Dr Terri Van-Leeson - Managing Director
Terri is a highly qualified and experienced Chartered and Consultant Forensic Psychologist. She also provides assessment and intervention services to a Mental Health In Reach Team in addition to independent psychological assessment of risk and need and Court work. She obtained a Bachelor of Arts with Honours Degree in Applied Social Science from Coventry University (1996), a Ph.D in emotional regulation from the University of Leicester (2000), a Diploma in Counselling Psychology from City University, London (2002) and a Diploma in Forensic Psychology from the Division of Forensic Psychology; British Psychological Society (2009). Terri is a Chartered member of the British Psychological Society; full member of the Division of Teaching and Research, full member of the Division of Forensic Psychology and an affiliate member of the Division of Counselling Psychology. In addition she is also a Chartered Scientist, and an associate fellow of the University of East Anglia.
Terri began her career as a University Lecturer in Psychology, which also spanned teaching health professionals including nursing, occupational therapy and physiotherapy undergraduates on how to work effectively with people who are acutely distressed. She currently guest lectures in psychopathology to psychology undergraduates. Terri has accrued a variety of experience working with different client groups including men and women in the community suffering with mental health issues, offenders on licence conditions in the community requiring rehabilitation from alcohol and poly substance misuse, through to conducting research and evaluation on services designed to support children and young people in crisis.
During the last several years Terri has worked extensively with life sentenced and sex offender clients in custody. She has gained considerable experience assessing and treating men who are at a high to very high risk of violent and/or sexual re-offending, and has accrued substantial practice in Parole Board hearings. Terri previously worked in the Dangerous and Severe Personality Disorder Service for the NHS in the category A Prison Estate, which enabled her to work with life sentenced prisoners who present the most complex set of needs and consequently are the most challenging client group to work with. She is currently developing a specific interest in how the PCL-R is used appropriately in clinical practice for effective treatment planning in the capacity as a fully independent psychologist. Terri is passionate to ensure high quality, effective offender treatment pathway planning, and is keen to ensure research outcomes are translated into improving clinical practice. Her current clinical practice caseload focuses on personality assessment and individualised treatment planning for offender clients with complex needs who do not easily fit into mainstream services. She is both Chartered with the British Psychological Society and a registered Forensic Psychologist with the Health Professions Council.
Most importantly Terri believes in treating all offender clients with dignity and respect irrespective of their level of current dangerousness toward self, her or others. She is an advocate of promoting ethical, empathic supportive clinical assessment and intervention to those offender clients who present with the most challenging presentation for practitioners. Terri’s professional beliefs include empowering clients and always being transparent with them throughout all processes; either with Court work or in custodial settings.
Terri is also developing training services and systems to teams working in criminal justice. This includes Cognitive Behavioural Therapy skills and formulation based work.