Austin Group Psychotherapy Society

AGPS events are a great way to network with wonderful therapists, gain unique, experiential professional development, and make new friends. You don’t need to be a member to attend most trainings; however, as a member, you can take advantage of pricing discounts and access exclusive members-only events. 

Upcoming events

    • Saturday, December 04, 2021
    • 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
    • The South Austin Home of Stacy & Ryan Spencer

    Come celebrate the holidays with us!

    We invite you to join us for an outdoor holiday party. It will be a drop-in, fun, and casual afternoon connecting over good conversation with friends and colleagues! There will be refreshments under a tent for any inclement weather. Please RSVP for the event location. 

    Partners & Spouses Welcome!

    • Sunday, December 12, 2021
    • 5:00 PM - 6:30 PM
    • Online Event
    • 16

    Hosted by: Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Committee & facilitated by 
    Alejandra Spector, LMSW

    “You ask me my name. I shall tell you. My name is nobody and nobody is what everyone calls me.” (Odyssey, Song IX, 360).

    This dialogue will focus on how mental health practitioners can support immigrant clients and how grief may present for these individuals. Alejandra will share her experience of working with immigrants who have experienced extreme violence and how it continues to shape her work and world view. Discussion will also explore the role of therapists in the struggle for immigrants’ rights and social justice movements.

    Charge: There is no charge for this event.

    Note: All therapists and students in the therapy field are welcome.

    Facilitator: Alejandra Spector, LMSW, received her Master's Degree in Social Work at The University of Texas at Austin. Prior to graduate school, Alejandra was the Director of Outreach for Mexicanos en Exilio, a non-profit dedicated to assisting Mexican activists and reporters gain political asylum while continuing to speak out against state corruption and impunity, and was invited to speak nationally and internationally on the situation on the U.S. Mexico border. Most of her career has been focused on immigrant and refugee mental health. She is currently a therapist at Colors of Austin Counseling, a social justice-orientated group practice.

Cancellation/Refund Policy:

Written cancellation notice must be emailed to at least 7 days prior to the event. After the deadline no refunds/credits are provided.

Speaker / topic Suggestions? 

Email our Events Chair.

AGPS General Event Descriptions


Workshops are part lesson and part experiential process. Presenters provide education on a topic and insight into how to use techniques in a group therapy setting. The experiential portion often includes a “fishbowl” where participants volunteer to be part of a demonstration group therapy process led by the presenter and observed by other attendees. Finally, participants have time to ask questions and provide observation of the group session.


The Diversity Dialogues are a conversation series intended to provide a safe space for mental health professionals to discuss critical topics in regards to race, culture, gender, age, ability, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, nationality, and religion in our community and around the world. Participants can heighten their awareness, become comfortable in engaging in intersectional dialogue, and utilize the understanding obtained to expand beyond cultural competency to the action of social justice.


Institutes are a highly experiential form of small group teaching led by an experienced leader intended to develop general therapy skills relevant to leading groups. These process-oriented groups are primarily designed for clinical professionals and often offer a chance to explore a particular theme in greater depth or to experience a different theoretical approach. The secure environment allows for rich cognitive and emotional learning about group process and oneself, as well as a chance for personal and professional renewal.


These evenings were born from a desire to connect in a more personal setting and discuss meaningful issues affecting our professional lives and identities. They are available to members every few months with varied topics and hosts.

