About Us

Founded by marriage and family therapists, the Atlanta Relationship Institute focuses on relational issues and increased fulfillment for family, business, and personal life. Men and women, couples, families, adolescents and children come to us to source their strengths and improve their relationships. Specialty areas for our practice include: marriage and family therapy, play therapy, pornography & sex addiction recovery, healing from betrayal trauma, EMDR, and discernment counseling for couples.

Who We Are

ARI was founded by Jennifer Kuck and Marilyn Witbeck in 2014.  We are a cohesive team of marriage and family therapists, social workers, and professional counselors who provide a safe place for healing for a diverse population. Clinical practitioners working at the Atlanta Relationship Institute are regulated and monitored by the Georgia Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers and Marriage and Family Therapists. At the Institute, therapists are trained in systems therapy, marriage and family therapy, play therapy, adolescents, trauma, and addiction and betrayal trauma recovery.

Mission

The mission of the Atlanta Relationship Institute is to promote healthy relational systems and increased fulfillment in family, business, and personal life. We advocate for increased love, connection, and attunement through mutually beneficial relationships, personal growth and healing.

Purpose

Our core purpose is to help people think and act more relationally. Do you consider yourself to be relational? Have you developed emotional intelligence? Do you have the skill set to develop and maintain meaningful, fulfilling relationships?

Values

ARI’s core values are respect, ownership, trust, boundaries, and vision

  • Full respect living (for self and others)
  • Take ownership and be accountable
  • Trust in the healing process
  • Hold healthy boundaries, while honoring others
  • Envision yourself already where you want to be
Jennifer Kuck

Jennifer Kuck

Co-Owner / Bilingual Therapist Ed.S., LMFT, LPC, CSAT, CPCS, AAMFT Approved Supervisor

Jenni takes a compassionate, solution- focused approach in working with all ages to provide individual, couples, and family therapy. She specializes in healing relationship struggles such as communication and conflict resolution, strengthening connection, working to resolve sexual and behavioral addictions, and support for affair recovery and betrayal trauma. Jenni Helps children communicate through play therapy using adventure, art, and sand tray to heal from trauma, abuse/neglect, loss, and divorce. She coaches parents to strengthen the parent/child interaction. Jenni is Co-Owner of the institute and provides supervision to therapists working towards licensure. She also provides services in Spanish.

Credentials: Master’s & Specialist Degrees, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Licensed Professional Counselor, Certified Professional Counselor Supervisor, AAMFT Approved Supervisor, & Certified Trauma Specialist. Credentials conferred by the International Institute for Trauma & Addiction Professionals (IITAP) include Certified Multiple Addiction Therapist, Sexual Addiction Specialist, and Financial Disorders Specialist.

Marilyn Witbeck

Marilyn Witbeck

Co-Owner / Therapist MS, LMFT, LPC, CSAT, CPCS, AAMFT Approved Supervisor

Marilyn uses a positive, strength-based approach to work with individuals, couples, and families from the teenage years through adulthood. She inspires hope and healing by guiding clients through recovery from abuse and trauma. She works with adolescents to help them better function in their social, school, and family systems. She treats couples in crisis, and specializes in sex addiction and betrayal trauma recovery. Marilyn uses Discernment Counseling to help couples on the brink of divorce find clarity and confidence in choosing a path forward. She is a member of the Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology and uses energy psychology modalities including EMDR, Emotional Freedom Technique, and Healing Touch. As Co-Owner of the Institute, Marilyn provides supervision to therapists who are working towards their licensure.

Credentials: Master’s Degree, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Licensed Professional Counselor, Certified Professional Counselor Supervisor, AAMFT Approved Supervisor, & Trauma Specialist. Credentials conferred by the International Institute for Trauma & Addiction Professionals (IITAP) include Certified Multiple Addiction Therapist, Sexual Addiction Specialist, and Financial Disorders Specialist.

Dr. Melinda Paige

Dr. Melinda Paige

Therapist / Ph.D., LPC, CPCS, NCC

Melinda’s person-centered approach to trauma recovery honors the strength and resiliency of survivors. She views her clients as experts of their unique experiences and has confidence in their ability to recover from trauma & stress-related conditions. She uses approaches including EMDR and clinical hypnosis, ensuring that clients remain present and grounded throughout the therapeutic session. Traumatic memory is reprocessed and stored in the “done file.” Negative thoughts, behaviors, and/or emotions are eliminated since they are no longer needed for survival. What remains is an increased capacity for presence and post-traumatic growth. Melinda is the founder of the Trauma Competency Institute, and an Assistant Professor at Argosy University. She has published and presented nationally on trauma competency and protective factors in the prevention of secondary trauma and self-injury.

Credentials: Doctoral & Specialist Degrees, Licensed Professional Counselor, Certified Professional Counselor Supervisor, National Certified Counselor. Recipient of Chi Sigma Iota International Outstanding Practitioner Award (2014), American Counseling Association Professional Development Award (2018), & Chi Sigma Iota International Outstanding Faculty Award (2018).

Tracey Van Dyke

Tracey Van Dyke

Therapist / MA, LPC, NCC

Tracey is dedicated to helping clients become empowered for personal growth and healing. She provides counseling to individuals, couples and families from teenage years to adulthood using a goal oriented approach. She assists clients working through issues related to anxiety, depression, sexual abuse, grief and trauma, stage of life transitions, and relational issues. Tracey provides customized anger management programs for individuals and groups.

Credentials: Master’s Degree, Licensed Professional Counselor, National Certified Counselor, Certified Anger Management Specialist.

