Education and training team

Meet Spectrum's education and training team.

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Education and training team

Andy Bouwman

A mental health social worker with 10 years of experience working in public mental health services in Victoria. Through his work within community and acute teams, he has developed a solid understanding of working with clients with BPD in a variety of settings. Andy is a senior clinician and member of the ACT team at Spectrum, providing individual therapy and group programs. He joined the workforce development team as he is passionate about sharing his experience and knowledge with other clinicians.

Rita Brown

Worked for nearly for 40 years as a pharmacist before embracing a career change to advocate for people impacted by BPD. Rita’s passion is working with and advocating for the needs of carers, while also remaining sensitive to the needs of people with BPD, clinicians, and other workers. Rita is currently the Lived Experience Team Leader (Carer) for Spectrum. In her work at Spectrum, she and draws on her own lived experience as a family member of someone with BPD to advocate for the needs of families and friends within Spectrum, other services, and the wider community. She is also a volunteer, founding and current President of the Australian BPD Foundation. Rita regularly facilitates peer to peer interactive workshops for carers that are run through Spectrum. She also presents at conferences and forums throughout the state and nationally. Rita has also contributed to numerous state and national consultations and submissions.

Katrina Bull

A Senior Clinical Psychologist and trainer at Spectrum within the DBT and workforce teams. She is certified by the DBT-Linehan Board of Certification and has completed advanced training in the DBT Prolonged Exposure Protocol for PTSD. Katrina has over 15 years’ experience in public and private youth and adult mental health services in Australia and in the UK, specialising in treatments for BPD, PTSD, Complex PTSD, and suicide intervention.

Dr Lukas Cheney

The Deputy Clinical Director at Spectrum. He has training in Dialectal Behaviour Therapy and Mentalization Based Therapy and a keen interest in research for improving our understanding of personality and associated disorders. Lukas’s work at Spectrum involves the most complex presentations of personality disorder from across Victoria. He also provides consultation to mental health services nationally. Lukas is a strong believer in a stepped care model of treatment for personality disorder and the idea that, with the right knowledge, any mental health clinician can engage therapeutically with a person living with personality disorder.

Deborah Dick

A Senior Psychiatric Nurse with more than three decades’ experience in mental health, working in a variety of areas including inpatient, community, and crisis settings. Deborah has worked at Spectrum for over 20 years, providing consultation to public mental health services, training, and direct treatment for clients and their families. She has contributed to the development of specific courses for nurses working in mental health, and has contributed to various nursing textbooks. Deborah is passionate about engaging clinicians to learn and think about how they may provide the best possible practice for clients struggling with complex mental health issues.

Dr Fiona Donald

A clinical psychologist at Spectrum within the Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Mentalization Based Treatment (MBT) teams. Fiona has a particular interest in how people with BPD experience treatment, publishing on the experience of recovery from consumer and clinician perspectives, as well as on the relationship between self-compassion and recovery.

Dr Zoe Gibbs

A Senior Clinical Psychologist at Spectrum where she provides DBT and DBT for complex trauma (DBT-PTSD) for adults, young people and their families. She has been with Spectrum for several years where she coordinates the DBT team. Zoe has a particular interest in working with BPD in youth, having spent several years employed at the Maudsley Hospital in London where she specialized in providing DBT for adolescents, in addition to her experience within the CYMHS sector in Victoria.

Lilli Haig-Wood

A senior mental health Occupational Therapist with extensive experience in a variety of settings including public mental health (inpatient and community), forensics, specialist personality disorder services, and the homelessness sector. Lilli works part-time in the Spectrum ACT team, providing individual and group programs, and in the workforce development team. She is passionate about working alongside clients who are diagnosed with personality disorder, empowering them to create meaningful and fulfilling lives.

Renee Harrison

A Senior Mental Health Nurse at Spectrum. She has extensive experience working in a variety of mental health areas, including Aged Care, Adult Services, and Child and Youth Mental Health. Renee has over a decade of experience working in the CYMHS Early Psychosis Team and continues to enjoy working with this age group. Throughout her career, Renee’s interest has extended to working with people who have personality disorder and complex trauma. Renee currently works with the DBT Team and is passionate about providing person-centered, collaborative care to help people create a life worth living. She is a Board Director at a Rural Mental Health Service and keen to ensure access to quality mental health care for all Victorians irrespective of their location. Renee joined the Workforce Development Team to share her knowledge, decrease stigma, and help create a positive culture in all mental health workplaces.

Kat Kahler

A qualified mental health nurse with over 15 years of experience working in acute and therapeutic settings in Victoria, interstate, and overseas. Over the past few years, she has worked as an emergency mental health clinician in a Metro Melbourne hospital whilst working part-time at Spectrum and in private practice. Kat enjoys providing clinicians with a space where they can reflect and learn and facilitates a variety of training courses within Spectrum.

