President of the Board:
Niki Picogna, LCPC, RPT-S is a licensed clinical professional counselor, board approved supervisor, and a registered play therapist supervisor in private practice in downtown Bethesda. She has been practicing since 2008 after graduating from Johns Hopkins University's clinical community counseling program. For many years she managed a child and adolescent program for a large mental health clinic, as well as her own private practice in Baltimore, MD. She has had the privilege of working with individuals, families, and supervisees in the hospital, intensive outpatient, in-home, schools, clinic, and in group practice settings. Having a flare for the arts and sports, Niki loves to incorporate right/left brain interventions in her creative therapeutic interventions. She is certified in EMDR and incorporates play with her child clients. In her free time, she enjoys traveling internationally; exploring and teaching some of wonderful play therapy skills she has learned, as well as learning new techniques from mental health professionals from different cultures.
Rachel Altvater, Psy.D., RPT-S is the owner of Creative Psychological Health Services, a psychologist at Gil Institute for Trauma Recovery and Education, an affiliate faculty member at Loyola University Maryland, and the Continuing Education Director of Starbright Training Institute. She is the recipient of the 2018 Outstanding Play Therapy Research Award from the Maryland/DC Association for Play Therapy. Rachel is passionate about spreading awareness and knowledge about play therapy.
Mimi Ryans, LCSW-C, RPT, CCPT is the Owner/Therapist at Lighthouse Center for Therapy & Play. For the past decade, she has made it her lifework to provide quality mental health services to children and families either experiencing mental health crises or those with specific mental health needs. In the last few years, it has become more evident to her that the focus on trauma when addressing children’s mental health needs is imperative to their healing and completing their treatment. Mimi has presented trainings on Introduction of Play Therapy and Trauma & Play Therapy with Children & Adolescents. Mimi is a wife and mom of three. She enjoys reading and traveling with her family.
Julianne Meagher, LCSW-C, RPT was first introduced to play therapy at College Park Youth and Family Services. She completed her masters degree in social work at the Catholic University of America in 2008 and has since practiced play therapy in the therapeutic foster care and outpatient mental health settings. She previously worked as a clinic and school-based therapist, as well as a clinical supervisor in a public outpatient clinic in Dundalk. She currently works in a public mental health clinic in Anne Arundel County.
Jenny Fleming, NCC, RPT-S, LCPC-S is a Professional School Counselor in Montgomery County Public Schools and works at a Private Practice in Bethesda, MD. She graduated from Johns Hopkins University with a school counseling masters and post masters in play therapy. Jenny is Advanced Sand Tray trained. Jenny is enthusiastic about her craft as a means to support children and always motivated to learn more.
Lora Wolz, LCSW-C, RPT started her journey towards becoming a RPT in 2014 after attending a Play Therapy training and understanding the impact play therapy can have on helping and healing children with mental health needs. Lora attended her first Association of Play Therapy Conference in 2015 in Atlanta, GA allowing her the opportunity to gain valuable knowledge in various play therapy modalities. Lora thrives off of opportunities that allow her to expand her knowledge in helping children, implementing new play therapy techniques, and watching her patients grow and heal through the art of play. Lora received her Masters in Social Work at Salisbury University in 2013 and is currently working as a child and adolescent psychotherapist in Baltimore County.
Victoria Rizzuto, MS is a Clinical Psychology doctoral student at Loyola University Maryland. Her clinical interests include the preschool population, child-centered play therapy, trauma-informed care, technology’s impact on child development, and working with underserved populations. Victoria is eager to support the branch in spreading awareness about play therapy, aiding in planning community outreach events for undergraduate and graduate students, and growing personally and professionally.
Judy Wang, MA, LCPC, RPT has always known she wanted to work in the mental health field. It wasn’t until she got her Masters degree in Counseling that she was able to pursue her interest in working with children by becoming a Registered Play Therapist. Over the past several years, she has had experience working with children, adolescents and adults in residential treatment centers, in-home counseling environments, outpatient mental health clinics and now in private practice, serving Montgomery County.