Newsletter Blog

President’s Message

by Michael Donner, PhD

It was my pleasure to attend the Membership Integration Party on Sunday, September 20th, an event made possible by the hard work of Meryl Botkin, Chair of the Membership Division, all the members of the Membership Integration Committee and the SFCP staff. What follows is part of my remarks at that meeting.

SFCP is a large and vibrant community, with over 600 analyst and community members and thousands of visitors and participants in our courses and programs. We are now made stronger and more vibrant with the inclusion of the Sacramento Psychoanalytic Society - a group formed to support and enhance psychoanalytic ideas in the Sacramento region. The board has just established a new membership category for our Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy graduates and students and we are looking forward to their formal engagement with this new part of our organization.

Growth is wonderful, but with growth also comes change and loss. This month marks the departure of Beth Schecter, who served as our Interim Executive Director, and a transition to our new Executive Director, Marian Banks-Nickleberry. Beth has done a wonderful job as interim ED, and we are a much improved organization as a result of her efforts. Not only has she helped us continue our work throughout the year, she has guided us through some significant challenges financially and organizationally. I have learned quite a bit from her about the complexities of running an organization like SFCP, and have benefited from her many years of experience.

Newsletter Issue: 2015-10 (October 2015)


Message from the Executive Director

by Marian Banks-Nickleberry, MS, LMSW



Do you like to Spend other people’s money?

Does the thought of Galas, 5-K Runs , Bake Sales and Golf Tournaments make you smile?

Than serving on the SFCP Development/Fundraising committee may be just the thing for YOU.

We are currently seeking people interested in volunteering for the Development/Fundraising Committee. One of our goals is to shore up our organizations financial capacity to support our ongoing programs and services.

Therefore we want to develop a proactive process of fundraising and friend raising to achieve our financial goals. If you are interested in serving on this newly formed SFCP committee, please contact me via Lynda Connelly at 415-563-3366 or email her at You will be added to our list and contacted once we establish the date for our first meeting.

Newsletter Issue: 2015-10 (October 2015)


New Ombudsman for SFCP - Myrna Frankel, LCSW

Myrna Frankel is a graduate of the San Francisco Psychoanalytic Institute in child and adult psychoanalysis. She also holds degrees in social work, education, psychology and speech path ology. With a long abiding interest in early childhood development, she taught pre-school and sat on the Mayor’s Committee on Childcare. A faculty member of SFCP, she is the recently retired co-chair of the Child Colloquium Series.


Newsletter Issue: 2015-10 (October 2015)


Sacramento joins San Francisco

by Susan Boulware, PhD

Mission Statement:

The Sacramento Psychoanalytic Society is a group dedicated to the study and advancement of Psychoanalytic thought in the Sacramento area.

Some of you may have noticed the announcements for the Sacramento Psychoanalytic Society (SPS) with the SFCP logo and affiliation. This affiliation has been worked on for several years through the initiative of Susan Boulware and the SPS and developed with Catherine Mallouh, chair of the Outreach Division. The affiliation was approved by Michael Donner and the Management Team, and brought to the Board recently. We are now able to move forward with expanding both our missions, promoting our programs, through a productive collaboration.

Catherine Mallouh, MD, Chair, SFCP Outreach Division

The Sacramento area has long had a connection to SFCP; there are several analyst members as well as community members and SFCP has provided support by administering CEU for out coursed and study groups. A couple of years ago, Susan Boulware, PhD and John Thor Cornelius, MD, formed the Sacrament Psychoanalytic Society with the goal of advancing the study and practice of psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic psychotherapy in the Sacramento area. Recently the connection to SFCP has been formalized and SPS is now an affiliate of SFCP in the Outreach Division. We are very happy about this alliance and feel it will benefit the community in Sacramento through the support and credibility of an existing and strong organization, as well as benefit SFCP by increasing the number of clinicians who recognize the value of psychoanalytic thinking in clinical work and who will participate in SFCP programming, especially the PPTP.

Newsletter Issue: 2015-10 (October 2015)


PAPPTP Students 2015 - 2016

Sepideh joined the faculty of Stanford’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, having completed her psychiatry residency and a neuropsychiatry fellowship there. She now works in the Neuropsychiatry Clinic, consults to the Neurology Department, and conducts individual psychotherapy and psychodynamic group psychotherapy. “This is now a perfect time for me to deepen my knowledge in psychodynamic and psychoanalytic psychotherapy and also to pass it to my enthusiastic trainees at Stanford University.” She is fluent in Persian and speaks Japanese. (Her Ph.D. work was in Japan). COLLEEN CUNNINGHAM, LMFT
Colleen, a licensed marriage and family therapist, has been in practice since she graduated from Notre Dame de Namur University in 2006. For her internship, she was a clinical services specialist at La Selva Residential Facility (of Momentum for Mental Health, Palo Alto) where she provided rehabilitation and therapeutic services. She now sees children, teens, and adults. “I whole-heartedly believe in, and trust, the role therapy plays in our lives. Healing does happen.”
Newsletter Issue: 2015-10 (October 2015)


