Hispanic Family Counseling

"mejorando la Calidad DE VIDA"

© 2017 All Rights Reserved

Ruth H. Calo Castro, M.Div. M. A. D.Min., Certitified in Family Therapist She worked at Central Austin Counseling Center in Chicago, after graduating from Northern Baptist Theological Seminary, with a Master of Divinity, and a M.A. in Social Services Administration from the University of Chicago.  Ruth was Certified in Family Therapy by the Family Institute of Chicago. During the last decades in Puerto Rico, Ruth taught at the Interamerican University, at the Evangelical Seminary of Puerto Rico, and was a Pastor in the local church and in parish schools. In her home country she co-founded and directed two community-based agencies that provided social, educational and recreational program to families, children, and adolescents.  Ruth obtained her Doctor of Ministry in Pastoral Care from McCormick Theological Seminary, at Chicago in 2003. In 2017 she trained in Essential Coaching at Centro Gaviota in Hato Rey, P.R.  Ruth works with families of single mothers, facing grief, and immigration process.

​​​Keila Solís, LMFT, Clinical Supervisor, South Florida Regionreceived her Master’s degree from Barry University in Counseling with a dual specialization in Mental Health and Marriage and Family Counseling in 2005. Early in her profession, she worked with adolescents and their families in a juvenile prevention program providing group and individual counseling. Mrs. Solís also has experience working in an outpatient setting providing individual and group counseling to adults with a broad spectrum of mental illness. Currently, Mrs. Solís works in ministry providing educational workshops to the couples of her home church. She also organizes retreats with the goals of empowering and equipping couples with the tools necessary to sustain a healthy and joyful marriage. Mrs. Solís is a proud member of the Hispanic Family Counseling Team providing diverse services to clients and their families. She can provide these services in English or Spanish.

Jacqueline Espinal, MA, Eds, LMHC, Licensed Evaluator graduated from John Jay College of Criminal Justice in 1999 with an M.A. degree in Forensic Psychology. She graduated from Barry University in December 2014 with an Ed.S. degree Dual Specialization in Marriage & Family Therapy and Mental Health Counseling. She is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor with the State of Florida. She just obtained her License as a Mental Health Counselor with the State of Florida. She is trained and experienced in providing Mental Health Assessments, Individual, Couple, Family, and Group Counseling to adults and children. She is fluent in Spanish and is available to meet with clients on some evenings and Saturdays.

Euridice Cruz Coming Soon!        

Lydia Oyola-Diaz, MSW has a Bachelors Degree in Social Science from the Univerisity of Puerto Rico. Furthermore, she has a Masters Degree in Education with Counseling from Cambridge College in Massachusetts. Lydia has worked for around fifteen years as a mental health clinician in Hartford, CT and in Orange County, Florida providing individual, group, and family therapy to children, adolescents, and adults.        

Johanna Lorenzo, M.Psy. was born in Puerto Rico. She has a master's degree in psychological counseling with a specialty in families, and a certification in education and mediation of conflicts. She has worked with children and adolescents in individual and group therapy and with the geriatric population. 

Mary Jane Tolmasoff, LMHC has worked in a variety of social service organizations for the last 33 years. She received her Master's in Counseling and Psychology. Mary Jane started her career working on a residential Dual Diagnosis Unit in Park Ridge, Illinois and worked there for 4 years. She then relocated to Orlando, Florida and worked with adults and adolescents who had substance abuse issues at Parkside Lodge of Orlando for 4 years. After that, she started her own business providing substance abuse treatment, conducting a batterers intervention program, and linking victims of domestic violence with community resources. In 1997, Mary Jane began her 18-year stint at the Center for a Drug-Free Living as a New Horizon Counselor at Oak Ridge High School.  During this time, she obtained her license as a Mental Health Counselor in Florida. She is also a Certified Addictions Professional (CAP). In addition, she supervised and trained Master’s level interns from Rollins College and the University of Central Florida. Concurrently while working at the Center, Mary Jane provided private counseling at other counseling agencies. Mary Jane is currently a contracted service provider at Hispanic Family Counseling, Inc., where she provides a range of counseling services to children, adolescents, and adults. Mary Jane is registered to supervise MHC interns.

Vanessa M. Ruisanchez, CMHC Therapist, was born in Valencia, Venezuela, and came to the United States when she was 19 years old. She graduated with her Bachelor’s in Science from the University of Central Florida in 2015 and with her Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Stetson University in 2018. She is passionate about working with the Hispanic population. Vanessa also enjoys traveling, reading, and spending time with her family.

