Dr. Punzo is a licensed clinical psychologist in the state of Illinois. She completed her doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology with a concentration in Traumatic Stress at Adler University.
Her focus throughout graduate school and clinical experiences has always been trauma/PTSD. She has worked in a variety of settings including corrections, community mental health, and VA hospitals. She is very passionate about psychological trauma and is thus involved in various national traumatic stress organizations through membership and active leadership roles.
Dr. Punzo also has experience in working with LGBTQ community. She is the former Director of the Anti-Violence Project at the Center on Halsted, a large LGBTQ community center. She has served in many leadership positions within the community and recently authored a book chapter titled The Impact of Sexual and Gender Diversity on Women’s Mental Health in Women's Mental Health Across the Lifespan.
She has extensive experience treating trauma and PTSD. She has been trained in evidence based therapies such as Prolonged Exposure, Cognitive Processing Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, and Dialectical Behavior Therapy as treatment approaches for trauma, as well as other co-morbid issues. She also utilizes a stage-oriented approach as described by Judith Herman when working with complex trauma survivors.
Dr. Punzo has also completed specialized training in maternal mental health through Postpartum Support International. As a mother herself, Dr. Punzo is passionate about educating and helping mothers struggling with postpartum mood disorders, such as anxiety, depression, and OCD.
Her overall approach to therapy tends to be straightforward and honest, as she values transparency and direct communication in the therapeutic relationship. She believes in working alongside her clients by providing safety and validation to help them achieve their goals.
Dr. Punzo is also a former adjunct faculty member at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. Her clinical and research interests include aspects of sexuality/sexual functioning that are affected by sexual trauma, the impact of trauma on spirituality, specific needs of bisexual individuals, postpartum mood and anxiety disorders, and the efficacy of evidenced-based trauma therapies within the LGBTQ community.
Please visit her Psychology Today or Linkedin profile for more information.