Welcome to Our NJAWT Website



A message from Meryl Nadell, President


Dear Members and prospective members, 

Welcome.  I look forward to continue serving as leader of NJAWT for the next two years.  Last term was the first time we had a presidency shared by two people. With the prospect of a splendid Board of officers and committee chairs for the coming term, many staying on as well as new ones, it made sense for me to volunteer for a second term and see what more we could accomplish. NJAWT was established 42 years ago and we believe it is still relevant for women to interact with their female peers and grow, learn and savor the feminine energy we bring to each other.  


Being a therapist demands much more than the hours spent with clients or managing paperwork and billing.  It requires us to keep up with current findings and treatments related to mental health and to keep ourselves enthusiastic, engaged and supported by peers. It requires us to build our reputation or that of our agencies so we can attract the clients we best serve.  NJAWT hopes to continue to provide opportunities for this to happen.  We are always thrilled to see both long-time colleagues and newcomers at our events, connecting and sharing information and networking.  During the past year, we had quality formal presentations at our General Meetings where continuing education credits were available as well as our less-formal but still clinically relevant conversation hours.  We have more excellent programs planned for 2018-2019.  


And we always make time to socialize. Before each evening general meeting, there is a light dinner and time to “eat, meet and greet”. The conversation and exchange of information is so lively that it takes a few minutes for all of us to settle into our seats for the program.  However, with the quality of the presentation and natural curiosity of our members, there quickly is focused attention and insightful questions and answers.  We leave with our enthusiasm for our work deeply engaged and renewed.


The conversation hours also begin with food and much networking in a more intimate home setting.  Here also, we are continually impressed by our members’ desires to do the best work possible with clients and to learn about new approaches and ideas. These pleasant interactions are like having lunch with a special group of colleagues.  For those of us who work in private practice, it helps us feel less on our own.  We hope also to support existing and newly forming peer groups and book clubs. Our movie group, meeting four times a year, also serves these same functions.


We hope you will take a few minutes to learn more about the many benefits that NJAWT membership offers.  Members can enter the Members Only area on the website by using the sign in name and password received with your directory. 


We invite you to involve yourself in all this organization has to offer – for networking, learning and making new friends.  Perhaps as you become more engaged, you may also consider joining our Board in the future.  This too, continues to be an enriching experience for all involved.


        Meryl Nadell, MSW, LCSW

(908) 654-9615, meryl.nadell@gmail.com


Mission Statement

The New Jersey Association of Women Therapists is organized to provide women therapists with an opportunity to meet for fellowship, for the exchange of ideas with colleagues, and for continuing education and professional growth.



Programs and Meetings

NJAWT is centered on our General Meetings and Conversation Hours.
Please click on the Programs tab for detailed information.



In May 2016 NJAWT Celebrated 40 Years
of Education and Support to its Members!


Next General Meeting

Sunday, October 20, 2019


6:00-7:00pm: Networking and Dinner

7:00pm-8:45pm: Business and Presentation



Presenter: Debrs Ruisard, DSW, LCSW, LCADC


From 2002 – 2013 the largest increase in heroin use was among women and in 2018 the rate of opioid use during pregnancy was approximately 14.4 per 1000 births. With more and more pregnant and parenting women seeking treatment, addiction professionals must balance the legal mandates of child welfare with the provision of effective, trauma-informed care to these women. In addition, providing attachment-based parenting interventions can be an effective way to disrupt the intergenerational transmission of trauma, substance abuse and child abuse/neglect. This presentation will explore the intersectionality of motherhood, addiction, and child protection, and examine best practices for treating this challenging population.


Note: General Meetings are held at The United Methodist Church of Summit, 17 Kent Place Boulevard, Summit.  Parking is available nearby; closest is the lot in the corner of  DeForest & Woodland Ave. Enter church via the driveway on DeForest Ave.

Next Conversation Hour

Friday, November 1, 2019



Presenter: Janet Hoffer, DSW, LCSW

Hostess: Meryl Nadell


The goal of the presentation is for participants to learn how working directly with shame can become an important healing agent in psychotherapy.  Shame is frequently the reason for therapeutic stalemates and even failures (Lewis, 1987). When we become brave enough to recognize shame in both our clients and in ourselves (an even more difficult task), we create opportunities to work directly with shameful emotions and deepen the therapeutic work.  This presentation teaches participants to listen for the ways shame is disguised and avoided in the consultation room, as well as how to address this elusive emotion. Participants will learn the definition of 'therapist shame', the distinction between guilt and shame, and some recommendations for the therapist when working with shame.



See Member's Corner for more details and RSVP information.



 A new benefit of NJAWT membership has just been added!

It is a closed Facebook group, exclusively for the use of members, called NJAWT Members Connect.  The purpose of the group is to enable members to network and share information.  Members can ask questions about professional practice, and look for referral recommendations.  They can also share information about their practices, up-coming presentations and conferences, interesting articles and any other relevant information to professional practice.

Any members who already have a Facebook account and would like to join the group can click on  NJAWT Members Connect and ask to join the group.