support in the outpatient division.

Kacy Grossman, MS, RD, CPT

Kacy Grossman, MS, RD, CPT

West Coast Supervisor of Outpatient Dietary Services

Kacy earned her bachelor’s of science in Clinical Nutrition and minor in Psychology from the University of New Jersey, Davis and went on to earn her master’s of science in Family and Consumer Sciences, Nutrition from New Jersey State University Northridge. To complement her education in nutrition, Kacy obtained a certificate in personal training from the American Council on Exercise.

Essentially by accident Kacy found a way to combine all her areas of interest and education when she began working as a Diet Tech in 2009 at A New Journey Eating Disorder Center. Once Kacy completed her dietetic internship through CSUN, she became a Registered Dietitian at ANJ and worked with adults and adolescents at the intensive outpatient (IOP) and partial day treatment (PDT) levels of care. In Early 2014 Kacy began working Center For Discovery where she now finds fulfilment working in adolescent residential and adult Outpatient eating disorder treatment. Kacy also maintains a private practice, The Shameless Eater, in Westwood, Ca and is serving as secretary of Behavioral Health and Nutrition dietetic practice group for the 2014-2016 term.

Maureen Peterson, MA, LMHC, CEDS-S

Maureen Peterson, MA, LMHC, CEDS-S

Regional Director & Program Director

Maureen Peterson is the Program Director at Center For Discovery Tacoma OP treating  adolescents, adults and families impacted by eating disorders. Maureen is a licensed mental health counselor and earned her BA  in Psychology  from Pacific Lutheran University and her MA in Counseling Psychology from Saint Martin’s University. She also completed a certificate program in The Long Term Treatment of Psychiatric Disorders through the University of Washington school of Social Work.Maureen has been working in the mental health field since 1991 and has specialized in the treatment of eating disorders since 1996. She is a Certified Eating Disorder Specialist and Supervisor through the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals. In 2011, Maureen received the “Spirit of the Alliance” award through the Alliance for Families, a national organization. She is passionate about community service, and enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time with friends and family.

Ardis Vanmeerten, LMHC

Ardis Vanmeerten, LMHC

PRIMARY THERAPIST

Ardis is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor who focuses on disordered eating, trauma and the damage of stigmatization. She has a strong passion for helping facilitate the repair of relationships between bodies and food through body trust, health at every size and social justice principals. Ardis believes that everyone deserves another chance to explore their thoughts, behaviors and how their feelings are impacted by losing connection with their body and explore how they are impacted by navigating through society. Ardis first started with Center for Discovery in 2013 after earning her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Carroll College. She went on to complete the Master of Arts in Professional Counseling Program through Liberty University. She has over ten years of experience working in outpatient, residential and inpatient settings for eating disorders and children’s mental health. Ardis is trained in Motivational Interviewing (MI), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), and takes a reality therapy approach.

Alex McKee, MS, RD, CD

Alex McKee, MS, RD, CD

Registered Dietitian

Alex McKee earned her Master of Science in Nutrition degree from Bastyr University where her studies focused on evidence-based integrative and functional nutrition. Upon graduation, she completed a year-long dietetic internship at Texas State University where she could further explore her passion for holistic and compassionate care while working with people from a multitude of backgrounds and social environments.

Alex also holds a Bachelor Degree in Social Anthropology from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland where she first gained perspective on how individuals’ unique history and needs deserve personalized paths to wellness and recovery. Areas of further interest include digestive health, alternative medicine, inflammation and immunity, mindful eating, and developing peaceful relationships with foods and with our bodies.

Angelica Brown

Angelica Brown

Adult Facility Coordinator

Angelica Brown graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Educational Studies in July 2017. Angelica has many years of experience working with children, teens, and young adults in multiple settings. She also gained administrative experience during her tenure with one of the largest school districts in Missouri.

Angelica’s personal and professional experiences have enhanced her passion for supporting families, mental health, and recovery. She is a wife and mother as well as the Facility Coordinator for Center For Discovery’s outpatient program in Tacoma, Washington serving adolescents and adults.

Chloe Allen

Chloe Allen

Adolescent Facility Coordinator

Chloe is the adolescent facility coordinator in Tacoma. She graduated from the University of Washington Tacoma with a Bachelors of Arts degree in psychology. She studied abroad in Austria for a short time where she learned about the psychology of food and culture. Chloe believes that different cultures and different backgrounds can influence one’s relationship with food and the body. She has a passion for working with people with eating disorders and body image challenges. She is also a certified yoga teacher and believes that yoga has healing properties and can help with body acceptance and body positivity. Other interests include art, traveling and practicing reiki. Chloe is committed to supporting people in recovery.

