A professional and compassionate full-service counseling center in Northern New Jersey for over 30 years. (201) 467-4173

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North New Jersey Counselor Staff

Jianny Adamo, LPC, MFT holds a Professional Counselor License in New Jersey, a Mental Health Counselor License in Florida, and is a certified relationship coach through Relationship Coaching Institute. Jianny speaks Spanish and can provide Christian counseling upon request.

Jianny's passion to help create intimate, life-long fulfilling marriages led her to earn a Masters of Arts Degree in Counseling from Nyack College, New York, where it combined psychological and spiritual theories to understanding humanity. She believes that intimate relationships, although conflictive at times, are nature’s path to healing, personal growth, and happiness. Her interactive eclectic styles draws from Gestalt, IMAGO Relationship Therapy, Life Coaching, CBT, and Positive Psychology.

Jianny provides her clients with positive communication and conflict resolutions skills, as well as intimacy-building skills for greater success and fulfillment. For couples, her focus is to help them to grow in love, intimacy and understanding, and to recharge the love that brought them together. Jianny supports singles to heal from past relationships, break unfulfilling cycles of attraction, and prepare for and attract love. In divorce care, she supports the client to stabilize and heal, and promotes a quicker path to healthy living and love again.

Beth Anagnostis, LCSW, LCADC is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a Licensed Clinical Alcohol and Drug Counselor and has been a social worker for nearly twenty years. In addition to working for the Mars and Venus Counseling Center, she also works in an outpatient substance abuse facility with adolescents and with adults who have mental health diagnoses as well as addictions.

One of Beth's areas of expertise includes helping people of all ages with addictions, with a focus on twelve-step recovery as well as cognitive behavioral work and motivational interviewing techniques.

Beth works extensively with young adults who are coping with the social and academic demands of college. In addition, she specializes in working with young people who have completed college, a trade school, or high school and are struggling to transition into the world of full-time work and adjusting to being at home with their immediate family again or living on their own.

Beth also specializes in adolescents with behavioral difficulties, anxiety and depression, substance abuse, ADHD and ADD, and broken families. There is a strong focus on family work.

Beth also helps couples and individuals who are in need of better communication skills and who may be suffering from a variety of mental health issues like depression, anxiety, or other mood disorders or personality disorders and are in need of support. In addition to cognitive behavioral work, she comes from a place of helping clients focus on their strengths and goals and also utilizing mindfulness techniques such as breathing exercises and meditation.

Michelle Branigan, MSW, LCSW, ACSW, B.C.D. is a licensed clinical social worker who holds a Masters Degree from Columbia University School of Social Work. She attained certification with Academy of Certified Social Workers and is a Board Certified Diplomate in Clinical Social Work. She has certification in Gestalt Psychotherapy and certification in Gerontology from Rutgers University. Michelle has an extensive background in clinical social work supervision in healthcare settings and holds SIFI certification from NYU School of Social Work.

For more than twenty years, Michelle has helped individuals, couples, and families better understand themselves and develop better ways of communicating with their loved ones. Michelle specializes in life transitions such as adolescent emotions, young adults seeking career and relationships, premarital, marital, parenting concerns, middle age to advanced age, and she addresses ways in which the client can feel positive in how they are handling and navigating their lives and situations therein.

Michelle believes in the mind/body/spirit connection, and she has expertise in working with clients coping with anxiety, depression, chronic physical conditions and illnesses, as well as terminal illness. Her background provides compassion for those dealing with caregiver concerns, the aging process, or the death of a loved one, including pets. She believes that loss is a part of life and, though difficult and challenging, it can also be a time of growth. Through her bereavement work, Michelle provides clients the opportunity to discover hope and healing. Michelle will integrate your faith if this aspect is important to you in your healing process.

Dara Dwojewski, LAC is a Licensed Associate Counselor who specializes in working with children, adolescents and their families. After receiving her Bachelor's Degree in Psychology and Education from Bucknell University, Dara began working with adolescents struggling with behavioral, mental health, and substance abuse difficulties. She earned her Master's Degree in Counseling as well as a drug and alcohol counseling certification from Montclair State University. Dara has experience working with children of all ages coping with crisis including depression, anxiety, family problems, problems in school, social difficulties, developmental delays, and substance use. She also has experience working closely with the Division of Child Protection and Permanency (formerly DYFS), children in foster care, and their families.

Dara has also worked with adults managing mental health, substance abuse, and co-occurring diagnoses. She has experience working with people facing a wide variety of challenges including family conflict, addiction, depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, schizo-affective disorder, schizophrenia, and career and financial difficulties. Dara often draws from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, but frequently employs a variety of techniques such as play therapy, motivational interviewing, mindfulness, and solution-focused techniques.