Events 1992-2021

Apr 17, 2021 Institute Institute: Dual Relationships: Integrating the Personal and Professional John Cooper, MA, LPC, CGP; Kristen Wicke, MA, LPC, CGP
Apr 16, 2021 Friday Night Conversation Body Liberation: Queering Group Therapy + Healing through BDSM Ani Mirasol, LCSW
Mar 21, 2021 Diversity Dialogue Women in Leadership Lavanya Shankar, PhD
Jan 15, 2021 Annual Meeting Vibrant Online Groups and Therapist Fatigue Joseph Acosta, LPC, CGP interviewed by Scott Phillips, LMFT, CGP
Dec 5, 2020 Social Member Virtual Holiday Party Online
Nov 7, 2020 Conference Neuroscience and Racism: The Power of Groups for Overcoming Implicit Bias Alexis D. Abernethy, PhD, CGP, FAGPA
Oct 18, 2020 Diversity Dialogue Taking an Honest Look: Systemic Racism in the Mental Health Fields Stacy Spencer, LCSW, and Stacy Nakell, LCSW, CGP
Oct 9, 2020 Friday Night Conversation Full Cup, Full Practice: How to Stay Fueled and Effective During a Pandemic Alyson Stone, PhD, CGP, and Pierre Choucroun, PhD, LPC-S, CGP
Oct 3, 2020 Institute Institue: The Therapist’s Resistance to Group: You Mean I’m Not the Only One? Anna Graybeal, PhD, CGP, SEP; Rhea Pledger, MA, LPC, CGP
Sep 25, 2020 Workshop Exploring the Hidden Costs of Microaggressions In Group Lavanya Shankar, PhD & Stacy Nakell, LCSW, CGP (With: Stacy Spencer, LCSW-S, Neathery Thurmond, LCSW-S, CGP, & Aaron Bandy, NBCT, LMSW)
Aug 28, 2020 Friday Night Conversation From Fragility to Stability Ani Mirasol, LCSW
Aug 7, 2020 Friday Night Conversation Friday Night Conversation: Rituals through Loss and Death Pam Greenstone, MA, LPC
Jul 11, 2020 Institute Institute - "Vulnerability & The Group Therapist: The Pain of Imperfection" Patricia Florence, MA, LCSW, CGP
Jun 12, 2020 event Silent Memorial: Joining in Grief Diversity, Equity, Inclusion Committee
Apr 25, 2020 Social Virtual Membership Party Online
Apr 19, 2020 Diversity Dialogue Class, Money, and Privilege Aaron Bandy, LMSW
Apr 17, 2020 Social Spring Membership Party Amelia Canally
Apr 3, 2020 Friday Night Conversation What Does It Mean To Be a Certified Group Psychotherapist (CGP) and How Do I Get There? Deborah Sharp
Mar 27, 2020 Friday Night Conversation The Therapeutic Frame: Holding It, Breaking It, Loving and Hating It Alyson M Stone, PhD, CGP & Pierre Choucroun, PhD, LPC-S, CGP
Mar 15, 2020 event Discussion Forum: Practicing Psychotherapy Amidst COVID-19 Scott Phillips and Pam Greenstone
Feb 11, 2020 Social New Member and Scholarship Recipient Happy Hour Kristen WIcke
Feb 7, 2020 Workshop Panel: Women Group Leaders and Aggression: Our Stories, Our Challenges, and Our Growth (A Workshop for Everyone on the Gender Continuum and for Anyone Interested in Ethical Considerations) Jan Morris, Ramona Aarsvold, Jeanne Bunker, Barbara E. Davis, Ani Mirasol, Stacy Nakell, Patty Olwell, Lavanya Shankar, Alyson Stone
Jan 19, 2020 Diversity Dialogue The Gender Spectrum in Group Therapy Neathery Thurmond, LCSW-S, CGP
Jan 17, 2020 Annual Meeting How We Talk About the Power and Value of Group Scott Phillips, LMFT, CGP (Moderator) Katie Griffin, FAGPA, CGP, LPC, Jeffrey S. Hudson, M.Ed., LPC, CGP, FAGPA, Randy Frasier, PhD, Tammy Brown, LCSW, CGP
Jan 11, 2020 Institute Sexuality, Hate, Shame and Abandonment: The Family We Wish We Had and the Group We Can Have Jordan Price, LCSW, CGP
Dec 7, 2019 Social Holiday Party Amelia Canally
Nov 15, 2019 Conference The Integrated Group Leader: Mindful Leadership Using Internal Family Systems and Modern Group Therapy Yoon Im Kane, LCSW, CGP