Glenda Trabal, Ph.D.  was born and raised in Mayagüez, Puerto Rico. She obtained her Master's and Doctorate degrees in Psychological Counseling from the Inter American University of Puerto Rico, San Germán Campus, in 2008 and 2015. As part of her experience in the Doctoral Internship, she worked as an Assistant Professor helping to evaluate and guide students in the Psychology graduate program of the Inter American University of Puerto Rico. With the Doctoral (PhD) conferred on 2015 she moved to Orlando, Florida in search of new opportunities for her personal and professional growth. Since 2009, she has been a licensed psychologist in Puerto Rico and currently one of her professional aspirations is to obtain her license as a Psychologist or Mental Health Counselor in the state of Florida. Glenda has more than eight years of experience providing counseling and psychological assessments to children, adolescents and adults. She has worked and collaborated with the Special Education Program of Puerto Rico and with the Department of Children and Families in Puerto Rico. She also has experience as an examiner for the Office of Disability Determinations in the state of Florida. Glenda is a wife and a mother of two adolescents.  She enjoys traveling and spending quality time with her family. She is bilingual in English and in Spanish.

Ivelisse Ruiz Coming Soon!        

​​​Cristian Alverio, MSW has a Bachelor of Social Work from the Inter-American University of Puerto Rico. With his Master of Social Work degree awarded in 2017, he moved to Orlando to make Central Florida his home and seek additional career opportunities. Christian brings more than 8 years of experience working with children, young adults, families and the elderly population. His previous mandate includes helping others cope with depression, anxiety, chemical addiction, as well as identifying traits of addictive personalities. He is passionate about working with children, providing advice and working together with subject matter experts to provide psychological evaluations to adolescent children and adults. He likes to educate and offer tools to clients on how to make positive changes in their lifestyle by helping them overcome the challenges of life in their environment. As Christian is constantly improving, he recently enrolled in advanced English classes to be able to offer fully bilingual therapies soon while continuing to obtain new certifications. In his spare time, he enjoys sharing time with his life partner, flying his own personal plane and flying to new destinations to learn from them and their diversity.   

Sully Rivera Montañez, M.Psy., was born in Puerto Rico. Sully possess a Master’s in Psychological Counseling from the Interamerican University of Puerto Rico. She recently moved to Florida and is a mother and wife. Sully has experience working with disabled children or anyone with mental disabilities, mourning, and situations related to cancer patients and their caregivers. Sully enjoys to see how human beings have the capacity to be resilient against the many circumstances of life.

Vania De Angeli Wood, MA is of Italian descent and was born in Brazil. She graduated as a psychologist at Santa Ursula University in Rio de Janeiro, where she worked as a psychotherapist for more than 10 years. Also at Santa Ursula, she specialized in Philosophy and Psychoanalysis - Subject and Ethics. She underwent clinical training in Orgonomia at the Wilhelm Reich Association of Brazil, in Sao Paulo, specializing in Personality Disorders. She moved to the United States, completed a Master's Degree in Clinical Psychology at North Carolina Central University (NCCU), and completed her internship at Duke University at a clinic specializing in psychological treatment for pain and trauma in Durham, NC. To become familiar with the relevant vocabulary of body therapies as well as the medical terms used in the USA, she completed the massage and bodywork course at Carteret Community College in Morehead City, NC. Vania recently moved to Florida and start working as a Mental Health therapist, working with groups, children, adolescents, adults, and families. Practices include psychoanalysis and cognitive behavior therapy, assessment, psychological evaluations, Systemic Family Constellation, Life & Business Coach, and Access Bars therapy. She may help individuals deal with issues associated with addictions and substance abuse. 

​​Wilmarie Rosa Coming Soon!        

Lisa Del Valle, Ph.D. has a Ph.D. and MA in School Psychology and a Bachelor of Social Work at the Interamerican University of Puerto Rico Metropolitan Campus. Within the field of psychology, she has expanded her studies, becoming certified in cognitive behavioral therapy for Puerto Rican children and adolescents, and acceptance and commitment therapy for families and couples from the Psychological Research Institute (IPSI) - UPR in Rio Piedras, PR. She was a founder of the corporation of professional services Puerto Rico Psychological Group. During the past 7 years, she has worked as a therapist for preschool, school children, adolescents and families. She is an expert on grief and the loss process. She has extensive experience working with the Department of Education of Puerto Rico in various psycho-educational and intervention programs. She has been an evaluator and researcher in her native country. She has written for various professional magazines and newspapers in Puerto Rico. She belongs to the Board of the Association of Pre and Prenatal Psychology of Puerto Rico. Currently, she moved to the city of Orlando, Florida in search of new opportunities for personal and professional growth. She is a wife and mother of three children.

​​​Juanita Salgado, LCSW was born and raised in Bogota, Colombia.  She completed four years of Psychology at Konrad Lorenz University in Bogota before moving to the United States in 2003.  Juanita worked with the migrant population in South Carolina while completing her undergraduate degree in Psychology from the University of North Carolina Wilmington.  After moving to Central Florida, she began her Masters studies in Clinical Social Work at the University of Central Florida.  Once Juanita completed the Masters of Social Work program, she has worked in crisis intervention on a wide variety of the population.  She is now fortunate to work with the Hispanic population, of which is closest to her values and heart.

