About Ellen Oler LCSW

Ellen Oler LCSW

Words that have been used by clients and colleagues to describe me are: relaxed, smart, intense, passionate, energetic, action-oriented, practical, solution-focused, reliable, funny, professional and supportive. It is obvious to anyone who works with me that I truly enjoy my work, which I experience as an organic expression of who I am as a person. My style is engaged, authentic, open, and loving.

Helping people is something that I grew up with. My father is an Episcopal minister, and one of my most personally defining experiences was as a Peace Corps volunteer in Senegal, West Africa in the mid- 1970's.

I attended the American College in Paris and was a psychology major at the University of Colorado, from which I graduated in 1974. Having completed an internship in a community mental health center near Denver, I knew that I wanted to be a therapist. Yet I was not ready to go right on with school - I wanted to travel and experience other ways of life first. That was when I joined the Peace Corps. After that I spent a few more years experimenting in different fields of work, including the entertainment industry in Los Angeles, before settling down to complete my graduate education at UCLA. I received a Masters in Social Work in 1981 and went to work at a small inpatient psychiatric hospital in Connecticut with adolescents and adults, where I learned more about therapy than I could have in another 10 years of school! Before moving to New York in 1985, I worked for an adoption agency where I had the profound experience of placing infants and children with adoptive families. All of these experiences have been both humbling and inspiring.

For over 20 years, I have been in private practice and worked in a variety of corporate settings in Employee Assistance Programs. (See Consultation) Since 2000, I have been exclusively in private practice in Brooklyn Heights and Midtown Manhattan.

Specialized training and certification over the years since graduate school include the following:

I live in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn with my husband, Jeremy, and our college-age daughter. I am active in my community and my church. I am a devoted practitioner of yoga and believe deeply in the importance of the body and the breath, as well as spiritual practice in our lives. I draw on the lessons I learn daily from my family and my own personal growth to inform my work.