many careers, Shelley’s started from her interests; her interest in
how people think and a deep commitment to helping her community.
However, like many career paths today, hers was not a straight line.
After taking an early retirement option in her first career she
returned to school to complete her Masters in Counselling Psychology
with an adult focus at the University of British Columbia. Upon
graduation she worked at Edgewood Chemical Dependency Treatment
Centre in Nanaimo, BC as an addictions counsellor for several years
before returning home to Yarmouth. From 2000
-2013, Shelley worked at South West Health as a child psychologist. Her
clinical practice focused on eating disorders, parenting challenges, mood
difficulties and developmental disorders, including assessing and treating
autism spectrum disorders. Her clinical practice with children has
focused on mood difficulties and assessing developmental disorders. Her areas of interest when working with adults has included
mood difficulties, career transition, EMDR, and PTSD in first responders.
Shelley started her
private practice in 2003 and has been providing service to clients
of all ages during this time. In 2010, she graduated with her PhD in
clinical psychology from Fielding Graduate University, an APA
approved program. She completed her one-year doctoral internship
with a focus on both child and adult populations at the Annapolis
Valley District Health Authority, Kentville, NS. Shelley is registered in Nova Scotia (R0494) as a psychologist.
In the past, Shelley has enjoyed teaching undergraduate and graduate courses at several Universities including Acadia University, Université Sainte-Anne and Dalhousie University (Yarmouth site). She holds an adjunct appointment with
As a rural
psychologist, Shelley has developed her skills in many different
areas. Her latest areas of interest include insomnia, police psychology, pain, and Alzheimer’s
disease. The latter after a family member was diagnosed with this
In 2011 Shelley received the Canadian Psychological Association Northern and Rural Sections' North Start Student Award for her doctoral research poster presentation on autism spectrum disorder. In 2003, She was nominated as one of the 20 extraordinary young alumni (under the age of 40) at Acadia University. She
has held several executive positions, including Chair, with the Rural and Northern Section of the Canadian Psychological Association. She has held several appointments from the Executive Council of Nova Scotia, including appointments to the Adoption Appeal Committee, Nova Scotia Advisory Committee on the Status of Women and
the Criminal Code Review Board. She has been the President
and Treasurer on the Executive of the Association of Psychologists
of Nova Scotia, and was a members of the CPA End of Life Task Force regarding Medical Aid in Dying.
As a freelance writer, Shelley
enjoys writing about the everyday joys and adventures of rural
coastal living. Her writing has appeared in regional,
national and international publications, including Saltscapes, Horse
Canada, The Cottager, and Policewomen. She frequently writes about
psychological issues and how they influence joy and engagement in
our leisure activities. Shelley has published in peer reviewed journals and written four book chapters on
ethics in psychology. She particularly enjoys writing in collaboration with other
professionals and friends. Her international work with fellow psychologists and Doctors
Without Borders has been very rewarding.
enjoys spending time with her life partner of three decades, Jeff.
They can be frequently found spending time with their horses,
walking, travelling, and gardening.
Photo credit - Carla