Ashley Walther

Ashley Walther

Diet Tech

Ashley is currently pursuing a double bachelors degree in Dietetics and Nutrition and Health with an intended graduation date in December 2019. Ashley has five years of experience working with adolescents and adults in a series of settings. Ashley has lived in five different countries and visited numerous others. During her summer semesters of University in Europe, Ashley traveled to Eastern European countries networking with community associations that benefit immigrants and underprivileged families with immigration funding programs in the Netherlands.

Ashley spent two years in the Netherlands studying medicine where she did in-depth research into perceptions of mental health disorders, such as schizophrenia, by student populations and genetic abnormalities. She volunteered her time with low-income elementary and voorbereidend middelbar beroepsonderwijs (VMBO) students (ages 12-16) who normally would not be exposed to programs and classes that would foster an interest in the medical field. Ashley is interested in furthering her knowledge about behavioral health in relation to Nutrition and proper health maintenance.

Laurel Madson-Lawson, MA, LMFTA

Laurel Madson-Lawson, MA, LMFTA

Program Therapist

Laurel Madson Lawson is the Program Therapist at the Center for Discovery in Tacoma Washington, providing services to adolescents, adults, and families impacted by eating disorders. Laurel Is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Associate. Laurel attended the University of Utah where she completed a Bachelors of Science in Environment and Behavior. She completed her masters degree at St. Martin’s University in Lacey, WA. Laurel has been working with teens for over 20 years in different capacities from art teacher to kayak camp instructor. She is an artist in her free time and mom to two girls. Laurel strives to develop a therapeutic relationship consisting of honesty and empathy to collaborate change with each client. Laurel believes each client is unique and each family is unique, therefore she tailors a therapeutic alliance that fits each one. She is passionate about eating disorder recovery and helping those who struggle with ED and Body Image challenges. Laurel uses Solution Focused Therapy/Art Therapy/ and EFFT.

Colleen Young, MA, LMFT

Colleen Young, MA, LMFT

Program Therapist – Binge Eating Disorder Advisor

Colleen Young is the lead therapist for the binge eating disorder program at the Center for Discovery in Tacoma, WA treating adolescents, adults, and families impacted by eating disorders. Colleen is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and a Certified Body Trust Provider. Colleen earned her Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Allegheny College and her Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Pacific Lutheran University.

Colleen brings with her more than ten years of experience in community mental health and private practice settings. Prior to joining the Center for Discovery team, Colleen ran her own private practice, Inner Revolution Counseling, where she worked with individuals, couples, and families struggling with disordered eating using a Health at Every Size approach with an emphasis on Intuitive Eating and Body Trust principles. Colleen also provided therapy at the Eating Recovery Program at Hope Sparks seeing clients on the disordered eating continuum.

Colleen has provided training to clinicians around Health at Every Size principles and is passionate about working with individuals towards healing their relationship with food and body. Colleen approaches treatment through a social justice lens and works to challenge the assumptions we all hold around who we are supposed to be versus who we truly are and is a champion for all people to live an embodied life where food and movement can be joyful.  Colleen enjoys good coffee, film, urban hikes, and spending time with her little boy and her partner.

Kacie Eldridge-Johnson, MA, LMFTA

Kacie Eldridge-Johnson, MA, LMFTA

Program Therapist

Kacie Eldridge-Johnson is a Program Therapist at Center for Discovery’s outpatient program in Tacoma, WA. Kacie is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Associate, and graduated with a Master of Arts in Psychology, Marriage and Family Therapy, from Brandman University. Kacie also received her Bachelor’s degree from Brandman University, majoring in Psychology and earning a certificate in Nutrition and Wellness. Kacie has been passionate about pursuing knowledge in the eating disorders field and has been a volunteer with the National Eating Disorders Association for the past six years. Kacie believes in the healing power of community and enjoys seeing the communities of recovery that Center for Discovery fosters in its clients.

