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YWCA Counseling Team

The counseling center at the YWCA SHR engages trauma-informed, evidence-based practices to help each client move through crisis toward healing. Utilizing a variety of therapeutic interventions, we work with you to design a treatment plan that will work for your specific needs. Under the supervision of licensed counselors, our superbly-trained and compassionate pre-licensed counselors provide individual and group counseling for survivors of all genders and ages.

Nicole Nordan M.S.Ed, LPC, NCC, CTTS
Program Director of Counseling

Nicole is a Licensed Professional Counselor in Virginia, a Certified Trauma Treatment Specialist, and a graduate of Old Dominion University with a Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. Nicole has worked with adolescents and adults since 2009, gaining experience working in middle schools, colleges, and homeless/domestic violence programs. Nicole specializes in treating trauma specifically with victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, and early childhood traumas. Nicole takes an eclectic approach in therapy, utilizing various therapies to help clients through the healing processes including; Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, EMDR level 1 & 2, interpersonal practice, and core strength development. She also works with males, females, couples, and families with issues related to self-esteem, depression, anxiety disorders, PTSD, grief and loss, emotional regulation, interpersonal relationships, domestic/sexual violence, and gender and sexual identity. Nicole believes a positive therapeutic relationship between a therapist and client is essential to the growth process. She creates a collaborative, warm, and comfortable environment in which clients can feel free to explore. Through her strength-based, holistic approach, she strives to help individuals achieve the goals they have in mind for themselves.

Jenay Garrett, M.S.Ed, LPC

Clinical Manager

Jenay Garrett is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the Commonwealth of Virginia, a National Certified Counselor, and a trained substance abuse counselor. She attended Old Dominion University earning both her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Human Services in 2009 and Masters’ degree in Mental Health Counseling in 2012. Jenay is currently working towards a Ph.D. in Human & Social Services at Walden University. She has been working in the human services and mental health fields for 11 years, working in settings ranging from shelters, non-profit organizations, public schools, in-patient facilities, and outpatient therapeutic services. Jenay has experience working with children, adolescents, adults, couples, groups, and families with a variety of presenting issues to include depression, self-esteem, various forms of abuse, anxiety, anger, relationship issues, at-risk behaviors, homelessness, foster care, and self-harm, however, her passion is working with individuals who have experienced trauma/PTSD, suicidal ideations, and substance abuse. Jenay utilizes an integrated approach to counseling which includes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Feminist Theory, Trauma-Informed Care, Motivational Interviewing (MI), DBT skills, Dream Work, and EMDR to help my clients process through their experiences in a healthy manner. Jenay believes that her purpose in life is to use her professional experience, educational knowledge, and passion to help other’s journey to a state of peace and healing by providing a non-judgmental space for exploration, support, and growth

Wanda McInnis, M.A.

Counselor l

Wanda received a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology in 2013, and a Master of Arts in Counseling in December 2017 from Regent University. Wanda began with the YWCA in May of 2017 as a Counseling Intern and was hired on as a Counselor l immediately after completing her degree. She spent her internship working with clients who were healing from various types of trauma to include sexual assault, domestic violence, childhood sexual abuse, and other forms of complex trauma. Wanda’s work experiences are varied. She has gained valuable experience from her work with adolescent teens in a behavioral residential treatment setting and managed group homes for individuals with intellectual disabilities. Wanda has also worked in local homeless shelters and gained extensive medical experience in her role as a Nurse Care Partner. Wanda volunteers in the counseling department of her church with the substance abuse recovery group and is active in mentoring recovering addicts. Wanda is passionate about meeting the client where they are and equipping and empowering them to overcome life traumas and help them live their best lives. Wanda’s counseling approach is integrative and uses approaches suitable to the client’s needs including person-centered, strength-based, CBT, and DBT.

Jerrica Newsome, M.A.

Counselor I 

Jerrica received a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology from Old Dominion University in 2013 and a Master of Arts degree in Professional Counseling from Liberty University in 2018. In 2016, Jerrica joined YWCA as a victim advocate in the Norfolk JDR court, where she assisted victims of sexual assault, and domestic violence in securing protective orders, and in navigating through the criminal justice process. Jerrica spent her one-year internship in the YWCA Counseling Department working with clients who were healing from domestic violence, sexual assault, childhood sexual abuse, and other complex trauma. She worked with clients to process their history of trauma and to develop the necessary skills to better manage symptoms of trauma including resilience training, emotional regulation, distress tolerance, cognitive restructuring, and mindfulness. Jerrica also worked part-time in the YWCA Emergency Shelter, until she was hired full time as a Counselor I in December 2018. Jerrica’s 9 years of experience in the mental health field also includes work as a direct support professional with individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities in Norfolk, and she provided in-home counseling and skill-building services to clients in Hampton & Newport News. She chose the counseling field because she believes that every person, every race, and every culture can benefit from having a safe, therapeutic space to process the difficulties and traumas of life, to live a more abundant and fulfilling life – together. Jerrica utilizes an eclectic therapeutic approach, incorporating techniques and interventions from CBT, DBT, CPT, and mindfulness

Alexia Chavero, M.Ed

Counselor l

Alexia received a Master of Education degree in Counseling and Guidance at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. Alexia is currently working to complete her Resident in Counseling License in Virginia. Alexia began with the YWCA in February of 2021 as a Crisis Intervention Specialist and was hired by our Counseling Department shortly after. Before working with the YWCA Alexia was practicing trauma work with multiple populations. Her work includes guiding and supporting unaccompanied immigrant children at the South Texas Border and grief and loss groups with children, teens, and adults. Alexia’s experience also expands to abuse and sexual assault work with children and their families. Her work in the university setting exposed her to different diagnosis and complex trauma cases including domestic violence. Alexia is really passionate about the mental health field and loves to participate in advocacy projects. Her main goal is to provide a safe place for healing and exploration where self-love and self-advocacy become reachable. Alexia’s counseling approach is integrative. Her counseling techniques include Person-Centered, Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and Cognitive Processing Therapy. She enjoys adding Play-Therapy techniques to her sessions to make the counseling relationship more comfortable and expressive.

Iiesha Ricks, MSW

Counselor l

Iiesha, MSW, found a love for psychology during an introductory to psychology class during undergrad. With a keen interest in human behavior and neurological function in psychology she felt she found her niche. Given the opportunity to intern in a local domestic violence shelter for women
she realized the role she wanted to play in the field of psychology. Interning in this environment cultivated her passion that developed into a career goal — a career goal to provide psychotherapy to women and children that would significantly reduce trauma symptoms and enhance their quality of life. She then went on to obtain a master’s degree in social work. Throughout the program, she gained experience providing trauma-focused treatment to adults and adolescents. She uses a cognitive-behavioral therapeutic approach utilizing both person-centered and strength-based techniques.