LACEFT Board of Directors

Silvina Irwin, Ph.D.

EFT Trainer, LACEFT Executive Director (current)

Silvina IrwinSilvina is a licensed clinical psychologist, specializing in working with survivors of childhood and adult trauma, focusing on recovery at the individual level, as well as addressing the impact of trauma on intimate relationships in her work with couples.  She is co-founder of the EFT Resource Center, a home for HMT workshops and a training site for interns and licensed practitioners interested in developing their EFT skills. She is certified as an EFT Therapist, EFT Supervisor, and EFT Trainer.  In collaboration with Dr. Lisa Blum and Kristina Jackson, MFT, she creating EFT-based organizational interventions for business settings.

Nancy Gardner, Ph.D.

EFT Trainer, Continuing Education Coordinator, & LACEFT Past President

Nancy Gardner Nancy is certified by the International Center for Excellence in EFT (ICEEFT) as an EFT Trainer, Supervisor and Therapist. She is a Co-founder, Inaugural President, and now Executive Director of the Los Angeles Center for EFT (LACEFT). Nancy is a AAMFT Approved Supervisor and a CAMFT Certified Supervisor. She taught couple therapy for more than a decade at Alliant International University in Los Angeles, and founded and chaired the couple therapy special interest group for the Los Angeles County Psychological Association (LACPA). She is also a past president of LACPA, and has been a board member and convention chair for the California Psychological Association (CPA). Nancy has post-doctoral training in psychoanalytic psychotherapy, family therapy, and couple therapy. She is licensed as a psychologist and as a clinical social worker, and has a private practice in Westlake Village where she sees individual adults and couples.

Kristina Jackson, MS LMFT

LACEFT Board President

Kristina Jackson, is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in private practice in Hermosa Beach, CA. For the past 25 years she has been working with couples and individuals to find relief, understanding and connection for themselves and in their most important relationships. Kristina is also a Certified Emotionally Focused Couples Therapist and Supervisor who works with licensed therapists throughout California and across the United States teaching and guiding them to become certified EFT therapists and Supervisors.

Suzanne Baron, LMFT

LACEFT Board Vice President, Programs Committee Chair

Suzanne is a Certified EFT Therapist and licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with a private practice in San Luis Obispo. She works with individual adults and couples and has a background in working with addictions and helping family members of those struggling with addictions. While she has done couple therapy throughout her career, EFT training has given her renewed energy and passion in her work with couples. Suzanne has volunteered at numerous trainings including Externships, Core Skills, and Hold Me Tight workshops. She is grateful for the community and training opportunities that LACEFT provides.

RJ Thomas, LMFT

LACEFT Treasurer

RJ is a licensed psychotherapist specializing in adult, adolescent, couples and family therapy. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism from Washington and Lee University in Virginia and Master’s Degree in Psychology with an emphasis on Marriage and Family Therapy from Pepperdine University in Los Angeles. His practice is based in Redondo Beach, California.

Betsy Walli, LMFT

LACEFT Secretary

Betsy WalliBetsy is a Marriage and Family Therapist in private practice in Hermosa Beach, CA, as well as Seal Beach, CA (in Orange County). Betsy specializes in Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) for individuals, couples, and families, and also provides EFT-based Hold Me Tight weekend couples workshops. She began learning about couples therapy and EFT while pursuing her Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy at California State University, Fullerton, and she continues to pursue additional training in EFT. Betsy also holds a Ph.D. in Linguistics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Lisa Blum, PsyD

LACEFT Diversity Committee Co-Chair

Lisa BlumLisa is a psychologist in private practice in Pasadena and West Hollywood, where she works with both gay and straight clients in individual, couples, and family therapy.  Lisa is a Certified EFT Supervisor and also has a specialty in community psychology and prevention-oriented programming.  Dr. Blum is deeply committed to the EFT approach and is in the process of completing certification.  She is co-founder of the EFT Resource Center, a home for EFT-informed workshops for couples and a training site for practitioners interested in developing their EFT skills. In collaboration with Dr. Silvina Irwin and Kristina Jackson, MFT, she is creating an EFT-based organizational intervention for team-building in business settings.

Yamonte Cooper, PhD

LACEFT Diversity Committee Co-Chair

Dr. Yamonte Cooper is a Professor of Counseling at El Camino College, adjunct Professor of Clinical Psychology at Antioch University, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC), National Certified Counselor (NCC), ICEEFT Certified Emotionally Focused Therapist (EFT) & Supervisor, Certified Gottman Therapist, and AASECT Certified Sex Therapist (CST). He specializes in working with couples, trauma, sexual dysfunctions, gender & sexual identity, depression & anxiety, bipolar disorder, personality issues, grief, and other mental health problems.

