About Dave

Welcome! I'm excited you've found my website. If what I offer interests or inspires you, I look forward to hearing from you! You can contact me through the Contact page. Below, I've shared a little about myself and my research, training, and education. If you have further questions about anything, please reach out and I'll reply as soon as I am able.

Here is an overview of my training and education:

  • B.A.: Psychology; M.Sc.: Cultural Foundations of Education; Ph.D.: Embodied Cognition, Autopoietic Biology, and Social-Relational Trauma
  • Certified in Trauma-Informed Yoga Therapy
  • Trained in trauma-sensitive mindfulness
  • Trained in confidential advocacy and crisis response for sexual assault and stalking survivors
  • Trained in intergroup/interfaith dialogue
  • two additional yoga certifications in progress

After beginning college as a music major, I received my Bachelor's in Psychology from the University of Northern Colorado and my M.Sc. and Ph.D. from Syracuse University, where I was awarded a Doctoral Research Fellowship and Teaching Assistantship. My dissertation research centered on the interrelated phenomena of embodied cognition, autopoietic biology, process ontology, and ecological psychology, which are the core of a radical paradigm shift in the psychological, neurological, and cognitive sciences (as well as other disciplines of study in the life-mind sciences). In this new, yet also ancient, understanding of mind-cognition, what the modern paradigm has mistakenly called "the physical body" (as supposedly, but not actually, separate from "mental mind") is revealed to be just as much mind as the form of cognition you're engaging as you read these sentences (i.e., abstract, symbolic-conceptual, linear-logical cognition).

My research and clinical practice creatively weaves together insights from dozens of different scientific disciplines and integrates the theory and practice of the neurophysiology of trauma and emotional regulation. In addition, my graduate work was completed in a social justice and inclusive education department, so my approach also integrates the social-systemic-structural-ecological dimensions of cognition, trauma, and healing. Appreciating this social-cognitive level of human existence is crucial for properly understanding and redressing trauma -- yet, sadly, most psychologists, therapists, and clinicians have not been trained to do this. For better or worse (and it's often a complex mix of both!), our social nature and experience is inextricably tied up with our "individual/internal" psychology and neurophysiology, and this dynamic interface must be considered in deeply and sustainably healing from the traumas inherent in living in our current sociocultural-political ecology, which itself is profoundly dysregulated, uncertain, chaotic, and all-too-frequently unsafe and threatening.

I'm also trained and certified in Trauma-Informed Yoga Therapy, trauma-sensitive mindfulness, intergroup/interfaith dialogue, and sexual assault advocacy and crisis response. I have served on the teaching faculty for Sundara Yoga Therapy and have previously owned and operated a somatic therapy practice in Denver, Colorado. Throughout my life, I have studied, practiced, and researched a diverse range of therapeutic, contemplative, and spiritual practices. These include, among others, Eugene Gendlin's "Focusing" method; contemplative listening/prayer; mindfulness meditation; labyrinth walking; yin yoga; wilderness and adventure therapy; play therapy; and narrative therapy/poetic writing. In my practice of Somatic Attunement, I creatively and critically draw from all these and other modalities and frameworks to co-create -- uniquely with each client -- a customized experience that will optimally support you in your unique needs and goals. For more information on this approach, see the What is Somatic Attunement? page.

Aside from all this technical, clinical, scientific stuff, I also enjoy a range of recreational kinesthetic activities including cycling/mountain biking, rock climbing, slacklining, drumming, juggling, unicycling, and backpacking. I've also worked a wide variety of manual labor jobs including masonry, carpentry, farming, ranch/acreage work, landscaping, and trail-building. Through all of this, I've fortunately never sustained a serious structural injury. I attribute this to the power of the fascial system when properly trained and maintained: we are remarkably resilient to injury and can withstand an extensive degree of stress without being negatively impacted. For more information on "fascial fitness" and training the dynamic functionality of the whole-body biotensegrity-based fascial system, see Tom Myers's article "Fascial Fitness: Training in the Neuromyofascial Web," (clicking this will download a PDF from Tom's website) and his website Anatomy Trains