We are committed to
the mental health and
wellness of Seattle’s
Founded in 1969, Seattle Counseling Service is proud to be the oldest LGBTQ-focused community mental health agency in the world.
Started as part of the Dorian Society in Seattle, SCS later expanded to become an independent organization in 1969. We began in a rented house with one telephone and several volunteers who were ready to answer the phone, talk with people, dropped by, and offered counsel and support.
Over the last 50 years, we have sought ways to provide a continuum of care for clients. SCS works with other King County Mental Health Providers to advocate on behalf of the LGBTQ community in the mental health system. We are incredibly proud of the resource SCS has become to our communities.
We are now so much more than a counseling center. Our services have expanded to include substance use disorder services; support groups; harm reduction programs; HIV prevention programs; peer-led outreach; and, immigrant, refugee, and undocumented outreach. We’ve listened to how your needs have changes, and we are always working to grow and better adapt to meet them. Through these changes, we are still committed to providing high-quality, accessible, culturally competent care to all that seek our services and to serve, advocate, educate, and advance the health and wellness of our LGBTQ community.
Ann McGettiganExecutive Director
Ann (she/her) has over 35 years of professional experience working with social change non-profits in various positions from crisis line worker to executive director. She has coordinated rape prevention programs, worked in battered women’s shelters, provided community education on sexual and domestic violence and administered programs that support reproductive rights for women and girls.
Deidre McHugh, ARNPMedical Director
Deidre McHugh (she/her) is a Doctor of Nursing Practice and Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner. Deidre started her career as a nurse in community health in Portland Oregon, and graduated as a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner from Oregon Health Sciences University in 2007. In her career, Deidre has worked as a psychiatric provider in public health, inpatient and outpatient pediatric clinics, primary care, corrections, and adult outpatient mental health specialty clinics. She joined SCS as a psychiatric provider in 2018 and recently expanded her role to include Medical Director as of July 2019. In addition to her work at SCS, Deidre is Adjunct Faculty at Seattle University. Passionate about all things science, Deidre loves to talk with people about psychopharmacology, and research in providing equitable, trauma-informed, whole-person health care.
When not working at SCS, Deidre is foraging for delicious edible mushrooms with her dog Benny.
Connie SummersH.R. Director
Connie Summers (she/her) is the Director of Human Resources at Seattle Counseling Service. As such, Connie provides the full depth and breadth of HR Services enabling a talented workforce to bring the best of their time and talent to work. Her background in previous not for profit and profit environments have included attention to inclusive talent acquisition and management strategies, employee development, fair and equitable work environments, employee engagement with an emphasis on inclusive leadership. Early in her career, Connie supported not for profit entities that provided assistance to the homeless, job search services and became an HR Director in an agency supporting those who were living in public housing. She then branched out into the for-profit environment taking on positions of increasing degrees of responsibility at The Boeing Company. Connie left the Boeing Company February 2020 as a Senior Leader in Global Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Connie was the Gender Transition Leader for the Boeing Company, having responsibility for gender transitions across the globe.
Danie EagletonClinical Director
Danie (she/her) earned a B.A. in psychology from Seattle University and a master’s in education in Counseling Psychology from Howard University. She has worked in mental health for 16+ years with both kids and adults. Danie is a passionate advocate for people living their lives with mental illness and other disabilities. Her areas of interest and experience in mental health include at-risk youth, communities of color, multicultural/ diversity issues, crisis/trauma, integrated health, supported employment, and recovery-oriented mental health services. Danie splits her time and interest between the fields of mental health and education. She has been a part-time instructor at Seattle Central Community for over 10 years and is currently an adjunct professor in Seattle University’s Clinical Mental Health program. She recently served as the Vice President for Clinical Excellence at Valley Cities Behavioral Health. Danie is a graduate of The National Council of Behavioral Health’s Addressing Health Disparities Leadership program and maintains a small private practice that focuses in the areas of mental health, employment, clinical supervision, and consultation.
Julie LaLunaFinance Director & Director of Operations
Julie LaLuna (she/her) is a 20+ year Nonprofit Finance Professional. She graduated with a degree in Sustainable Business from Antioch University in 2014. Julie has worked in numerous local nonprofit agencies with a focus on uplifting underserved populations. She’s volunteered as a PEPS leader, been on the board at Launch and been a strong advocate and supporter for many local artists of all varieties. She believes that providing accessible finance and operational support is the best way that she can lend herself to the causes that matter most. Julie feels strongly about intersectional feminism, destigmatizing sex work, uplifting voices of underserved populations, dismantling racism and smashing the patriarchy, in varying order of importance depending on the day. When not working at SCS, Julie might be spotted out with her grown son on Saint John’s patio, joining her teen daughter on walks with their Pitbull Bunny near Jose Rizal, reading a good book by the pool, or watching an acid rock show with her boyfriend.
Board of Directors
Christopher WelchBoard President
Christopher Welch (he/him) has been a member of the Seattle Counseling Service board since 2014 and serves as Board President and Chair of the Fundraising Committee. He is a marketing and business development professional who has called Seattle home since 2003. Christopher is passionate about increasing access to mental health and harm reduction services and fighting social stigma affecting people seeking care. In his free time, Christopher enjoys cooking, gardening, reading and supporting the arts. Christopher and his husband, Daniel, live in downtown Seattle.
