Meet Our Psychologists

The Ahead Psychology Team

Ahead Psychology comprises a team of experienced and caring female and male psychologists.

All of our psychologists:

  • Have 10 years or more experience working as a psychologist
  • Are fully registered with the Psychologists Board of Australia (PBA)
  • Practice within the Psychologists Board of Australia Code of Ethics
  • Undertake a PBA approved program of continuing professional development
  • Hold Professional Indemnity Insurance

Psychologists Profiles

Click each person’s name to read more…
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Richelle Deakin Brisbane Psychologist

Richelle Deakin
PGDip Psych

Richelle Deakin is an experienced psychologist with over 12 years’ working in both private practice and public health. Richelle is committed to helping you overcome the limitations caused by a range of mental health conditions so that you can experience more fulfillment and satisfaction in your life and your relationships with the people that matter most. Through the use of powerful and effective evidence based methods, Richelle works with you to help you understand how change is possible, and what you need to do to achieve your goals.

Areas of Practice

Richelle works with adults, adolescents and children experiencing a range of mental health issues including:

  • Depression
  • Stress and Anxiety
  • Adjustment related issues
  • Complex trauma
  • Developmental and attachment related issues
  • Parenting strategies
  • Disability

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Areas of special interest and expertise

Child and Adolescent Psychology

Richelle has over 12 years experience working with children, adolescents, and their families.

She is committed to assisting children and adolescents reach their full potential and can help with a wide range of issues such as social anxiety, behavioural and emotional difficulties, and coping skills to manage life’s challenges.

Richelle uses evidence-based treatment approaches that work specifically for children. She can also help parents by providing them with practical tools and strategies to help them be more effective in supporting a child’s growth and development.

Families with complex trauma and family relationship issues.

Richelle has a special interest in working with families where there are difficulties related to complex trauma and family relationship issues. She uses both individual and family-based approaches to work with children and their parents/caregivers. She believes that teaching families how to nurture strong, healthy relationships is fundamental for promoting healing, hope and changes that last.

Richelle uses evidence-based counselling approaches including cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and other mindfulness-based practices. She also uses practical tools for helping parents/caregivers to be more effective in the management of their children’s behavioural and emotional difficulties.

On a personal note

Richelle is a busy working mum who understands the reality of juggling work and family life. In her spare time she likes doing outdoor activities such as going to the beach and bush walks, as well as spending time with her family.

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Patricia Smith Brisbane Psychologist

Patricia Smith
BA (Hons) Psych, MAPS

Patricia Smith is a Registered Psychologist with over 13 years’ experience.

She has worked in both private practice and the public sector, with the Australian Defence Force.

Patricia takes a practical and thoughtful approach to therapy with the aim of helping you to experience life in a more meaningful, fulfilling and connected way.

She is committed to helping you get a complete understanding of what is causing your current emotional and behavioural difficulties, and to show you better ways of coping and resolving issues that may be stopping you from living the life you want.

Areas of Practice

Patricia works with adults experiencing a broad range of psychological health problems including:

  • Anxiety disorders
  • Depression
  • Stress management
  • Complex and post-traumatic stress
  • Adjustment disorders
  • Life phase issues and decision making
  • Relationship / marriage counselling
  • Personality disorders
  • Self esteem and changing self-defeating behaviour
  • Anger management
  • Assertiveness and social skills training
  • Conflict resolution

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Areas of Special Interest and Expertise

Relationship / marriage counselling

Patricia is passionate about helping couples to cope with the stress and pressures in their relationship that lead to conflict and disconnection. She does this by helping couples to understand the root causes of their problems, and to learn healthier and more effective communication skills that promote greater harmony and connection in their relationship as a couple.

Trauma Counselling
Patricia has a special interest and expertise in providing trauma counselling. She has experience working with people who are suffering with post-traumatic stress disorder, acute stress reactions, and difficulties adjusting to major life changes or losses. The trauma may be related to experiences from your past, or more recent life experiences. Patricia is dedicated to helping you develop the knowledge and skills required to build hope for the future by moving past the trauma and hardships of the past. She does this by using counselling practices such as CBT (with a specific trauma focus) to help you to learn how to cope with the impact of trauma on you personally, as well as your relationships with others, and your ability to function day-to-day.