Niashay Whitaker, LMHCA CDPT

Niashay Whitaker, LMHCA CDPT

Primary Therapist

Niashay Whitaker earned her undergraduate degree in developmental psychology from Eastern Washington University in 2013 and her graduate degree from Seattle University in community counseling in 2017. While studying Niashay specialized in child development and multicultural studies. Her internship included working with underprivileged youth helping youth and their families. Niashay received her Master of Education from Seattle University in community counselor with an emphasis in social justice. While studying, Niashay began her working at an inpatient eating disorder clinic helping clients develop tools, coping skills, and running specialized groups. 

Niashay’s areas of focus include but are not limited to; eating disorders, trauma-focused care, depression, anxiety, grief and loss, adjustment concerns, and parenting.

Boyd Cowan, ARNP, PMHNP-BC

Boyd Cowan, ARNP, PMHNP-BC

Nurse Practitioner

Boyd Cowan is the psychiatric provider at Center for Discovery Tacoma PHP treating adolescents, adults, and families impacted by eating disorders and mental health disorders. Boyd is a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner and earned his Master’s in Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing from Seattle University and Master’s in Psychology from Seattle University. Boyd has been working with children, adults, and families in the mental health field for 8 years. He has worked in inpatient and outpatient settings, providing psychiatric assessment, prescribing psychiatric medications, and conducting counseling and family therapy.

Sara Zajac, MSW, LCSW

Sara Zajac, MSW, LCSW

Program Therapist

Sara is a part-time therapist for the eating disorder recovery program at the Center for Discovery in Tacoma, WA treating adolescents, adults, and families impacted by eating disorders. Sara earned her Masters Degree in Social Work from the University of Washington in Tacoma, Wa and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. Sara brings with her over 10 years of experience in the social work and mental health fields. Sara has worked with a variety of different populations impacted by biopsychosocial issues including Veterans at the VA Hospital, homeless adolescents and young adults in non-profit outpatient and residential settings, elderly adults with in-home mental health and nursing homes, and substance abuse and chronic pain residential treatment programs.

Sara has experience in both individual MH treatment as well as group therapy treatment including Dialetical Behavioral Therapy and Acceptance and Committment Therapy. Sara believes in social justice, equality for all people and is passionate about advocating for her patients and their rights. One of these beliefs is that every person deserves a life full of meaning, purpose and happiness. Sara works with every patient from a strengths-based perspective and a person-centered approach. Sara enjoys spending time with her husband and their beautiful rescue cats, painting, weekend road-trips and shopping.

Maggie Mills, MS, CN

Maggie Mills, MS, CN

Diet Tech

Maggie Mills earned her Master of Science in Nutrition degree from the National University of Natural Medicine in Portland, OR, where her studies focused on holistic, integrative, and personalized nutrition. After graduation, she began teaching nutrition courses for college students, focusing on topics related to the dangers of fad diets, chronic dieting, and weight stigma. In 2017, she completed the Be Nourished Training Institute’s Body Trust Provider certification program, a 10-month training course which seeks to refocus multiple healing modalities with compassionate care at the core.

Maggie also holds a Bachelor Degree in Psychology from the University of Tulsa in Tulsa, OK, where she gained experience and perspective working with underserved populations within the local mental healthcare system. Areas of further interest include alternative medicine, functional nutrition, digestive health, autoimmune conditions, intuitive eating, meal planning, size diversity, body positivity, Health at Every Size (HAES), and helping others repair their relationships with food and their bodies.

Kaitlyn Bassler, MSN, RN

Kaitlyn Bassler, MSN, RN

Outpatient Nurse

Kaitlyn is the registered nurse for the Tacoma outpatient program. She graduated from Pacific Lutheran University with a Master of Science in Nursing in May 2017. She is currently pursuing her Doctorate of Nursing Practice, specializing in Psychiatric-Mental Health. She has 3 years of experience as a mental health nurse, working with both adolescents and adults in various inpatient settings. Kaitlyn passionately supports her clients through recovery while encouraging both physical and mental wellness.

Jenni Scharf

Jenni Scharf

Clinical Outreach Supervisor and Staff Recruitment Representative

Jenni Scharf is the Clinical Outreach Supervisor and Staff Recruitment Representative at Center For Discovery in the Northwest treating adolescents, adults and families impacted by eating disorders. Jenni earned her degree in Journalism, with an emphasis in Management from Western Washington University. Jenni has been working in healthcare marketing since 2001 and has held seats on 4 separate Pacific Northwest iaedp chapter boards. Jenni loves being a resource for professionals. She is a wife and mom to three kids and is passionate about helping families find the recovery they need to be healthy, whole and happy once again.