Experienced professionals with a fresh perspective
At Equinox Counseling and Wellness Center, we understand how people define an organization, and how the therapeutic relationship between the client and therapist has an important impact on the successful change a client experiences. As a result, we have built a team of skilled clinicians and therapists that share a passion for providing high-quality therapeutic care in a compassionate and client-centered manner. Each of us believes in the “Why We Do What We Do.” We believe that every client—youth, adult, couple, and family—deserves individualized treatment, comprehensive care, and a supportive professional that listens to your needs.
With compassion and care, we partner with you to meet your needs.
Mary Marcantonio, Founder
Mary is a clinical therapist and the founder of Equinox Counseling and Wellness Center. She has been supporting adolescents, families, adults and parents for 28 years. Her academic career has taken her from Mesa State College, where she received her bachelor’s degree, to the University of Arizona, the University of Northern Colorado and Lesley College for master’s coursework in clinical psychology.
Mary specializes in finding clinical and therapeutic solutions in an innovative, comprehensive and compassionate way for youth and families experiencing complex challenges. She has extensive expertise developing and running clinically based residential treatment programs for youth with ASD/ADHD, as well as high-risk struggling teens. After successfully developing and running both residential and wilderness therapy programs, Mary became drawn to parents, families and life at home for youth after discharge. Thirteen years ago, she left the residential world to focus on educating and supporting families in their natural home and community environments, where youth and families no longer have to move from one treatment provider and therapeutic setting to the next, or leave home or the state, to get the help they are seeking.
Today, Mary offers youth and their families specialized expertise concerning youth diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (specifically Asperger’s Syndrome and High Functioning Autism)/ADHD and other social and learning difficulties, and struggling teens who are experiencing significant difficulty across a broad spectrum. She functions in an intimate arena in her family therapy practice, where she helps parents who are coming face-to-face with challenging situations with children who are in turmoil and resisting their relationship with their parents. This often calls for new kinds of parent leadership and a new conceptual framework of how to get there. The issues, problems and conflicts that youth and families experience have broad application. Mary partners with parents, adolescents and families to design an individualized approach and treatment design that supports their work together.
At the heart of Mary’s enlivening and dynamic partnerships with parents, families and adolescents is her conviction that much more is possible than people ordinarily think. Each of us has a long storyline with variations on themes within each chapter. This storyline portrays a world where the conflict lies between youth and their parents, and where each individual’s unique experience plays an integral and constructive part in setting the direction for family level healing.
On a personal note, Mary has two wonderful children, a loving family and Coco, their Chacadobe (Doberman/Labrador mix) rescue pup that puts a smile on the face of everyone he comes in contact with. She is also a cyclist, can be found at warrior workouts on any given morning, loves to cook and continues to work on her house and yard projects.
Eileen Courtney Scheibe, MA, LMFT
Clinical Administrator & Parent Coach
As a valuable complement to her duties as clinical administrator of Equinox, Eileen also provides Parent Coaching services to our families. In her role as a parent coach, she offers guidance, support, and solutions for parents struggling with the many challenges of raising children. She is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) in the states of Colorado and California, and has provided therapeutic services to individuals, couples, families, high-risk adolescents, and youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder for the past 24 years. Eileen’s academic background and training includes a bachelor’s degree in child development and master’s degree in clinical psychology. As a result of her experience and education, Eileen has a passion for providing parents extensive knowledge and specific skills in relation to child development, parent/child dynamics, and successful strategies for effective parenting.
Eileen believes that despite the frustrations, problems, and barriers that arise with raising young children with behavior issues or troubled teens, there are strengths and successes to build upon in every family. She approaches every parent’s situation from a place of compassion and understanding, while also focusing on creating solutions and positive change in the family system. Coaching sessions include helpful techniques, effective strategies, and weekly homework to help parents generalize information back into the home.
Parent coaching is offered through Skype, phone and email sessions, an approach that has been part of Eileen’s practice for several years and which gives parents greater flexibility and access to coaching support. Session length and goals are designed to specifically meet the unique needs of each parent.
Tim Burke, BA
Director of Wilderness and Adventure Programs
As a managing partner and director of wilderness and adventure therapy at Equinox Counseling and Wellness Center, Tim brings a unique blend of technical acumen, therapeutic insight, leadership, quiet confidence and an easygoing personality to our team. He believes that the use of thoughtful and expert-led wilderness interventions is a complement to traditional therapies and often a critical component in helping people gain valuable insights about themselves and the world around them.
