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Tamara Sharifov, LCSW

Areas of Specialty

  • Trauma - Complex, Acute, Sexual

  • Depression & Anxiety

  • Grief & Loss

  • Women's Mental Health

  • Life Transitions

  • Couples & Relationship Concerns

  • Divorce/Separation

  • Communication & Boundaries

  • LGBTQ+

  • Spirituality/Religion

  • Compassion Fatigue & Burn-Out

  • Front-Line, Humanitarian, & Crisis Workers

  • Forced Migration & Displacement

  • Cultural Sensitivity

  • International Relations & Affairs

  • Conflict Resolution and Peace-building


As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, I have 12-years clinical experince in the field of Psychology, with further background in crisis and disaster-work, humanitarianism, and most recently conflict resolution & peace-building. My clinical training was gained under lead psychology expert Dr. E. Paul Holmes - specializing in Third-Wave Cognitive Behavioral Therapies - the newest forms of psychotherapy in the field of psychology. While also receiving additional supervision under PTSD expert Jeff Levy, LCSW. Currently, I virtually teach and consult licensed clinicians along side Dr. Holmes at the University of Chicago School of Social Work, and oversee and provide therapy within a private practice in San Diego, California. Additionally, I have specialized training on the impacts of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), complex trauma, global mental health, relationship dynamics, and emotion regulation. And further more, unique training & experience with international affairs, refugee mental health, international armed-conflict, political unrest, peace-building, military service, and the impacts of structural racism.

I have clinical experince working with adult individuals, couples, and families within a variety of contexts - both domestically and internationally. My therapeutic approach fuses a mind-body integration of emotional-experiencing and relational processing, while utilizing a culturally sensitive and mindfulness based approach to promote success within treatment. 

My graduate studies at the University of Chicago, and my post masters clinical training was gained under the mentorship of Dr. Paul Holmes, PsyD – A clinical psychologist and renowned expert in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), and Chronic Distress. Dr. Holmes is also the creator of Contextual-DBT (C-DBT). I then assisted in the development of mindfulness programs, Intensive Outpatient Program, and building a psychology private practice. Simultaneously, I worked with the Syrian refugee community on the boarder of Syrian and Lebanon - both through engagement in a medical mission with the Syrian American Medical Society, and co-founding an international humanitarian organization - Rise Up Humanity. I then received a second Masters in Conflict Management and Resolution, from the Kroc School of Peace Studies at the University of San Diego.

My experince ranges from on-call staff at Rape Crisis Centers, adult psychotherapist at a community mental health clinic in inner-city Chicago, lead family therapist within a group private practice in San Diego, teaching, consulting, humanitarian work, and more. With my parents immigrating to the United States 2-months before I was born, I have walked the tight-rope of two cultures my entire life. I only hope is to be some sense of grounding as you navigate this thing we call life.

Education & Licensure


Master’s of Science - Conflict Management and Resolution

University of San Diego, Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies


  • California Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW# 97915)

  • Illinois Licensed Social Worker   (LSW# 150.102015) (Currently Inactive)


Master’s of Arts - Clinical Social Work 

University of Chicago, School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice.


Bachelor’s of Arts, Psychology

University of California, Santa Barbara.


Previously Held Positions


-University of Chicago, Masters of Social Work Department

Guest Lecture

- Kroc School of Peace Studies, University of San Diego

Dialectical Behavior Therapy Outpatient Clinics 

Intensive Outpatient Program

– Primary Family Therapist

Multiple Rape Crisis Centers


Emergency Domestic Violence Shelters

Syrian Refugee Camps (Lebanon)

Humanitarian Relief Organization Co-Founder

Community Mental Health Clinic 

Homelessness and Chronic Mental Health Outpatient Services

Therapeutic School Bridge Program 

Psychology Consultant to Conflict Resolution Firms and Journalists

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