Xiomara Fuentes Coming Soon!        

Kiara Serrano, MSW, Registered CSW was born and raised in Bayamón, Puerto Rico. She is fluent in both English and Spanish. Kiara is a graduate from the University of Central Florida where she graduated with her Master’s degree in Social Work. Kiara completed her internship at the Juvenile Drug Court as well as ay Hispanic Family Counseling. Kiara’s clinical experience includes providing counseling to individuals (children, teens, and adults) experiencing depression and anxiety, trauma, substance abuse, eating disorders, self-harm, and anger. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family and watching television.

Elba Rivera, MA, Registered MHC Intern, EMDR Cert. is a graduate from Webster University with a Master of Arts in Mental Health Counseling degree. She completed her internship at Sheeler High School and Dr. Phillips Hospital in the Family Counseling department. Elba’s past work experience includes, but is not limited to, working with women in crisis, teens, family, individual and group counseling. Elba also has experience as a case manager in which she assisted clients in reaching their highest potential and learning to live in a healthy environment.  Elba enjoys spending time with her grandchildren, reading, going to the beach and traveling. Elba has full training on EMDR Therapy for adults, children and teens to attend the post-traumatic stress disorders (TPT), anxiety, depression, and other traumas.

Celibeth Rodriguez, BSW was born in Puerto Rico. As a child, she identified her passion and desire to become a Social Worker. Since high school, she worked voluntarily with the school counselor, conducting educational workshops focused on self-esteem. She graduated in 2017 with her bachelor's degree in General Social Work from the Inter-American University. Celibeth completed an internship in the Department of Social Work at a hospital in Caguas, Puerto Rico, as well as at the Crime Victims Support Center in San Juan, Puerto Rico. In 2017, she completed a clinical internship in the SAETS Project (Student Support Service in Social Work) located at the Inter-American University of Puerto Rico, Metro Campus. Celibeth was the protagonist of the short film “I Am Resilient” Facing Times of Challenges as part of her clinical internship, she developed this short film focused on supporting the students of her university, victims of Hurricane Maria, orienting them about the resilience of the human being and emphasizing how resilience transforms adversity in a learning opportunity. She has experience in topics such as: anxiety, suicide prevention, depression, anger management, self-esteem, among others. She is passionate about working with the entire population and is sure that Social Work is her passion. Her goal is to complete a doctorate in Clinical Social Work and to base her profession on respect, social justice and solidarity. For her, Hispafam is very important: “There is no doubt that Hispanic Family Counseling is a professional environment in which ethics stands out, but above all solidarity, with these two ingredients a professional environment based on human sensitivity is created”.     

Jose Selles, MSW is a Social Worker who completed his bachelor’s and Master degree in the University of Puerto Rico.  His professional career started like Social Worker and Supervisor in the Department of Family, agency he worked for five years.  The next ten years he worked like Mediator and Supervisor in the General Court of Justice of Puerto Rico. On 2013, he moved to Florida where he has continued his professional development as Targeted Case Manager, Family Service Worker and Mental Health Therapist.  He also has been involved in volunteer work in community, religious and sports organization. Jose has vast experience working with different type of population; children, adolescents, adult and the elderly.        

         Speaks English                      Speaks Spanish                     Speaks Portuguese                     Speaks Greek                       Speaks Creole                    Speaks French

            *Ph.D.- Doctorate of Philosophy                                                *LCSW- Licensed Clinical Social Worker                                 *LMHC- Licensed Mental Health Counselor

            *LMFT- Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist                       *MSW- Master's in Social Work                                               *MHC- Mental Health Counselor

            *BSW- Bachelor's in Social Work                                              *MPsy- Master's in Psychology                                                 *MA- Master's Degree

Jasmin Suarez Cordero, MA was born in New York and raised in Puerto Rico.  She currently lives in Orlando with her beloved son, Yadiel, and husband, Raul. They are a big support in her life! She had the opportunity to finish a Master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling at the University of Puerto Rico.  Also, through the interesting challenges of life, she went to Madrid, Spain to study Social Psychology at the Complutense University of Madrid. Since 1991, she has been working as a counselor and educator in different agencies and universities. Her philosophy as a helping professional and educator is based on a strong belief in people’s strengths. She believes that by providing the right tools and experiences, people will build up strengths and resilience that will allow them to manage challenges and succeed in life. She likes to see people grow and empower themselves to live a happy life.