Andrew Mottram

A senior clinical psychologist and accredited Mentalization Based Treatment practitioner and supervisor. While he has broad experience working with complex and severe personality disorder across therapeutic modalities including ACT and DBT, since 2016 his focus has been on Mentalization Based Treatment. Andrew’s work with Spectrum includes Complex Care Service consultation and treatment, as well as the delivery of Mentalization Based Treatment to groups and individuals. Andrew is passionate about this treatment approach and the value it represents for both consumers and clinicians.

Dr Mithira Nithianandan

A consultant psychiatrist at Spectrum. She has received training in Dialectical Behaviour Therapy and Mentalization Based Treatment. Mithira believes that training and support for the mental health workforce are crucial for addressing the needs of people with personality disorder. She has a particular interest in supporting primary care providers to work therapeutically with clients living with BPD.

Dr Julian Nesci

A senior clinical psychologist and accredited Mentalization Based Treatment practitioner and supervisor. His work within Spectrum’s Mentalization Based Treatment clinic includes individual and group therapy, supervision, and training. Julian also works within the Complex Care Service, providing consultation and treatment for consumers, carers, clinicians, and services. Julian also has a background in working with people with severe eating disorders, acute mental health issues, and the adolescent forensic field. Together with his colleagues, he has received accreditation for Spectrum’s Mentalization Based Treatment program from the Anna Freud Centre in London. Julian is eager to support the growth and delivery of psychotherapy for people with complex difficulties within Australia.

Cathryn Pilcher

The Associate Director of Spectrum and an Occupational Therapist, with more than 15 years’ experience in Mental Health, specialising in working with people who have personality disorder. She is a Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) therapist and was integrally involved in setting up the first regional DBT program in Western Australia. Along with clinical leadership, Cathryn provides consultation, supervision, and training and as an OT, is passionate about helping people with personality disorders to experience a meaningful and purpose-filled life.

Dr Alex Potter

A senior clinical psychologist and MBT therapist. He has experience working with clients who have complex personality disorders within community, forensic, and private practice settings. At Spectrum, Alex is a member of both the MBT team - running groups and working with individual clients – and the Complex Care Service, providing treatment and consultation. Alex sees MBT as a dynamic and flexible modality for working with people who experience personality disorder.

Associate Professor Sathya Rao

A psychiatrist and the Executive Clinical Director of Spectrum. He is also the Vice President of the Australian BPD Foundation. Sathya holds an adjunct clinical associate professor position at Monash University. Sathya conducts clinical research and has published research papers, book chapters, and co-authored books on borderline personality disorder. He was a member of the NHMRC Clinical Practice Guidelines development committee, 2012. Sathya has taught clinicians across Australia for many years and was the head of the psychiatry training program of Victoria for the RANZCP. Sathya was the recipient of the 2020 Meritorious Award of the Victorian Branch of RANZCP. He treats people who experience complex personality disorder and provides second opinions and secondary consultations for complex clinical conditions associated with personality disorder. In recognition of his contributions to psychiatry, Sathya received the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) (General Division) in June 2022.

Dr Samantha (Sam) Tabak

A senior clinical psychologist and board-accredited supervisor. She has over a decade of experience working in Child and Youth Mental Health services, psychiatric triage, intensive outreach teams, and early psychosis, utilizing psychotherapy frameworks such as MBT, DBT, ACT, and Open Dialogue-informed therapy. Sam currently works in the Complex Care Service at Spectrum. She also works with young people and their families in private practice. Sam believes in a person-centered and collaborative approach to treatment and support.

Joanne (Jo) Veltkamp

A mental health nurse with extensive experience in a variety of roles in both private and public mental health settings. Her predominant interest lies in working with people who have a lived experience of personality disorder, as well as their carers. Jo is currently a Senior Clinician at Spectrum, working in collaboration with the Spectrum Lived Experience Team (consumer and carer) and the Intake Team. She continues to work with adolescents and adults in public mental health settings.

Sarah Wallace

A Senior Clinical Psychologist at Spectrum who brings years of experience from multiple practice settings, including outpatient community mental health, non-government organizations, and private practice. Sarah works in Spectrum’s Complex Care Service, providing individual therapy and secondary consultation, as well as in Spectrum’s Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) clinic.

Marianne Weddell

Clinical Manager & Clinical Specialist at Spectrum. She is a Clinical Psychologist with 20 years’ experience in public and private settings, treating a wide range of disorders, managing teams, training staff, and supervising/mentoring clinicians. Marianne has a special interest and significant experience working with borderline personality disorder. Her particular focus is developing service and family systems that work effectively in this space. Marianne believes in therapy as a tool to help people understand themselves, their passions, and build a life worth living.

Contact education and training team

Phone: (03) 8413 8750

Email: [email protected]

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