New Beginnings Psychology, LLC   Huntington NY  631-784-7761 Dr. Risa Levenson Ph.D    New Beginnings Psychology, LLC   Huntington NY  631-784-7761 Dr. Risa Levenson Ph.D


                Due to her solid belief in the mind-body connection, Dr. Levenson recently             completed a hypnosis certification given by the National Guild of Hypnotists.             Dr. Levenson has been coaching individuals to a more stress free lifestyle for             over 20 years. She is proud to announce that she is now using hypnosis with             individuals who experience physical pain, phobias, inner healing, weight loss,             smoking cessation, etc. Hypnosis is also used to improve motivation and

            coping with various medical conditions. Dr. Levenson is looking forward to             sharing her knowledge with you.

               Dr. Levenson completed her Ph.D. in 1998 from Yeshiva University's Health             Psychology Program, where she had the opportunity to attend classes in

            Albert Einstein College of Medicine with the medical students and classes in             Ferkauf School Of Psychology with the psychology students. Dr. Levenson             completed externships at Memorial Sloan Kettering and North Shore/LIJ             Hospitals. She did training at Brunswick's Physical Medicine and

            Rehabilitation Unit. Dr. Levenson completed her internship year at Kessler             Institute for Rehabilitation. After completing her degree, Dr. Levenson did

            further training in the anxiety disorders spectrum. She specializes in working

            with individuals who suffer with panic attacks, generalized anxiety disorder,

            post traumatic stress disorder, and obsessive-compulsive disorder.

               Dr. Levenson has volunteered as a group facilitator for the American

            Cancer Society. She serves as a panel psychologist for ACCES, formally

            known as VESID. Dr. Levenson enjoys working with individuals, couples,

            and families.

                   *Available in both Huntington and Sound Beach Locations


                  *Available in Huntington


                    *Available in Huntington


          Dr. Debra L. Johnson (Psy.D has been a school psychologist for the

           NYCDOE for10 years,working with children with special needs. She started

           her career as a teacher for D.75 with the NYCDOE in the 6:1:1 program. In

           the intervening years, Debra also worked with a private foster care agency

           where she remained for 15 years, until this past December. While there

           she specialized in working with children who were traumatized, ages 3 to

           22. Debra also worked for an adult mental health program for 4 years

           (Institute of Community Living) after receiving her doctorate from Rutgers

           and before returning to the NYCDOE.

                  *Available in Huntington









Our Doctors:


Dr. Cassidy (Psy.D.)  Dr. Cassidy earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the Derner Institute of Advanced Psychological Studies at Adelphi University.  Her education provides Dr. Cassidy with an in-depth understanding of personality development, which is the basis of her approach to treatment.  

    Dr. Cassidy’s treatment approach provides a warm, supportive, and non-judgmental atmosphere.  This creates a safe environment in which the client feels free to explore him/herself with the goal of self-understanding and change. Dr. Cassidy is interested in patterns of behavior, which she feels are often the result of unconscious beliefs, both accurate and inaccurate, that we develop about ourselves during our formative years.  She holds a strong belief in the power of the therapeutic relationship in healing.  

    Dr. Cassidy has provided therapeutic services to a diverse population including substance abuse, family therapy, couples therapy, forensics, addictive personality, trauma (both physical and emotional), childhood abuse, sexual abuse, abandonment, and grief.  Dr. Cassidy has experience treating patients from the ages of 3 years old through 102 years old.  Dr. Cassidy is interested in attachment as the basis for the healthy development of any relationship.  As such, she is interested in helping pregnant women to adjust to the pending changes in their lives and mothers of infants and small children who may be struggling with their new role in life.  Dr. Cassidy has an empathic understanding of the difficulty of change that life presents to everyone, regardless of age.  Her guiding philosophy is one of acceptance, flexibility, and the belief that human beings are much stronger than they realize.  

           *Available in both Huntington and Sound Beach Locations



Dr. Kari Schlessinger (Psy.D. & Ph.D.)  received her doctorate in

clinical psychology from Nova Southeastern University and completed her undergraduate work at the University of Florida. She participated in post-graduate training at the Federal Bureau of Prisons, Butner, North Carolina. Dr. Schlessinger received extensive training in the areas of anxiety, depression, substance abuse, and serious mental illness. She received comprehensive training in cognitive-behavioral, interpersonal, and insight-oriented therapies.  Dr. Schlessinger has experience working with depression, anxiety, trauma, behavior disorders, child and adolescent adjustment, and relationship issues. She utilizes both cognitive-behavioral and insight-oriented treatment approaches in her practice. The combination of approaches affords the best opportunity for change, allowing individuals to improve their daily functioning, stress management, and self-esteem. Dr. Schlessinger works with children, adolescents, and adults. She enjoys working with individuals, couples, and families.

           *Available in Huntington




“Dr. Chewy” - Chewy Levenson

     Welcome Dr. Chewy! Dr. Chewy is our first “therapy dog in training” here

at New Beginnings. Dr. Chewy was born on May, 27, 2015 and is a Border

Collie. Any ideas on the other part of her lineage?

    Dr. Chewy has a doctorate in loving, cuddling, eating, chewing, pooping,

and playing. She is the best at listening and comforting. She loves her belly

rubbed. Can you find the spot that drives her nuts?

