H.E.L.P.’s co-owner and Chief Clinical Officer is Dr. Karen Witherspoon, a licensed clinical psychologist in the state of Illinois who has thousands of clinical hours performing assessments with children and adults. Her clinical practice focuses on psychological, program, and parenting evaluations, but she also conducts psychotherapy with children, adolescents, and adults.
Dr. Witherspoon is also a tenured professor, published author and grant writer who has served as a past President of The Chicago Chapter and a Member-at-Large on the National Executive Board of the Association of Black Psychologists. Dr. Witherspoon graduated from Loyola University Chicago, where she obtained a M.A. in Community Counseling and a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology. Her teaching philosophy is based on a process of encouraging learners to make connections between their experiences and the subject matter. She believes that professors are facilitators of learning, and encourage students to become responsible for their own learning objectives in addition to the course objectives. She also believes that focusing on the processes of learning leads to greater outcomes.
Dr. Witherspoon’s expertise in research includes survey research methods, scale development, and program evaluation. Her statistical skills and experience are in descriptive statistics and correlational analytical techniques. Her research interests are in the areas of racial identity, self efficacy and the relationship between mental health and oppression. Dr. Witherspoon’s previous research was funded through a National Institute of Mental Health grant to study the role of oppression in the psychological functioning of African Americans.