ADF members and their families

Patricia has over seven years’ experience working with ADF members. She has a special interest in supporting these members and their families to cope with the difficulties and challenges of the ADF lifestyle. She has an excellent working knowledge of ADF procedures and processes for managing mental health disorders, and understands the culture and pressures that contribute to mental health problems for ADF members. She is also very interested in supporting Defence families to cope and function better with the pressures they face when a member of the family is in, or transitioning from the ADF.

Patricia’s approach to counselling includes the use of evidence-based frameworks including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT); Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT); Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy; Schema Therapy; Critical Incident Stress Debriefing; Alternative Dispute Resolution; Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), and Trauma Focused Therapy.

Supervision of Psychologists for registration

Patricia is an accredited AHPRA Board-approved supervisor and can provide the mandatory supervision required for registration as a Psychologist via the following pathways:
• 4+2 internship principal supervisor
• 4+2 internship secondary supervisor

On a personal note

After living interstate for 16 years, Patricia now calls Brisbane home. She values getting the work/life balance right by making sure she leaves enough time for going to the gym, gardening, and always having a renovation or craft project on the go!

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Heath Christie Brisbane Psychologist

Heath Christie
BBehSc, PGDip Psych, MCouns, Assoc MAPS EMDRAA

Heath Christie is a registered male Psychologist with over 12 years’ experience providing psychological counselling, supervision, critical incident management, therapeutic program delivery and professional development.Heath has returned to private practice at Ahead Psychology after 2 years working as a Senior Psychologist with Mates4Mates helping current and ex-serving Australian Defence Force (ADF) members.Heath employs a collaborative, strengths-based and holistic approach to help people understand their difficulties and to tailor management strategies so they can meet their goals and reach their full potential.

Areas of Practice

Heath has extensive experience working with adults, including older adults, experiencing a wide range of psychological problems including:

  • Trauma
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Stress management
  • Depression
  • Grief and loss
  • Substance use disorders
  • Workplace Issues

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Areas of special interest and expertise

Anxiety and trauma related disorders 

Heath’s area of special interest and developed expertise is in the treatment of anxiety and trauma related disorders, including PTSD, complex trauma and dissociative disorders.

He has helped people from a broad cross section of society including front line Emergency Services staff and ADF members

EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing) therapy

Heath has undertaken Master Class level training in EMDR therapy, a powerful psychotherapy approach for the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and many other types of psychological distress.

Heath also uses a range of other therapeutic techniques including Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy, Mindfulness, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Narrative and Solution Focussed Therapy, Motivational Interviewing , and Dialectical Behaviour Therapy.

On a personal note

In his spare time Heath enjoys spending time with friends, surfing, yoga, circuit training, cooking, riding motor cycles and travelling.
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Tara Taylor Brisbane Psychologist

Tara Taylor,
B Psych (Hons) MPsych Clin, MAPS

Tara Taylor is a highly experienced Clinical Psychologist with over 10 years’ working with children, adolescents and adults. She has worked in private practice, community mental health clinics, and hospitals.Tara focuses on building warm, comfortable and collaborative relationships with her clients to support them to achieve their goals. Her approach to counselling is practical, sensitive, and focussed on helping you make changes that lead to greater meaning and satisfaction in life. She also considers humour and fun to be an important part of the therapy process.

Areas of Practice

Tara works with children, adolescents and adults experiencing a variety of concerns such as:

  • Anxiety disorders, including panic and phobias
  • Depression
  • Stress management
  • Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Adjustment Difficulties (particularly for parents of premature infants)
  • Perinatal mental health issues (including Post Natal Depression (PND))
  • Grief and loss
  • Eating issues
  • Chronic pain
  • Parenting issues
  • Behavioural, social and emotional problems in child and adolescents

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Areas of special interest and expertise

Child Psychology

Tara has a particular passion for working with children and adolescents experiencing social, emotional and behavioural problems that impact on their functioning at home, school, or in their social relationships. Tara’s main focus is to help your child and your family develop a plan and learn practical skills aimed at improving communication, learning helpful strategies for managing difficult behaviour, and adjusting to the different stages and challenges of family life.

Parents of Premature Infants

Tara also has a special interest in working with parents who are coping and adjusting to the birth of a premature infant. She is very experienced working with parents (including Dads) as they experience the different stages of pregnancy and the birth of a child.

Tara uses a variety of approaches including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Schema Therapy, and Narrative Therapy. Tara is also an accredited provider of the Triple P Positive Parenting Program.

On a personal note

Tara is a busy working mum. In her spare time she enjoys having fun and keeping active with her young children and boisterous dogs.