Tim is originally from Buffalo, New York, and earned his bachelor’s degree in social sciences before moving to Colorado in 1996. For over 16 years he has been designing and guiding wilderness and adventure therapy interventions for youth, adults and families with great success. In addition, Tim has extensive experience and knowledge from his seven years working in residential treatment centers and community-based counseling and supervision programs. These experiences have shaped how Tim approaches his work and are most evident in his uncompromising approach to safety. His mantra is “nothing we accomplish here is worth anyone being hurt over,” and when you work with him you see this firsthand.
Since the start of Equinox in 2009, Tim and the Equinox leadership team have played significant roles in serving our nation’s military families during some of the most challenging times in recent history. Tim is proud to have helped deliver Healing Adventures Family Retreats (a National Military Family Association Program), the US Army Chaplains Group Family Resilience Program and the Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program to name a few.
The common theme throughout all Tim’s work is simple; help clients learn from these experiences and then apply the learning into other important areas of their lives for increased effectiveness.
Tim feels fortunate to combine his passion and his work. An avid rock climber, ice climber and mountaineer, he holds climbing guide certifications from two national (the PCIA and PCGI) and one international organization (the AMGA). Tim also maintains certifications in wilderness medicine (WMI), avalanche safety (AIARE), challenge course facilitation and critical rescue skills (the ACCT).
Bridget Slaten, BS
Director of Marketing and Enrollment
Bridget joins the Equinox team with 15 years of marketing and sales experience in a variety of industries, focusing her talent and passion for building longstanding relationships with each of her clients and professional networks. Bridget earned her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Colorado State University, where she quickly recognized her skill in connecting with people and her interest in learning about the unique nature of people and their background.
Prior to developing her career in the area of marketing and sales, Bridget established herself as professional ballroom dance instructor in Denver, CO and Austin, TX. As a young entrepreneur, she founded her own studio where she not only fostered her students’ love of dance, but helped them to discover a new sense of interpersonal confidence and competence. With this unique background in psychology, dance, and marketing, Bridget brings to her position as Marketing and Enrollment Director vast experience of learning about the needs of her clients, understanding the strengths and challenges related to reaching their goals, and helping to design the roadmap toward success.
With the majority of her marketing background in housing and petcare, Bridget has learned the importance of reflecting what her clients’ value most, creating visual and real life representation of this, and assisting her company in matching this in service delivery. In her position with Equinox, Bridget will utilize her compassion, confidence, and professional expertise to understand the complex needs of each family and guide them through the enrollment process and initial phase of treatment. This is often a time of crisis and confusion for parents, requiring a vital connection with a professional that can be trusted as a resource and guide. Bridget’s longstanding priority in relationship building, networking and having a strong knowledge of community resources adds to her passion and success in her role as first point of contact for families seeking out the support of Equinox. Additionally, she enjoys the ongoing contact and connection with the many valuable resources and services in the Denver metro area and the United States serving troubled teens and youth diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. You will find her personable presence in medical and psychiatric offices, schools, occupational and speech therapy clinics, wilderness programs and therapeutic schools, and outpatient clinic offices seeing how she collaborate with other professionals on behalf of kids and families.
In her free time, Bridget travels to the mountains for hikes, fishing, and camping as often as possible with her English stringer spaniel, Finley, and husband happily in tow. She also loves tinkering in her garden, cooking up the fruits (or veggies) of her labor, and having friends over for a great dinner. To continue her learning and professional growth, she will be starting a masters program in counseling in the Spring of 2017.
Andy Dunn, BS
Andy began working in the outdoor therapeutic industry in 1998, after graduating from the University of New Hampshire with a bachelor’s degree in outdoor education. He has been dedicated to influencing young people through the therapeutic wilderness experience, promoting professional and positive team culture, and developing quality programming for over fifteen years. His evolving career and training has created the valuable foundation from which he operates in his role as Program Director with Equinox. Bringing with him experience in wilderness therapy as front-line staff, field manager, and program manager for programs in Maine, Hawaii, Georgia, North Carolina, and Utah, Andy understands and operates with belief that every person and role connected to the client’s experience is valuable and impactful to their success.
As Program Director, Andy is committed to implementing the Equinox principles and values related to service delivery and team culture. His leadership focuses on understanding and implementing the necessary integration of the comprehensive treatment process, the needs of each client and family, and the unique skills of each Equinox team member. Additionally, Andy believes the world would be a better place if every kid had the opportunity to sit around a campfire and relationships could be built through a back country adventure. His expertise, skill set, and passion related to the development of wilderness and experiential programming is an essential aspect of his leadership position with Equinox. He is focused on ensuring safety, implementing systems and procedure, and delivering the highest industry standards in intensive treatment programming.