Oct 18, 2019 Institute Yes, And: Building Group Therapist Spontaneity, Flexibility and Presence Through Improv Gianna Viola, LCSW-S, CGP, and Amelia Canally, LCSW, CGP
Oct 13, 2019 Diversity Dialogue Resistance to Discussing Issues of Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity Ani Mirasol, LCSW
Oct 11, 2019 Friday Night Conversation Something Must Be Wrong - My Group Feels Like My Mother! Stacy Watkins, M.Ed, LPC, CGP
Sep 7, 2019 Institute Helping Every Group Client Grow: Working with Common Defense Strategies in Group Pierre Choucroun, PhD, LPC-S, CGP
Aug 25, 2019 Diversity Dialogue Religion Stacy Spencer, LCSW
Jul 13, 2019 Institute Exploring the Multidimensional Aspects of Group: Intrapersonal, Interpersonal, Group as a Whole and Co-leader Dynamics in Group Deborah Sharp, LCSW, CGP and Ryan Spencer, LMFT, CGP
Jun 21, 2019 Friday Night Conversation Here There Be Dragons: Internal Barriers to Growing Big Professionally (Second Offerinng) Laura Ebady, PsyD, CGP
Apr 26, 2019 Workshop Our Emotional Resistance to Climate Change Anna Graybeal, PhD, CGP, SEP
Apr 12, 2019 Social Spring Membership Party Amelia Canally
Apr 7, 2019 Diversity Dialogue Intersectionality in Groups: Finding Words for the Deepest Vulnerabilities Lavanya Shankar, Ph.D.
Mar 29, 2019 Friday Night Conversation Here There Be Dragons: Internal Barriers to Growing Big Professionally Laura Ebady, PsyD, CGP
Feb 8, 2019 Workshop Blending Modern Analytic and DBT in Group DeLinda Spain, LCSW, CGP, CEDS
Feb 1, 2019 Institute Early Longing, Emotional Engagement and Sexual Desire Katie Griffin, LPC, CGP, FAGPA and Joseph Acosta, LPC, CGP, FAGPA
Jan 20, 2019 Diversity Dialogue Every BODY in Group: Creating a More Inclusive Space for All Bodies Neathery Thurmond, LCSW, CGP
Jan 18, 2019 Annual Meeting How we got here and where we’re going: A Panel of Presidents Deborah Sharp (Moderator), Sue Marriott, Jev Sikes, Patricia Tollison, Pam Greenstone, and Dave Kaplowitz
Dec 7, 2018 Institute Starting a Group: Developing Your Own Group Contract Dave Kaplowitz, LMFT, CGP and Michelle Bohls, LMFT, CGP
Dec 1, 2018 Social AGPS Member Holiday Party 2018 Amelia Canally
Nov 30, 2018 Friday Night Conversation Make Group Great Again: Politics and Group Therapy Ryan Spencer, LMFT, CGP & Stacy Spencer, LCSW
Nov 9, 2018 Conference Cultivating the Internal Secure Base in Group Psychotherapy Aaron E. Black, Ph.D., CGP
Oct 14, 2018 Diversity Dialogue The Fluidity of Desire in Group Anni Marisol (for Dylan Davies)
Sep 14, 2018 Friday Night Conversation I’d Rather Go Out for Tacos: Our Resistance to Talking about Climate Change Anna Graybeal, PhD, CGP, SEP
Sep 8, 2018 Institute Using Modern Attachment Theory in Groups: Integrating Affective Neuroscience, the Spectrum of Attachment and Developmental Psychology Sue Marriott LCSW, CGP
Aug 19, 2018 Diversity Dialogue Setting Down Roots: Group Therapists Reflect on Immigration Diversity, Equity, Inclusion Committee
Jun 15, 2018 Friday Night Conversation The CGP: Certification as a Group Psychotherapist. Now or Later? Deborah Sharp
Apr 28, 2018 Social Spring Membership Party Deborah Sharp
Apr 22, 2018 Diversity Dialogue Age in Groups: More than Just a Number? Stacy Nakell, LCSW
Apr 20, 2018 Workshop Entering The Early Unknown: Sensing When To Speak And Be Silent As A Group Leader Jordan Price, LCSW, CGP and Angelo A. Ciliberti, LPC, LAC, CGP
Apr 7, 2018 Institute Receiving In Group Charlotte Howard
Apr 6, 2018 Friday Night Conversation When To Speak And When To Be Silent As A Group Leader Dave Kaplowitz
