Susan is a certified music therapist (MTA) and Vocal Psychotherapist with over thirty years of clinical experience working with adults and older adults in community care, long-term care, and end of life care in hospice. She has bachelor’s level music therapy training from Capilano University, a Master of Music Therapy from BC Open University (now Thompson Rivers University), and a PhD in leadership and change from Antioch University. She has specialized training and expertise in Dr. Diane Austin’s vocal psychotherapy (AVPT), neurological music therapy (NMT), and leadership. She has a private vocal psychotherapy and a vocal healing practice and offers supervision.
Susan is a singer, a pianist, a guitarist, and an improviser. She has nearly thirty years of energy healing training and practice which she brings to her work. Susan has been actively involved musically in many choirs and bands and currently leads a women’s singing circle, Sacred Web Singers.
Susan has an extensive history of leadership, professional and community involvement including membership on many boards, and collaboration with other therapist and arts organizations. She has three decades of supervisory experience with music therapy practicum students, pre-professional practicum students, colleagues, and students from other professions. Susan has presented at national and international conferences in Germany, Japan, United States, and throughout Canada and has published in Voices, CJMT, and Approaches.
Susan’s research interests centre on music therapy and the use of voice and singing as a therapeutic influence for healing and for community building. She is involved in research teams with University of British Columbia’s departments of neurology, gerontology, and developmental cognitive neuroscience studying the effectiveness of music therapy with older adults with dementia.
Susan is currently a board member of the Canadian Association of Music Therapists (CAMT), Music Therapy Association of British Columbia (MTABC), and the Federation of Associations of Counselling Therapists of BC (FACTBC). She is a strong and tireless advocate for music therapy’s expansion of its services, scope, and recognition through statutory government regulation, and with government agencies and officials, the public, and other professionals.