Angelina Correa, MA, Registered MHC Intern was born in Cartagena, Colombia. She has been living in the USA since 1985. She graduated from Palm Beach Atlantic University with a Master's of Arts in Mental Health Counseling and a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. In addition, she also has an Associate in Occupational Therapy in which she provided treatment for early intervention for children with various needs such as developmental delays, sensory integration, and neurological deficits. Some of her clinical experience includes providing counseling for individuals experiencing depression, anxiety, panic attacks, obsessive-compulsive disorders, and substance abuse. She has experience working with children, adolescents, and adults. Some of the techniques that she incorporates during counseling include CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy), Expressive Arts, Gestalt technique (Empty Chair) and mindfulness. As a counselor, Angelia will help her clients to identify problems, resolve conflicts and promote optimal functioning in everyday life. She is fluent in English and Spanish and conversational in Portuguese. She enjoys spending time with her family, friends and her two dogs, Jax the beagle and Destiny, the diva Chihuahua. 

Vanessa Trinidad Coming Soon!        

Niko Figueroa Coming Soon!        

Priscila Manzanet, MSW, Registered CSWI was born in Puerto Rico and can provide counseling services in either English or Spanish. She graduated with her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Central Florida in 2016. She has obtained her Master's degree in Social Work from the same University in 2018. Her goal is to become a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and she is interested in working in the field of mental health. Priscila has experience in working with depressive and anxiety symptoms, as well as working with children, adults, and couples.

​​Glenda Matheus Roldan, MA is from Puerto Rico. She received her Bachelor’s in 1993 in Social Sciences Sociology at the University of Puerto Rico in Rio Piedras. Glenda then studied at the Interamerican University in Puerto Rico. She received her Master’s degree in Counseling and Guidance in the year 2000. In 2007, Glenda moved to Orlando, FL. She has experience in individual counseling and group counseling with children, adolescents, and adults.

Xiomara Sanchez, MA, MHC was born and raised in Puerto Rico. She completed her Bachelor's degree in Sociology in 2006, at the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras campus. Then, in 2013, completed her Masters in Mental Health Counseling in University of Phoenix, Puerto Rico campus. She likes to help others achieve their goals. Her experience in the field of counseling has been with children and adults. Currently, she is proud to serve the community in Orlando, Florida with Hispanic Family Counseling, Inc.

Maria Valentina Moreno, MSW, Registered CSW Intern was born in Colombia and came to the United States when she was 12 years old. At the age of 10, she lost her dad in a car accident. This has been the hardest event in her life, but it has also given her the opportunity to meet therapists and understand the value of their work. Now, Valentina is a therapist. She graduated with a Masters Degree in Clinical Social Work from the University of Central Florida (UCF). Throughout her years at the university, she completed two internships at Florida Abolitionist and at Florida Hospital. These internships gave her the opportunity to work with different communities including human trafficking survivors. With this career, she plans to help a lot of people and keep growing professionally. Her next goal is to obtain her LCSW. Valentina has other long term goals that are guided by her passion for human rights.

Yorlenice Rodríguez-Irizarry, MSW, Registered CSW was born in 1979, in the city of Ponce, Puerto Rico. Yorlenice grew up in a town in the mountain area of Puerto Rico called Jayuya "Ciudad del Tomate". She graduated from high school in 1997, then started her university studies at the Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico, Ponce Campus. When she started her university studies, she entered in the Education Department with a concentration in Elementary Education but, her passion to serve and help others made her make changes to the Arts and Humanities Department with a concentration in Social Work. When she finished her bachelor's degree in 2001, she started working in the Department of Education of Puerto Rico as an intermediate level Spanish teacher. On November 5, 2001, she went from being a teacher to occupying a position as a School Social Worker, which she did for 14 years (2001-2014). In 2010 -2012, while performing her duties as a School Social Worker, she returned to school to complete a Masters in Clinical Social Work, this time at the Universidad del Este, Utuado Campus, PR. In 2014, she and her husband made the decision to move to the USA, where they lived in Lancaster, PA for one year and then moved to Orlando, FL, where she started working as a Targeted Case Manager from 2015 to 2016. In December of 2016, she had a wonderful experience and great opportunity to work as a Remote Clinician with a population of immigrant adolescents arriving in the USA from their countries (Central America). It was an enriching experience which helped her to confirm that she loves what she does and that SERVING is her vocation.

