ABOUT US

OUR PHILOSOPHY

At Columbus Park we've assembled a team of experts, exclusively focused on treating eating disorders and their co-occurring conditions like depression and anxiety. Working with clients of all ages - adults, adolescents, and children - our active, skilled and engaging therapists deliver the best evidence-based treatments available.

Columbus Park accepts Aetna and CHP Insurance.

MEET OUR TEAM

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    Melissa Gerson, LCSW
    Clinical Director and Founder
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    Melissa Gerson, LCSW
    Clinical Director and Founder

    I’m Melissa Gerson, the Founder and Clinical Director of Columbus Park. I started Columbus Park [Collaborative], the first private eating disorder day-treatment program in NYC, in 2008. Since then, Columbus Park has evolved and refined its role in the eating disorder community and I’m proud to say that we’re the only feedback-informed (FIT)*, evidence-based outpatient eating disorder treatment center in Manhattan.

    A bit about my background: I’m a native New Yorker who transplanted to Miami, Florida at age 18 to dance with the Miami City Ballet. After seven years, touring with the MCB company, I retired from ballet and came back to my NY roots to attend Columbia University as a Psychology major. I went on to earn a master's degree in social work at New York University. I soon started a private therapy practice, developing more and more of an interest and expertise in disordered eating. I benefited from years of individual case consultation and supervision, working with experts like Judith Brisman, PhD, Julie Goldfein, PhD and faculty from NYU Psychoanalytic Institute, William Alanson White Institute and NY State Psychiatric Institute. I completed the two-year post-graduate training program in psychodynamic psychotherapy at NYU's Psychoanalytic Institute. I also completed trainings in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Dialectical Behavior Therapy at the Center for the Study of Anorexia and Bulimia, NYC and the Eating Disorders, Compulsions and Addictions program at the William Alanson White Institute of Psychiatry, Psychoanalysis & Psychology.

    I am a Certified Family-Based Treatment Therapist, having completed advanced training and extensive consultation in Family-Based Treatment ("Maudsley) through the Training Institute for Child and Adolescent Eating Disorders. Without a doubt, FBT certification is among my proudest achievements. FBT is the gold-standard treatment for childhood and adolescent eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia; I am thrilled to be able to support families so effectively in beating these potentially devastating illnesses.

    In Columbus Park, I’ve created a true center of excellence, with a robust team of skilled and engaging clinicians. I’m grateful for the impact we’ve had on so many lives thus far… and look forward to continuing to make a powerful mark in the field for many years to come.

    *Feedback informed treatment involves routinely and formally soliciting feedback from clients so that the therapist can respond promptly and accordingly to better meet the client’s needs.

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    John Tillotson MD
    Physician
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    John Tillotson MD
    Physician

    I'm John Tillotson, a physician at Columbus Park. As someone whose personal life has been touched by eating disorders, I understand the pain and daily challenges they present. The good news is that there are effective treatments, treatments we offer here at Columbus Park.

    I'm passionate about working on things that make a difference. It's why I initially went into medicine and why, early in my career, I went to the US Senate to work on health care policy. Later, I moved to Los Angeles to start a behavioral health company, and then to Silicon Valley to join a venture capital company and make investments in innovative health care start-ups.

    Along the way, I fell in love with and married a New Yorker, and then became one myself. Once here, I headed US Operations for APS Healthcare, a disease management company, was President of ComplexCare Solutions, a home care company, and was Chairman of Fit4D, a telehealth company focused on helping those with diabetes.

    I'm thrilled to now be part of the Columbus Park team! We're out to change the world as well, one patient at a time.

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    Liz O'Connell, LMSW
    Therapist
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    Liz O'Connell, LMSW
    Therapist

    I'm Liz O'Connell, a Primary Therapist at Columbus Park. I received my master’s degree in social work from New York University and my BA from Brown University. As a graduate student, I gained early clinical experience in field placements at the New York State Psychiatric Institute’s inpatient eating disorder research unit and at The Training Institute for Mental Health, an outpatient psychoanalytic clinic. I completed the Columbus Park Behavioral Health specialized eating disorder training program for clinicians prior to joining the practice as a therapist. I’ve been comprehensively trained in Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) through Marsha Linehan’s Behavioral Tech and have received advanced training through Columbus Park senior leadership in eating disorder-specific modalities like CBT-E and Family-Based Treatment ("Maudsley") for adolescents.

    At Columbus Park, I work with individuals and families and also facilitate group therapy sessions and supported meals. I would describe my therapeutic style as thoughtful, sincere, and grounded.

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    Piper Nunez, LMSW
    Therapist
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    Piper Nunez, LMSW
    Therapist

    I’m Piper Nunez, a Primary Therapist at Columbus Park.

    After earning my undergraduate degree at the University of Notre Dame, I completed my master’s degree in social work (MSW) at Columbia University. During my time there, I worked at the NYU Child Study Center within an inter-disciplinary treatment team, treating individuals who were suicidal, struggling to regulate emotions and engaging in active self-harming behaviors. I completed both the Intensive and Advanced Intensive Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) trainings, facilitated by Behavioral Tech trainers, as part of Columbia University’s year-long DBT training lab.

