About Marlene

Personal Background

Marlene grew up next to the youngest of ten children on a large Midwest farm where she learned the value of hard work, commitment and problem solving. Those values and principles continue to guide her as an adult. She married, raised three children, two with special needs, before returning to school to complete her master’s degree program.

An “I can do” mindset allowed her to pick up the pieces after the death of her husband and close the final chapter of her youngest son’s life when cancer took his life.

Throughout all the ups and downs, adversities, challenges and deep losses, God has sustained, comforted, strengthened and encouraged her to move forward into uncharted waters. She continues to live in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, enjoying singing, hiking and travel, family and friends.

Education and Professional Years

Marlene has a master’s degree in psychology/counseling and taught psychology at Clackamas Community College and Chapman University Extension Center. She was a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and National Certified Counselor before retiring them in 2020 and a Certified Clinical Supervisor.

Clinical work included individual and couples counseling, using Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) as her primary therapy. Additional training included work with the elderly, children and adolescents, Bereavement, Solution Focused Therapy, Life Span Integration, Personality Disorders, and others.

As a facilitator and consultant for Kaiser Permanente, HMO, Marlene helped edit class material, design, and develop new course material and produced a relaxation/ visualization tape for use with their chronic illness and chronic pain classes. She facilitated many health/education classes, including parenting of all ages, ADHD parenting, couple’s communication, low depression, and low self-esteem.


Marlene currently writes, blogs, and speaks at workshops and retreats on subjects associated with developing practical life skills, recovery from losses and rebuilding our lives. Those topics include:

  • Effective communication
  • Stress – how to make it work for you instead of against you
  • Rebuilding your life after loss
  • Healing the wounds of our past
  • The art of reframing
  • Maximizing your time and efforts
  • Grieving that heals
  • Taking charge of your life – Yes, I can
  • Attitudes and mindsets that work for you – not against you
  • Benefits of Relaxation/Visualization to reduce pain and healing
  • Memoirs – Keep the treasures of your past

She is passionate about helping people move through and beyond tragedies to rebuild their lives as they develop that “Yes, I can” mindset.

Marlene is available for speaking engagements and would be happy to work with you, your group or organization to put together workshops or retreats that meet your needs.

“Marlene has taught more classes than we can keep track of, from ADHD Parenting, to Depression, to Couples Communication. She has oriented new counselors for ADHD Parenting, assisted in writing our Chronic Illness Class, and developed a series of relaxation exercises to be used in stress reduction. Marlene also has a wonderful sense of humor and eyes that sparkle when she smiles. Thanks Marlene, working with you is a gift.”

—Hope Sasek, Chairman, Health Education, Kaiser Permanente