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Team Spotlight – Dr. Anna Lisa De Lima, Ph.D., LMHC, NCC

May 24, 2021

Dr. Anna Lisa De Lima, Ph.D., LMHC, NCC

Clinical Director, Hanley Center

Dr. Anna Lisa De Lima, Ph.D., LMHC, NCC, has been proudly named Hanley Center’s Clinical Director. Dr. De Lima brings a wealth of clinical expertise and her well-rounded specialization in trauma and crisis makes her an excellent fit to serve Hanley Center as Clinical Director.

Dr. De Lima completed her Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision with a specialization in trauma and crisis. She is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in the state of Florida as well as a National Certified Counselor (NCC). In her work as a clinician, Dr. De Lima utilizes a variety of evidenced based protocols in the treatment of mental health disorders, SUDs, and trauma. These protocols include Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and other trauma-informed interventions. Dr. De Lima has worked with first responders from a variety of backgrounds and specialties in her work as a clinician. Having worked closely with first responders in a variety of roles, and through her years of research on this population, Dr. De Lima is well-versed in the unique concerns that this population faces. Dr. De Lima has also presented extensively on this topic around the country.

What brought you to the field of addiction treatment? What brought you to Hanley?  

After some significant medical issues, my life changed course when I learned I would no longer ride horses. As I’d only ever known myself as an equestrian, this news shook me to my core.  After taking some time, I decided that I had two choices: stay in my bed feeling sorry for myself or do something with my life.

My encounters with individuals struggling with mental health and addiction issues inspired me to explore these two fields. As I began my graduate degree studies, I got a job with the Palm Beach County Firefighters Union by some divine plan. My exposure to the lives and experiences of first responders, coupled with my personal experiences of trauma, became the impetus for my Ph.D. research. For five years, I was able to gain extensive insight into this population.

While working with the firefighters, I continued to build my clinical skills at several treatment centers. When I finally decided to go into full-time clinical work, I knew the only place I would be willing to leave the firefighters for was Hanley. I was well aware of Hanley’ reputation for excellence and ethical care, which aligned closely with my own goals as a clinician.

If there was only one thing you could tell us about working within your specialty area, what would it be?

My specialty area is trauma, and I emphasize growth from trauma in my approach to healing. My own experiences with trauma have motivated me to help others find greater strength and meaning in their lives.

What have you learned through your experience working in treatment?

I’ve seen that healing from addiction is possible, which has given me the hope and motivation to continue this work. I have also witnessed the miracles of faith and spiritual healing. I firmly believe that Hanley Center is a special place. Many patients have told me that they feel a sense of peace as they step onto campus. I feel the same on days when I get to work.

Do you hold any credentials or certifications? Do you participate in any professional activities outside of work? 

I am a licensed mental health counselor (LMHC) in the state of Florida. I have a Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision with a concentration in trauma, and I’m certified by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NCC). Outside of Hanley, I’ve conducted many trainings for first responders and departments. I have also spoken extensively at national conferences to audiences, including first responders, clinicians, and other healthcare professionals.

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? 

I am an avid equestrian, and in my previous career, I was a coach and a competitive rider. My riding took me all over the world, including Europe, Central America, and South America. I also do CrossFit daily, which is a huge de-stressor and keeps me grounded. Millie (my dog — a cross between a fox and a cat) is my best friend. She moved with me from Trinidad and became a U.S. citizen before I did. We are about to add a new Aussiedoodle puppy boy to our household.

Hanley Center is a well-known care provider offering a range of treatment programs targeting the recovery from substance use, mental health issues, and beyond. Our primary mission is to provide a clear path to a life of healing and restoration. We offer renowned clinical care and have the compassion and professional expertise to guide you toward lasting recovery.

For information on our programs, call us today: 561-841-1033.

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