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ialgbtic board of directors 2019-2021

gideon litherland

President - Gideon Litherland MA, LCPC, CCMHC, BC-TMH, is clinical counselor, supervisor, and consultant Veduta Consulting, LLC and Adjunct Faculty at Counseling@Northwestern. He received his MA in Counseling Psychology from The Family Institute at Northwestern University and is a proud alum serving as Chair of the Alumni Advisory Board. He is a doctoral candidate at Oregon State University, working towards a PhD in Counseling. Gideon is a member of ICA, IMHCA, ICSJ, ACES, ALGBTIC and ACA.

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Secretary - Dr. Tamekia Bell is an Assistant Professor in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program at Adler University, Chicago Campus. Dr. Bell completed her Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia in May 2012. Her dissertation was on counselor competency in counseling individuals with learning disabilities. Dr. Bell completed her master’s degree at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, Tennessee in Counseling with a concentration in Marriage and Family Therapy. 

Dr. Bell has a variety of work experience, which includes three years working as a full-time tenure track faculty member and program co-director in the Educational Counseling program at California State University in Bakersfield, California. Prior to her enrollment at Old Dominion University, Dr. Bell worked for three years in student affairs in the roles of Resident Director, Area Coordinator, and Undergraduate Admissions Counselor. 

Dr. Bell is a member of several professional counseling organizations, such as the American Counseling Association, Association for Assessment and Research in Counseling, Association for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Issues in Counseling, Illinois Counseling Association, Illinois Association for Assessment and Research in Counseling, and the Illinois Association for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Issues in Counseling. She is currently involved in Chi Sigma Iota as a Chapter Faculty Advisor for Alpha Iota Delta and Chair of the Public Policy and Advocacy in Association for Assessment and Research in Counseling. 

Dr. Bell’s research interests includes multicultural competency as it relates to individuals with disabilities and LGBTQI+ individuals, intersectionality of cultural identities, couples and family counseling, and assessment and program evaluation in counseling.

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Courtney emery

Treasurer - Courtney Emery, MA, LCPC, is a Program Manager at Trilogy Behavioral Healthcare in Chicago where she directs the work of therapy and case management teams. The previously directed The Living Room at Turning Point, an alternative to Emergency Departments for adults in crisis. She received a MA in Counseling Psychology from The Family Institute at Northwestern University, and her foremost interests include serious mental illness, mental healthcare needs of underserved populations and the intersections of counseling and social justice. She is a member of ACA, ICA and IALGBTIC. 


Sandra gavin

Member-At-Large - Sandra “Sandy” Gavin, MA, LPC, NCC is a doctoral student in Counselor Education and Supervision at Northern Illinois University. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor and a National Certified Counselor working at Lighthouse Professional Counseling Center in . Sycamore, IL> Sandy received her master’s in May 2018 in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at the University of Northern Iowa. She has a wide range of experiences working in a private school, university settings, and private practices. Sandy recently published her first manuscript in the International Journal of Play Therapy regarding play therapists’ perceptions of using technology in the playroom.

elisa woodruff

Member-At-Large - Elisa Woodruff, MSEd, LPC (IL), NCC (she/her/hers) is a core faculty member in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program at Buena Vista University in Storm Lake, Iowa and a doctoral candidate in Counselor Education and Supervision at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois. Previously, she has worked in private practice, college counseling, community mental health, and as adjunct faculty at Adler University. She has held over a dozen leadership positions in the Illinois Counseling Association, its divisions, and chapters. Her clinical interests include sexual and gender minorities, trauma informed care, medical issues/disability, and the mind/body connection. Elisa’s original research line is related to issues affecting asexual identified people - a topic she has presented at local, state, and national venues; professional trainings; university classrooms; and on an IALGBTIC webinar available through the Illinois Counseling Association. Other research interests include the identity politics in counselor education and issues facing older adults. Prior to being a counselor, Elisa was a theater director and educator on the west coast and on Chicago’s northside. In her spare time, Elisa plays an assortment of musical instruments, read popular non-fiction, exercises, and plays with her dog Scout.


jason Maravelias

Student Representative - Jason Maravelias is currently a Reporting Analyst for OptumRx which is part of United HealthCare. He currently has his masters in Psychology, and is working towards his masters in Mental Health Counseling through Concordia University cohort program. He is also a current certified Hatha yoga instructor, Reiki Master, and shamanic practitioner. His goals are to work with the LGTBTQA community once he is licensed, and provide a wellness approach to the community. He is a member of the ACA, ICA, ICSJ, and IALGBTIC.!


Missy Lugo

Past-President - Missy Lugo, MSEd, LPC, NCC, PEL-School Counselor is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Counseling, Adult and Higher Education at Northern Illinois University. Missy has experience providing counseling to children, adolescents, and adults, as well as working in student affairs. She has provided individual and group counseling at the middle school level and has experience in academic advising. Missy worked for a company affiliated with DCFS providing supervised parental visits. She is a Student Success Specialist at NIU where she focuses on retention. She is currently transitioning from higher education to school counseling at the high school level. Missy is an adjunct professor and works in private practice at Lighthouse Professional Counseling Center in Sycamore , IL. Current professional memberships include ACA, ICA, ALGBTIC, IALGBTIC, ACES, ICES, NCACES, AMCD, IAMC, ASCAm and ISCA.