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Juliet Whitlock Brisbane Psychologist

Juliet Whitlock
BSc(Psych)Hons, MMH(Family Therapy), AAFT MAAPi

Juliet Whitlock comes to Ahead Psychology with over 20 years’ experience working as a psychologist in both the public and private sectors.Juliet is dedicated to helping you grow and develop personally in ways that allow you to live your life with a sense of hope, satisfaction and resilience. She does this by helping you to develop insight, let go of old habits that hold you back, and learn to use simple and practical skills to support the changes you want to make in your life.

Areas of Practice

Juliet works with adults, adolescents and children and families experiencing various mental health issues including:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Stress management
  • Trauma and complex childhood trauma
  • Child attachment issues
  • Parenting difficulties
  • Workplace stress
  • Relationship / Marital difficulties
  • Family difficulties

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Areas of Special Interest and Expertise

Child and Adolescent Psychology

Juliet has extensive experience working with children and adolescents, and their parents, on a wide range of emotional, social and behavioural issues. She offers practical solutions and strategies with the focus being on helping your child become happy and resilient.

Relationship / Marriage Counselling

Juliet has a special interest in working with couples who are experiencing difficulties in their relationship. She helps couples to resolve their problems and differences by improving their ability to be more emotionally aware of each other, and more effective in their approach to problem solving and negotiation.

Juliet has undertaken and continues to engage in advanced training in couples therapy. She is committed to helping couples develop the understanding and skills required to build a healthier relationship.

Juliet uses evidence based models of therapy such as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Family Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Expressive and play-based therapies, Emotional Focussed Therapy (EFT) for couples, and Solutions Focussed Therapy.

Family Counselling

Juliet offers specialised Family Counselling to deal with family wide problems, or problems concerning a particular person, but where the problem impacts on the entire family. She helps to: change the way family members interact; improve the functioning of the family as a unit, and improve the functioning of individuals in the family
Juliet has completed a Masters of Mental Health (Family Therapy) and is a Member of The Australian Association of Family Therapists (AAFT).

On a Personal Note

After living interstate recently, Juliet has now decided to return to Brisbane and make this her home. When she is not busy at work, Juliet enjoys relaxing with family friends or a good book.
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Carly Fay Brisbane Psychologist

Dr Carly Fay
B Psych (Hons) D Clin Psych

Dr Fay is returning to private practice in September 2018Dr Carly Fay is a highly experienced clinical psychologist. She is committed to helping you achieve goals that that allow you to experience life in a more meaningful, fulfilling and connected way.She helps people improve their health and well-being, their relationships, and to cope effectively with unexpected life changes, especially those related to trauma or chronic illness.Her approach to counselling is based on providing you with simple yet highly effective tools that help build your strength and resilience to overcome the obstacles that are holding you back in life.

Areas of Practice

Carly works individually with adults and has experience treating a range of mental health issues including:

  • Anxiety disorders
  • Cancer support (for clients and carers)
  • Grief and loss
  • Depression
  • Chronic disease management
  • Pain management
  • Post natal depression
  • Post traumatic stress disorders (PTSD) and adjustment issues
  • Self-esteem & self-development

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Areas of special interest and expertise

Anxiety and Stress Disorders

Carly has a special interest in treating anxiety and stress disorders. She understands that anxiety is multi-faceted in the way it affects your mind, body and behaviour.

To help you get on top of your anxiety and stress, Carly teaches you how to use strategies that allow you to be brave, manage your stress better and make changes so that you can live beyond the life limiting choices imposed by anxiety.

Counselling for people affected by Cancer (Psycho-Oncology)

Another of Carly’s special interests is working with people who have been diagnosed with cancer and those supporting and caring for someone with cancer.

She understands the difficulties and distress that a cancer diagnosis can cause – the huge upheaval, changes and uncertainty for everyone involved. Carly is passionate about helping people to adjust, cope and get the best support possible.

Carly uses a range of evidence-based interventions including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Compassion-Focused Therapy. She also has extensive experience with Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy.

Supervision of Psychologists for Registration

Carly has STAP accreditation and offers supervision services in the following pathways:

  • Higher Degree program. Area of practice: Clinical psychology
  • Registrar Program. Area of practice: Clinical psychology. Supervisor type: Principal
  • Registrar Program. Supervisor type: Secondary

On a personal note

Outside of her work, Carly enjoys the demands of raising her young family and getting out and about in the great outdoors.

