Vivian Piazza, PhD
Dr. Vivian Piazza is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist who is committed to using empirically supported, evidence-based treatments with her clients. She has experience using a variety of treatments within a cognitive behavioral framework to treat anxiety and mood disorders and associated symptoms. Dr. Piazza has specific expertise working with clients who have experienced trauma and treating Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. She values being authentic in her clinical interactions and is genuinely invested in her clients’ health and in helping her clients achieve their treatment goals.
Dr. Piazza earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology at Georgia State University. While completing her doctorate degree, she received training in both inpatient and outpatient settings working with a variety of presenting concerns. Following her pre-doctoral internship and postdoctoral fellowship at the Southeast Louisiana Veterans Health Care System, she continued there as a psychologist in the Military Sexual Trauma program.
In addition to her clinical work, Dr. Piazza has been actively involved in research. She has published articles in several peer-reviewed journals and has also presented her research at national conferences, earning a student research excellence award from the American Psychological Association while in graduate school. She has completed research in several distinct areas including developmental disabilities, eating disorders, and the impact of trauma on the marital relationship. She also uses research to inform her clinical work in order to ensure she is providing effective treatments.
Laura Niditch, PhD
Dr. Laura Niditch is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist who specializes in psychological assessment for children, adolescents, and adults. She has particular expertise in anxiety disorders, ADHD, autism spectrum disorder, and learning disorders. She uses state-of-the-art psychological tests to provide clear diagnoses and thorough explanations for patients’ symptoms. Her assessments include comprehensive, written reports with specific, individually-tailored recommendations. Her mission is to provide each patient with a roadmap to address current concerns and move forward. Her therapeutic style is warm, fun, and collaborative.
Dr. Niditch completed her Ph.D. in school psychology at Tulane University. During graduate school, Dr. Niditch was honored with a prestigious predoctoral fellowship from the National Institute of Mental Health. She received multiple awards and commendations for her achievements and was recognized by the faculty for “the high quality of her academic work, professional accomplishments, research record, and contributions to the field.” Dr. Niditch completed her predoctoral internship in school and clinical psychology at FSU’s Multidisciplinary Center. She completed her postdoctoral fellowship in adult clinical psychology at the Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Center of New Orleans. In addition to her clinical work, Dr. Niditch is an accomplished researcher and educator. She has published several original research articles in peer-reviewed journals and serves as an ad hoc peer reviewer for numerous journals. Dr. Niditch has taught both graduate and undergraduate psychology courses at Tulane University, and she maintains an adjunct faculty position in the psychology department.
Thomas Hallinan, PhD
Dr. Thomas Hallinan is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist with a background in insight-oriented psychodynamic treatments and evidence-based cognitive behavioral treatments. He has a wealth of experience in treating trauma, depression, anxiety, difficulties with emotion regulation, and interpersonal problems.
Dr. Hallinan completed his undergraduate degree at Loyola University New Orleans prior to earning his masters and doctoral degrees in clinical psychology at Duquesne University. He completed his internship and post-doctoral fellowship at the Southeast Louisiana Veterans Health Care System (New Orleans VA) with a focus on cognitive behavioral therapies and trauma work. Since that time, he has continued to work in the general mental health clinic treating a wide range of diagnoses and psychological issues. He has experience and training in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Prolonged Exposure (PE), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I), and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). He also enjoys mentoring psychiatry residents, psychology interns, and post-doctoral fellows at the VA. Dr. Hallinan currently provides psychotherapy at Atlas Psychiatry during evening hours.
Outside of his clinical work, Dr. Hallinan enjoys attending cultural events in the city, spending time with his family, and staying current with new technology and gadgets.
Katherine Aucoin, PhD
Dr. Katherine Aucoin is a licensed developmental psychologist. With over 15 years’ experience, Dr. Aucoin utilizes a mostly cognitive-behavioral approach to play, individual, and family therapy with children and adolescents and their families. She maintains expertise in treating anxiety, depression, trauma, behavior problems, social difficulties, low self-esteem, parent-child relationships, transgender issues, and various other challenges common to today’s developing child. Dr. Aucoin also possesses expertise in the administration and interpretation of various types of psychological testing with children and teens, including diagnostic, educational, and developmental assessments.
A native to the New Orleans area, Dr. Aucoin attended St. Mary’s Dominican High School and Loyola University. She received her Master’s and Doctorate in Applied Developmental Psychology from the University of New Orleans. During her graduate school career, Dr. Aucoin completed several research studies, primarily focused on the relationship between emotion regulation and behavioral problems in children and adolescents. She also completed a Fellowship in infant and preschool mental health at Tulane University Health Sciences Center while working as manager and lead clinician at a program for young children in Jefferson Parish.
Dr. Aucoin’s clinical style, along with her abilities to be empathic, practical, open-minded, and fun, demonstrates her mix of professional and personal qualities that she brings to her work tailored to each client.
Alexandra Sims, PhD
Alexandra Sims, Ph.D. is a licensed psychologist who specializes in educational and psychological assessment of children and adolescents. Her expertise lies in the diagnosis of ADHD, learning disorders, anxiety disorders, and stress and trauma-related reactions in children. Dr. Sims is adept at bridging assessment to meaningful intervention, providing families with insight into how to best support their children through the completion of clear and thorough written reports.
Dr. Sims earned a master’s degree from New York University before pursuing her Ph.D. from Tulane University. While a student at Tulane, Dr. Sims was active in research, presenting original and collaborative research at local and national conferences. She graduated from Tulane with a specialization in trauma-focused school psychology. Dr. Sims has worked as a school psychologist at several elementary and secondary schools, and served as the Director of Pupil Appraisal and Evaluation at a local charter school for three years. Currently, Dr. Sims is a full-time faculty member at Tulane University, teaching courses on child development, psychopathology, and assessment. She is responsible for training doctoral students in cognitive and academic assessment and provides supervision for post-doctorate professionals seeking licensure. She also continues to work with local schools on the completion of special education evaluations. At Atlas Psychiatry, Dr. Sims provides assessment services for children and adolescents, including psychological testing, psycho-educational testing, gifted testing, and school admissions testing.