Jermaine Sullivan

Jermaine Sullivan

Trilingual Therapist / M.Ed., APC, NCC

Jermaine is passionate about helping his clients break through barriers, finding creative ways to overcome life’s difficult challenges. He provides counseling services to clients of all ages using a Cognitive-Behavioral approach. His areas of interest include depression, addiction, couples therapy, and family therapy. He provides counseling services in the evenings and speaks three languages: English, Spanish, and Portuguese. Jermaine works under the supervision of Jenni Kuck.

Credentials: Master’s Degree in Higher Education, Master’s Degree in Mental Health Counseling, Associate Professional Counselor, National Certified Counselor.

Natalie Sorensen

Natalie Sorensen

Therapist / Play Therapist, MSW, LCSW, RPT

Natalie believes that everyone has an innate drive towards growth and healing. She strives to create a therapeutic environment where clients feel safe, accepted and able to access their inner wisdom so that their mind, body and heart can heal and feel liberated from adverse life experiences. Natalie provides services to all ages and uses a Client-Centered approach in addition to EMDR, Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Sand Tray, Art Therapy and Play Therapy. She specializes in treating anxiety, depression, trauma, abuse, PTSD and attachment issues.

Credentials: Master’s in Social Work, Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Registered Play Therapist

Josefina Bates

Josefina Bates

Bilingual Family Therapist / MSW

Josefina is gifted at empowering her clients by pulling from their strengths. Her approach to therapy is positive and goal oriented, developing small tangible tasks towards desired outcomes.  Josefina works with couples, families, and individuals from the age of 12 and up, specializing in the treatment of depression, anxiety, mood disorders, grief/bereavement, trauma, and relational issues. She has three years of social work experience in the public school system. With over 13 years of case management / bereavement counseling experience, and 15 years of social work experience related to geriatric and end-of-life care, Josefina understands the development of progressive disease and the impact for individuals and families. She provides services in English and Spanish. Josefina is under the supervision of Marilyn Witbeck.

Credentials: Master’s Degree, Licensed Master of Social Work.

Sierra Watkins

Sierra Watkins

Therapist / MS

Sierra believes her clients have great capacity for self-actualization and taps into this inner wisdom by exploring higher planes of physical, psychological, social, and spiritual awareness. She enjoys using experiential and creative techniques based on her belief that the quest for healing should never be boring. Sierra has worked in a residential mental health facility with children, adolescents, and young adults where she gained experience with mindfulness, DBT, trauma work and crisis management. Life can be unbearably overwhelming at times. Through nurturing the therapeutic relationship, Sierra supports her clients in alleviating stress and anxiety to lead a more enriching and balanced life of holistic wellness. Sierra works under the supervision of Jenni Kuck/Marilyn Witbeck.

 

Credentials: Master’s in Clinical Mental Health, ASIST (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training) Certified.

Tuesdai Brown

Tuesdai Brown

Therapist / MA

Tuesdai uses a person centered approach to be of service to individuals who have experienced trauma in their life.  Her passion lies in working with her clients to collaboratively identify their strengths and resiliency which can aid in successful healing.  She guides her clients through their goals using a tri-phasic trauma recovery model which painlessly paves the way to post-traumatic growth.  She uses approaches including mindfulness meditation training, psycho education (teaching the effects of trauma on the human brain) and diaphramic breathing to gently guide clients to the present moment while offering a safe, nonjudgmental space for clients to ultimately explore their identity outside of their traumatic experiences.  She provides counseling services to adolescents, adults and the elderly in the form of individual and group counseling. Tuesdai works under the supervision of Dr. Melinda Paige.  

 
Credentials: Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with a focus in trauma therapy.
 
Todd Rugg

Todd Rugg

Therapist / MS

Todd has an innate ability to authentically connect with clients of all ages. He uses awareness and mindfulness techniques to help his clients overcome their stressors. He is artistic, using creative interventions and humor in his work. Todd enjoys doing dream work with clients to access hidden barriers, bringing them to the conscious mind to conquer resentments and facilitate change. Todd specializes in preparing young adults for life transitions and provides pre-marital counseling for couples. He guides men and women survivors through recovery from domestic violence, sexual assault, and childhood sexual abuse. In 2018, he founded the only active support group for male survivors in Georgia. Todd is under the supervision of Jenni Kuck / Marilyn Witbeck.

Credentials: Master’s in Clinical Mental Health, QPR Certified.

Gus Juliao

Gus Juliao

Counseling Intern / MBA

Gus’s approach to helping clients is rooted in his conviction that we all possess the resilience to surpass our present conditions by looking inward, finding our strengths, and empowering ourselves. He fosters personal growth through compassionate and empathetic behavioral change. He provides counseling services to clients of all ages, using Cognitive Behavioral and Psychodynamic approaches. He specializes in working with veterans and their families to address the salient issues of military service, including posttraumatic stress. He is a 22-year veteran of the U.S Army, with a background in human resources and public administration. Gus provides services in English and Spanish, and works under the supervision of Marilyn Witbeck.

Credentials: MBA, Human Resources and Public Administration, completing Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at the University of West Georgia.

 

Wendy McGee

Wendy McGee

Administrative Assistant

Wendy joined our staff in June of 2017. She enjoys working with clients to provide assistance in scheduling, processing payments, and providing payment receipts. Plus many other behind the scenes things that make ARI pleasant and efficient! Wendy has several years of experience as a property and office manager, and previously served as a Parent Advisor for the State of Georgia’s Educational Services.

Credentials: Master’s Degree in Education.