A Community of Support, Health,
and Growth

Since 1999,  Personal Growth Associates has been a cornerstone in the Northwest suburbs in providing comprehensive care for all ages. Each therapist uses multiple approaches to meet the unique requirements of your situation.

At Personal Growth Associates, we are committed to helping you develop the life and relationships you want. We strive to create a safe and comfortable atmosphere to address the issues and challenges you face. Accordingly, we make an effort to select the therapist with the most appropriate style and expertise to match your individual needs. Often, our therapists and psychiatrists will use their collective experience to develop therapy goals. This comprehensive care may also include the combination of therapy and medication if appropriate to your situation.
Services offered:
Individual Therapy- Adults, Seniors, Child, and Adolescent
Couples Therapy
Family Therapy and Parent Coaching
Group Therapy- Adults and Adolescents
Psychiatric Diagnostic Assessments
Medication Management
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
Psychological Testing
Gastric Bypass Pre-Surgical Evaluations
Couples Tip
of the  Month

In their book "The Love Dare", Stephen and Alex Kendrick write: "Kindness is love in action". Write these words on a piece of paper and post it where you can both see them. Or, put them on your cell pone or computer screen. They are words to live by.
- Barbara Fontana, PhD
Personal Growth Associates Welcomes a New Additions...

Valerie Farmer Rausseo, MA, LCPC, NCC
Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor

Valerie has worked with children, youth, families, couples and individuals both in outpatient, inpatient and community mental health settings. Valerie utilizes a holistic approach in counseling. Connecting the body, soul and mind for clients to work towards full integration of self.

Kelsey Wodka, MA
Child, Adolescent, Adult and Family Psychotherapy

Kelsey works from a strengths-based and collaborative approach to help individuals and families work issues like anxiety, depression, ADHD, behavioral problems, academic concerns, and parent management strategies. She is also trained in health psychology.

To read more about Kelsey, Valerie, and the rest of our therapists, click here.

Psychological Testing-

For What??

What is psychological testing? 

The goal of psychological testing is to diagnose and guide treatment by utilizing tests and other assessment tools to measure and observe one's behavior. By using standardized and researched tests, we can take an objective look at someone's functioning. To read more, click here.

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Do you sometimes feel:
  • That you don’t matter? 
  • That all you do is try to make everyone else happy, while never feeling happy yourself? 
  • That you can’t get past the disappointments and hurt you’ve experienced?
  • That life is overwhelming? 
  • Your relationships aren’t what you want them to be?
  • That you want more out of life?

If so, please join our support group for women who want to be in charge of their own happiness and create the life they really want.  Having the support of other women will help you become stronger and more empowered.  You will learn how to:

  • Increase your self-esteem by learning to love and accept yourself.
  • Replace negative thinking with a positive attitude.
  • Grieve losses and disappointments.
  • Create and keep boundaries in your life.
  • Improve current relationships and create healthy new ones.
  • Set achievable and fulfilling goals.

Facilitated by Fonda Lewis, MS, LCPC, NCC

Saturdays from 10:00 - 11:15 am

To register please contact Fonda Lewis at (847) 413-9700, ext. 336
Meet Steve Wodka, Psy.D., one of the partners at Personal Growth Associates!
Steve Wodka, Psy.D. was featured in this CBS local article.
Communication Skills for When We’re Angry
“Why do you ALWAYS???”
“You NEVER…”
“You need to stop…”
“You need to start…”
“OMG! What is wrong with you? What are you thinking?”
Sound familiar? That’s because we tend to focus on others and get annoyed at the things our families and loved ones do and then let them know about it in an aggressive, attacking manner. We do this and we might be thinking this will change things. To continue reading, click here.

Seeking Post-Doctoral Candidates

Personal Growth Associates is a multi-disciplinary practice that takes pride in its excellent team of therapists and medication managers. At PGA, we value teamwork and have created a supportive and nurturing culture, allowing our staff to continue learning and growing.  We are a large, well-established private practice with over 20 clinicians in three different locations.  We place a high value on collaboration, supervision, and self-examination. Our administrative staff and billing team are experienced and highly efficient, thus allowing clinicians to devote their focus to the client.

We are currently interviewing post-doctoral psychologist candidates, a license is not mandatory. Interest in psychological testing and assessment is also desirable. If you are a self-motivated and driven post-doctoral candidate looking to be part of a diverse team of behavioral health professionals, please contact us at:

Joseph Ripp, PsyD

Phone 847-413-9700, ext. 315   

Fax resume to 847-413-1701 or e-mail to josephripp1@comcast.net