We Believe…

…that combining DBT skills with music therapy is the most engaging and effective way to support people in enhancing their lives and creating a brighter future for themselves, people around them, and the world.  Having a passion for this movement has led to the creation of the DBT Informed Music Therapy Center.

We are a group of DBT informed Board Certified Music Therapists who have completed DBT Skills Training, as well as an in-depth year long DBT informed Music Therapy program that includes weekly clinical supervision from a team of intensively trained DBT clinicians, DBT informed music therapists, and a DBT-Linehan Board of Certification Certified PsyD clinician.  We all have experience facilitating DBT informed music therapy groups, and are often found co-leading groups with psychologists, social workers, and other DBT skills group leaders.

We are creating resources to support you.  We look forward to having you join the movement and our community!

Individually We Are...

Meet the Core Creative Team:

Below are members of the team dedicated to creating content for the DBT Skills Mastery through Music Memberships and providing DBT informed music therapy services to support and enhance DBT programs:

Deborah Spiegel MT-BC

Deborah Spiegel MT-BC is CEO and director of the DBT Informed Music Therapy Center, providing music therapy based resources for clinicians and participants of DBT to help them master the skills and live their best life.

She also provides a comprehensive DBT informed music therapy training program for music therapists, in conjunction with Dr. Lauren Bonavitacola and an education team, through the Spiegel Academy (a platform for music therapy continuing education.) 

Deborah was first introduced to DBT in 2001 when she worked as a member of a Dialectical Behavior Therapy based treatment team at the Colorado Mental Health Institute. She was trained in DBT alongside her treatment team by representatives of Behavioral Tech.

Being a Board- Certified Music Therapist, she found herself using music to teach the skills in her DBT skills training groups, and also reinforcing the DBT skills in her music therapy groups.  
Over the next 11 years this evolved into her passion for using music therapy to support patients in strengthening DBT skills.  

Author of a book in 2010,  the 2nd edition, called Creative DBT Activities Using Music – Interventions for Enhancing Engagement and Effectiveness in Therapy, was published by Jessica Kingsley in 2020.

Deborah’s passion for integrating DBT with music therapy led her to present workshops nationwide since 2011, and online, which has evolved into an extensive DBT informed music therapy training program offered through the Spiegel Academy

She also spearheaded a research project comparing a traditional DBT skills training group with and without the addition of music therapy. Results show in the favor of music.

Bailey Hinz MT-BC

Bailey Hinz, contributed creative resource videos in the DBT Skills Mastery through Music memberships, and is also a key facilitator in the DBT informed Music Therapy Training Programs.

A Board Certified Music Therapist, Bailey is currently furthering her education in Social Work.

Bailey has always had a love of music and of people. While earning a bachelor’s degree in music from North Central College, she spent summers as a camp counselor, an experience which inspired her to further pursue work in a helping profession. 

In 2013, Bailey received her master’s degree in music therapy from Colorado State University; her graduate thesis was on the utilization of therapeutic music for young women with negative body perception and disordered eating.

Bailey has had the opportunity to work with a variety of populations including mental health, at risk youth, substance abuse, veterans’ needs, hospice, autism spectrum, developmental disability, and diseases of aging. Her greatest passion and life’s purpose, however, lies in mental/ behavioral health.

She loves incorporating music and other creative arts to affect meaningful change in the lives of individuals she serves. 

To continue her growth as a clinician, Bailey received her designation as a DBT informed Music Therapist through Behavior Tech and The Spiegel Academy in 2017.

In her free time, Bailey lives an active lifestyle. She enjoys running, cycling, swimming, camping, and hiking with her trusty pup Benji.

Stephen King MT-BC

Stephen King is another key facilitator at the Spiegel Academy. He is also found in the creative resource videos in the DBT Skills Mastery through Music Memberships as an ongoing member of the creative team.  He creates music therapy experiences for members to learn from and enjoys creating videos for members on his computer.

Stephen explored his interest in Music and Psychology with his undergraduate work at Harding University, after which he studied the Masters in Music Therapy program at Texas Woman’s University. 

His Music Therapy career allowed for experience with older adults, addiction and recovery, children with developmental challenges, and most recently adolescents with behavioral and emotion regulation difficulties.

 In early 2018, Stephen enrolled in The Spiegel Academy in conjunction with Behavioral Tech, to earn his designation as DBT informed Music Therapist. 

Combining his interest in electronic music and technology, Stephen brings unique skills to the community of Music Therapy with sessions both online and in-person.

Alice Browne, MT-BC

Alice Browne is a member of the original creative team so you’ll see her a lot in the recordings in the DBT Skills Mastery through Music Memberships.  She created many amazing mindfulness experiences for members to enjoy and music therapy experiences to learn skills from.

Alice has  a B.S. in Music Therapy from Augsburg University that she received in 1984 and has been practicing music therapy for 36 years.

 She has achieved Level, l & ll Certification in Sound healing through Normandale Community College in Minnesota and through Sound Healer Kay Grace. 

Alice’s experience includes work with a wide array of populations, including geriatrics, recovering alcoholics, homeless people, autistic children, and people experiencing grief. 

She received her DBT- Informed Music Therapy  training through the Spiegel Academy, and completed the DBT skills training with Behavioral Tech..

