About Dr. Ericha Scott
Ericha Scott, PhD, NCC, LAADC, ATR-BC, Addiction Counseling
Dr. Ericha Scott began her counseling career in 1985, when she was hired to work with drug addicts and alcoholics at Care Unit Hospital. Inspired by her personal recovery from co-dependency and trauma, and her background as an artist, she brought compassion, common sense, and creativity to her new profession. At the end of her first year as a drug and alcohol counselor, the outcome studies for the hospital revealed that her clients had the lowest relapse rate of any other counselor in the 200-bed hospital. Dr. Scott had found her calling.
Upon reflection about why her clients were more successful than others, Dr. Scott realized that it was because of the individualized, experiential, creative arts activities she had provided to her groups. Over the next 26 years, Dr. Scott would go on to design a series of creative arts experientials and assignments specific to the twelve steps. These exercises have been carefully tailored to address the needs of addicts and their family members. The creative arts (painting, drawing, sculpting, mask making, journal writing, and poetry) are able to help clients engage both sides of the brain, as well as the body and spirit. The creative arts activities help clients and their family members express a felt sense of the painful experiences associated with addiction. These combined processes are able to act as a gentle intervention for even the most severe cases of addiction.
In 2006, Dr. Scott is the first author of a chapter in a textbook that is used as part of the addiction curriculum for Rutger’s University. The chapter is entitled, Integrating the Creative Arts into Trauma and Addiction Treatment. That same year she was awarded the Sierra Tucson Alumni Recognition Award, one of five out of 285 staff members that year to be selected for the honor. Her qualitative research on self-mutilation was published by UCLA, in the Journal of Arts in Psychotherapy. Dr. Scott is the former clinical director of The Canyon at Peace Park in Malibu and worked for Sierra Tucson in the program of sexual and trauma recovery. She has been a board member for the International Expressive Arts Therapy Association and Allen Street Gallery.
Her simple philosophy has been at the core of Dr. Scott's effective approach to recovery for over two decades: anyone with a proactive attitude can heal from addiction.
Dr. Scott demonstrates an exceptional competence in creating a healing experience using art. In each of her workshops she step by step skillfully created and maintained a safe container for the experience, no small feat with up to 60 healthcare professionals present. As a testament to her presence as witness and her skill at designing and running these workshops, every workshop had healthcare professionals that were very deeply touched by the experience, sometimes opening them to areas of healing previously unattained in their own personal therapy.
~ Mary Barkalow, MD (Harvard Faculty)
& George Campbell (Artist)
Her psychotherapy skills are exceptional I think. She has a respectful sensitivity for her clients, a patient ability to allow issues to unfold in accordance with her clients’ autonomy and ownership over their own recovery. Her art and art therapy skills have been particularly helpful with traumatized clients who need a structure within which to identify and value affect and self.
~ Howard Miller, MD