Feb 28, 2018 Social Austin Happy Hour at AGPA AGPS Board
Jan 27, 2018 Institute Tuning In to the Language of the Body in Group Therapy Barbara Davis
Jan 21, 2018 Diversity Dialogue Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack: Navigating Systems of Power and Privilege Ani Marisol
Jan 19, 2018 Annual Meeting Beyond the Binary: Exploring Gender and Gender Identity in Groups
Deborah Sharp, LCSW, CGP (Moderator), Pam Greenstone, LPC, Paula Buls, LCSW, Anne Marie Jennings, LCSW, Derek Leighton, LMFT, LPC, CGP
Dec 2, 2017 Social AGPS Member Holiday Party Gianna Viola
Nov 11, 2017 Institute Dependency and Counter-Dependency in Group Jev Sikes, PhD
Nov 10, 2017 Friday Night Conversation Sex in Group: How to Have More of It Patty Olwell, LPC with Scott Phillips LFMT
Oct 22, 2017 event Clinical Consultation with Molyn Leszcz MD, FRCPC,CGP, DFAGPA Molyn Leszcz MD, FRCPC,CGP, DFAGPA
Oct 20, 2017 Conference Developing and Sustaining Successful Group Leadership Practices Molyn Leszcz MD, FRCPC,CGP, DFAGPA
Sep 29, 2017 Friday Night Conversation Boundaries: Know when to hold 'em, when to fold 'em Monrovia Van Hoose
Sep 24, 2017 Diversity Dialogue Viewing of the movie "13th" & Discussion Group Diversity, Equity, Inclusion Committee
Sep 9, 2017 Institute Working with Resistance in Group (Intermediate and New Professionals) Jay Erwin-Grotsky, LCSW, CGP, FAGPA
Jun 23, 2017 Friday Night Conversation White Privilege, Reaching Out, Diversity, & AGPS John Cooper
May 19, 2017 Workshop Finding Words for Our Neurobiological Responses: Establishing the Foundations of Emotional Connection in Group Joseph Acosta
Apr 1, 2017 Fundraiser Mardi Gras Casino Night - Scholarship Fundraiser AGPS Development Committee
Mar 8, 2017 Social Austin Happy Hour at AGPA AGPS Board
Feb 18, 2017 Institute On The Fringe: Working With Feelings of Being an Outsider in Group (Intermediate) Patricia Florence LCSW, CGP
Feb 11, 2017 Social Spring Membership Party Gianna Viola
Jan 20, 2017 Annual Meeting Boundaries, Distance, & Connection: The Impact of Technology on Group AGPS members Dave Kaplowitz, LMFT, CGP (moderator), Blake Davis, LCSW, Jan Morris, PhD, CGP, Stacy Nakell, LCSW, CGP, and Amiel Romain, LPC
Dec 2, 2016 Institute Starting a Group: Putting the Pieces Together (Student and New Professional) Dave Kaplowitz, LMFT, CGP & Michelle Bohls, LMFT, CGP
Nov 6, 2016 event Sunday Consultation with Christine Schmidt and Rudy Lucas (Fall Conference) Christine Schmidt and Rudy Lucas
Nov 5, 2016 Conference The Relational and Ethical Dilemma of Race: VISIBLE to one and invisible to the other Christine Schmidt and Rudy Lucas
Oct 7, 2016 Workshop Invasion of the Body-Snatchers: When Your Group Members Take Over Your Psyche Jeanne Bunker and DeLinda Spain
Sep 30, 2016 Friday Night Conversation Considering Our Evolving Social Class: Reflections on the Impact of Income and Power on the Subtleties of How We Practice Sue Marriott LCSW, CGP and Patricia Florence LCSW, CGP
Jul 23, 2016 Institute Moving into Relationship: Rediscovering Body Sense (Intermediate) Patricia Tollison, PhD
May 20, 2016 Workshop Manifestations of Preverbal Trauma in Group Kathleen Adams, PhD
May 7, 2016 Institute Exploring the Erotic in Group (Advanced) Nancy Kelly, PhD
Apr 10, 2016 event Sunday Consultation: Three Key Ways Groups Connect Greg MacColl, LCSW, CGP, FAGPA
Apr 9, 2016 Conference Three Key Ways Groups Connect Greg MacColl, LCSW, CGP, FAGPA
Apr 2, 2016 Institute What Are We Doing In There? A Modern Analytic Approach to Therapy
