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2021-2022 MCA Executive Board

President, Ashley VanBemmelen, Ph.D., LPC, NCC

I am a licensed professional counselor in Grand Rapids, Michigan. As a graduate of WMU, I interned at my local YWCA and eventually began working in a group practice.  I specialize in working with young adults and clients who have experienced trauma. I conceptualize clients from a relational cultural perspective and work to advocate on behalf of and alongside those I serve.  I am completing my Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision with a focus on issues of multicultural competency and social justice advocacy.  

I am excited to serve the Michigan Counseling Association and look forward to connecting with new and current members.  On a more personal note – I love espresso, I watch a Christmas movie everyday in December, and I frequently plan vacations to hike/backpack around the U.S. 

Secretary - Kayla Thrushman, MA, LPC

I have been working as an LPC and Art therapist at WillowsEdge Counseling & Healing Arts Center in Oakland County for the last five years. Our private practice is expected to service 5,000 sessions this year, with over 300 active clients spread over (2) locations.  Our outreach covers approximately six other townships and we have developed a strong referral base with local schools, shelters, and other health practitioners.  I currently specialize in children and adolescent populations, anxiety, depressive disorders, and other mood disorders. I utilize art therapy as an expressive therapeutic tool with many of my clients. I also have over 12 years of experience working with individuals with autism and their families. In 2014, I developed a counseling and art therapy program at Crossroads for Youth; a nonprofit treatment agency, serving at least 60 at-risk adolescents. Having lost many friends and classmates to suicide, I am passionate about helping children and adolescents experiencing anxiety and depression in order to prevent continuous mental health issues in future generations to come.

MCA Committee Chairs

Professional Development – Alana Nicolazzo, MA, LPC

Technology – Caroline Ray, MA, LPC, NCC

Call for Committee Chairs & Members

MCA is currently seeking dynamic leaders to serve as chairs and members for the committees listed below! If you are interested in filling a leadership position with MCA, please, email michigancounselingassociation@gmail.com for more information.

  • By-laws/Policy & Procedure 
  • Events
  • Membership 
  • Nominations and Elections
  • Public Policy and Legislation
  • Publication

Michigan Counseling Association is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. 


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