Susan Hawkins, JD, PsyDVice President
Susan is a licensed clinical psychologist whose Madison Valley practice emphasizes psychoanalysis and psychotherapy with adults, adolescents and couples. She especially enjoys working with LGBTQ individuals and couples. Prior to starting her own practice, Susan served for 11 years as the counseling center director at Seattle University. Also a lawyer, Susan specialized in mental health law, representing indigent mentally ill people in California. A native of San Francisco, Susan lived in Philadelphia for 12 years before moving to Seattle. She has been a singing member of Seattle Women’s Chorus for 15 years and loves hiking, kayaking and biking.
Christine Dee, PhDSecretary
Christine is a solutions executive with IBM who joins the Board of SCS in 2019. Her background includes 20 years in telecommunications and data technologies, alongside a concurrent academic exploration in psychology, which led to her Masters in Applied Behavioral Science in 2003 and PhD in Media Psychology in 2016.
Adam joined the SCS Board of Directors in 2014. He is an attorney at Stoel Rives LLP with a practice focused primarily on commercial real estate transactions. Before receiving a law degree in 2011 from Georgetown Law, he was a Peace Corps volunteer in Senegal and earned his undergraduate degree from University of Washington. Adam loves to travel and cook and is excited for this opportunity to serve and support our community.
J. Alejandro Vega-Gutierrez, Ed.D, CQIA
Alejandro joined the SCS Board of Directors in 2018. He is an administrator of the Institutional Review Board of the U.S. Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Health Care System (VAPSHCS). He also serves as the Special Emphasis Program Manager for Hispanic Employment at the VAPSHCS serving as an advisor to the Medical Director and the EEO Manager, in matters affecting the employment and advancement of women, minorities, and people with disabilities. He has a strong passion for affording professional, educational, and financial opportunities to minority and underrepresented groups. Originally from Puerto Rico, Alejandro and his two huskies now call Seattle home where they live on Capitol Hill and spend time cooking and exploring the outdoors.
Elizabeth Scallon (she/her) is an award winning leader in the Pacific Northwest startup ecosystem, and leading the Go-To-Market/Operations for the Amazon Alexa Fund and Startup team. Elizabeth is a scientist, mentor, and 15 year leader in scientific and technological innovation. Known for a keen ability to locate disruptive and innovative technology, previously to Amazon, she was the Head of WeWork Labs US West-leading incubation and startup programs for WeWork. Prior to WeWork, Elizabeth led the team at CoMotion Labs at the University of Washington coaching and growing the robust bench of NW tech and biotech startups. An out lesbian from before the L Word pilot episode, Elizabeth has a passion for spotlighting and developing outsider voices. Obsessed with growth and knowledge, Elizabeth went from a degree in Biochemistry, to Georgetown’s Global Executive MBA in Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Emerging Markets. Elizabeth is a hometown hero. She grew up in Seattle, plays the connector and mentor role in building Seattle’s booming economy, and she lives on Beacon Hill with her wife and toddler. Sundays usually mean farmer’s markets and family brunch.
Jim Dillon, Ph.D.
Jim is very excited to be a member of the SCS Board. He is a psychologist at the Seattle Vet Center. A native of Massachusetts, Jim earned his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Jim lives in West Seattle with his feline son and daughter, and likes movies, books, lectures, wine, and travel.
Erik Schlocker, MSW
Erik is a graduate of the University of Washington’s Social Work program. He completed his post-graduate fellowship at Yale in the Child Study Outpatient Clinic. Erik has more than 20 years of experience helping children, adolescents and their families cope with mental illness and behavioral health challenges and is currently a Social Worker at Seattle Children’s Hospital.
David Rickabaugh, MScCoachPsych
David joined the SCS Board of Directors in 2017. David was attracted to SCS because of his longtime passion for mental health in the LGBT community. David is an executive coach with a focus on leadership development and on helping adults with ADHD achieve professional success. He holds a Master of Science in Coaching Psychology from the University of Sydney, and he has over 25 years of business leadership experience in retail and digital. A native of California, David has moved many times, living in such cities as Los Angeles, Indianapolis, New York, Chicago, Sacramento, and Sydney, Australia before moving to Seattle — where he hopes to stay! — in 2015. David currently lives in Northeast Seattle with his husband Wyatt and their Border Terriers Tucker and Tally.
Brett Thomazin, MBA, MSHA
Brett is the Director of Respiratory Care and the UW Medicine Sleep Center at Harborview. He’s been with Harborview since August 2010. Born and raised in Nebraska, Brett moved to Seattle after 13 years in Denver. He’s a Registered Respiratory Therapist and in his free time enjoys cycling, fitness, time with family and friends, and travel. In 2019, Brett will be participating in his 4th AIDS/LifeCycle. He joined the SCS Board in August 2018 and is excited to be able to serve SCS and their clients.