To unwind, she loves nothing more than an afternoon spent in the garden or tending her orchids. She takes any opportunity to go to yoga.
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Dr Katherine Williams Brisbane Clinical Psychologist

Dr Katherine Williams
BPsychSci (Hons), DPsych

Dr Katherine Williams is a highly experienced Clinical Psychologist who has just started private practice at Ahead Psychology.

Full details of the clients she works with and her areas of practice will be uploaded shortly
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Michelle McBride Brisbane Psychologist

Michelle McBride,
PGDip Psych MA Assoc MAPS

Michelle McBride is an experienced psychologist with over 20 years’ in practice.

She has worked with adults from all walks of life and is passionate about helping people overcome the emotional and mental blocks that stop them from living the life they want.

Michelle helps people to develop the self-belief that change is possible. She does this by providing education and practical tools that will help you to make the changes needed to get what you really want in your life.

Areas of Practice

Michelle has worked with people experiencing a range of emotional and mental health problems including:

  • Anxiety disorders
  • Stress management
  • Grief and loss
  • Relationship issues
  • Parenting strategies
  • Adjustment to major life changes
  • Workplace Issues

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Please Note – Michelle only offers appointments during business hours.

Areas of Special Interest

Michelle has a particular interest in stress management and anxiety disorders and helping you to overcome the negatives effects of this in different areas of your life including personal and family relationships, work performance, and life satisfaction. She is dedicated to helping you increase your capacity to change unhelpful behaviours and habits, no matter where you are in the process right now.

Michelle also offers personal coaching to business owners and professionals to help them make their life, career or business thrive.

Michelle uses evidenced based approaches including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Mindfulness Strategies, Brain-Based Therapy, and Compassion Focussed Therapy.

On a personal note…

Michelle is a busy working mum, and understands the importance of getting the work/life balance right. In her spare time she tries to squeeze in a yoga class or two, a trip to the beach, and reading the biographies of interesting and inspiring people.

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Please Note – Michelle only offers appointments during business hours.

Robyn Kirby
B Psych (Hons), GradDip Psych, B AppSc (Psych)

Robyn Kirby has over 20 years of diverse experience working in the counselling and psychology field – with individuals, families, large organisations, and small community agencies.Robyn recognises that we all have struggles from time to time, and she is dedicated to helping you find a solution to achieve the best outcome. Robyn offers a supportive approach to work together with you to find the right path and adjust to changes along the way to achieving your goals, whether in your work place or your life outside of work.One of Robyn’s key strengths is being able to connect with people, and building strong relationships is one of her main priorities in her work with her clients.

Areas of Practice

Robyn has experience in supporting people to find adaptive coping strategies to manage some of the following concerns:

  • Anxiety
  • Adjustment to change
  • Depression
  • Grief and Loss
  • Trauma and Critical Incident Stress
  • Work related or personal stress
  • Anger management
  • Sleep disorders
  • Relationships and couples counselling
  • Parenting strategies
  • Leadership coaching

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Areas of special interest and expertise

Robyn has a special interest in the management and treatment of stress and trauma related disorders such as PTSD . Through 12 years of working with emergency services, she has developed a strong understanding of the importance of resilience in managing high stress and demanding environments. Robyn helps people to build resilience by teaching them to use a range of coping strategies that help them navigate the stressful challenges they may be facing in life. Robyn also tailors her counselling to focus on each individual’s needs and to make use of their personal strengths to manage stress more effectively.

Robyn is committed to working with couples experiencing relationship stress, and has specialised training in the area of marital counselling. Robyn will work with couples to help them understand their relationship challenges and introduce practical strategies and “tools” to help build a healthier and happier relationship. She has completed Level 1 training in the Gottman Method Couples Therapy, and is keen to help you understand and successfully manage your personal and family relationships.

Her framework draws upon a variety of strength based therapies such as Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, Leadership Coaching, Gottman Method Couples Therapy, Narrative Therapy, Solution Focused/Brief Intervention, Psychological First Aid, Skills for Psychological Recovery, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, and other Mindfulness based practices.

On a personal note

Robyn is an active working Mum who finds great fulfillment in her career and family time. She enjoys outdoor activities, playing sport (especially golf) and reading – and she passionately dislikes ironing!

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Need more help finding a Brisbane Psychologist?

If you’re not sure who might be the best match for you, or you have any other questions, our friendly client support team are always happy to help.
Give us a call on (07) 3352 3577