    Dr. Chewy will be back in both offices in the spring. She is presently taking

classes to improve her manners. She says "ruff" to you all and cannot wait to

give kisses soon.                     


Doctor Joseph Costello PhD. , received his doctoral degree in clinical psychology from the Derner Institute at Adelphi University. He had worked at Western Suffolk BOCES for thirty years, focusing on middle school and high school students with psychiatric and learning disabilities. In this role, he has provided individual, group and family therapy; psychological evaluations; consultations with staff and community agencies and crisis intervention. He was a member of a team, organized by NYS Office of Mental Health that provided a final review of all placements by Long Island school districts of their students into residential facilities.

      Doctor Costello also worked as a Teacher Coordinator within the Western Suffolk BOCES system and he is the co-author of a study guide to abnormal psychology published by Harper-Collins.

      Doctor Costello received a solid foundation in psychodynamic therapy at Adelphi and he has enhanced this foundation with comprehensive training in cognitive behavioral therapy. He believes psychology has made great progress in developing effective treatment directed at specific problems and that cognitive behavioral techniques are an essential part of this development.

      Doctor Costello enjoys working with older children, adolescents, young adults and families.

            *Available in Huntington


Dr. Linda Treichel, Psy.D. is dedicated to providing treatment that is guided by a safe, attuned and curious engagement that is fundamentally directed by the needs of her clients.  Her psychodynamic relational sensibility emphasizes the importance of early developmental influences, and focuses on the therapeutic relationship as a catalyst for change.

Dr. Treichel specializes in adult psychotherapy and has extensive experience working with a broad range of age groups and symptoms including anxiety, depression, relational conflict, trauma, as well as intersections of identity. She approaches therapy from a strength based and integrative approach using psychodynamic, existential, phenomenological and cognitive behavioral perspectives.  

Prior to beginning her doctoral program, Dr. Treichel obtained training at the Child and Parent Guidance Center and worked as a family therapist at Spectrum Family Network providing intensive therapeutic services for children, adolescent, young adults and their families.

Dr. Treichel obtained her pre-doctoral training at the University of Denver Counseling Center, Bethesda Employee Assistance Program and Shiloh Home for Children.  She completed her internship at National Jewish Medical Research Wellness Center and her post-doctoral training at the Fifth Avenue Center in New York City.  

Dr. Treichel received her bachelors in Psychology from Rutgers University, a masters in Phenomenological Psychology from Duquense University and a second masters degree in Clinical Psychology from University of Denver.  She obtained her doctorate in Clinical Psychology (Psy.D.) from University of Denver Graduate School of Professional Psychology.  Dr. Treichel's clinical and research interests include: the effects of attachment status on personality development and its implication on emotional regulation, emerging research in neuroscience, intersubjectivity, phenomenology, whole body wellness/stress management and tobacco cessation.

               *Available in Huntington


Doctor Cressada Glean-Brilliant, PhD. , received her doctoral degree in general psychology from Capella University. She has extensive experience working with families in New York City public and private schools. She is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor as well as a licensed teacher. She has 10+ years of experience providing clients of all ages addressing psychological and behavioral issues. She helps clients develop the capacity to regulate emotions through the examination and reframing of feelings and moods.

    Dr. Brilliant also has extensive experience with adolescence and college age clients who are struggling with issues including but not limited to: transitioning, anxiety, depression and feeling stuck. Dr. Brilliant specializes in women’s issues which include and are not limited to: depression, anxiety, perinatal, infertility, etc.

            *Available in Huntington


33 Walt Whitman Road, Suite 307, Huntington Station, NY 11746, Phone: 631-423-3600


6 New York Avenue, Sound Beach, NY 11789, Phone: 631-849-1300

(By Appointment Only)

Email Us At:  



Debra Zaech L.M.S.W., received her Master’s Degree in Social Work at Adelphi University. She is the Assistant Dean at St. Joseph’s College. Debra

works with adolescents in the college setting where she helps them with their academic success. . She teaches Adults and Development and Psychology

of Women focusing on the multitude of psychological issues both the adult population and women confront on a daily basis. . She wrote her own course

called The Dog Whisperer focusing on the positive effects of the human-dog interaction. She is a Reiki practitioner who uses relaxation techniques

with a mindfulness approach to counseling. Debra was the Vice-President of The Mother’s Center where she ran parenting groups with young mothers and

their infant-toddlers. She worked in the Hauppauge School district where she counseled students in grades K – 12. Debra was the President of the PTA

where she ran Bullying Workshops for parents, teachers and students. Debra enjoys working with the elderly, adolescents and children. She focuses on

building individual strengths to increase each person’s fullest potential.

            *Available in both Huntington and Sound Beach Locations


Melissa Hyland L.M.S.W., received her Masters of Social Work from Fordham University. She has been working with children and families in child

welfare for over 12 years.  Melissa is experienced in working with families that include children and adolescents with behavioral and emotional difficulties. Melissa has worked with families in Child Protective, Preventative, Foster Care capacities as well as in a Clinical setting.  Melissa has worked with children, adolescents and young adults ranging in ages 6-23 with ADHD, adjustment, anxiety, depressive and mood disorders.  Although Melissa primarily specializes Cognitive Behavioral therapy, she incorporates techniques and strategies from other modalities to achieve the individual needs of each client.

            *Available in Huntington