Dr. Chinichian’s passion for clinical psychology and social justice work was reignited in the place she least expected – a corporate banking start-up. As Vice President of Training and Development, she developed one of the first formal national training programs for retail/wholesale and operation channels to span across over 2,000 associates in the retirement planning industry. She spent many days putting out “fires,” managing associates, working long hours, and coping with constant pressure. She was fueled by the excitement of the work and by the primary goal of helping seniors. Although it was gratifying, it also led to taking on positions of leadership that removed her from direct client work that she both craved and enjoyed. After 9 years in the banking and finance arena, she made a career change to reflect the altruistic values she was raised with.
Dr. Chinichian is a cognitive-behavioral therapist whose primary areas of interest are child/adolescent development, complex trauma, and minority mental health. Her clinical training and experience have involved working in multiple therapeutic contexts, the use of multidisciplinary resources and efforts, and the management of a diversity of mental health concerns. She has worked with children/adolescents and their families in the contexts of schools, day-treatment programs, hospitals, probation programs, foster care, social and protective services, home-based services, outpatient clinics, and private practice.
Dr. Chinichian spent six years of her training working with vulnerable and at-risk youth. This eventually culminated in her dissertation project, “Formative Program Evaluation of a Graduate Training Program Advocating for Youth with Neurodevelopmental Disorders in Extended Foster Care.” During her APA-accredited internship training at UC Davis Children’s Hospital, CAARE Center, Dr. Chinichian was involved in the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with a myriad of psychiatric presentations including post traumatic stress disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, ADHD, anxiety disorders, sexual and physical abuse, developmental disability, and mood disorders. While interning, Dr. Chinichian was afforded the opportunity to work with refugee families and provide Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in Farsi. Additionally, she became certified in Parent Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) to help caregivers and children ages 2 to 7 repair disrupted attachment issues due to trauma. Dr. Chinichian is committed to provide services within a multicultural context.
Dr. Chinichian holds a postdoctoral scholar fellowship position at the University of California Davis (UCD) Medical Center, The MIND Institute, in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. Under the Northern California LEND program her role includes various advocacy and leadership duties, program development, clinical assessment, and evidence based interventions for youth with neurodevelopment disorders. Dr. Chinichian’s passion includes developing community outreach programs/resources for families with autism spectrum disorder and developmental disorders.