Seeking a Black Therapist for Kids, Teens, Young Adults

Parent Q&A

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  • Hi, I haven't been able to find very many black male therapist or psychologist for my almost 9 year old son. I would prefer someone in Oakland, or a nearby city. Insurance (Anthem Blue Cross) has not provided any helpful results, so any suggestions will be very much appreciated. There is a lot going on in his head, and he doesn't know how to express how he feels at times. I think speaking with a therapist or psychologist will help him sort through all those thoughts and feelings.

    I'm sorry I don't have a personal recommendation.  But you can go to  Click on "Find a Therapist".  Type in your zip code.  Do the drop-down menu "Gender".  Do the drop-down menu "More".  Check the box for "Ethnicity Served".  Click on "Insurance" and check the box for your insurance.  Click on the therapist's photo and it will give additional information about the person.  If the box "Verified" is checked, I think it means they've checked the person actually has a license.  This is just a way to find names, but then you should call a few to see if you like them -- they should give you a free, brief phone consultation.  And if your son does not feel comfortable with the first therapist you try, move on and try another one!  Good luck!


    I found my last two therapists through Psychiatric Alternatives and was please with the care they provided. I just looked at their page of providers, and based on photos (which I know is a flawed methodology), it looks like there is one black male therapist: Their site used to tell you if they were accepting new patients but it doesn't seem to anymore. They are very responsive, though, if you call them they'll be able to answer any questions.

    Good luck to you and your family!

    There is a group called Bay Area Association of Black Psychologists

    they are on Facebook and maybe elsewhere

  • Can anyone recommend an African American therapist for a young adult male? Can be anywhere in the Bay Area.Thanks.

    We really liked Dr. Paul Guillory for our teenage son.

    Check Dr Frank Davis

    He is just outstanding! He helped my son thru all his teenage years and still is a great resource.

    Here is one therapist:

    And a directory of therapists:

    The biracial son of a close friend has been seeing Dr. Ryan Adams in Berkeley.  510-766-0112.  I think his office is on Telegraph Avenue, a few blocks from Ashby. has a Black Virtual Wellness Directory ( - it's nationwide) where you can search for a therapist as well as some useful tools that may help in the meantime: They are very active on Instagram and other social media where they host a lot of talks.

    I have a very high opinion of Kaela Farrise.

    Jessica Lang in the East Bay though she has been doing mostly online (Especially since covid)

    She is Black and specializes in trauma of all sorts.

Archived Q&A and Reviews


Seeking a male therapist of color for teen

August 2010

My son was adopted as a baby from Latin America and is now entering young adulthood. He is struggling with identity issues and anger. Can anyone please recommend a 1st rate male therapist of color (preferably black, Latino, South Asian, or mixed race)? We are hoping for someone who will take HMO insurance. anonymous

Our son who is African American and adopted has been going to Frank Davis for 3 years now. It has been a life changing event for our son and keeps us the parents on an even keel. He is extremely dedicated to supporting young boys into men and a cool guy too. Excellent communication with the families. Cannot recommend him too highly. Frank Davis 510- 390-4025 2000 Dwight Way St. C Berkeley, CA 94704

I'm presuming that he is a teen which is when a lot of this comes up. There is some value in more psychodynamic therapy but it also has limitations with teens since a lot of their view is influenced by peers. Face-to-face therapy can only accomplish so much. A good bilingual therapist who grew up in Mexico is Sam Tabachnik at 510-845-3525 but he is not an adoption specialist. For an adoption/attachment specialist talk to Susan Love 684-0045 or Virginia Keeler-Wolf 339-9363. For having your son in a group of his peers that he identifies with and struggling with these same issues contact PACT An Adoption Alliance or Coyote Coast. Best wishes. This is very challenging. Feel free to contact me. david

I was given this reference: If the family is willing to take the BART into downtown San Francisco, Dr. Luis Perez would be a good fit. He is excellent.

Forrest Hamer in Oakland is a very highly regarded therapist. He's African American. Not sure if he works with adults only, or not. My friend who sees him is an adult. Harriet

Depressed 23-y-o African American male

March 2002

Can anyone recommend a good therapist for very depressed 23 year old African American male. He has indicated that life is not worth living . . . but suicide per se has not been mentioned or knowingly planned. Kaiser is not available to the family. Many thanks . . .

Hello, I have a document in front of me called Bay Area African-American Psychologist. I am listing a few of the African American Male therapists.
  • Phillip Coleman PhD 2100 Lakeshore Ave. Ste B Oakland Ca 94606 510 763-0105 Specialties: children, stress management, depression/mood disorders etc.
  • Gerald Davenport PhD 436 14th St Ste 805 Oakland 94612 510 451 3192 Specialties: Adolescents, children, evaluation etc
  • Thomas duvaul, LCSW 621 E. Cambell Ave ste 14 Cambell, Ca 95008 408 266 6967 thomduv AT Spec: Child abuse, Adolescents, children, depression/ mood disorders, anxiety, panic attacks and phobias
  • Sam Edwards LCSW 1721 SCOTT ST San Francisco, Ca 94115 415 563 3316 sedwards AT spec: Adolescents, anxiety, panic attacks and phobias, grief and loss, depression/mood disrders etc.
  • William Spivey PhD 360 29th st ste 300 Oakland, ca 94609 510 893 2001
  • Marlin Griffith PHd, CEAP 436 14th st Ste 700 Oakland 94612 510 287-5324
  • Paul Guillory PhD 4315 Piedmont ave oakland 94611 510 654 8339
  • Forrest Hamer PhD 5305 College Ave oakland 94618 Hamerf AT 510 652 2150
  • Donald Hunter LCSW 1290 Fillmore st Ste 107 San Fran 94115 415 931 6490
I do not know any of the above therapists personally but I wish you and the young man the best of luck in overcoming the problem. Lagos

Therapist for 15-year-old clashing with dad


My husband and 15-year-old son are truly clashing, they used to be the best of friend but lately they just do not get along. I believe counseling would be of great help for the both of them. Does anyone have a reference for a good counselor, preferably an African American male?

Regarding the request for an African-American counselor for teens-- I suggest Paul Guillory, Ph.d (psychologist). His telephone number is 451-5011. Barbara

I've had excellent experiences with John Nickens PhD, a child and family therapist - 510/287-9456. Rosa

Dear Mom with Clashing Son and Husband: If you have a membership with Kaiser Permanente which includes mental health benefits, I highly recommend their family psychiatry department over in the Mosswood building at the Oakland facility. They have two outstanding Black male professionals on staff (and perhaps others whom I am not personally familiar with). Dr. Whitmore and Dr. Simmons counsel both adults and children in individual sessions and in groups organized for early/pre-teen children. You will need to inquire as to whether your situation meets their criteria for obtaining services and of course, they are probably already very busy. But for serious family problems affecting our children, Kaiser members should be aware that affordable help can be obtained. Good luck. Nicolie

Roscoe Simmons, LCSW, PhD, who was mentioned in the last newsletter, has a private practice in addition to his work with Kaiser Oakland. I know of his work, as he is a colleague, and I highly recommend him. He can be reached at 510 596-1468 or 510 464-1033.

An outstanding female African American counselor in the West Contra Costa area is Shirlene Turner, LCSW. Her practice is in Pinole, and she sees adults (individually and couples), teens, children and families. She can be reached at 510 799-2896.
-- Jean Shimozaki, LCSW