The Sandplay Therapists of America (STA) and the International Society of Sandplay Therapists (ISST) set the standards for training and certifying therapists  based on the theories and teachings of  Dora Kalff.  Years of study and practice are required to qualify for certification. Therapists listed are professionally qualified to provide a therapeutic sandplay process. Many are also teachers, consultants, writers and mentors who are devoted to sandplay therapy and its unique healing potential. 

Please scroll down to find listings by name and location.

Alphabetical Directory of Therapists


Takako Ainsworth, MSW, LCSW, SP

699 Spruce Street, San Francisco, CA 94118

Email:  takakoainswothlcsw@gmail.com

Phone:  415-712-8694

Website:  www.takakoainsworth.com

Takako is a licensed clinical social worker and therapist who uses Sandplay Therapy and dream work in her practice.  Born in Japan, she is a bilingual practitioner with experience living in Asia, Europe and the US.  She is specializes in loss and grief and has extensive experiences in working with individuals with chronic and terminal illness.  She continues to enjoy working with adults to help them transform through each stage of life cycle.

Katie Amatruda, PsyD, MFT, EMT, CST-T, MFLC, BCETS

Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

1001 Bridgeway #620, Sausalito, CA 94965

Email: dr.katieamatruda@gmail.com

Phone: 415-235-1365

Website: KatieAmatruda.com

Dr. Amatruda deploys to disasters and conducts Critical Incident Stress Debriefings. She lectures internationally and has taught at Southwestern College in Santa Fe, the California Institute of Integral Studies, U.C. Berkeley and Sonoma State University. Dr. Amatruda is the author of Sandplay, The Sacred Healing, Psyche & Soma: Psychotherapy and the Body, and many journal articles and chapters. She is available for Sandplay consultation and training.

Laura Bachman, MA, SP
Sandplay Practitioner, STA: Certified Kairos Therapist

38 Ridge Road, San Anselmo, CA 94960

Email: lbachman@post.harvard.edu

Phone: (415) 457-4419
Website: http://www.laurabachman.net

In offering adult clients a unique blend of kairos, sandplay, and tarot over many years, I have found these non-verbal therapies to be particularly helpful in accessing body-based wisdom about persistent self-defeating patterns of behavior. Kairos is gentle hands-on energy work which relaxes the body in such a way that trapped emotions can be released. While powerful on its own, my work is also a useful adjunct to psychotherapy, counseling, or medical treatment.


Linda Elaine Bath, PhD, LMFT, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST; Founding Member of STA,

1003 Court Street, Woodland CA 95695

Email: elainebath@me.com
Phone: (530) 848-1674

Private Practice: Children and adults using sandplay in Kalff method as well as long term depth therapy, EFT, and Reikian and body based interventions. Teaching/process/mentoring/therapy in sandplay: 30 years certified teaching member of ISST and STA in individual process, supervision and trainings in sandplay.   


Kathleen Beavers, LCSW, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

1568 Creekside Drive, Suite 206, Folsom, CA, 95630

Phone: (916) 984-8769

I am a teaching member of Sandplay Therapists of America and the International Society for Sandplay Therapy. I've presented nationally including at the 2008 Fresno Regional Sandplay Conference and California State University Sacramento. Currently, I serve as Assistant-to-the-Editor of the Journal of Sandplay Therapy. In my private practice, l offer both dream work and sandplay for adults.


LaVon Bobo, MFT, CST-T, Retired School Psychologist
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

836 El Camino, Mountain View, CA 94040

Email: lavonbobo@comcast.net
Phone: (408) 735-9247 and (650) 200-7771 (cell)

Sandplay therapy with children has captivated and inspired me since being trained by its founder, Dora Kalff. I'm always deeply touched to discover the healing power that resides within each child's psyche as the journey to wholeness unfolds. I also offer a sandplay consultation group which meets the first Saturday of each month. Please contact me if interested.


Mary Ann Brock, PhD, MFT, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

825 Oak Grove Ave, #D202, Menlo Park, CA, 94025

Email: drmabrock@gmail.com 
Phone: (650) 380-9132


I work individually with children and adults from a depth psychology perspective, influenced primarily by Jungian therapy. I form a trusting relationship with my clients that allows them to explore the inner thoughts, feelings and beliefs that influence their life choices. For adults this occurs within a verbal therapy that may also include dreamwork, sandplay and active imagination. With children sandplay is often the primary therapy within a traditional play therapy treatment.