He is the author of the upcoming book Racial Trauma and African-American Men (Routledge). Further, as a Fulbright scholar, Dr. Cooper exchanged best practices in career counseling and development in Germany and has exchanged best practices with higher education institutions in Botswana. He can be reached at

Anne Crile, LMFT

LACEFT Membership Committee Chair

Anne is a licensed marriage and family therapist (MFC #86294) in private practice in Pasadena. Anne is a certified EFT and PREPARE/ENRICH therapist for couples and also has advanced training in AEDP for individuals. She specializes in helping couples create and restore safe, meaningful, and fulfilling connection; women find balance and thrive in the midst of overwhelming work, family, health or personal difficulties; and 20- and 30-somethings develop a strong sense of personal identity and navigate through life’s transitions.

Haleigh Scherma, LPCC

LACEFT Promotion Committee Chair

Haleigh Scherma is a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, dual licensed in the state of California and Colorado. Haleigh is a Certified EFT Therapist and Supervisor. She was trained in EFT during graduate school in 2015 and became certified during her private group practice work in Denver, Colorado. She currently has her own private practice in West Los Angeles where she focuses on work with highly reactive couples, anger management, sexuality and LGBT issues. While she does work with a few individuals, Haleigh enjoys working with the tough cookie couples and those who have struggled with emotional expression and attachment trauma.

Maryam Dalilli

LACEFT Outreach Committee Co-Chair

Maryam Dalili, PsyD, LMFT has a Doctorate of Psychology and is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. She sees clients in her private practice, Hand in Hand Counseling Center, with locations in Beverly Hills, Torrance and Downey. Dr. Dalili provides psychotherapy in English, Farsi, and Turkish to clients with diverse cultural backgrounds. She takes pride in volunteering often at EFT events. She is also passionate about facilitating her own workshops, especially; Hold Me Tight couples workshops at her offices and neighboring communities.

Kris Crownover

LACEFT Outreach Committee Co-Chair

Kristy Crownover is a registered Associate Marriage and Family Therapist, practicing under the supervision of Dr. Maryam Dalili. She is an EFT therapist specializing in secure attachment and helping individuals, couples and families create deeper connections. She is in private practice at Hand in Hand Counseling Center in Torrance, Downey, and Beverly Hills. Kristy especially enjoys working with couples in the prenatal and postpartum transition and helping families understand, express and respond to intense feelings. She is passionate about facilitating educational workshops designed to increase emotional awareness such as: Hold Me Tight for couples, Bringing Baby Home for pregnant couples, Parenting through Connection and Nonviolent Communication. She has volunteered for numerous EFT events and feels grateful to be part of the LACEFT community.

Allison Rosenberg, AMFT

LACEFT Scholarship Committee Chair

Karen ShoreAllison is a Registered Associate Marriage and Family Therapist, practicing under the supervision of Estee Diamond. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Arizona State State University and a master’s degree in Counseling with an emphasis on Marriage and Family Therapy from Ottawa University. Allison has extensive experience working in the mental health field, with an emphasis on attachment and trauma, and has worked in a variety of settings including community mental health, eating disorder treatment as well as substance abuse treatment. She currently has a private practice in Encino and serves as the Lead Therapist at a Los Angeles based substance abuse treatment center. Allison began her training in Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) starting in graduate school in 2012 and continues to train in the model. Allison has also been trained in a variety of trauma models including the Trauma Resiliency Model and EMDR. She has a special interest in working with couples and families using EFT in addition to working with teens, young adults and individuals experiencing various life stressors and personal growth challenges.

James L. Furrow, Ph.D.

Ex Officio Board Member & Certified EFT Therapist, Supervisor, & Trainer

James FurrowJim is a certified EFT therapist, supervisor, and trainer. In 2006 Jim led the first of several EFT externship and certified trainings in Los Angeles. In 2011 he cofounded the Los Angeles Center for Emotionally Focused Therapy serving as Executive Director through 2016. In addition, to training Jim has contributed to the development of the EFT model through research and writing. He was principle editor or the EFT Casebook: New Directions in Couple Treatment and contributing author to the Becoming an EFT Therapist: The Workbook, and co-author of Emotionally Focused Therapy for Dummies. His research and clinical writing appear in the Journal of Couple and Relationship Therapy, Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, Journal of Systemic Therapies, and Psychology and Spirituality. He is a clinical member and approved supervisor in the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy and a Certified Family Life Educator.