Tamela Crouch, MSW has worked in a variety of social service organizations for the last thirty years. She received her Master’s and Bachelor’s in Social Work, with a concentration in Family Counseling and a minor in Psychology. She started her professional career in Adult Probation in Charleston, West Virginia, working for seven Supreme Court Justices for five years. She then relocated to Orlando, Florida and worked as a New Horizons Counselor for the Center for Drug Free Living for 21 years. During her tenure with New Horizons, she provided counseling services to high school students at West Orange and Olympia. In addition, she also supervised and trained Master’s level interns and counselors from the University of Central Florida. She was asked by the OCPS SAFE Department to provide training to new SAFE Coordinators. She has also provided counseling services to children who had been suspended by Orange County Public Schools due to a Level IV infraction through the Back on Track intervention program. She worked for CFDFL at several of its programs, including: Adolescent Residential Treatment Center, Adolescent Therapeutic Community Center, Adult Drug Court, and Adult Outpatient Counseling Services Center. While working at the Center, she was an Adjunct Instructor for the University of Central Florida School of Social Work, teaching both undergraduate and graduate social work classes. She also served as a Faculty Field Liaison, which included her visiting community agencies that hosted BSW and MSW interns. In 2009, she began work with the Safe Schools Healthy Students Federal grant as a Project Success Coordinator. In this role, she provided individual, group and family counseling, and crisis intervention services to students at two Title I middle schools.  She developed programs to meet the needs of the students and families utilizing the Safe Schools, Healthy Students Program and created and facilitated Social-Emotional Counseling Groups for children. Additionally, she provided professional development services to school staff that needed instruction on how to deal with disruptive students, and assisted with the interventions to strengthen students’ social, emotional and decision-making skills for positive impact towards academic achievement. She is currently a contracted service provider with the Hispanic Family Counseling, Inc. and provides counseling services to a diverse group of clients and families.  

Nidia Medina, PhD, Licensed Evaluator She has a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico. She holds a Master degree in Mental Health Counseling from University of Phoenix in Puerto Rico. She also obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice with Penology emphasis from Interamerican University of Puerto Rico. Dr. Medina is currently a License Evaluator of Hispanic Family Counseling. Dr. Medina has been in the counseling field since 2000 and has provided outpatient and group therapy to children, teenagers, adults, couples and families. She has worked with a variety of issues including but not limited to severe and chronic mental illness, self-harm, ADHD, anger management, low self-esteem, anxiety disorder, depression disorder, addiction disorders, grief, stress and everyday relational and family issues. Dr. Medina relocated in Florida in 2013 and has provided services as a Mental Health Targeted Case Management and Mental Health Counselor for children, teenagers, adults and families in home, schools and office settings. Dr. Medina is happily married to her husband and has four kids. She works side by side with the Senior Pastor at her locale church to fulfill the mission to teach the gospel to every family. Dr. Medina believes that her God-given purpose is to inspire, empower and propel women, individuals and families with a Christian faith-based approach to reach their own purpose in life.   

Monica Ortiz, MSW was born in Puerto Rico. From a very young age she discovered her passion for working with children and families. This passion led her to study pedagogy. In 2003, she graduated from the University of Puerto Rico, where she obtained a Bachelor's Degree in Preschool and Elementary Education. For 14 years, she worked as a preschool teacher serving preschool children between 3 and 5 years of age and their families. During her teaching career, she has had the opportunity to work with children with different special needs, among them Autism and ADHD. She was an advocate for children's rights and worked closely with the families of her students so that they could develop their skills to the fullest. Monica has worked in the Literacy Program of the Department of Education of Puerto Rico. She had the opportunity to participate and motivate adults to learn to read and write. In 2008, she decided that she wanted to help disadvantaged families in multiple situations in their recovery process and to encourage them to have a better quality of life. This motivation led her to study social work. She completed her internship in the Psychiatric Emergency Room for Children and Adolescents (ASMCA) at the Regional Hospital of Bayamón. In 2011, she completed her post-graduate studies at the Interamerican University of Puerto Rico, where she obtained a Master's Degree in Social Work. She worked as a volunteer at the Alzheimer's Association, Puerto Rico Chapter. In the same position, she worked as a support group collaborator. In her role as co-leader of the support group, she worked directly with the primary caregivers, focusing on providing the necessary assistance and education to optimize the quality of life of Alzheimer's patients and their families. She is currently working as a therapist. It is her goal to be able to provide each of her participants and their families with the necessary tools to improve their quality of life.

© 2017 All Rights Reserved

Michelle Rivera Coming Soon!        

Keren Rohena Coming Soon!        

Yadiel Muñoz, MSW received a bachelor’s and a master's degree in Social Work with emphasis in Mental Health from Southern Adventist University in Collegedale, Tennessee. He has worked with adolescents and families in a private and group environment. Yadiel has experience dealing with diverse problems that range from addictions, couple problems, behavior problems in children etc.. As a counselor, Yadiel wants to help individuals and families to function in an optimal way. For this, Yadiel focuses on motivating and reinforcing the qualities of the individual or family. Yadiel also feels a great passion for music. Yadiel plays the piano and sings actively in his church. Yadiel is proud to belong to the family of Hispanic Family Counseling, Inc., where he provides diverse services to clients and their families in both English and Spanish.

Zaida Rios Coming Soon!        