(Students and New Professionals)
Jordan Price, LCSW, CGP
Jan 29, 2016 Annual Meeting What Makes Group Work? Three Theoretical Orientations (Modern, DBT, and SCT) Michelle Bohls (Moderator), DeLinda Spain, Amy Brent, and Rick Campos
Oct 24 - 25, 2015 Institute The Power of “Yes”: Welcoming the Full Emotional Range Alyson Stone
Nov 13, 2015 Workshop Greed, Vulnerability, Deprivation, Shame & Envy: Let’s talk about Money in Group Dave Kaplowitz, LMFT, CGP & Michelle Bohls, LMFT, CGP
Nov 7, 2015 Social Fall Party
Oct 17, 2015 Conference Challenging Topics in Group Psychotherapy: Money and Difficult Patients Jerome Gans, MD
Sep 18, 2015 Friday Night Conversation The Use of Self as the Group Leader Tammy Brown
2015 Conference Men and Women Who Fall: The Management of Shame in Groups Paul Kaye
2015 Workshop O Brother Where Art Thou Lois Graham
2015 Institute Mind Moment: Integrating Mindful Awareness into the Work of the Group Gaea Logan
2015 Friday Night Conversation The Use of Self as the Group Leader Tammy Brown
2014 Conference Lacanian Desire in Group Scott Conkright
2014 Conference Sexual in Group Douglas Braun-Harvey
2014 Workshop Preverbal to Verbal: Body Language & Attachment Jan Morris
2014 Workshop Creativity and the Depression Group Tammy Brown
2014 Institute Identifying & Embracing Unlovable Affect States Glenn Olds, Zach Bryant
2014 Institute Competition in Groups: Envy-Intimacy Laura Ebady, Allen Lambert
2014 Friday Night Conversation Help Them Stay or Help Them Leave? Gerry Lowe
2014 Friday Night Conversation Diversity Lisa Means
2013 Conference Belonging as a Healing Factor in Group Scott Rutan
2013 Conference Working with Resistance, Refusal, and Rebellion Richard Billow
2013 Workshop Strategies for Self Regulation Gaea Logan, Patricia Tollison
2013 Workshop Addiction as Attach Disorder Phil Flores
2013 Institute DBT and Modern Analytic in Group DeLinda Spain
2013 Friday Night Conversation Resistance, Rebellion, Refusal Lisa Means
2013 Friday Night Conversation Website Dave Kaplowitz, Allen Lambert
2012 Conference Therapist Role in Containing Aggression in Group Lena Furgeri
2012 Conference Jungian Analytic Approaches to Group Justin Hecht
2012 Workshop Attachment in Group Candyce Ossefort-Russell
2012 Workshop Body Oriented Approaches in Group Barbara Davis- Kelly Inselman
2012 Institute Intimacy & Immediacy in the Modern Analytic Group, Jan Morris
2012 Institute Embracing Experience in Group: Our Patients, Ourselves, Phyllis & Roy Clymer
2012 Friday Night Conversation Real & Transferential Rships in the Evolution Group Tori Olds, Glenn Olds
2011 Conference Group Process, Leader, & Group: Intersubjectivity Sara Emerson
2011 Conference Coming Alive in Group Mary Susillo
2011 Workshop Nonverbal Comm in Group Stacy Nakell
2011 Workshop How Religion & R Trauma Affects Th. & Ct. Alyson Stone
2011 Institute Interpersonal Group Process Jev Sikes
2011 Friday Night Conversation Bearing Witness & Healing Trauma Gaea Logan
2010 Conference When Love Fails for LGBT Clients Joel Frost
2010 Conference Using Whole Self as a Group Therapist Jerome Gans
2010 Workshop Bisexual Identity Development in Group Katie Griffin
2010 Workshop Humor in Group: A Laughing Matter? Jay Erwin-Grotsky
2010 Workshop Emotional Communication in Group Joseph Acosta
2010 Institute Expanding Emotional Range in Group: Leader Receptivity Jeff Hudson
2008 Conference The Evocative Object: Imagination, Play, Creativity in Group Lise Motherwell
