Welcome to the page where I tell you a bit about me. I have over 25 years of experience in social services, including more than a decade in mental health. I earned my Master of Social Work degree in 1997 from San Diego State University, and have been a licensed clinical social worker in Oregon for 12 years. I've lived in the Eugene-Springfield area for 28 years, and have been married to my wife Maryanne for 26 years.
During more than two decades as a social services professional, I’ve worked for ShelterCare (14 years), Lane Community College (7 years), Gateways Counseling/Consulting Services (2 years), Portland State University (in the MSW program, for 2 years) and in private practice for over 5 years. In addition, I have supervised more than 40 mental health counselors since 2010, and am currently providing clinical supervision for over a dozen counselors who are working toward professional licensure.
For seven years, I taught in the Social Sciences Department at Lane Community College. I’ve taught the following courses during this time: Introduction to Human Services, Crisis Intervention, Ethics & Law, Casework Interviewing, Advanced Counseling (Motivational Interviewing), Trauma Outcomes, Best Practices in Human Services, and Personal Effectiveness for the Human Services Worker. In addition, I have been teaching in the Master of Social Work program at Portland State University since Summer Term 2017.
In addition, I am proud to say that I was selected to serve as a member of the NAMI Lane County Board of Directors in the Spring of 2017, and completed this term in March 2019. More on this wonderful organization here.
To view my professional profile on LinkedIn, visit the following link: https://www.linkedin.com/in/gene-obersinner-99a62a53?trk=hp-identity-name.
For more information about the counseling process and what it's all about, please see my page about this.
One thing you may be wondering about me is the type of counseling theories and models I use. While I tend to draw from a variety of models, I most often use Motivational Interviewing (MI), Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), and Existential Therapy tools. To list all models that I use would be pretty exhaustive. I pay close attention to evidence-based practices for whatever problem(s) clients are coping with.
More information on MI can be found at http://www.motivationalinterviewing.org/. A good site for CBT is http://www.cognitivetherapyguide.org/index.html. You are welcome to contact me at any time to inquire about my methodology. This is a very important thing to know about your therapist!
More than anything else, you should know that I believe in empowering clients by helping them bring out and maximize the strengths and resources that lie within. If you do seek a consultation with me, you will find that I am a strength-based, person-centered counselor. This process is about you and for you. That is something I keep in mind throughout our working partnership.
I read quite a bit, especially on topics centering around communication, listening, and personal empowerment. This page covers books, authors, and websites that I have found especially beneficial for myself or others.
During my 14 years at ShelterCare, I had the opportunity to work with many clients who were survivors of physical and sexual trauma. In addition, my experience at ShelterCare and as a community-based mental health counselor has given me a great deal of experience in working with clients suffering from grief and loss issues. I have found that I gain tremendous satisfaction from helping people work through both of these issues.
In addition, I am very adept and comfortable working with people who are coping with any of the following:
As I mentioned above, I am very experienced in providing supervision to other mental health clinicians. I currently supervise eight clinicians who are working toward licensure as a mental health counselor. I have supervised six additional counselors who have completed this process and are now licensed. In addition, I've had the opportunity to supervise and mentor several other students working on their master's degree in counseling or social work.