Founder Licensed Mental Health Counselor and Substance Use Disorder Professional
Laura is a highly skilled, deeply compassionate therapist whose approach is warm, supportive, and inquisitive. She brings 32 years of both inpatient and outpatient chemical dependency treatment experience to her work, including time in her career at the esteemed Betty Ford Center in Rancho Mirage, California.
Laura brings a holistic approach to mental health and recovery utilizing EMDR, CBT, DBT, Gottman Method Relationship Therapy and Family Systems counseling. She is a third-generation therapist, mentored by her late grandfather, a psychiatrist whose practice in Orange County and Hemet, California exposed her to the healing effects of meditation, nutrition, and group therapy as a basis for healing. Her father was a devoted social worker in community mental health in Southern California and Spokane, Washington, and recently retired after many years of work as an elementary school counselor. A Navy Reserve veteran, Laura has extensive experience supporting recovery for first responders and military personnel, both active and veteran. As a business owner she is driven and visionary, enabling her to develop an acute and intuitive sense about people and trends while balancing her own family obligations that include raising a newly-driving teenaged boy.
Through years of counseling executives, high-profile individuals, and others of significant responsibility, she has developed a pragmatic, humorous, collaborative, and direct approach, working to get to the root of problem-sustaining behavior and thinking in order to drive more effective methodologies in work and home life. Drawing from Napoleon Hill’s 17 success principles, she maintains a “keep it simple” approach to managing complex problems. She also invests time in training therapists in mindful wellness and life balance as she supervises those gaining their credentials.
Laura began her family work at Ryther Child Center in 1990 with adolescents and their families. While working at Ryther, she learned of the importance of family involvement in all aspects of counseling. The lessons learned early on with teens and their families formed the basis for her belief that families are a vital resource that need to be included in an individual’s counseling and treatment.
In 1993, Laura went on to work at Central Youth and Family Services in Seattle, conducting in-home family and adolescent counseling. At Therapeutic Health Services, she counseled and supervised people detoxing from methadone by facilitating mindfulness and meditation groups, counseled people with chronic mental illness, and later developed a young adult treatment program at the Bellevue branch. She worked as a counselor for five years with Lake Washington Schools before beginning a private practice in 2004 when she graduated from Bastyr’s Leadership Institute of Seattle in applied behavior science. Her post-graduate work has included studying Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Gottman Method Relationship Counseling, and PTSD with veterans and others recovering from trauma, and she is currently working to complete training to enhance her work with couples seeking a collaborative divorce.
Laura founded Eastside Center for Family in 2011, a family-based treatment and counseling clinic for all ages. The clinic emphasizes wellness within entrepreneurial, high tech, and executive family systems, requiring an understanding of the need to maintain high productivity without losing the heart and soul of one’s self or the family unit. She believes in unifying families by providing multiple counseling services under one roof. In her current professional studies, she continues to research and learn about trauma effects and the healing power of appreciative inquiry, and values greatly a philosophy of mindfulness, compassion, and empathy in all counseling work.
Rachel is a Washington State licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who is passionate about working with couples and families. She has experience in treating mental and substance abuse disorders using a client-centered, holistic approach to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Her clinical expertise includes depression, anxiety, trauma, couples and family counseling, as well as eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR).
Rachel was born and raised on the border of Mexico. There she had a wonderfully rich childhood, full of cultural diversity and a variety of personalities. She has always loved people and could often be found talking to adults as a child. This love of people naturally developed into a passion for psychology.
Rachel was able to develop this passion at Brigham Young University Idaho, where she received a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. She went on to earn a Master of Arts degree at Argosy University.
Rachel has a 2-year-old son and a 4-year-old daughter, who are the light of her life and teach her daily about love and patience. She co-parents successfully with their father, who has become a trusted friend and confidant. Together they make plans for their children’s future and make their life experience as enjoyable as possible.
Rachel believes in creating a better future through cooperation and understanding, and through helping one family at a time. Mental illness and the need for psychotherapy has a negative stereotype in western society that she believes must be changed. It is her firm belief that every individual, at certain times in their lives, will need the help of a counselor or therapist. She hopes to be one of the many qualified and able therapists to help those in need.