Susette Lopez, LCSW, Clinical Supervisor, Licensed Evaluator is a graduate from the University of Central Florida, where she obtained her Master’s degree in Social Work. She also has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Florida, where she gained experience in crisis intervention as well as suicide prevention. Her clinical experience includes providing counseling to individuals experiencing depression and anxiety, as well as working with individuals experiencing other forms of severe mental illness. She has experience working in many populations, including children, adolescents, and adults. In addition, she received her credentials as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in 2018. She is fluent in both English and Spanish and enjoys spending time with her family and friends, reading, and hiking.

Sarah Serrano, LCSW, Program Supervisor, South Florida Region  is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker serving the South Florida tri-county area (Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade Counties). She obtained her Bachelors in Psychology with a minor in Criminal Justice from the University of Central Florida (Go Knights!) and her Masters in Social Work with a concentration in Addictions Counseling from Florida International University. Sarah has over 13 years of experience in the field of Behavioral Health, having worked with the forensic mental health system and later the addictions recovery field in both clinical and administrative settings as Director of Behavioral Health Programs for a local South Florida agency. Most recently, Sarah has been concentrating on providing services as an independent contractor in corporate crisis counseling, conducting clinical trainings and independent clinical audits for local social services agencies, and facilitating educational workshops for community and faith-based groups. Sarah is registered to supervise Clinical Social Work Interns. “My passion lies in assisting individuals and agencies fulfill their potential in all areas.”

Jessica Heredia, LMHC, Licensed Evaluator is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor at Hispanic Family Counseling Inc. Jessica holds a Master’s Degree in Guidance and Counseling from Bayamon Central University in Puerto Rico; a Master’s Degree in Christian Clinical Counseling from Central Christian University in Orlando, Florida; and a Diploma in Biblical Studies and Theology from A/G Multicultural Theological Institute. Jessica's professional experience began and developed in church ministries, and included being a Children's Director and a Youth Pastor. She is fully bilingual and her previous work experience includes working with many diverse populations including children, youth, marriage, and family. Jessica is a certified case manager and has EMDR full training, and is looking forward to having an EMDR certification. She has provided services to diverse populations in terms of cultural, social, and ethnic background. For more than 4 years, Jessica was part of the Youth Pastor Team, Worship Team and Translation Team Ministries at a local church. Additionally, she has experience in presenting at conferences and giving training to churches and schools (in the USA and Puerto Rico) on the topics of Domestic Violence, Differences between ADHD and Anxiety signs & symptoms, Assertive Communication, and Leadership. Jessica is happily married to Norbert for more than 14 years and together they have 2 dynamic sons. Lately, she's been developing professional experience leading groups to educate and empower children and youth. Jessica feels blessed to be a facilitator in the field for individuals looking to regain self-confidence and empowerment. She is also on various boards, including the Early Learning Coalition of Osceola County, Healthy Start Coalition of Seminole County, and The United States Fire Department Reserve Corps.

Denisse Centeno-Lamas, LCSW has worked with a variety of social service organizations for the last fifteen years. Denisse was born in Puerto Rico and moved to Orlando in 1996 to start her professional career. She received her Master's and Bachelor's degrees in Social Work from the University of Central Florida in 2001 and 2000 respectively. In 2006, she obtained her License as a Clinical Social Worker, and in the same year was named the “Intervention Specialist of the year” by the Center For Drug-Free Living. In 2009, Denisse became a District SAFE Suicide Prevention Counselor for Orange County Public Schools, where she left her mark by contributing significantly to changing OCPS policies to meet state law standards. In her experience with OCPS, Denisse developed the suicide prevention program and reviewed the Baker Act policies for the district, providing suicide prevention training and counseling and serving as a liaison between mental health hospitals, providers, and the school district. In 2012, Denisse decided to follow her dream and create Hispanic Family Counseling, Inc. in July of that year. Today, Denisse provides counseling services to a diverse population of clients and families, as well as serves as the Executive Director for the agency.

For the past few years, Denisse has been an active advocate in the field of suicide prevention. She is currently serving as the President of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention - Central Florida Chapter - and has been since 2014. Additionally, Denisse is an adjunct professor at the University of Central Florida, teaching an array of social work classes. Denisse is also registered to supervise Clinical Social Work Interns, and regularly supervises employees while they work towards licensure.

Denisse's awards and recognitions include receiving the “Social Worker of the Year 2015 in Central Florida” award given by the National Association of Social Workers. UCF selected her as the “Alumni of the year - 2015” to recognize her influence in the Central Florida community. In October of 2015, Denisse was awarded the Lighthouse Award by the Working Together Coalition for being a "beacon in the community". Denisse was recognized by Orange County Public Schools during Hispanic Heritage month in 2016, was a finalist in La Prensa's Mujeres Destacadas in 2017, and was a distinguished panelist in 2017 for the Hispanic American Professional and Business Women's Association Foundation. Denisse is also a Hispanic Society of Friendship Honorary Member from Lakeview Middle School, the VIP Woman of the Year of the Circle National Association of Professional Women, and a Continental Who's Who Honored Member.  Denisse's business Hispanic Family Counseling has won the Don Quijote Awards "Hispanic Business of the Year" award in 2017. Denisse is a member of several boards, including the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Central Florida Chapter, Leadership Council National Association of American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, and The United States Fire Department Reserve Corps.

