Shelly Lawson & Keri Prather

Keri Prather

My name is Keri Prather and I am a graduate of Pepperdine University, where I received my Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology, with an emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy in 2006. I have over 15 years of experience working with children, individuals, and families. Prior to opening a private practice, I worked for many years with children and families in the dependency system, as well as in community-based non-profit mental health based programs, in-home crisis for children/adolescents, and managed care in Orange County, CA.


B.A. Chapman University, Criminal Justice/Sociology, 2000
M.A., Pepperdine University, Clinical Psychology, emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy, 2006


Marriage and Family Therapist, California -- License #50823
Professional Memberships:
California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT) -- Member #78190
Psi Chi -- The National Honor Society in Psychology, lifetime member
Association of Play Therapy - Membership # 44299405

Specialized Training:

Early Childhood mental health
Play therapy training
Certified in Functional Family Therapy (FFT)
In-home Crisis training
Animal Assisted Therapy

I believe that the experience a person has while participating in therapy relies greatly on the relationship between the client and therapist. As a therapist, it is my job not to tell you what to do or to give you specific answers, but to assist you in arriving at your own decisions and solutions. I encourage open communication with my clients and I feel that therapy is only successful when feedback is given and received on both ends of the relationship. Please feel free to ask any questions, either over the phone prior to your first appointment, or at any time along the way, if it will help you to determine if your needs will be met.

I feel that every person is an individual and that this means that therapy can look different from one client to the next. I approach therapy from the perspective that we can work together to find ways to improve your life in areas where you feel change can lead you to a more fulfilling life. Just as every person is unique, I want to find the most effective way, to help you get to where you want to be in your life. Although our work together during therapy session is integral to the therapeutic process, I also feel that most change occurs in between sessions. For this reason, I often give "homework" assignments which may be in the form of an exercise, worksheet, log, or "food for thought" to think about until the next session.

It is important to remember that therapy is a journey, not only a destination. It is a process that can be solution-focused and time-limited, or it can be a path of growth and exploration, depending on the individual. My hope is that the result will be a more fulfilling life as an individual as well as more satisfying relationships with those you care about.

I enjoy working with all ages, but specialize in children toddler age up to young adults, as well as families. I use the modality I feel is most appropriate, in any given situation. This may include individual and/or family therapy sessions and the frequency will vary as appropriate. I also often use Animal Assisted Therapy (AAT) with Becket, my certified therapy dog, which adds a new perspective to the therapy experience for both children and adults alike. I look forward to working with you to help you in moving toward the life you want to live.