Andy has operated as a volunteer EMT, served on a search and rescue team, and also worked on the ski patrol in New Hampshire. He currently holds a wilderness medicine certification through Wilderness Medicine Institute. He has been involved with the AEE (Association for Experiential Education) since 1995 and served as a committee member for OBHC (Outdoor Behavioral Healthcare Council).
Originally from Rhode Island, Andy now resides in Colorado with his family. He enjoys morning coffee on the porch in the fall, telemark skiing in the winter, planting the garden in the spring time, and bluegrass and old-time music in the summer.
Joe Penn, MA, LPC
As a lead clinical member of the Equinox team, Joe combines his extensive therapeutic background with his love for experiential programming in his work with troubled teens and youth on the autism spectrum. Being raised in a small farm town outside of Chicago, IL, Joe brings his easy going personality and authenticity into his relationships and everyday interactions with his team members and clients. Through humor, “keeping it real”, and bringing his work out of the office environment, Joe has successfully overcome the many barriers that often occur when building rapport and trust with teens entering treatment for the first time. There is no doubt to those working with Joe, that he is completely invested in the successful outcomes for his clients and in creating sustainable change that will far outlast treatment at Equinox.
After completing his undergraduate degree at Judson University in Illinois, he moved to Colorado to pursue his master’s in counseling psychology at Colorado Christian University and later was licensed as a professional counselor in 2007. His clinical work has spanned various settings with high risk youth and those with social/learning differences living in more restricted treatment programs due to problematic behavior. Additionally, Joe sought out extensive training in the field of sexually abusive behaviors. As an Associate Provider with Sex Offense Management Board in Colorado, Joe has committed to treating youth with sexual behavior problems from the lens of prevention and building new pathways toward healthy relationships and safe sexual behavior. Joe’s approach to therapy includes foundational principles of Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. He believes in the importance of connecting a person’s awareness to their thoughts, feelings and behaviors, while integrating mindfulness and emotional regulation skills during times of distress and chaos.
Joe is an avid believer in bringing real life experiences, purposeful therapeutic challenges, and fun and adventure to his work with teens. He is a member of the Association for Experiential Education and Association of Challenge Course Technology. He has served as a challenge course manager and facilitated challenge course treatment and team building groups. Joe skillfully integrates the important clinical goals into the challenge course experience and provides valuable opportunities for problem solving, building trust, communicating, and connecting within one’s relationships.
When Joe is not at work, he is an avid practitioner of yoga and loves indoor/outdoor climbing. Joe finds his center when he is hiking in the backcountry and in nature. Like many other Coloradans he is a dog person and loves being part of the pack with his two dogs. He is an enthusiastic reader, has been known to pen a few poems and considers himself to be an expert at listening to music. Previously, he was an accomplished carpenter and to this day enjoys the creative process incorporated with building. Joe celebrates life by enjoying the amazing moments each day brings. Breathe. Relax. Focus.
Lindsey Calder, MA, LMSW
Lindsey comes to Equinox Counseling after completing her post graduate fellowship on the adolescent inpatient unit at Menninger Clinic in Houston, TX. Working as a clinician and integral member of the interdisciplinary team treating youth with complex psychiatric and co-occurring disorders, Lindsey consulted with on daily basis with professionals from psychiatry, psychology, psychiatric nursing, internal medicine, chemical dependency counseling, nutrition and dietary counseling, and psychiatric rehabilitation.
As a result, she brings to Equinox her skill and knowledge in working with our clients from a holistic and comprehensive lens that is necessary throughout the treatment journey. Her experience in providing clinical support to parents and youth as they navigated the emotions and complexities of inpatient care, has led to a seamless transition for Lindsey into her clinical role as an intensive treatment team lead with Equinox. Additionally, she brings to her work a natural curiosity and desire for learning, a compassionate approach to each interaction, and her down to earth demeanor which puts young people at ease.
Lindsey received her bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee and then returned to her hometown in Houston, Texas. She worked as a bilingual family resource specialist, and subsequently a clinician, where she provided in home counseling and coaching for parents struggling with behavior and relationship issues with their children, as well as anger and stress management. Lindsey’s passion for working with high risk adolescents and young adults developed through her master in social work program at Smith College School where she completed an internship at Menninger Clinic and another in Boulder, CO working with sexually abusive youth and their families. In Boulder, Lindsey facilitated a mindfulness and emotional regulation group with youth in crisis and further developed and piloted a psycho-educational boundaries curriculum and workshop for adolescents. It was during this time, that Lindsey collaborated and built Colorado professional ties with victim advocates, therapists, schools personnel, probation officers, human service caseworkers, and other providers. Returning a year later to join the Equinox team was returning back to a home she had come to love.