Denisse loves to travel and to spend time with her husband, family, and friends. She is a founder and has been an active member of Iglesia Cristiana Hispana (Discípulos de Cristo) – North Orlando since 1996. 

The HispaFam

Cecilia Hernández, MA was born in Caguas, Puerto Rico. She has a Master's degree in Counseling from the University of Puerto Rico. She has a License Level III as a Professional Counselor in Psychoactive Substances and is working, privately, with people with drug addiction problems. She worked for 16 years as a Specialist in Rehabilitation from the Administration of Mental Health and Addiction in Puerto Rico. She has experience working with patients with severe mental conditions. She worked for many years on a voluntary basis, offering counseling services to the community. Counseling is her passion!

Cristina Paz, PhD, was born in Maracaibo-Venezuela, and has lived in Orlando for 2 years. She has a degree in Psychology and Master's degree in Clinical Psychology obtained from the Rafael Urdaneta-Venezuela University, as well as a Doctorate in Human Sciences and Postdoctoral Activities in Human Sciences from the University of Zulia-Venezuela, focused on Family Violence researching. Her professional career of more than 30 years has provided her with therapeutic mastery in psychological conditions related to medical illnesses, family problems and psychological evaluation. She is an Associate-Retired Professor of Social Work undergrad at the University of Zulia-Venezuela, teaching subjects such as General Psychology, Family Psychology, Human Development and Cognitive Processes. She is the creator of the Family Violence course, taught at the Undergraduate, Postgraduate and Postdoctoral levels at the same University, with training and facilitation in Systemic Family Therapy, Research Methodology and Positive Psychology. Cristina is a researcher on Family Violence since 1999, and a speaker at scientific events, with articles published in indexed journals. She is also a collaborator with the "La Nota Latina" Magazine, with articles written on family psychology that seek to educate families as a preventive means to many of their problems. Cristina is a person with training and passion for Psychology, whose mission is searching for the greater well-being of people and families.

Nyrgidma Santiago, MA was born in Puerto Rico.  She is bilingual and has lived and worked in Orlando, Florida for the past 29 years. Nyrgidma has a Master’s degree in clinical psychology and addiction counseling. She is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist in Puerto Rico.  Nyrgidma is part of the National Association of Forensic Counseling and is AODA Board Certified. Nyrgidma is a DUI Evaluator and instructor in the State of Florida. Nyrgidma has over thirty years working in substance abuse prevention, treatment, education, court intervention, program development, and service coordination.  She has more than twenty years of experience in counseling with children and families and more than ten years of experience in private practice. She also developed and directed the implementation of a Family Care Program, targeting at-risk families. Nyrgidma was involved in the domestic violence movement as the President of the Board of Directors of a domestic violence center, Casa Protegida Julia de Burgos, where she provided counseling for victims. Nyrgidma also has experience with mentoring and supervising. She has over fifteen years working with the correctional system. She is a previous member of the Orange County Citizens’ Police Review Board.

​​​Diana Tafur, MHC, Registered MHC Intern, received her Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Rollins College in 2019. She is currently a Registered Mental Health Counselor Intern pursuing her license in the state of Florida. Diana provides counseling in English and Spanish. She has experience working with individuals and groups that include adults, adolescents, and children with a focus on depression, anxiety, trauma, family issues such as divorce, and conduct issues. Diana believes the focus of every therapeutic encounter should be empowering individuals so they can gain a better quality of life and be able to overcome life’s challenges.

Marsha Mena, MSW, Reg. CSW Intern, Clinical Coordinator, Therapist is the Clinical Coordinator at Hispanic Family Counseling. In her position, she provides orientation and clinical training to new team members, as well provides clinical support and continuing education for current staff. Marsha oversees interns from a variety of Universities who are pursuing their degrees in the areas of Mental Health, Social Work, Marriage and Families, and Psychology. Marsha also provides direct supervision to interns in their generalist and clinical practice from the School of Social Work at the University of Central Florida. Marsha holds a Masters and Bachelors degree in Social Work, and a Children’s Services Certificate from the University of Central Florida. Marsha is also a Registered Clinical Social Work Intern pursuing her license as a Clinical Social Worker in Florida. Marsha speaks English, Spanish, and some Portuguese, and believes that providing services in ones preferred or native language is essential to ensuring that her clients are comfortable and able to express themselves adequately. Marsha is truly passionate about mental health and serving her community, as well as helping those in need.

