JUDITH BANKER, MA, LLP, FAED, Founder and Executive Director
Judith Banker is the founder and executive director of the Center for Eating Disorders which is marking its 30th year of service. Judith is also Clinical Consultant to the newly launched Huron Oaks Adolescent Eating Disorder Recovery Program, a partial hospitalization program at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital in Ann Arbor (www.stjoeshealth.org/eatingdisorders). She is a member of the Professional Advisory Panel of F.E.A.S.T. (Families Empowered and Supporting Eating Disorder Treatment), the Advisory Board of the Academy for Eating Disorders (AED), and a member of the Scientific Advisory Board for the Global Foundation for Eating Disorders. The 2011 recipient of the AED Clinical Leadership Award Judith lectures internationally on clinical treatment, in particular on the transtheoretical application of psychodynamic principles and techniques in eating disorder treatment and the integration of research with clinical experience. Her research and publications address a range of topics including research-practice integration, effective eating disorder treatment, and early identification and screening for eating disorders. Judith is past president and a Fellow of the AED.
AMY PERSHING, LMSW, ACSW, Clinical Director, Program Director, Bodywise
Amy Pershing LMSW, ACSW began her career treating the spectrum of eating and body image disorders at the Center for Eating Disorders (CED) in Ann Arbor, MI, in 1991. In 1993, she developed “Bodywise™,” a comprehensive treatment program to serve a growing population of clients coming to the center with binge eating disorder (BED). Pershing became CED’s clinical director in 1998. In 2008, Pershing and Chevese Turner, CEO and founder of Binge Eating Disorder Association (BEDA), joined forces to found Pershing Turner Consulting LLC which offers training to clinicians treating BED nationwide.
Pershing has pioneered an integrated approach based on almost 30 years of clinical experience. Her approach is strengths-based, incorporating a number of clinical paradigms including Internal Family Systems, mindfulness strategies, Self Compassion interventions, and a range of somatic trauma techniques. Her approach also integrates mindful eating and movement and a “health at every size” philosophy. Pershing offers training and supervision to clinicians treating BED nationwide, and has developed two- and three-day Intensives for those in recovery, as well as “Hungerwise™,” a 10-week program for ending chronic dieting and weight cycling.
Pershing lectures internationally and writes extensively on the treatment of BED and her own recovery journey for both professional and lay communities. She has been featured on numerous radio and television programs speaking about BED treatment and recovery, relapse prevention, weight stigma, and mindful eating and movement. Pershing has also served on a variety of professional boards and is the Past Chair of the Binge Eating Disorder Association. She maintains a clinical practice in Ann Arbor.
Suzanne received her medical degree from Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago and completed residency training in Emergency Medicine at the University of Michigan. Throughout her career Suzanne has been interested in the impact of mental health, particularly eating and mood disorders and substance abuse, on her patients’ overall well-being.
She joined the Center for Eating Disorders’ staff in 2011 where she now also provides comprehensive, medical care for the Center’s patients. Suzanne is also active in eating disorder advocacy and education efforts as a member of the Board of Directors for the Binge Eating Disorder Association and as a member of the Academy of Eating Disorders (AED) and the AED Medical Care Special Interest Group.
Her current research interests include early identification of eating disorders through improved screening, the comorbidity of eating disorders with both psychiatric and medical conditions, and methods for improving education about eating disorders for healthcare providers.
Sarah Vlnka, LMSW, Clinical Staff
Sarah earned a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Michigan, a Master of Arts degree in Literature from Eastern Michigan University, and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Hope College.
Sarah has clinical experience with an emphasis on treating Binge Eating Disorder (BED), anxiety disorders, obsessive compulsive disorder, trauma, and depression. Her approach to therapy is multidisciplinary, while her clinical training and prior research has been in evidence-based practices with a specialty in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Anxiety Disorders. She works to treat and raise awareness for Binge Eating Disorder and weight stigma-related issues. In her practice, she takes the whole person into account when forming individualized treatment plans with clients, and works from a "health at every size" paradigm.
Sarah has completed post-graduate training in several evidence-based practices including: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Motivational Interviewing (MI), and Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR). Her approach to therapy is biopsychosocial, encompassing psychological, physical, and interpersonal aspects of treatment. She is a member of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) and the Binge Eating Disorders Association (BEDA).
