Lori is co-owner of Heartland Play Therapy Institute. Lori obtained her Bachelors of Arts degree in Social Work with a secondary major in Women’s Studies from Kansas State University in 1999, her Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Kansas in 2002 and her Play Therapy Certification from KC Play Therapy Institute in 2006.
Lori began her career as a case manager for a residential children’s home in Wichita, Kansas, gaining valuable experience and insight into the field of foster care and child protective services. Upon moving to the Kansas City area in 2000, Lori was given the opportunity to work in her field of passion at SAFEHOME, serving victims of domestic violence. Over her sixteen years at SAFEHOME, Lori worked as an advocate, Shelter Director, Child and Family Therapist, Outreach Therapist and Clinical Director. In the position of Clinical Director, Lori was responsible for overseeing the agency’s counseling program, which served over 1,000 clients a year. In 2015, Lori became the co-owner of Heartland Play Therapy Institute, Inc. and began teaching the Fundamentals of Play Therapy workshop. Lori also started a private practice in 2015, serving children, families and adults in Overland Park, Kansas. Over the past fifteen years, Lori also expanded her experience through contract work providing individual therapy for children in the Head Start Program, providing home study and post placement services for families adopting domestically or internationally, and facilitating trainings and providing play therapy supervision for the KC Play Therapy Institute PlayTalk program.
Throughout her career as a therapist, Lori has pursued training in a variety of therapeutic models including Play Therapy, Theraplay, Psychodrama, Emotional Transformation Therapy, Resonance Repatterning, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF CBT) and Art Therapy. Lori is passionate about working with children of all ages (including adults). She believes that the principles of play allow children to be seen and heard, which facilitates healing and growth. Lori is also passionate about teaching and supervising students to help them develop new skills. She believes that the therapeutic relationship has the power to be transformative and she enjoys working with clinicians to expand their skills.