Serving Oakland’s Diverse and Vibrant LGBTQ+ Community
Private Practice Therapists @ The Center
Lesley Sternin - Psychotherapy
Lesley is a licensed clinical social worker and has worked for 30 years providing psychotherapy services in the Bay Area in private practice (lesleysternin.com) and mental health agencies. Lesley’s style is relational and authentic. She works collaboratively with clients to create the changes that they want to see in their lives. Lesley works with adolescents, adults and couples. Her areas of specialty include transgender and gender identity issues, trauma and relationship issues.
Lesley began her career as a Clinical Supervisor at the Pacific Center for Human Growth working with the LGBTQ community. Lesley also served as Director of the Child Trauma Training Program, a collaboration between UCSF Child Trauma Research Program and Jewish Family and Children’s Services SF, where she provided leadership, training and clinical consultation.
Jonathan Julian - Registered Associate Marriage & Family Therapist
Hello! I am a queer artist, activist and therapist. I believe deeply in healing, and my practice as a therapist is one way I use my own healing journey to inform and create space for others to explore theirs. I identify as Queer, non-binary, femme male, same gender loving, he/him/they/them pronouns, White-European, Scots-Irish descended, Midwestern raised
and spiritual/ancestral. As such, I seek to center my work on empowering and supporting people in the LGBTQIA+ community. Whether directly or indirectly through my practice, I also work to uplift and center the empowerment of queer, trans*, black, indigenous
and people of color (QTBIPOC); immigrants; sex workers; folx with different physical and neurological abilities; survivors of abuse; folx who have been impacted by or are currently experiencing economic oppression, homelessness, foster care system, prison
system, legal system, police brutality, education system, community violence, intimate partner violence, etc.
Before becoming a therapist I was a visual and performing artist – illustrator, singer, musician, and dancer. I have used these mediums in my own process of healing, and offer exploration with many forms of creative arts to find deeper connection to self and empower expression. Art can be a powerful way to access difficult content through metaphor and externalizations of internalized pain. It can also be a joyful way to celebrate and honor growth and boundaries, and connect to community. I have practice using visual art, music, drama, poetry, writing, and dance in therapy. Using the arts in therapy has the potential to strengthen coping, bolster resilience and give voice to oppressed parts of ourselves.
Therapy with me will focus on continuing a journey of self-awareness by engaging deeply with emotions and empathy, tending to natural defenses like anxiety, depression, isolation, anger, disconnection and external coping strategies, exploring and containing trauma, staying healthy while navigating oppressive structures and systems, and loosening innate creativity to find your most authentic self and relationships.
Although this organization is not located on-site here at the Oakland LGBTQ Community Center, we are happy to be affiliated with the LGBTQ Psychotherapists of Color (QTOC) referral Website through center volunteer, Dr. Darlene A. Hall. Finding LGBTQ psychotherapists of color can be challenging in the Bay Area so having this resource on our site is very critical to serving our diverse community. Founded in 2009, QTOC is a San Francisco/Bay Area grassroots, volunteer-led group providing support, networking, leadership development, and community building opportunities for LGBTQs of color in Psychology, Social Work, and Counseling. Their members range from students through licensed professionals and work in a variety of settings, including schools, nonprofit and community-based organizations, government, academia, hospitals and clinics, private practice, and consulting. To locate LGBTQ pschotherapists of color in the San Francisco/Bay Area, please visit their website https://www.lgbtqpsychotherapistsofcolor.com/
The Pacific Center & Gaylesta are partner mental health resources for our LGBTQ community.