Meet the BPAR Team

BPAR has built a team of mental health professionals who are passionate about our mission. As specially trained adoption competent therapists, we have a unique understanding of how challenges or behaviors may be connected to the adoption experience. We believe the relationship between client and therapist is the most important piece of our therapy, and we will work at your pace, meeting you or your family wherever you are on your adoption journey.

"At BPAR, my children do not need to justify their life. The therapists and staff welcome the complexity of adoption, identity, and loss and walk with my children on their journey to learn, explore, and heal."

—LORI, ADOPTIVE PARENT

"I think it’s about the really thoughtful approach that you take. And I think that this is the first time I’ve ever gone to a place where listening seems to be the first objective. What is really steadfast, honest, clear-sighted, intentional, thoughtful advice and just love towards me sort of rubs off and helps my own development."

—DAN, FOSTER PARENT

Jennifer Eckert, LICSW
Founder, Board Chair

I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and the Founder and Executive Director of BPAR. An adoptee myself, my life turned around when I found a source of specialized post adoption therapeutic support. Inspired by my experience and aware of a shortage of similar resources, in 2003 I returned to school and earned my Masters Degree in Social Work at Simmons College, where I currently serve as a member on their Board of Trustees. I made it my mission to increase awareness of post adoption challenges through education and training, building and offering resources, and providing a safe space for therapeutic support to all those touched by adoption and foster care. After training with adoption and post adoption agencies, in 2012 I founded Boston Post Adoption Resources. I work with adoptees of all ages, adoptive parents, foster parents, and birth parents. My strength-based and person-centered approach stems from my belief that adoptees have the capacity to live healthy and whole lives, with the understanding that challenges may ebb and flow throughout the entire lifespan. I am here to support you as you move through your own unique journey.

Kelly DiBenedetto, LMHC, ATR
Executive Director, Clinical Director, Clinician

I am a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and Art Therapist and I love the work that I do here at BPAR. I have had the privilege of working with individuals and families touched by adoption since 2011. I have worked in outpatient, milieu and residential settings. I have been the Clinical Director of Boston Post Adoption Resources since February 2014. My specialty is working with children and teens who have experienced trauma, loss, anxiety, and depression as a result of adoption. Many of the clients I work with struggle with impulsive behaviors, emotion regulation, questions or confusion regarding their adoption, or identity and attachment challenges with their primary caregiver. It is extremely important to me to work closely with caregivers and children. I will often provide dyadic therapy to help strengthen their relationship. I have a warm, playful approach and integrate play and art therapy, trauma informed cognitive behavioral therapy, developmental theories, and a variety of other therapeutic approaches into my work. I believe that every client already has the tools and strengths inside of them that they need to live a healthy life. It is my job to help guide, strengthen and reveal these strengths.

Kristen (KC) Craig, LICSW
Assistant Clinical Director, Clinician

I am a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker. I am passionate about working with children and families, and most of my career I have focused on helping individuals and complex-blended families who are adopted, divorced, experiencing major life changes or have a history of trauma. My work often centers on depression or anxiety related to relationships. Since 2011, I have specialized in working with adopted individuals and families, including identity work around loss and parent consultations. I focus on empowering the family system by incorporating cognitive-behavioral, narrative and solution-based techniques as well as some art and play interventions. I value self-care and meditation and am Reiki trained, so I love the way BPAR encourages wellness both for our families and for our staff!

Maya Rogers-Bursen, LMHC, ATR, Expressive Art Therapist
Clinician, Development Coordinator

I am a licensed mental health counselor who specializes in art therapy. When I was six months old, I was adopted from India. Working in this field, as an adult adoptee, has opened my eyes to the dynamics that go into creating and defining family. I have had clinical experience in settings which focus in bereavement with children, adolescents with complex trauma histories, post adoption support, as well as intensive family work within the home. As an art therapist, I believe in the importance of integrating arts-based work into therapeutic settings when appropriate. I use this approach to help facilitate conversation as well as guide those in self exploration.

Darci Nelsen

Darci Nelsen, LMHC, BC-DMT
Clinician

I am a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and Dance/Movement Therapist. I graduated from Lesley University in 2013 with a degree in Mental Health Counseling and Dance/Movement Therapy. Currently, I am pursuing further doctoral education in Expressive Therapies. My clinical experience has been focused on supporting children, adolescents, and families within a variety of therapeutic and educational settings. Clients I have worked with struggle with emotional regulation, challenging interpersonal and family dynamics, and have experienced trauma, loss, anxiety, and depression. As an expressive therapist, I use a creative lens in my work with clients, through movement, play, art, and storytelling. My aim is to always work collaboratively with clients to foster self-exploration, and support movement toward deeper connections with self and others.

LC Coppola, M.Ed, LMHC, Addictions Specialist, MA PGS
Clinician

I am a licensed Mental Health Counselor specializing in adoptee support as well as issues with addiction in the family. As an adoptee myself, working with families touched by adoption and foster care is deeply important to me. I draw upon my training in Narrative therapy as well as  a variety of theories including relational, cognitive and cultural theories. I believe getting in touch with our authentic selves through our life stories can be a powerful experience and this journey can often bring out of us the truths we need to face in order to evolve into our best selves.