Having individual, group, and family therapy experience in both an inpatient milieu and community based setting, Lindsey skillfully approaches intensive treatment planning with the important integration of goals related to self-identity, family, school functioning, social and life skill development. In her work with both troubled teens and youth on the spectrum, she recognizes the importance of perspective taking, empathy and relationship development as important avenues to addressing behavioral and emotional change. Using Equinox models, integrating creative and expressive arts, and finding new ways to engage even the most resistant youth is something that ignites energy into Lindsey’s clinical work.
As a new Coloradan, Lindsey is diving into the rock climbing world and is out hiking as often as possible. She also enjoys road biking, reading fiction, drinking good coffee, trying new cuisine, and keeping up with her two playful kittens.
Community Based Specialists
Benjamin Armas, BA
Therapeutic Care Specialist & Mentor
Born in New York city and raised in Denver, Benjamin is a graduate of Metropolitan State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in recreational therapy. For over six years, Benjamin has developed a multifaceted background working with inner city youth and neurodiverse youth and young adults, as a coach, mentor, community organizer and site coordinator. Through his various positions with Denver parks and recreation after school and summer programs, Benjamin combined his skill for implementing innovative and engaging learning techniques with his passion for promoting self-discovery and healthy life habits. Specifically, he has developed strategies to address differential learning needs and support academic environments, provided aquatic therapeutic opportunities to work with developmental challenges, and created weekly and monthly activities which integrate art, music and community resources. Benjamin brings to Equinox his innate ability to develop strong, trusting relationships with teens and young adults who have a long history of interpersonal and social difficulties.
As a Therapeutic Care Specialist and youth mentor, Benjamin creates quality moments within the complex lives of his clients. He first takes the time to understand their interests, needs, and reason for therapeutic intervention; upon thorough understanding and assessment, he then designs community based goals that closely complement the clinical treatment goals occurring in the individual and family therapy process. He is deeply invested in promoting personal growth and self awareness through music education, vocational guidance, and creative avenues focused on effective communication and interpersonal skill development. With confidence and enthusiasm, Benjamin supports his clients and helps them develop competencies and prosocial behaviors in the area of social, academic, and life skill functioning. Benjamin has successfully taught youth skills for self monitoring school responsibilities, contributing to the family environment, holding down a new job, and how to simply have fun with peers in a bowling alley, swimming pool, or sledding on a snowy day.
As part of his role as Therapeutic Care Specialist, Benjamin also works with parents, school professionals, and employers on behalf of promoting effective relationships, responsibility and interdependency between his clients and the important people in their lives. He is a skilled communicator with extensive experience conducting outreach and resourcing on behalf of youth with special needs or significant behavioral/emotional needs. As a result, he works to create highly collaborative relationships and to ensure that all the important players in the youth’s lives understand the goals, objectives, and avenues being utilized toward successful community and social engagement.
When Benjamin is not working, he stays active by running and playing tennis and basketball. Benjamin loves to read, cook, play the guitar and piano, and spend time with family and friends. He is always looking to further develop his skills through knowledge and practice.
Elizabeth Bowling, BA
Therapeutic Care Specialist & Mentor
Liz is passionate about the importance of understanding both the research and the clinical process of working with youth and adults. She combines her knowledge in these areas with her love for adventure, outdoors and athletics to successfully engage and promote positive change with young people.
She received her bachelor of arts degree in psychology from Bates College in Maine. During this time, she served as a mentor for Somali youth, a teacher’s assistant working with struggling teenage students, and a counselor for victims of sexual assault. Much of her undergraduate time was spent researching questions regarding troubled teens, including patterns of decision-making, high risk sexual behavior, and gang violence. Alongside her work at Equinox as a Mentor and Therapeutic Care Specialist, Liz is also collaborating on a research project with the University of Denver and Denver Health Medical Center to study emotion regulation and coping strategies in cancer patients.
After finishing her undergraduate degree, Liz spent the summer in New Hampshire working for an Americorps sponsored residential treatment center. She worked primarily with 17 year-old boys suffering from anxiety, depression, and trauma related issues. With a passion for the outdoors, Liz recognized the need for these youth to get out of the office and utilize the outdoors for clinical process. She developed and led a kayak adventure program which exponentially changed the course of treatment for these youth. Additionally, Liz taught meditation techniques in managing stress and anxiety to children ranging from 6-18 years. As a person who also enjoys travel and finding opportunities to learn about people, Liz then chose a job in Rome, Italy as an au pair for an Italian family. It was during this experience, she knew she would continue her work with youth and families, especially as she learned more about the impact of culture, diversity, and socio-economic status on the family unit.