2008 Workshop Exploring Artistic & Creative Energy in Group Albin, Davis, Graham, Mersky, Morris, Murphy, Shea
2008 Workshop The Over-Functioning Therapists: Narcissistic Injury to Sustainable Self Care Delinda Fox & Jeanne Bunker
2007 Conference Object Relations, Spiral Groups & Other Strange Things Cecil Rice
2007 Workshop Co-Leading Groups Jeanne Bunker, Jay Erwin-Grotsky
2007 Workshop Preserving Emotional Health of the Leader Jan Morris
2006 Conference Self-Psychological Intersubjective Approach Marty Livingston
2006 Conference Group Therapy as Awareness Practice Robert Unger
2006 Workshop Countertransference in the Body Barbara Davis
2005 Conference Integrating Interpersonal & Existential Approaches Molyn Leszcz
2005 Conference Managing Love & Hate in Groups Ronnie Levine
2005 Workshop Nonverbal Interaction in Groups
2005 Workshop Leader's Need to be Liked Jeff Hudson, Andrea Pully
2004 Conference Exploring Unspoken Desires Douglas Braun-Harvey
2004 Conference Women in Group and Women's Groups Lucy Holmes
2004 Institute Ethical Considerations Lisa Mersky, Melba Vasquez
2004 Friday Night Conversation The Therapist's Not so Secret Life Kimberly Judd
2003 Workshop Deconstructing the Difficult Group: Transference
2003 Workshop Intimacy & Sexuality in the Life of the Group
2002 Conference Passion & Love in Group, Allan Elfant
2002 Conference Addiction as an Attachment Disorder Phillip Flores
2002 Workshop Ethical Cosiderations in Group
Oct 13, 2001 Conference Do you Know Where Your Group is? Whole Group Dynamics Mark Ettin
Apr 28, 2001 Conference Working within the Immediacy of the Group Elliot Zeisel
Nov 2, 2001 Workshop Ethical Considerations in Group Lisa Mersky, David Cramer, Melba Vasquez
2001 Workshop Money Matters in Group: Ethics, Envy, & Aggression
2001 event Mindfulness and Immediacy: A Psycho-Spiritual Retreat Gaea Logan
Mar 23, 2001 Friday Night Conversation Issues of Loneliness for the Group Leader Bob Murphy
May 11, 2001 Friday Night Conversation Immediacy in Group Therapy Mac Hruska
Jan 19, 2001 Annual Meeting Annual Meeting
Nov 11, 2000 Conference Unconcious Communication in Group David Altfeld
Mar 25, 2000 Conference Fostering Regression: Leader Takes Charge Stewart Aledort
Oct 21, 2000 Social Annual Party Gaea Logan
Oct 27, 2000 Friday Night Conversation Hosted by Patricia Tollison Patricia Tollison
Nov 3, 2000 Workshop Core Concepts of Modern Analytic Group Psychotherapy Jan Morris
Apr 28, 2000 Friday Night Conversation Hosted by Lois Graham Lois Graham
Aug 25, 2000 Friday Night Conversation Hosted by Jeff Hudson Jeff Hudson
1999 Conference Shame: The Hidden Emotion in Groups Samuel James
1998 Conference Love & Hate in Groups Anne Alonso
1997 Conference Couples Groups: What Works Judith Coche
1997 Conference Healing & Destructive Forces in Group Scott Rutan
1997 Friday Night Conversation The New Group Patti Cox
1997 Friday Night Conversation Dealing w/Destructive Forces in Group Jeff Hudson
1996 Conference Using Object Realtions in Group & Working w/Anger Bonnie Buchele
1995 Conference Managing Multiple Views: An Integrative Approach David Hawkins
1995 Conference Working with the Difficult Patient in Group Bennett Roth
1994 Conference Defense Mechanisms & Their Resolution Louis Ormont
1994 Conference Dilemmas in Group Marsha Vanicelli
1993 Conference Anger & Hostility in Group & Money Issues Jerome Gans
1993 Conference Dynamic Context of Inpatient Group Therapy Howard Kibel
1992 Conference Countertransference Revisited Scott Rutan

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