Dr. Cynthia Davis is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who has worked in the mental health field for the past 15 years in positions within the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health (DMH), South Central Los Angeles Regional Center (SCLARC), the Office of Diversion and Reentry (ODR) and in private practice. Her fundamental purpose as a mental health therapist is to assist individuals to eliminate or control troubling emotional symptoms, relationship issues and life challenges for better functioning and increased well-being.
As a mental health therapist in the community and in private practice, she provides therapeutic services to children and their families, individuals, and couples for various mental disorders [i.e., anxiety, depression, psychosis, schizophrenia, bipolar, etc.] and interpersonal relationship issues.
Dr. Davis currently consults with SCLARC to develop relationships with community mental health organizations to support the therapeutic needs of SCLARC individuals. Dr. Davis also serves as consultant to SCLARC to implement two Mental Health Service Act (MHSA) grants awarded by the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) to increase access to mental health services for SCLARC individuals. As part of those grants, she also coordinates specialized training for community mental health clinicians to better understand dual diagnoses (IDD/MI) in people the Regional Center serves and to learn how to adapt therapeutic approaches to better serve those individuals.
Dr. Davis’ primary work for the past 10 years and presently entails providing therapeutic services to adult individuals with developmental disabilities and consultations with service providers who also support them. In response to many of her clients’ reported need for social connections and lack of knowledge in how to engage with others successfully, Dr. Davis created the Interpersonal Relationship Development (IRD) program. The IRD program enhances the social skills of Regional Center adult individuals who are pursuing educational and work endeavors to improve their opportunities for inclusion and a higher satisfaction of life. Dr. Davis is a certified UCLA PEERS trainer and has adopted the fundamentals of the evidence-based PEERS program to teach interpersonal skills.
Dr. Davis’ aim with the IRD program is to enhance Regional Center individuals’ ability to connect with others in an appropriate and effective way to facilitate inclusion, confidence and successful living.
The empowering quality of education is something that Dr. Markwongnark knows all too well. After earning her doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Southern California, she has proceeded to make a career of crafting educational best practices for engaging students and other educators alike. Through the years, she has strived to help her students establish connections that encourage growth both in and out of the classroom.
Driven by her successes in these avenues, Dr. Markwongnark has since channeled this passion into helping individuals who face certain social and developmental challenges, along with their caregivers. For her, it is not enough to put together a carefully crafted and engaging curriculum; it is all about cultivating a program that meets the individual where they are in their unique journey. Her ability to create a space for each individual to maximize their potential is key, as it allows for that individual to develop the skills that will help them flourish in their own life and interpersonal relationships.
Dr. Markwongnark is someone who approaches her life and work with joy and an unparalleled enthusiasm, so providing an environment where learners feel empowered to actively and safely engage with the world around them is the only way that she knows how to operate.