The Vida Clinic Philosophy
As mental health providers, our goal is to help foster resilience and hope through meaningful connections with our clients. We work with children, adolescents and adults. We help individuals deal with issues that arise at the various stages of the life-story. We have therapists who are bilingual in English and Spanish, and all work is done through a culturally-competent lens. We specialize in issues related to toxic-stress and psychological trauma. Some therapists have specialized training in working with individuals diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorders and chronic mental illness. We also work with families who are coping with a child diagnosed with medical or developmental disabilities.
School Mental Health
Vida Clinic specializes in the development and implementation of school-based mental health programs. This practice espouses a multi-systemic approach to psychological care in schools, thus offering programs that support the wellness and development of staff and families, in addition to providing targeted services for youth. Vida Clinic seeks to increase mental health awareness in schools and to create access to high quality, progressive mental health services to all who need them, equally. Vida Clinic’s scope of evidence-based services in the school mental health program focuses on 1) High quality direct clinical sessions on school-site, including diagnostic intake, individual, family and group therapy services for campus community members, 2) consultation support for campus staff, and 3) coordination of care with schools and health providers, 4) fostering school system-level development towards a whole-child educational climate. Our innovative models of school-based care have been presented in numerous presentations to the local community and in national conferences.
Dr. Elizabeth Portman Minne, LP
Executive Director and Co-founder
Dr. Minne is a licensed psychologist with an extensive history of providing intensive mental health services in inpatient and outpatient clinical settings. Dr. Minne's specialized training in school psychology gives her a strong foundational understanding of navigating psychological matters in school systems. Dr. Elizabeth Minne believes in building a highly individualized and meaningful experience for each of the clients she serves. Her approach to therapy is integrative, utilizing primarily a combination of Cognitive Behavioral and Interpersonal techniques. Dr. Minne places a strong emphasis on the cultural and social factors that have contributed to the individual's life story. Most importantly, she aims to take a collaborative role in her work as a psychologist by adapting her therapeutic strategies to fit the needs of the person she serves. Dr. Minne specializes in working with anxiety, depression, trauma-related issues, autism spectrum disorders, women's issues, multicultural issues, and working with larger systems.
After completing her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from the University of Texas at Austin, Dr. Minne went on to complete her Master’s Degree at Teacher’s College, Columbia University and her Doctorate Degree at the University of Texas at Austin, both in Psychology.
Laura Rifkin, LCSW
Laura is a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) with more than ten years of experience working in schools, as well as inpatient and outpatient mental health settings. She studied journalism at the University of Nebraska before earning a master’s degree in social work at the University of Texas – Austin. Laura believes that everyone should have to access high quality care and wellness opportunities, and she is passionate about dissolving systems of stigma related to mental and behavioral health. Laura works primarily with teens and adults, offering individual, family, and group counseling services. She believes that a safe and trusting relationship is the foundation for therapeutic work and uses a collaborative, strength-based approach with clients. Her focus includes anxiety, depression, trauma, grief and loss, self-esteem challenges, social problems, and adjustment to life transitions. Laura’s practice is informed by many various techniques and strategies, allowing her to individualize services to meet the needs of each client. In her free time, Laura enjoys being outside, spending time with friends and family, running, volunteering, and the Austin food and music scene.
Gloria Mann, LPC
Gloria is a licensed professional counselor who enjoys working with her clients to discover their strengths so that they can thrive. She aims to create a non-judgmental environment for clients to find their own skills and support to achieve their goals and reach their full potential. Gloria earned her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology at University of Rochester and a Master of Education in Counselor Education from the University of Texas at Austin. She became interested in counseling when she first volunteered at an inner-city program in Rochester, NY about 12 years ago and has since worked with teenagers and young adults in individual, groups and family settings. Gloria focuses on issues related to anxiety, depression, body image dissatisfaction and trauma. She uses a combination of cognitive behavioral therapy, mindfulness, and solutions focused techniques in her daily work and loves helping clients feel comfortable so that they can find hope through their circumstances and move towards wellness. Gloria is a proud parent of two dogs, enjoys being in nature, traveling, exploring different types of food, and spending time with friends and family.
Laura Johnson, LPC
Laura is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) with a Master’s Degree in Professional Counseling. Laura has enjoyed working with children and families in education and mental health for 15 years and has been a counselor for 8 years. Laura specializes in working with children, adolescents and families and provides individual, group and family therapy. She uses a strength-based and collaborative approach, combining cognitive behavioral therapy and solution focused techniques. She has a special interest in incorporating art, sand tray and other expressive therapies into her work and seeks to tailor the unique needs of the individual she is working with. Laura provides a safe, caring and encouraging environment where clients can find healing and seek solutions that will bring about lasting change.
Director of Operations and Co-founder
John has over 20 years of experience in the tech industry, starting with consulting at the age of 16. He received a Computer Engineering degree from the University of Notre Dame in 2000 where he started his first company doing IT consulting. Then he spent the next 16 years at hardware and software startups in Austin. During this span he took on various roles as needed to enable team and product success. John is focused on enabling Vida Clinic to achieve it's vision through disciplined operational efficiency that provides the best possible daily experience for all employees, patients, and clients. John has this to say: "Vida Clinic is helping communities and individuals in ways that are measurable and remarkable. What a great place to work."