Biographical Information

I grew up on a farm in northern Indiana catching turkeys, gathering eggs, herding cattle, delivering pigs, driving tractor, tending garden and stacking hay bales. Farm life taught me to enjoy animals and nature, how to work cooperatively with others, that hard work could usually be turned into some type of fun, and how to fix or build most anything. When not doing farm work, we spent time riding horses, swimming or fishing in our farm ponds, or building hide-outs in our 30 acres of woods. We also made several types of tracks in the fields and woods for go-carts, scooters or homemade motor bikes and later a cadre of motorcycles. One of our big adventures was searching for 12,000 year old mastodon bones in our marl pits: one of my brothers still has a massive foreleg bone from our “archeology” expeditions. With 2 brothers and 3 sisters there was never any shortage of adventures (or mischief?) to participate in.

Although my undergraduate degree was in education (Industrial Arts Education), I've worked in mental health since 1973, primarily in community mental health centers. I got my start in the mental health field when I was invited to take a leave from the fiberglass factory I’d started to fill in as an “activities therapist”/case manager at the local mental health center. That three month job was enough to convince me that I wanted to spend my life helping people address their mental health concerns. I felt fortunate to be offered a permanent job at the mental health center, where I had wonderful opportunities and experiences.  These included co-developing a biofeedback clinic, public education, managing a residential program for severely challenged adults, leading group therapy, psychodrama, art therapy, music therapy, and activity based therapy.  I worked collaboratively with psychiatrists, psychologists, OTs, PTs, nurses, and social workers.

After 7 years of work at the mental health center, it was clear that I needed formal education to develop more skills for a mental health career, so I moved with my family to Kansas, where I graduated from the University of Kansas' School of Social Welfare in 1983. My passion for clinical work continues in that I still thoroughly enjoy providing therapeutic services to families, adults, and children through my business, Kreider Consulting, LLC.  I can’t imagine any other type of work that would offer greater satisfaction than knowing I have made a useful difference in people’s lives.

I've also taught in various settings since 1975. Currently I am a Professor of Practice at the University of Kansas where I teach Generalist Social Work Practice, Clinical Social Work Practice, and Solution-Focused Brief Therapy. Teaching at KU has also provided me the opportunity to publish a handful of book chapters and articles from Critical Incident Stress Debriefing to applying the Strength Perspective and Solution-Focused Brief Therapy in unique settings. I also provide various types of teaching and training (in-house training; 1 to 20 day workshops; training, consultation and supervision groups; and advanced clinical training groups) through Kreider Consulting, LLC. My teaching and training activities have taken me to both coasts and to many sites throughout the mid-west.

I have special practice interests in hypnotherapy, brief therapy, family therapy, energy medicine / energy psychology, postmodern approaches to psychotherapy, collaborative/competency based approaches, applied neuroscience, and the integration of spirituality and psychotherapy. I also enjoy helping clinicians develop competence and confidence through supervision and consultation, which I have provided for a number of social workers, psychologists, counselors, and organizations since 1975. I especially enjoy facilitating advanced clinical training groups that add subtlety and sophistication to practice skills; I’ve offered these since the mid-1980’s.

I am very happily married and have a daughter, a stepdaughter, and three rambunctious grandchildren, all of whom are great sources of delight. I have also been a foster parent. My wife and I like to do remodeling and various house projects, as well as work in our vegetable and flower gardens. We also have a water garden and fish pond (which routinely attracts neighborhood children, dogs, cats, raccoons, migrating song birds, and an occasional blue heron).  My leisure activities include woodworking, carpentry, gardening, home repair (if something is not working, I like to figure out how to fix it, if I can), photography (I no longer have a dark room but the digital era has opened up an entirely new world in photography!), camping, hiking, canoeing, backpacking, and music (most recently I’ve been learning to play the mandolin and penny whistle, but the Native American flute, fiddle and guitar still get play time). I’ve not outgrown being a “gear head” and still enjoy auto restoration/modification (current project is a rare ’69 MGC roadster). I've given up motorcycle racing, but I haven't been cured of the desire to do so. I try to spend as much time hiking and camping in the Colorado mountains and the southwest desert as I can with friends and family who share the same passion for nature, wilderness areas, indigenous cultures and archeology. When outdoors, I enjoy celebrating the wonder of the natural world through photography.

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