Meet the Team

John Gaspar, M.A., L.M.F.T.

Clinical Director

John is a Licensed Psychotherapist specializing in providing mental health services for those with psychological disorders and behavioral-emotional concerns. As a former Research Associate at UCLA's Semel Institute for Neuroscience, John comes from a neuro-psychological background and has over ten years of experience as a mental health professional. He treats a wide range of psychological disorders including anxiety, depression, OCD, and behavioral disorders. Together with therapeutic insights, cognitive-behavioral techniques, and mindful-awareness, he will work to help you overcome insecurities, embrace growth, and maximize your overall wellbeing.

John works with a wide range of mental health issues and provides a highly-personalized approach, tailored to meet each of clients' individual needs. He will collaborate with you to determine therapy goals, and provide psycho-educational materials to help teach coping skills, cognitive-behavioral interventions, mindfulness training, and other techniques.

John received degrees in psychology and philosophy from UCLA and an M.A. in clinical psychology from Pepperdine University, Malibu. His background in philosophy and neuroscience are essential to his work as a psychotherapist, and he draws from various therapeutic approaches including CBT, family systems, Jungian, ABA, mindfulness, and others.

Sareh Hamzavi, M.A., L.M.F.T.

Sareh is licensed psychotherapist, providing therapy to children, adolescents, and adults. She holds Master’s Degree in Psychology with an emphasis in mindfulness from Phillips Graduate University and has training in various treatment approaches including, but not limited to, cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, and strength-based techniques.

With over seven years of practical experience, Sareh utilizes an integrative approach to therapy which combines different elements of specific therapies to allow room for individual growth and cultivate healing and wholeness in children, adolescents, and adults. She treat individuals struggling with depression, anxiety, and behavioral disorders such as emotional disturbance, ADHD and oppositional defiant disorder.

Sareh's strives to create a safe and non-judgmental environment so you can feel empowered to be your authentic self at every moment in your life.

Sareh is also fluent in Farsi.

Paola Barba, M.S., L.M.F.T.

Paola is a licensed psychotherapist holding Bachelors and Masters of Science degrees from California Baptist University. Paola has worked extensively with children, teens, and families. Utilizing clinical methods such as cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, applied behavioral analysis (ABA) amongst others, Paola is comfortable with treating various psychological issues such as ADHD, anxiety, grief, eating disorders, marital or sexual issues, to name a few.

Paola believes mutual trust, respect, and freedom to share emotional content without being judged are crucial to the therapeutic process. She collaborates with you to establish the goals to work on including self-esteem, coping skills, domestic violence, women’s issues, family conflict, parenting, peer relations, and behavioral issues to name a few.

Paola is bilingual and is proud to offer therapy services both in English and Spanish.

Alex Shelling, M.A., L.M.F.T.

Alex is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who received her Master's Degree in Counseling Psychology from Argosy University. She have extensive experience working in Community-Based, Residential, and School Mental Health Settings. Alex has a passion for working with children, adolescents, young adults, and families in assisting them in developing and utilizing the necessary coping skills to manage and care for themselves and feel empowered in their life choices while addressing systematic barriers and historical traumas.

Alex's specialty areas include depression, anxiety, coping skills, foster care issues, school issues, and trauma. She approaches therapy from a trauma-informed, client-centered and culturally competent perspective. Her goal is to help clients live authentically and reach their full potential by using interventions from strength based approaches, emotional focused therapy, and anti-oppressive frameworks.

Adriana Eversole, M.A., LMFT

Adriana holds degrees in psychology and applied psychology from UCSB and a Master’s in Clinical Psychology from Pepperdine University. She has a deep knowledge and respect for the therapeutic process, and is passionate to share various tools, interventions, and insights with clients to support their ongoing growth and self-understanding.

With over five years of clinical experience, Adriana takes an integrative approach to treatment and combines interventions from a variety of therapeutic modalities, including CBT, DBT, ABA, mindfulness, strength-based, and solution-focused. She treats a broad range of disorders including anxiety, depression, bipolar, behavioral concerns, and many others. Adriana provides a compassionate and empathetic atmosphere and works together to form a unique treatment plan to address your specific goals.

Kristen Wallis, M.A., LMFT

Kristen is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with 8 years of clinical experience. Whether you are struggling with depression, anxiety, addiction, a life transition, family/parenting concerns, or other mental health issues, we are all trying to better understand ourselves and break free of our limiting patterns and beliefs. Kristen's approach to therapy involves a strong foundation in formal therapeutic modalities, including CBT, DBT, family systems, and others, while at the same time recognizing that you are the expert of your own life. It is through the therapeutic process that you will come to gain valuable insights, recognize your potential, and enhance your capacity for self-love.

While Kristen treats a variety of diagnoses, she has a particular expertise in areas of addiction, substance abuse, parenting, relationships, stress and grief. Kristen is pleased to offer evening and Saturday appointment times to accommodate schedule's of her clients.

Kristen Smith, M.S., LMFT

Kristen is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist helping adolescents and adults seeking help with issues including stress, anxiety, depression, relationships, parenting, communication, suicidal thoughts, self-harm, grief, life-changing events, and others. Kristen's approach to therapy is to provide a safe, non-judgmental space where you can identify and explore the underlying beliefs driving your behaviors, shaping your habits, and impacting your relationships. Working together using therapeutic approaches such as mindfulness, CBT, narrative therapy, DBT, etc., you will learn to better manage emotions and behaviors, allowing you to meet your own personal goals.

With 7 years experience in mental health, Kristen's goal is to walk side by side on a path that explores and identifies what a fulfilling life looks like for you. Kristen believes therapy is a journey and not a destination, implementing and using psychological techniques—from traditional to modern modalities—in a life-long process. Kristen has extensive expertise in couple's therapy, divorce issues, and parenting.

Dan Weinstein, M.A.

Practice Manager

Dan brings a background in education, business management, educational therapy and human resources to his role as practice manager. As owner of Academic Training Services since 2013, Dan continues to help students reach their educational goals, specializing in working with kids, teens, and young adults struggling with learning disabilities or social/emotional/behavioral issues. Apex's focus and commitment to helping teens and young adults comes from Dan's passion for serving that group.

Holding math degrees from UCLA (Bachelors) and Arizona State (Masters) with highest honors, Dan handles billing, invoicing and scheduling. With an extensive background in staff management and client relations, as our Apex Therapy Group family grows, Dan will help pair you with the perfect therapist to help you reach your goals.