drshelleyavny@gmail.com; 646.216.2190

260 Madison Ave

New York, NY 10016

About Me

I am a clinical psychologist with expertise in assessing and treating anxiety disorders in children and adolescents. After training under and working for many of the leaders in the field, I opened my own practice to pursue my vast programmatic and clinical visions.

 

Prior to opening CAAP, I was the Director of Training and the Director of the Selective Mutism Program at Kurtz Psychology Consulting PC (KPCPC). During this time, I developed WeSpeak – the first behavioral group intensive for pre-teens and teens with SM.

I was also the director and clinical supervisor of Mighty Mouth Kids (MMK), an intensive intervention developed by Dr. Steven Kurtz for 3-9 year olds with SM. In addition to my leadership, training, and program development responsibilities at KPCPC, I immersed myself in my clinical work, striving to provide optimal care to my patients and families.

My training has afforded me top-notch opportunities, and helped shape my expertise in multiple areas. I was a post-doctoral fellow at the Child Mind Institute (CMI), where I provided weekly and intensive treatment for SM, OCD, and other anxiety disorders; co-led CBITS – a skills-based group intervention in schools aimed at reducing symptoms among children exposed to trauma; and co-led the DBT multi-family skills group, teaching adolescents with emotion dysregulation and their parents effective skills to replace problem behaviors.

 

My pre-doctoral internship was completed at the University of Florida Health Science Center, where I specialized in assessment, treatment, and consultation across a broad range of difficulties, including anxiety, mood, and disruptive behavior disorders; sleep problems; obesity; and adjustment issues related to acute and chronic illness (e.g., Inflammatory Bowel Disease, feeding problems, encopresis).

 

I received my doctorate in clinical psychology from Virginia Commonwealth University, but pursued my externships elsewhere to receive specialized training in anxiety and related disorders. My externships included the NYU Child Study Center, Child & Adolescent OCD, Tic Disorders, Trichotillomania and Anxiety Group (COTTAGe) at the University of Pennsylvania, the Center for the Treatment and Study of Anxiety (CTSA) at the University of Pennsylvania, the renowned Pediatric Sleep Center at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), and the Family Stress and Illness Program at CHOP.

 

I am actively involved in academic organizations, seeking to expand my knowledge and disseminate my work. I am a member of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies (ABCT), Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), and the Selective Mutism Association (SMA), and am a frequent presenter at their annual conferences. I have also co-authored book chapters and scholarly articles, and served as an ad hoc reviewer for several journals.

 

Inspired by a former supervisor who was relentless in his therapeutic efforts, I continuously explore ways to optimize treatment outcomes for youth with anxiety disorders. I am not only committed to reducing symptoms, but also to improving functioning with friends, at school, and with family. I am particularly interested in identifying mechanisms to translate the progress made in sessions to the real world.

 

In my free time, I enjoy seeing friends and family, trying new restaurants, traveling, and attending the unique activities and events that NYC has to offer.