Alice often incorporates visual arts in her therapy sessions. 

She has been a wife for 36 years, a mother for 27 years, a mother-in-law for one year, and a cat owner for a very long time.

The following make up our Core Educational Staff

for the DBT Informed Music Therapy Training

(for Board Certified Music Therapists):

 Includes the co-authors of the book (with Deborah Spiegel)

Creative DBT Activities Using Music:

Interventions for Enhancing Engagement and Effectiveness in Therapy

Lauren Bonavitacola PsyD, MT-BC

Dr. Bonavitacola is a key member of the training team.  She teaches and supervises music therapists who participate in The Spiegel Academy’s DBT Informed Music Therapy Training Program.

Lauren is a psychologist, DBT-Linehan Board of Certification Certified Clinician™,  and board certified music therapist working for Cognitive & Behavioral Consultants of Westchester and Manhattan (CBC), an outpatient CBT- and DBT-based treatment, training, and consultation center. She is the Coordinator of Trauma-Focused Treatment Programs at CBC and works with adolescents, adults, couples, and families. Dr. Bonavitacola has expertise and specialized training in the delivery of evidence-based treatments for trauma, anxiety, mood, substance use, eating, and personality disorders across the lifespan. She specializes in the implementation of Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) for Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) and associated conditions, as well as CBT for anxiety and mood disorders, particularly Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in adolescents and adults.

Lauren received her bachelor’s degree in Music Therapy and Music Performance with a minor in Psychology from the University of Miami, and she earned both her master’s and doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Rutgers University Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology (GSAPP). Additionally , Lauren consults to several school districts in New York on DBT implementation in schools as well as conducting trainings in house and at schools on DBT and CBT treatment implementation. She is a supervisor of pre-doctoral psychology externs and post-doctoral fellows at CBC. 

Dr. Bonavitacola has published written works in several peer-reviewed journals and books and presented on topics related to CBT and DBT at national and international conferences including those sponsored by the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies (ABCT), the International Society for the Improvement and Teaching of Dialectical Behavior Therapy (ISITDBT), and the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA). She is an active member of both ABCT and ISITDBT. 

Suzanne Makary, MT-BC 

Suzanne Makary is a key member of the training team and facilitates DBT Skills Training for music therapists who participate in the Spiegel Academy’s DBT Informed Music Therapy Training Program.

She is a Board- Certified Music Therapist who has spent her career serving adults with mental health challenges. She completed her internship in 1997 at Allentown State Hospital. Since that opportunity, Suzanne has worked with an interdisciplinary team in the Partial Hospitalization setting. 

Throughout her journey as a professional, Suzanne designs and leads daily music therapy groups to assist in learning and reaching wellness goals with her clients. She found Linehan’s work inspiring and used concepts to help frame her work.  In 2017, Suzanne completed the yearlong “DBT Informed Music Therapy” Program through The Spiegel Academy.

As a DBT-Informed music therapist, Suzanne has created a curriculum for the Innovations Partial Hospital Program at St. Luke’s University Health Network focused on teaching DBT skills daily. She is grateful to share ideas!

Suzanne finds sharing ideas as professionals with one another and our clients to be rejuvenating. The Creative DBT Activities Using Music text allowed her to do just that through contributing some of her original ideas and in working with Deborah to expand the first edition of the book into the 2nd edition.

Suzanne provides training in the Spiegel Academy’s DBT informed music therapy program.

Ethan Lechner LCSWA, PhD

Ethan Lechner is another member of the training team and a facilitator in our DBT informed Music Therapy Training Program. 

Ethan is an intensively trained DBT therapist with Guilford Counseling, PLLC, in Greensboro, NC. He holds a Masters of Social Work and a PhD in Musicology and is also a teacher of Buddhist meditation.

Ethan has experience working with clients recovering from trauma and experiencing loss and health changes. In his first years of practice, he worked primarily with the elderly in various settings, and now works with clients of various ages and backgrounds.

He loves the depth and adaptability of the DBT skills kit. In his therapy practice he is committed to meeting clients in a deeply person-centered, collaborative process.

Kim Johnson LMHC, MT-BC

Kim Johnson is a proud team member of The Spiegel Academy and facilitates the Q&A supervision meetings with Ethan.

Kim is a licensed mental health counselor and board certified music therapist currently practicing in Massachusetts. She received her master’s degree from Lesley University in 2017 in clinical mental health counseling with a specialization in music therapy.

During her time at a community mental health agency, she completed an intensive DBT training from Behavioral Tech in January 2021 and has since been implementing both comprehensive DBT, including individual work and facilitating DBT skills groups, and DBT informed therapy, often integrating music therapy interventions.

Kim currently practices in a private practice outpatient mental health setting, working with both adolescents and adults, often with LGBTQ+ individuals.

In addition, Kim specializes in songwriting interventions. She also has recorded an album of guided mindfulness meditations featuring ukulele titled “Tiny Happy Guitar” as a free resource for clinicians and the general public alike.

Plus Bailey Hinz and Deborah Spiegel, who are listed above.

For details about the Spiegel Academy’s DBT Informed Music Therapy Training Program (for existing board certified music therapists) Click the button >

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