Elisa joined the SCS Board of Directors in 2018. Originally from Texas, she attended University of Colorado graduating with B.A. in Asian Studies and went on to travel the world. She moved to Seattle in 2015, a city she is proud to call home. She is a business development professional in sports and tourism, who also serves on GSBA’s Tourism Advisory Board. She loves being a tech geek, kayaking around the Sound, and supporting Seattle sports.
Paul Sherman, MD, is the CMO (Chief Medical Officer) for Community Health Plan of Washington after serving for 26 years in various clinical and administrative roles at Group Health/KP. Dr. Sherman is a board-certified pediatrician with a Bachelor of Science from the University of Notre Dame and a Doctorate of Medicine from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He completed his internship and residency at Seattle Children’s, and obtained his Master of Health Administration at the University of Washington. He lives in Seattle with his teenage son and is a proud former SCS client.
Cris Fowler, Ed.D.
Cris Fowler joined the SCS Board of Directors in 2019. She is the Director for Academics at the University of Washington Information School where she oversees the learning technologies team, human resources for adjunct faculty and student employees, and works to integrate social justice into STEM curricula and pedagogy. Her passion lies in diversity, equity, and inclusion issues, with a particular interest in Indigenous knowledge systems and supporting and promoting Native American sovereignty and culture. Cris enjoys problem-solving, making connections with others, and bringing people together. She lives in Seattle with her wife, 14-year-old daughter, and 11-year-old toy Rat Terrier. She enjoys exploring the world and experiencing different cultures, meeting new people, gardening, and cooking for family and friends.
Mocca Swinney (she/her) joined the SCS Board of Directors in 2020. Originally from Memphis, she relocated to Seattle in 2013. She resides in the Capitol Hill neighborhood. Professionally, Mocca has worked in high-end customer service roles in some of Seattle’s most recognizable luxury establishments. She is a tireless advocate for BIPOC, queer and trans individuals and is proud to be a member of an organization that provides essential care to heal and uplift these individuals.
Danny (he/him) is currently an attorney with the Trans in Prison Justice Project at Disability Rights Washington. He has been grateful to interact with SCS in a variety of ways over many years, from receiving services himself to attending programs that utilize SCS as a community space. He believes all people should have access to excellent, affirming health care and mental health-related supports, and deeply respects SCS for providing those services while rooted in community. Danny was honored to join the SCS board in 2020.
Our clinical staff are here for you.
Our agency is a state licensed community mental health agency and state licensed chemical dependency out-patient treatment facility. All clinical staff members hold master’s level degrees or higher and are credentialed Mental Health Professionals. All staff members have training and experience in providing culturally competent services to LGBTQ clients.
Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker
These titles are a branch of social work that specializes in mental health therapy in a counseling format. Becoming an LCSW requires a significant degree of training and education from an accredited program. One of the primary defining characteristics of the Licensed Clinical Social Worker method of mental health therapy is that something called a strength-based approach to client counseling is employer. The strength-based approach requires that the LCSW works with the client to assess their own personal situation both in terms of their internal situation and also their external factors such as economic, societal, home and career in order to create an inventory of both strengths and perceived weaknesses or obstacles.
Licensed Mental Health Counselor
These are two different titles for essentially the same occupation in the mental health field, both of which require a significant degree of education as well as training. LMHC/LMHCA offer a method of mental health counseling that is very individually based and tends to rely on a more collaborative approach then other methods of mental health counseling and often has a more flexible outlook on methodologies. Due to this, LPC’s and LMHC’s are often able to make use of more novel approaches and also develop therapies that they find to be effective. It is this flexibility in methods and practice that many find appealing when weighing their options between professional counseling and other occupations in mental health therapy.
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
These titles are for clinicians who have received training from accredited marriage/couple and family therapy programs, focused on diagnosing and promoting mental and emotional wellness within the context of individual, couples, and family sessions. A primary emphasis for these clinicians is to approach change and healing systemically, which refers to seeing individuals within the context of their relationships, such as families, friends, supports, external influencers, a person’s identities, etc. Through this approach, MFTs look at how a client’s systems intersect and impact their struggles, changes, and growth within their life. MFTs and their approaches look beyond individual issues, to include the broader picture.
Substance Use Disorder Professional
Washington’s addiction counselors are credentialed by the Washington State Department of Health (DOH). Certification as a Substance Use Disorder Professional is based on meeting education, examination, and supervised practice requirements. The Substance Use Disorder Professional is to provide services for individuals, family and groups in mastering their addictions, and to understand the problems caused by their chemical dependency.
Seattle Counseling Service Interns
Interns at SCS are second year Master’s level students. While meeting their school practicum requirements and providing quality care to our clients, interns are gaining the knowledge of working in a community agency that focuses on serving the LGBTQ community. This experience includes direct client service hours, record keeping, using the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, clinical consultation, weekly individual and peer supervision.
We are located in the Sixth & Lenora Building and occupy the entire fourth floor. Our entry door faces 6th Avenue. If your appointment is between 9am-5pm, use the elevator to come up to the fourth floor. If your appointment is before 9am or after 5pm, use the callbox outside to dial "Sea Co. Service" and you will be let inside by reception.
Seattle, WA 98121
Give us a call
Monday - Friday 8AM - 5PM