David Capitolo, LMFT, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

1480 Lincoln Avenue, San Rafael, CA 94901
465 California Street, Suite 630, San Francisco, CA 94104

Email: dcapitolo@sbcglobal.net 
Phone: (415) 456-5596

David is a MFT and a STA Certified Sandplay Therapist. His clients include adults, children, adolescents & GLBT. He facilitates sandplay processes and supervision for interns. He is a seed member of NCRSS and its CFO. He is interested in fathering and initiation into manhood rituals. He co-founded CTIM with his wife Tessamarie.


Tessamarie Capitolo, MFT, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

1480 Lincoln Avenue, San Rafael, CA 94901

Email: tcapitolo@sbcglobal.net 
Phone: (415) 456-4448

I am a seasoned analytic psychotherapist, trained in Jungian, sandplay and psychodynamic theory and methods of practicing within the frame of depth psychological work. My patients include adults, adolescents and children. I have written and published articles on race and culture, a particular interest of mine. My practice includes offices in San Rafael and San Francisco.


Maria Ellen Chiaia, PhD, MFT, JA, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

1480 Lincoln Ave, San Rafael, CA 94901
3155 College Ave, Berkeley, CA 94705

Email: mchiaia@sbcglobal.net
Phone: (510) 654-3281

Maria Ellen Chiaia, Ph.D. is a Jungian Analyst and uses sandplay and dreamwork in her analytic practice with adults, children and adolescents. She is also an individual and group consultant of Jungian psychoanalytic psychotherapy and analysis. She is co-author of Sandplay in Three Voices: Images, Relationship, the Numinous and has authored many articles and book chapters.


Joyce Cunningham, MS, LMFT, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist-Teaching Member of STA/ISST; CAMFT Certified Supervisor

1628 Union Street, San Francisco, CA 94123

Phone: (415) 668-8250

Joyce Cunningham is an analytically oriented psychotherapist in San Francisco. She is a teaching member of STA and ISST and Editor of the Journal of Sandplay Therapy published by Sandplay Therapists of America.


Lauren Cunningham, MSW, LCSW, JA, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

35 Vicente Street, San Francisco, CA 94127

Email: Lauren_c@pacbell.net
Phone: (415) 585-4551

Lauren is an adult and child Jungian analyst who integrates sandplay into her analytic practice with children, adolescents and adults. She teaches sandplay and consults with individuals and groups. She is an adjunct associate professor at California Institute of Integral Studies and has taught in child studies at the C.G. Jung Institute of San Francisco.


Linda Cunningham, PhD, MFT, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

2964 Fillmore Street, San Francisco, CA 94123
21 Tamal Vista, Suite 194, Corte Madera, CA 94925

Email: linda@drlindacunningham.com 
Phone: (415) 346-6363
Website: www.drlindacunningham.com

Linda Cunningham, PhD is a depth psychotherapist who works with adults on the issues of anxiety, relationships, and complex trauma. She is the author of Sandplay and the Clinical Relationship (2013) and many articles in the Journal of Sandplay Therapy. For many years, Linda was associate faculty at the California Institute of Integral Studies and in Sonoma State University's Depth Psychology Master's Program. She provides sandplay training, process and consultation.


Lynne Ehlers, Ph.D., CST-T, Licensed Clinical Psychologist
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

1664 Solano Avenue, Suite 8, Albany, CA 94707
1902 Webster Street, San Francisco, CA 94115

Email: lynne.ehlers@sbcglobal.net 
Phone: (510) 388-7679

Sandplay and Jungian-oriented Analytic Psychotherapy. Available for personal sandplay process, individual and group consultation. East Bay Consultation Group: Albany Sandplay consultation group meets 10 - 12, first Saturday of each month, or TBD.


Olivia Heathcote, Ed.D., MFT , CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

P O Box 1941, Los Gatos, CA 95031

Email: oliviadh@gmail.com 
Phone: (408) 920-2990
Website: oliviaheathcote.com

Olivia Heathcote is a teaching member of the Sandplay Therapists of America and serves on that organization's executive board. She teaches sandplay in the Bay Area and nationally. Trained in both Jungian theory and psychoanalytic psychotherapy, Olivia offers individual and group consultation on sandplay. She works with children, adolescents and adults in her private practice in Los Gatos.


Valerie Hinard, MA, MFT, SP
Sandplay Practitioner: STA; Certified Integrative Medicine Practitioner: Guided Imagery - Expressive Arts

1480 Lincoln Avenue, #5, San Rafael, CA 94901

Email: valeriehinardmft@gmail.com 
Phone: (707) 938-7018

Valerie Hinard is a Jungian depth psychotherapist who works with individual adults and couples. She integrates sandplay, dreamwork, guided imagery, and art therapy into her practice. Valerie has published articles and a book chapter on Jungian topics. She currently teaches in the JFK University Deep Imagination - Guided Imagery certification program.