LINDZY SIENKOWSKI, MS, LLPC, Clinical Staff
Lindzy received a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville where she went on to earn a Master of Science degree in Mental Health Counseling. Her clinical experience is in the treatment of anxiety, depression, and substance abuse, with a particular emphasis on Trauma Informed Care. Lindzy’s professional background also includes providing individual and group therapy services to girls and women that address body image and self-esteem issues. Her current professional interest is in working with individuals with a history of trauma and eating disorders/body image disturbance.
Lindzy is a member of the Michigan Counseling Association and the Michigan Mental Health Counselors Association, the Academy for Eating Disorders (AED), and the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA).
STEPHANIE COLLINS, RD, Nutritionist, Clinical staff
Stephanie Collins, Registered Dietitian, earned a Bachelor of Science from Michigan State University where she also gained her background in the treatment of eating disorders and worked with on-campus eating disorder education and awareness projects. In the past fifteen years, Stephanie’s work experience includes: clinical dietitian for the University of Michigan Hospital, nutritionist at Michigan State University providing individual counseling, teaching group classes and sports nutrition counseling for athletes and nutritionist for Head Start, advising low income families on a wide range of nutritional concerns. She is skilled in all nutrition related disease diagnoses, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and weight management.
Stephanie's approach to eating disorder treatment is to provide kind and compassionate and individually tailored nutrition counseling to clients of all ages struggling with food and/or weight issues. She is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, International Federation of Eating Disorder Dietitians, the Southeastern Michigan Dietetic Association and the Academy for Eating Disorders.
KATHY CHEN, PSY.D., L.P.
Kathy Chen is a fully licensed psychologist. She earned her BSc. degree from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. Chen then received her Master’s and Doctoral degrees from the APA-accredited Clinical M.A. and Psy.D. Programs at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. She is passionate about working with individuals who have eating disorders and has had many years of experience providing individual, family, and group therapies in treatment centers that specialize in eating disorders recovery. She has presented nationally at eating disorders conferences and offers trainings to professionals who are interested in eating disorders treatment. Chen is knowledgeable about several different interventions, including DBT, ACT, and mindful eating. She believes that building a trusting and open therapeutic relationship is the main foundation of the recovery process.
AMANDA HARRIS, MA, LLP, Clinical Staff
Amanda earned a Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology from the University of Missouri-Columbia, 2006. She has worked in the field of eating disorders for the past eight years in both research and clinical treatment capacities.
Amanda has published in the field and presents nationally and internationally on the topics of athletes and eating disorders and eating disorder recovery. Her clinical focus is working with athetes and the roles of both identity and self-esteem in the development and maintenance of eating disorders. She recently headed a research work group collecting data on the eating disorder recovery process from individuals and family members from around the world.
Amanda facilitated CED’s weekly Eating Disorders Support Group for the past 7 years. Currently she provides individual psychotherapy at CED and serves a CED clinical consultant to the eating disorder partial hospitalization program at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital&emdash;Ann Arbor.
ERIN M. ZALESKI, MA, LLP, Clinical Staff
Erin graduated with a Master's degree in Clinical Psychology from the Michigan School of Professional Psychology in 2005. She began working at the Center for Eating Disorders as a graduate intern in 2004. With a background in psychoeducational eating disorder group work, and individual and family treatment, Erin has a particular interest in the treatment of children, adolescents and young adults with eating, weight, and/or body image disorders and their families. She is a member of the Academy for Eating Disorders (AED). She currently is a member of the AED Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Special Interest Group, the Research-Practice Forum, and serves on the AED Development Committee.
CED Staff Alumni
CED continues to partner with former staff who currently practice in the Greater Detroit area.
KRISTINE VAZZANO, PhD, LP, CED Staff Alum
Kristine maintains a clinical practice out of CED’s satellite office located at 3910 Telegraph Road, Suite 202, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.
A fully licensed psychologist, Kristine earned a doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from the University of Detroit/ Mercy. Kristine specializes in the treatment of children, adolescents and adults experiencing a range of eating and body image concerns including anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating disorder. Kristine has a special interest in working with adolescents and families. She offers a skills-based training program for family members and others affected by a loved one’s eating disorder.
Kristine is a member of the Academy of Eating Disorders (AED). She is currently the AED coordinator for the AED/NEDA Michigan Charter Launch, aimed at ensuring comprehensive and quality treatment to individuals suffering from an eating disorder. Kristine is also Co-chair of the AED's Worldwide Charter Action Subcommittee.
Call 734-668-8585 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for information about scheduling an appointment at the CED Bloomfield Hills office.