2015 - 2016 PPTP Students

JAIME M. BARDACKE, LCSW is a San Francisco based clinical social worker licensed in August of 2010. Jaime began her social work career as a Family Services Worker at San Francisco Head Start. While there, she worked with a mental health consultant who was psychodynamically trained, and she fell in love with the theory and practice of this approach to clinical work. Jaime went on to receive her Masters in Social Work at UC Berkeley, where she participated in the Child Welfare Title IV-E program. After graduate school, Jaime worked for San Francisco Child Protective Services as an Emergency Response Social Worker. While there, she became interested in trauma, particularly the impact of trauma on the nervous system. This interest led her to pursue training in Somatic Experiencing, and she was certified as a Somatic Experiencing Practioner in 2012. After obtaining
her certification, Jaime has continued to study both somatic practices and psychodynamic theory. She completed the Coalition for Clinical Social Work's education program through SFCP in 2014, and she is looking forward to delving deeper into theory and practice through the PPTP program. Jaime currently has a private practice in San Francisco, where she works with both children and adults. Jaime also teaches in the Social Work Department at San Francisco State, and provides training and consulting for local schools and non-profit agencies.
Newsletter Issue: 2015-10 (October 2015)


Membership Division News

by Meryl J. Botkin, PhD, Chair


The Fall Welcome Back Party was a huge success. About 80 to 90 members and friends were in attendance. This year we had many new faces. It was really gratifying to talk to new folks from all over the Bay Area who were interested in becoming involved with our psychoanalytic community.

A new program highlighting the activities of our members, aptly named Members Present, will begin on November 1st. It features the types of work and activities many of our members are engaged in. On November 1st, Leah Fisher, LCSW, will talk about taking a sabbatical, a brave move that involved closing down her practice to travel in Asia and South America. She discusses her experiences in closing her practice; her travels and adventures; and then, in working with her husband, Chuck Fisher, on projects in South America.

Members Present is an informal gathering, in which all of our members can talk about or present their current work, their work in progress, and/or personal experiences working with diverse populations. We want to enlarge our psychoanalytic community’s awareness of the range and scope of the work our members are engaged in. If you want to present your work, please contact Meryl Botkin at

We are excited to note that our new membership category, PPM, or the Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Members, has a chair, Lovina Chahal, MD. She is forming a committee to help with designing programs and events for the graduate members of our psychoanalytic psychotherapy programs.

Newsletter Issue: 2015-10 (October 2015)


Poetry and Psychoanalysis – An Announcement from Susan Kolodny, Chair

by Susan Kolodny, DMH, Chair


As we enter our program’s tenth year, Poetry and Psychoanalysis will shift from three events per year to one. Our event this year will be held on Saturday, April 16, 2016 from 10:30 am -12:30 pm at the Center.

The event will be a celebration of ten years of interviews with guest poets on territory shared by our two endeavors, followed by readings from the poet’s work. At the April 16 event, however, the format will be different. Usually, one of our committee of poet/analysts (Forrest Hamer, Alice Jones, Susan Kolodny) conducts the interview. This time Carol Snow, a former guest poet, will interview our committee on our work as poets and psychoanalysts, and on some of our work.

Poetry and Psychoanalysis events are free and open to the public. We welcome people with interest in either field and in the relationship between them. Our events are supported by the generosity of the J. David Frankel Memorial Fundfor

Poetry and Psychoanalysis and are held under the auspices of the Outreach Program of SFCP.

A more detailed announcement will be available closer to the event.

Newsletter Issue: 2015-10 (October 2015)


Faculty Committee News

by Diane Donnelly, PhD, Faculty Committee Member


SFCP would like to welcome the following individuals to the Faculty:

Celeste Birkhofer, PhD, Adjunct Faculty. Her teaching interests include Relational Psychoanalysis, Theoretical Pluralism, Comparative Psychoanalysis, History of Psychoanalysis, Introduction to Psychoanalysis, Couples Therapy, and Countertransfer-ence

Angela Sowa, PsyD, Adjunct Faculty. Her teaching interests include Infancy, Development 0-3, Group Process, Dreams, Case Conference, Winnicott, Bion, Creativity and Psychoanalysis

Diane Donnelly, Chair
Faculty Appointment Subcommittee

The SFCP Faculty Committee is recruiting new members.

Please contact Elizabeth Biggart, PhD, Co-Chair, ( or 650-322-1975) if you are interested in joining. The Faculty Committee represents the Faculty in the educational mission of the Center. The Committee’s primary task is to support and promote the educational efforts and intellectual pursuits of the Faculty.

Newsletter Issue: 2015-10 (October 2015)


SFCP Community Members Mentoring Program


SFCP offers free mentoring from September 2015-June 2016 to Community Members who want to discuss developing as a psychoanalytic psychotherapist, areas of theory that are of interest, or available resources and programs. Mentors meet one time per month with mentees for the academic year. We love to help you and hope you reach out!

Please visit the Community Members Mentoring Program webpage to apply for this program.

We hope to hear from you!

Holly Gordon, DMH, Hilary Foster, PhD and Sunny Kuegle, PsyD, Co-chairs

Newsletter Issue: 2015-10 (October 2015)



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