Caroline Isaacs, MFT, RPT-S, SP
Sandplay Practitioner: STA

2625 Wilson Street, Eureka, CA 95503

Phone: (707) 444-0927

With individuals, couples and families, adults and children, my clients and I work at the place where psyche and spirit meet. The emphasis is on transformation, deep structural change, not adjustment. In addition to sandplay, other expressive and verbal modalities are used. I am also certified as a supervisor by CA Association of Marriage and Family Therapists and by the Association for Play Therapy, and offer spiritual direction to individuals and groups as well as psychotherapy.


Maretta Juarez, LCSW, IFECMH Specialist, RPF Mentor, CIIM, RPT/S, SP
Sandplay Practitioner: STA

PO Box 808, Gilroy, CA 95021

Email: marettaj@msn.com 
Phone: (408) 504-8647

Maretta has been a licensed clinician for over 25 years, currently specializing in work with children ages 0-5. Endorsed by California as an Infant Family Early Childhood Mental Health Specialist and Reflective Practice Facilitator Mentor, she is also an Infant Massage and Touch Communication instructor and Play Therapist Supervisor. Maretta is a trainer in the Touchpoints approach developed by Dr. T. Berry Brazelton. Her sandplay consultation focuses on the interpersonal neurobiology of sandplay.


Jill Kaplan, MFT, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist-Teaching Member of STA/ISST

913 Willow Street, Suite 103, San Jose, CA 95125

Email: jillkk@att.net 
Phone: (650) 364-4670
Website: kaplanmft.com

I offer sandplay for children and adults as well as sandplay consultation. My background includes training in Jungian analytic psychology, Eastern psychology, domestic violence, childhood trauma, and psychoanalytic relational psychotherapy. I take an integrative approach using dream work, body awareness, meditation, and active imagination to facilitate a process toward healing and an experience of the Self.


Liana Kornfield, MA, Art Therapy, AIWP, CST-T
Certified Teaching Member of STA/ISST

111 Mitchell Drive, Fairfax, CA 94930

Email: lkornfield@aol.com 
Phone: (415) 488-1505

I offer depth sandplay process and spiritual counseling, primarily for adults, incorporating dreamwork, expressive arts and Somatic Experiencing trauma work in my practice. I am also available for individual sandplay consultations. I have published articles in the Journal of Sandplay Therapy and am a visual artist as well, and especially enjoy letting the symbols that arise through the sand, dreams and imagination evolve and speak for themselves.


Ellen Searle LeBel, LMFT, BC-DMT, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST; Board Certified Dance/Movement Therapist

745 Chapman Court, Arcata, CA 95521

Email: ellen@temenostherapy.com 
Phone: (707) 826-7900
Website: temenostherapy.com

The sandplay process is fundamental to my therapeutic approach. I incorporate sandplay, movement, dream work and art to express and integrate unconscious themes, emotions and complexes . I teach, consult and mentor sandplay therapists, have written for the Journal of Sandplay Therapy and other publications, and volunteer  as the current NCRSS President and program manager for Continuing Education.I am committed to fostering learning and collaboration among sandplay therapists in our regional communities.


Sonia Lucana, PHD-C, LCSW, RPT-S, SP
 Sandplay Practitioner: STA; Registered Play Therapist - Supervisor, Board Certified Hypnotherapist

San Mateo, CA

Email: sonylizan@yahoo.com 
Phone: (415) 312-7974

I have worked for 14 years serving children and families, and hope in the future to have a private practice. I provide supervision for child play therapists who are in the process of being certified, and also supervise candidates for the Association of Play Therapists.


Eileen Nazzaro, MA, MFT,SP
Sandplay Practitioner: STA

546 Hartnell Street, Suite C2, Monterey, CA 93940

Email: enazzaro@sbcglobal.net 
Phone: (831) 643-1736

Eileen Nazzaro is a psychotherapist specializing in depth therapy. She has used sandplay and dreamwork for many years as an integral part of her practice. Eileen is a STA Sandplay Practitioner and currently enjoys teaching and sharing her love of sandplay with trainees and interns.