As a former Division 1 athlete, Dara also enjoys working with young athletes and incorporating elements of sports psychology. She believes in a strength-based and goal oriented approach to counseling, and is passionate about helping others reach their full potential and attain positive emotional health.

David Kaplan, LCSW is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, having graduated the Rutgers University MSW program. He has over 20 years experience and provides professional counseling for individuals, couples, marriage, premarital, families, and groups.

Susan Keefer, Ph.D., LPC is a Licensed Professional Counselor with a Ph.D. in Social Psychology. Susan works with couples experiencing relationship issues, such as difficulties in communicating or resolving conflict, and with individuals experiencing a variety of concerns, from mood disturbances, such as anxiety and depression, to struggles with addiction.

Susan utilizes an integrative approach in counseling that helps clients to discover and build upon their unique strengths, and that emphasizes each person's responsibility for affecting and improving his or her own life circumstances. Fluent in cognitive, behavioral, humanistic, and psychodynamic theory and techniques, Susan also relies on contemporary and more contextual approaches to counseling, such as Solution-Focused Therapy, Narrative Therapy and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy.

Susan is also a passionate believer in the mind/body connection. With 10 years of experience as a yoga teacher, she has seen the positive results that physical exercise, proper nutrition, and meditation can play in creating a balanced lifestyle and improving psychological well-being.

Elisabeth M. Keeney, LAC is a Licensed Associate Counselor in New Jersey and a Licensed Graduate Professional Counselor in Maryland. Elisabeth uses a wellness based approach to help individuals focus on manageable changes and see major improvements. She works primarily with individuals who are struggling with depression, anxiety, loss of a loved one, and relationship issues. Prior to joining Mars and Venus, Elisabeth specialized in working with children and adolescents with behavioral issues. She has advanced training in positive behavior support, school presence, and trauma-focused CBT.

Elisabeth has earned a MA from Immaculata University in Counseling Psychology as well as a BA from Rutgers University in Psychology and American Studies. In addition to working at the Mars and Venus Counseling Center, Elisabeth is an adjunct professor at Berkeley College teaching social science courses. She is also an active member and volunteer with the New Jersey Counselors Association.

Jennifer Pinto, LPC is a Licensed Professional Counselor who received her Master's in Counseling from Nyack College. Jennifer provides individual therapy, couples counseling, and family counseling. Her areas of expertise include anxiety, depression, grief and bereavement, and strengthening relationships through more effective communication.

Jennifer also has training in Christian Counseling, which can be incorporated into therapy upon request. In addition, Jennifer holds a Bachelor's in Education and she has a specialty in working with children and teens, their schools, and their parents to help with anxiety, depression, grief and bereavement, divorce, troubles in school, ADHD, behavioral issues, and parenting support.

Jennifer Pinto is married and lives in North New Jersey with her husband and three children.

Socorro Caballery-Smith, LCSW
is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who received her Master’s in Social Work from Fordham University She has worked at Hackensack University Medical Center and the Jewish Board of Family and Children Services. Socorro began her private practice in 2003

Clients describe Socorro as “a caring, nurturing, and gentle psychotherapist.” She strives to treat each person as a unique individual, and helps them direct the treatment that will move them beyond the problems they are facing to a more fulfilling and authentic life. Socorro enjoys witnessing the progress of psychotherapy and growth of her clients.

Socorro follows her orientation in psychoanalytical and psychodynamic work; however, she is also is interested in the interplay between the body, mind, and spirit and incorporates the techniques of psychodrama in trauma work when deemed fit.

Socorro specializes in women’s issues and empowers women by guiding them to see their inner strengths, envision their potential, and develop an awareness of how powerful they are to generate change in their lives. Socorro extensively works with clients who have anxiety and depression with a strong resolve to facilitate them to learn the lesson that is inherent within these conditions. She also has experience with high conflict couples, providing those who have lost their way with the hope of a solid reconnection in their relationship.

Socorro is bilingual and is able to work with a culturally diverse Latino population.

Belinda, Administrative Director

Wishing to be an integral part of a center that implements the principles and theories of Dr. John Gray, Belinda has proudly assumed the duties of Administrative Director since the year 2000. Her experience with administrative coordination spans more than 20 years.

Belinda manages all office procedures, upholds the strictest confidential operations of the center, and delivers steadfast support to the co-directors and staff.

Belinda is the primary point of contact for clients and the first step through the murky terrain that is health insurance. Belinda is here to help maneuver through this complex insurance process, to remove the hassle of claims submission by submitting primary and secondary claims for all clients, to overcome insurance obstacles, such as authorizations, delays, and denials, and to answer any and all billing questions.

Belinda works closely with the counselors to implement the best possible health insurance strategies based on plan coverage, to apply the fairest sliding scale fee for those who do not have insurance, and to provide high-quality, high-value care to all who seek counseling and coaching.

Belinda has a Bachelor of Science. She is married and lives in Northern New Jersey.