Jan Lee is a licensed Substance Use Disorder Professional Trainee with a lifetime of experience working with people struggling with addiction. She earned an Associate’s degree in Addiction Studies from Edmonds Community College and completed her Bachelor’s degree in Children, Youth and Family with an emphasis on social justice from Edmonds College.
Jan Lee is a passionate listener and fierce advocate. While working as a counselor for pregnant and parenting women, she was always excited to hear her clients speak about their growth and transformation. Jan Lee takes great joy in helping a person find their way back from the despair of addiction to become the person they were always meant to be. She helps others rediscover their own intuition so they can make better decisions, find protection from within, and reconnect with their ability to overcome fear, provide compassion and experience love.
Gayland utilizes his deep concern and respect for others combined with his life experience in business and sense of humor to augment his formal education in systemic based therapy. Gayland’s areas of strength include working with anxiety, depression, grief and loss self-compassion techniques and perfectionism. This might take the form of examination of how your perceived history impacts present day (Narrative) or how certain unquestioned beliefs filter how we react or feel about current situations (CBT).
Gayland started on his journey to become a therapist right out of high school but was sidetracked by social and family messaging that he would not be happy unless he earned a “high” salary. He abandoned his dream to heed these messages to pursue “success.” It took many years of working for various businesses until a deep anxiety and feeling of unproductive effort led him back to complete his Masters at Saybrook University and start work as a therapist. Now he believes that on his worst day at work there is still the opportunity to make a positive impact on someone’s life.
Gayland has been married to his best friend going on 29 years and credits his wife for helping him make some difficult decisions and supporting him while he followed through on them. Gayland feels that their dedication to clear communication executed with compassion has helped them through some tough times.
We all hit a wall somewhere in our life’s journey; Gayland would like the chance to help you over yours.
Laura Williamson, LMHCA
Licensed Mental Health Counselor Associate
What I love about life is that it is relentless. In the best way, life requires full participation and will not let up until you are transformed. Knowing this, I am truly passionate about supporting people, at any stage and ability, to pivot from a static position toward a more creative, dynamic, and emerging way of being.
Simple, but not easy. A price has to be paid, and that price is giving up old patterns. Leave them behind. Join us in investing in your growth, in designing your life, in reinvigorating the passion within yourself, your department, and your organization!
I have worked with the Washington State Women’s Correctional Facility, YWCA Angeline’s Day Center, PEER Seattle, Social Advocates for Youth, L3/Wescam Corporation, Boeing Computer Services, Physio- Control, Los Angeles Police Department, United States Air Force, Air National Guard, and several universities including Central Washington University, City University of Seattle, Argosy University, DeVry University, and Ashford University.
I have extensive academic training with a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy, three master’s degrees in Counseling, Adult Education, and Business Administration, and a doctorate in Education. I also have extensive professional training in Gottman Couples Training – Level I, LifeSpan Integration (LI) – Level I, Relational Life Therapy (RLT) – Level I, AIDS Training, TeleHealth for Mental Health Professionals, Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT), “The Work” Byron Katie (BK) – No Body Intensive and Mental Cleanse, and Psychological First Aid.
As a family system, addictions, Buddhist-infused, and trauma-informed center, I was attracted to Eastside Center for Family (ECFF), for its integrated and holistic approach to therapy and wellness. If you want to get well, come here. We do not mess around and will get right at it. I am honored to join ECFF, working under the clinical supervision of Laura J. Halford, LMHC, SUDP.
Address : 2025 112th Ave NE Suite 201 Bellewood Office Park, Bellevue, Washington 98004
Office : 425.462.8558
Fax : 425.462.8556
Eastside Center for Family is licensed by the State of Washington Department of Behavioral Health and Recovery (DBHR).
The foundation of our approach to treatment and all forms of counseling in our office is one of respect, empowering people to make their own choices. We take time to listen carefully and identify with a person problem maintaining behaviors and look for workable solutions.