Szifra Birke
November 01, 2014
Szifra Birke

About Szifra Birke

Since the beginning of her career nearly 30 years ago, Szifra Birke has been an original thinker, a pioneer recognizing needs others do not see and developing creative solutions to address those needs.

In the 1970's, it was clear to Szifra that grown children of alcoholics needed a safe place to discuss their experience, build self-esteem, and learn more effective ways to relate, so she created such a group. Within a few years, groups and resources to support adult children of alcoholics had become widespread.

In the 1980's, Szifra believed many would benefit if physicians’ offices brought mental health services into their practices. She began to work in a medical office and was brought in for consultation in cases where the patient’s complaint might have some psychological basis. Many of those patients eventually became Szifra's clients.

Szifra brings this thoughtful and creative approach to her work as a therapist and consultant. Flexibility is a hallmark of her practice, and she understands that one approach does not fit all. Each client’s personality and style helps create the foundation for their work together.

With Kathy Mayer, she co-wrote Together We Heal, the first self-help exploration written on Adult Children of Alcoholic's group therapy. PBS excerpted this book to create a booklet that accompanied the video of "Circle of Recovery," a national television program on men and recovery hosted by broadcast journalist Bill Moyers.

Broadcast since 1997, Szifra is producer and co-host of "Shrink Rap," a monthly television show highlighting current mental health issues.

Szifra is also on the on the Board of Experts for Marcia Yudkin’s Marketing for More Mentorship Program.

A professional speaker for two decades, Szifra has led workshops and presentations at local and national conferences on mental health, addictions, and money and emotions. She has been conducting training sessions for mental health professionals for 20 years.

She holds a Master's Degree from Purdue University and a BA in psychology from Boston University. Since 1973, Szifra has attended 500 hours of continuing education, plus seven graduate courses beyond her master's degree. She is a licensed mental health counselor, a licensed marriage and family therapist, and a certified drug and alcohol abuse counselor.

>>To set up an appointment or find out more, please email Szifra or call 978-446-9600.