Marsha has a variety of experience working with adults, adolescents, and children. Her populations of interest include working with young adults and adolescent youth in suicide prevention, trauma, behavioral issues, anger management, domestic violence, eating disorders, child welfare, LGBTQ+, grief & loss, depression, and anxiety. In her experience, she previously worked at a domestic violence shelter for women and children, working with individuals in crisis and providing services to women and families affected by domestic violence and human trafficking. She has previously worked with children in the foster care system and has also provided direct support to students and families as a school social worker for Seminole County Public Schools. Currently, Marsha is providing mental health services as a therapist with HFC as well as a psychiatric hospital in Orlando. 

Mayelin Aguilar, MA, Registered MHC Intern was born in Cuba and, in 1998, graduated with a degree in Clinical Psychology. Since she was a little girl, she has showed her desire to help others, teaching them to be better people and to get ahead by being more positive. Upon graduating as a psychologist in Cuba, she worked in a community hospital for 3 years, then specialized in sports psychology, working also with high-performance athletes of sports teams in Cuba. During 1998 until 2005, she worked as a group dynamics therapist with groups of people with addictions, abused children and women, people living with HIV, and traumas. In Cuba, she obtained certifications such as play therapist, art, addictions, family, and traumas. From 1999 to 2004, she taught introductory classes in psychology at the university for workers. In 2005, she left Cuba for Venezuela to work as a collaborator of the Cuban sports mission in Venezuela, educating aquatic sports athletes how to reduce anxiety, depression, and fears before competitions, as well as increase sports performance. In 2007, she began her master's degree in General Psychology at the University of Phoenix and, in 2011, completed her master's degree in Mental Health Counselor at Troy University. She is completing her internship hours and is preparing for the state exam in order to obtain a Mental Health Counselor license. She works with the Hispanic population presently. She has done mental health first aid, trauma, anxiety and depression in adolescents and children, adoption, addictions and multiculturalism in mental health. Mayelin is a therapist who loves her work and works with passion to educate clients on how to change their lifestyles and how to overcome life's problems without deteriorating their mental health. In the field of psychology, she has done research on the positive effect of cognitive paradigms, the power of cognitive therapy, and reality therapy for mental health patients.

Elidio Suriel Coming Soon!        

Rebecca Millan Coming Soon!        

Amanda Colon, MSW, Registered CSWI received her Bachelor’s degree in Social Work with a minor in Psychology from the University of Central Florida in 2017. She continued on to graduate with her Master’s degree in Social Work in 2018, also from the University of Central Florida. She is currently a Registered Clinical Social Work Intern, pursuing her license in the state of Florida. Amanda has experience interning at United Way and Hispanic Family Counseling, where she found a passion for working with vulnerable populations. Amanda’s areas of interest include working with individuals (children, adolescents, and adults) struggling with depression, anxiety, trauma, substance abuse, eating disorders, LGBTQ+ issues, self-harm, and anger management. In her spare time, Amanda enjoys reading, spending time with friends and family, and arts and crafts. 

Natalie Montaldi, MSW, Registered CSW Intern is currently a Registered Clinical Social Work intern pursuing her license as a Clinical Social Worker in Florida. She has a Bachelors of Art in Psychology and minor in Family Studies and a Masters in Social Work with a specialization in International Social Work and Community Development, both from Southern Adventist University, in Collegedale TN. Natalie has over 4 years of field experience working with at-risk youth, suicide prevention, crisis intervention, and family/marriage therapy. Natalie’s passion is working with individuals and families providing psychotherapy using strength-based modalities. Her area of specialty is working with teens, adults, couples, families, and individuals struggling with depression, anxiety, self-esteem, behavior and anger management, conflict resolutions, parenting skills, and communication issues.  Natalie also volunteers at Spring Meadows Church Counseling Center once a month to provide pro bono counseling to individuals and families in need. In her spare time, she enjoys supporting her church, spending time with her family and friends, exercising, and traveling.  She is also fluent in Spanish and English and feels blessed to be able to provide her skills and knowledge to help the community and families in areas that are most needed.

Nancy Oquendo-Rolón is a graduate from the University of Central Florida. There, she obtained her Bachelor's in Social Work, and later a Master’s Degree in Clinical Social Work with a specialization in Mental Health. Ms. Oquendo-Rolón worked with the Children and Families Department in Puerto Rico, in a center for Children's Childcare and Development, where she gave services to both children and their families. She was a community leader and advocate, volunteering in schools and community organizations in her hometown of Vega Alta, Puerto Rico. 

Ms. Oquendo-Rolón is passionate about empowering people and communities, and loves to work with all populations, including the LGBTQ+ community. As a therapist, she loves to help people to understand, recognize, and manage their feelings and emotions in a healthy manner. Her next goal is to obtain her license as a Clinical Social Worker.