Marta Isabella Sierra, LMHC
Clinician

I am a licensed mental health counselor specializing in Internal Family Systems therapy. I graduated from Lesley University in 2011 with a degree in Mental Health Counseling and Dance Movement Therapy. I started my training in Internal Family Systems in 2013 and after finishing Level One and Two I started staffing trainings as a Program Assistant. I am very passionate about the capacity of IFS to support those touched by adoption help and heal all of their internal parts. I have ten years of experience working with eating disorders and as an adoptee myself, have a deep desire to work with adoptees. As an interracial and international adoptee, I also have a specific interest in racial identity development for adoptees of color and how that affects overall health and self esteem. I believe community is the medicine, both internal and external, and am honored to be joining this team.

Alison Cohan

Alison Cohan, MSW, LCSW
Clinician

I am a licensed social worker who is motivated by the idea that everyone is the expert of their own story. I spent the past five years working with children and families in the Boston area, mainly in roles at the Department for Children and Families (DCF) and at the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (MSPCC). In addition to my experience in the field, I obtained a trauma certificate for children, adolescents, and adults. My approach to therapy is based on the idea that the family or individual brings a wealth of knowledge that will be helpful in our work together. I tend to use a cognitive, solution-focused, and narrative approach; additionally, I enjoy incorporating different creative projects in a session. My goal is to provide individuals and families with the support they need to be successful in their everyday lives.

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Elena Li
Clinical Intern

I am an international student from Lesley University currently pursuing my master's degree in Mental Health Counseling, Art Therapy. I came to the US in 2012 as an exchange student from China; my experiences of learning a different language and adjusting to a new culture while living with my host family for three years have inspired me to explore the complexity and beauty behind how a person adapts to new environments, builds emotional strength between different cultures, and strengthens relationships with others. Over the past seven years, I have gained clinical experiences with elders, children, and adults in various settings and treatment modalities, utilizing family therapy, play therapy, group therapy, dance therapy, music therapy, and art therapy. I am a certified yoga instructor, passionate about creativity and meditation work focusing on breathing techniques. In my future clinical practice, I hope to continue to use a humanistic approach to address collective trauma, grief work, racial trauma, and multigenerational trauma.

Erica Kramer, MSW
Operations and Intake Director

I am so excited to work with this incredible group of  BPAR clinicians to help further our mission and support all members of the adoption constellation. Many years ago, I earned my Masters in Social Work and for 15 years I worked as licensed therapist, supervisor and Clinical Director within the trauma field. After my third child was born, I left the work world to take care of my wonderful children. Recently, my youngest child started college, and I am so happy to re-enter the work world again. At BPAR, I am responsible for intakes and operations - this covers a variety of areas including billing, social media, blogs, and intakes. I am available to answer any questions you might have about our services.

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Larry Kramer, MBA
Outsourced CFO

I began my role as BPAR’s outsourced CFO on Day #1 in summer 2012. With over 35 years of finance, accounting, and operations experience, I serve this organization as well as a dozen other for-profit, venture firm, and non-profit clients in my role as a Managing Partner at Foundation Management Associates. My philanthropic interests include fundraising for the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation, the Pediatric IBD Foundation, Walks for Hunger, and various pediatric cancer causes. Since 2009 I have raised over $2 million through my three Boston-area cover bands. I also served on Boston’s Chapter Board of Financial Executives International and ran the organization's Career Services and Career Planning Committee.

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Lucy Davis, MBA
Director of Marketing & Communications

I’m the lucky one who gets to shine a spotlight on all the amazing work performed by the BPAR team. On an outsourced basis, I help develop educational content and find creative ways to connect the adoption constellation to BPAR’s resources and to attract prospective donors. I grew up on a block with nine adoptive families. Yes—nine! Whether I’m designing a new feature for the BPAR.org website or compiling a book about post adoption mental health, I can’t help but wish that I could take BPAR back with me in a time machine to help my friends and their families. My background includes corporate advertising and communications; digital content marketing; author services; and non-profit leadership and fundraising.

Mr Roger Therapy Dog

Mr. Roger
Therapy Dog

My name is Mr. Roger, but feel free to call me Roge. I was trained as a service dog at The Seeing Eye in Morristown, New Jersey. I’m partial to cable knit sweaters, and I get along with every kind of animal you can imagine—cats, birds, you name it. But I especially love people. I’m affectionate, gentle, caring, compassionate, and I’m a really good listener.

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Loki
Therapy Dog

My name is Loki, I am a Shiba Inu. I have lived in Seattle, Washington and Cali, Colombia, and am excited to come to work with my mom, Marta, here at BPAR. I love people and am very comfortable with lots of big emotions. Whether you need space or comfort, I am here to offer love.

"BPAR holds a very special place in my heart because of staff who go above and beyond in making sure that their clients feel comfortable and cared for."

—ADULT ADOPTEE CLIENT

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