    As part of the Columbus Park treatment team, I utilize the most current, evidence-based treatments including DBT and CBT-E. I would describe my therapeutic style as warm, genuine, engaging and non-judgmental.

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    Madelyn Bart, LCSW
    Therapist
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    Madelyn Bart, LCSW
    Therapist

    I’m Maddy Bart, a Primary Therapist at Columbus Park.

    I received my BA with honors in psychology from George Washington University before graduating from Columbia University with my master's degree in social work. I completed both the Intensive and Advanced Intensive Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) trainings, facilitated by Behavioral Tech trainers, as part of Columbia University’s year-long DBT training lab. Prior to joining Columbus Park, I received clinical training as an intern at St Luke's Roosevelt Hospital’s Child and Family Institute, where I provided outpatient treatment to children, adolescents and their families utilizing both Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and DBT. I also worked as a primary therapist at The Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services, providing trauma-focused therapy to adolescents, young adults and their families in a residential setting. In addition to training and practice in DBT, standard CBT and trauma-focused therapy, I received comprehensive training and extensive supervision in Enhanced CBT (CBT-E), the modality of choice for most eating disorders.

    At Columbus Park, I conduct individual and family sessions along with supported meals and a weekly DBT Skills Group. In all of these settings, I deliver evidence-based treatments with my personal therapeutic style of curiosity, compassion and warmth.

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    Yuval Moses, LCSW
    Therapist
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    Yuval Moses, LCSW
    Therapist

    I'm Yuval Moses, a therapist at Columbus Park.

    After earning my BA in Psychology from Ben Gurion University in Israel, I came to New York and completed by graduate studies in social work at NYU.

    Prior to joining Columbus Park, I was the leader of the DBT team in the Yonkers Clinic at Westchester Jewish Community Services, providing individual and family therapy using CBT, DBT, and psychodynamic therapies. I also provide trauma-focused therapy and DBT skills training at Mt Sinai and St Lukes.

    At Columbus Park, I lead DBT skills training groups specifically designed for those with eating disorders. I am fluent in both Hebrew and English.

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    Jamie Fialkoff, LMSW
    Therapist
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    Jamie Fialkoff, LMSW
    Therapist

    I’m Jamie Fialkoff, a Primary Therapist at Columbus Park.

    I'm a native New Yorker (though I spent my college years in Philadelphia) and have a Master's degree in social work from Fordham University. Previously, I completed a Master's degree in developmental psychology at Columbia University.

    Prior to joining Columbus Park, I received extensive training and supervision in Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) and Family Based Therapy (FBT) at Mount Sinai's Eating and Weight Disorders Program. Additionally, I served as Group Director of the Eating Disorder Resource Center of New York.

    At Columbus Park, I work with individuals and families and facilitate group therapy sessions and supported meals. I would describe my therapeutic style as approachable, empathic, and genuine.

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    Paloma Nunziata, LCSW
    Therapist
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    Paloma Nunziata, LCSW
    Therapist

    I'm Paloma Nunziata, a Primary Therapist at Columbus Park.

    I graduated from Ithaca College with a major in Clinical Sociology and completed my Master's degree in social work from New York University. I later completed a full course of post-graduate study at the Center for the Study of Anorexia and Bulimia, Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy.

    I started my career working with adolescents on the inpatient unit at Queens Hospital in Honolulu, Hawaii and later served at Forestdale and The Children’s Village as a therapist with children and families struggling in the New York City school system. I spent three years as an individual, family and group eating disorder therapist at the partial hospital level of care at The Renfrew Center of New York. In addition to my direct clinical practice at Renfrew, I served as the primary supervisor to graduate student interns.

    I combine evidence-based therapies like CBT-E and DBT with with psychodynamic insights; I encourage an examination of defenses and help my clients understand underlying conflicts that contribute to the development of eating disorder symptoms. I provide individual therapy as well as facilitate therapeutic groups.

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    Courtney Levy, LMHC
    Therapist
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    Courtney Levy, LMHC
    Therapist

    I'm Courtney Levy, a Primary Therapist at Columbus Park.

    I received my masters degree in mental health counseling at Brooklyn College and my BA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Prior to joining Columbus Park, I gained clinical experience working with adolescents at the Institute for Community Living's school-based mental health clinic at IS 220. I also have experience working in a private practice setting providing outpatient therapy to adolescents and adults using a blend of DBT, CBT and psychodynamic modalities. I spent two years as a clinical coach at Eating Disorder Recovery Specialists where I provided one-on-one meal support and clinical coaching to patients in eating disorder recovery.

    I am currently a member of the two-year postgraduate training program in feminist relational psychotherapy at The Women's Therapy Centre Institute, an organization known for it's pioneering work on women's relationship to food, feeding and their bodies.

    At Columbus Park, I conduct individual therapy and supported meals utilizing the most current, evidence-based treatments. I would describe my therapeutic style as warm, compassionate and genuine.

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