Lisa Ravitz, PhD, Licensed Clinical Psychologist, JA, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

2220 Fillmore Street, San Francisco, CA 94115
318 Western Avenue, Petaluma, CA 94952

Email: dr.ravitz@gmail.com 
Phone: (707) 772-9802
Website: lizaravitz.com

Liza J. Ravitz, Ph.D. is a Child and Adult Jungian Analyst, Clinical Psychologist, Associate Professor at SSU and a Teaching Member of STA/ISST. Liza has worked with children and adults for over 35 years. She studied sandplay with Dora Kalff in Switzerland. Liza teaches and trains therapists both internationally and locally. Her most recent publication is about Cross Cultural Analysis and Sandplay. Liza's Sandplay Consultation Group meets 1x per month on Friday. Call or email her for any information.


Laura Soble, MFT, REAT, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

1425 Leimert Blvd, Suite 302, Oakland, CA 94602

Email: laura@laurasoble.net 
Phone: (510) 527-1501
Website: laurasoble.net

Laura Soble, MFT, REAT, CST-T works with people at all stages of the life cycle, with a focus on Jungian Depth Psychotherapy & Sandplay. She is attuned to symbols, images and dreams as important to the therapy process. An analytical candidate at the C.G. Jung Institute of S.F. and a founding member/former officer of NCRSS, Laura presents and consults nationally and internationally on sandplay and the integration of the arts in psychotherapy.


Luana Rowland, MFT, CST-T  
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teacher of STA/ISST

255 El Camino Real #205, Burlingame, CA 94010

Email: luanarowland@gmail.com  
Phone: (808) 927 7833


Following Jungian analysis with June Mathews and personal sandplay process with Dora Kalff, Luana qualified as a teaching member by presenting her case study at the 1989 ISST Congress in Kyoto.  She is known for her devotion to the teachings of Mrs. Kalff and regard for the psyche’s healing potential.

Luana sees therapists for personal process and consultation and children for sandplay in her offices in Burlingame and Mountain View.


Marilyn Stefonetti, LMFT, NE, SP
Sandplay Practitioner: STA

6 Petaluma Blvd, Suite B4, Petaluma, CA 94952

Email: mstefonetti@comcast.net 
Phone: (707) 762-3660

The foci of my practice is Nutrition for Mental Health and Jungian sandplay. My personal experience and my nutrition training have taught me that good food equals good moods and bad food equals bad moods. As for sandplay I marvel at the wonderful results that occur when a client experiences the sand.


Diana C Wood, LCSW, SEP, SP

Sandplay Practitioner, STA; Somatic Experiencing Practitioner

1731 Eye Street #202, Sacramento, CA 95811

Email: dcwlcsw@mac.com

Phone: (916) 446-2787

Website: www.tending2ourresiliencenow.com

Diana is a somatic psychotherapist using Jungian Sandplay and somatic modalities to work with adults struggling with developmental trauma and complex PTSD. When one engages the deeper aspects of the Self through active imagination and somatic modalities, the whole mind-body- spirit responds with healing energies. Compassionate mindfulness towards oneself allows these energies to lead the way to embodied well-being. Diana serves as the secretary to the NCRSS Board.

Judy Zappacosta, MFT, CST-T
Certified Sandplay Therapist - Teaching Member of STA/ISST

720A Capitola Avenue, Capitola, CA 95010

Email: zappaj@sbcglobal.net 
Phone: (831) 427-5326

Judy Zappacosta offers sandplay for individuals seeking to experience their own personal process, as well as consultation and training in Jungian studies. Judy uses integrative dream work, sandplay and body awareness in both individual psychotherapy and Interior Rhythm workshops. In addition, Judy has a strong background working with children, basing her theoretical work in Jungian child studies and developmental psychology.


Directory of Therapists, by Location


  • Lynne Ehlers


  • Ellen Searle LeBel


  • Maria Ellen Chiaia


  • Luana Rowland


  • Judy Zappacosta

Corte Madera

  • Linda Cunningham


  • Caroline Isaacs


  • Liana Kornfield


  • Kathleen Beavers


  • Maretta Juarez

Los Gatos

  • Olivia Heathcote

Menlo Park

  • Mary Ann Brock


  • Eileen Nazzaro

Mountain View

  • LaVon Bobo


  • Laura Soble


  • Lisa Ravitz

  • Marilyn Stefonetti


  • Diana C. Wood

San Anselmo

  • Laura Bachman

San Francisco

  • Takako Ainsworth

  • David Capitolo

  • Joyce Cunningham

  • Lauren Cunningham

  • Linda Cunningham

  • Lynne Ehlers

  • Lisa Ravitz

San Jose

  • Jill Kaplan

San Mateo

  • Sonia Lucana

San Rafael

  • David Capitolo

  • Tessamarie Capitolo

  • Maria Ellen Chiaia

  • Valerie Hinard


  • Linda Elaine Bath