Mary Gail Frawley-O’Dea, Ph.D.
Dr. Frawley-O’Dea has been Executive Director of Presby Psych since 2010 and considers it the highlight of her career to lead this professionally skilled and compassionate organization.
Education: Dr. Frawley-O’Dea earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from St. Mary’s College, Notre Dame, IN and a Master of Business Administration degree from the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University. She worked in healthcare marketing for seven years. Changing careers, she earned a Master of Arts degree and Doctorate in Clinical Psychology at the Gordon F. Derner School of Psychology, Adelphi University, where she also received a post-doctoral Certificate in Advanced Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis. She completed her pre-doctoral internship at Rockland County Community Mental Health Center in Pomona, NY.
Clinician & Executive Director: For more than 35 years, Dr. Frawley-O’Dea has specialized in treating adolescent and adult male and female survivors of developmental trauma, including sexual abuse, and is internationally known for this work. She takes a relational psychodynamic approach to her clinical work informed by trauma theory and contemporary neuroscience. She believes that psychotherapy and psychoanalysis are crafts, combining both scientific principles and artisanship. No two therapeutic journeys are alike. Rather, they reflect the unique interactions of the individuals involved in the processes. Therapists and patients enter a relationship through which, when things go well, “more” becomes possible — more life, more love, more play, more feeling, more thought, more choice, more reflection.
Educator: Dr. Frawley-O’Dea taught in Derner’s doctoral and post-doctoral programs and was co-director, faculty member and supervisor at the Manhattan Institute for Psychoanalysis where she also served as Executive Director of their Trauma Treatment Program. She was faculty member and supervisor at the National Institute for the Psychotherapies Supervisory Training Program and at their National Training Program for Psychoanalysis. In Charlotte, she served as faculty member, supervisor and curriculum consultant for the North Carolina Institute for Clinical Pastoral Training. Recently, she became a faculty member and supervisor at Derner’s Post-Graduate Continuing Education Program.
Author, Speaker, Expert Witness: Mary Gail’s co-authored book, Treating the Adult Survivor of Childhood Sexual Abuse, is considered a classic. She also co-authored a book, The Supervisory Relationship, which offered a new, relational model of psychodynamic supervision. In 2002, she was the only psychologist invited to address the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops at its seminal meeting on sexual abuse. There, she presented a paper on the psychological and spiritual damage resulting from clergy sexual abuse. After that, she authored Perversion of Power: Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church, an analysis of the Catholic sexual abuse crisis. She has provided expert witness services in legal cases addressing sexual abuse.
Dr. Frawley-O’Dea is or has been on the editorial boards of several professional journals and is a member of the editorial board of The North Carolina Psychologist. She has published more than 50 book chapters, professional articles, and magazine or newspaper articles and has made numerous professional presentations and invited lectures throughout the United States as well as in Canada and Israel. She appeared in the Oscar-nominated documentary film, Deliver Us From Evil, which addressed the sexual abuse crisis in the Catholic Church.
Location: Dr. Frawley-O’Dea’s clinical practice is at our Sharon Road/South Park location where she accepts Aetna, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, Carolina Behavioral Health Alliance, and out-of-network insurance. Her website is www.mgfod.com
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