A fun fact about Liz is that she spent five weeks driving solo from Maine to California shooting a documentary and blogging about different lifestyles around America. She hopes to inspire others to pursue a photo or video project to help answer questions about the world. As a Colorado native, Liz enjoys doing Bikram yoga, biking around Sloan’s Lake, hiking 14ers, and eating delicious food.
Lindsey Pence, MA, LPC
Therapeutic Care Specialist
Lindsey has joined our Equinox team bringing with her a contagious energy and passion in her work with youth and vast clinical experience lending a sense of professional confidence and skill to each interaction. Born and raised in the metro Detroit area, she began her professional career working with inner city youth, specifically helping them to develop a relationship with nature and express themselves creatively; this included conducting research on how children use their imaginations to cope with anxiety and trauma.
Her drive to positively impact teens developed into a career in clinical psychology, leading to her Master’s in Counseling Psychology, and eventually becoming a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Illinois, with projected licensure in Colorado by June 2017. Specifically, Lindsey has extensive experience and embraced the value of clinical group therapy in both inpatient and community based settings. She has developed and implemented group curriculum for youth and their parents in areas such as social competency development, college transition, parent education and support, and grief/loss. As a group facilitator with Equinox, she brings action based learning, engaging fun, and therapeutic relevance to Club EQ, our social competencies group for youth with social and learning differences.
Integral to her position of Therapeutic Care Specialist with Equinox, Lindsey has extensive experience integrating parent participation and education into the therapeutic process with her clients. Closing the important trifecta of home, school, and treatment as a primary component of her role as TCS is done with confidence as she communicates and collaborates with parents, caregivers, and school professionals to ensure seamless programming between the community and clinical intensive treatment services.
Lindsey’s desire to join the Equinox team came from her own background and interest in using adventure and “out of the box” experiences in her personal and professional growth . Two primary influential experiences include her participation in an outward bound excursion through northern Canada and a year studying and living with indigenous tribes in Thailand. It was stepping out of her comfort zone, developing impactful relationships, and gaining a new understanding of resilience and self-competency that is reflected in the therapeutic activities and interventions that she develops for her clients.
In her free time, Lindsey finds every opportunity to explore the outdoors, particularly backpacking through various national parks. Since relocating to Denver this past summer, she is enjoying everything the Colorado Rockies has to offer.
Kristy Soler, MS, MFTC, Registered Psychotherapist #0105321
Therapeutic Care Specialist & Mentor
Kristy has a passion for facilitating healing through her natural ability and professional skill in developing therapeutic rapport and relationship with teens, young adults, and their families. She has actively sought opportunities to professionally learn and develop as an student therapist, graduate assistant, and intern while attending Harding University in Arkansas.
Upon receiving her master’s degree in marriage and family therapy, Kristy continued her career in residential rehabilitation and home based treatment working with children, teens, and young adults. While living in Arkansas, Kristy discovered her love for adventure based counseling and the benefits of integrating this into her therapeutic practice. Using the experiential process of the challenge course and team based initiatives were an integral part of her work with those teens and young adults dealing with addiction, trauma, and behavioral problems. Since joining the Equinox team, Kristy has been a driving force in bringing the elements of rock climbing into her work with teen girls as they struggle in their journey toward self-confidence, personal identity, and self-esteem.
As a MFT candidate in Colorado and in her role as Therapeutic Care Specialist, Kristy embraces the value of the Equinox intensive treatment model by bringing the office based clinical treatment into her client’s everyday life experience. She establishes purposeful therapeutic activities in the young person’s home and community that creates opportunity to practice and rehearse skills for situational coping, healthy relationship development, social and vocational competencies, and personal development. Through her contagious smile, fun spirit, and engaging demeanor, Kristy connects with each individual in an authentic way. At any given time each week, you may find Kristy providing vocational support to a young adult at their job site, sitting in the classroom with her practicing in the moment coping skills with her client, or on the rock wall focusing on building self confidence and healthy relationship skills with her
Through her hard work and determination Kristy moved out to Colorado to be closer to the mountains and pursue this chosen career path. While living here, she has found new passions for rock climbing, hiking, snowshoeing, kayaking, and the many other outdoor activities she has come to love.