Dr. Nick Flower
Licensed Clinical Psychologist/ OCD Spectrum President
Dr. Nick Flower is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist (Psy.D.) and the president of OCD Spectrum. He created OCD Spectrum to be the pre-eminent Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and anxiety treatment center for Pittsburgh and the region. Dr. Flower graduated from Xavier University with his doctorate in clinical psychology in 2007 and has been licensed as a psychologist in Pennsylvania since 2010. He is a graduate of the Behavioral Therapy Training Institute put on by the International OCD Foundation (IOCDF) where he received specialized training in Exposure and Response Prevention Therapy (ERP). He is also the president of OCDPA, the Pennsylvania affiliate of the IOCDF. He is also a member of the Diversity Committee for the IOCDF where he works on ways to disseminate effective OCD treatment to under-served populations. For the past few years he has been a speaker at the annual IOCDF conference and has organized support groups for patients with harm OCD among other topics.
Dr. Flower has a warm and personal style with a sense of humor that allows for a good rapport with his patients. The type of therapy that he does is likely not what one might consider “typical” where the patient sits on a couch to discuss problems. It is an active and goal-directed approach so the patient can face fears directly while gaining a sense of mastery. His theoretical approach is largely based on something called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). It’s an approach that focuses both on a person’s thinking patterns and behavior changes. In sessions, he will often help a patient examine thinking patterns and connect them with feelings so that they can change their behaviors. CBT has been widely supported in various research studies as an effective treatment approach for depression, anxiety, and many other disorders. He looks forward to working with you to help you conquer your OCD and anxiety.
Dr. Josh Riley
Dr. Josh Riley is a psychiatrist with a special interest in working with people struggling with OCD and anxiety disorders. He earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Cambridge before completing a PhD in Linguistics at the University of Maryland – College Park and an MD at the University of Kentucky. After medical school he completed residency training in General Psychiatry at Western Psychiatric Hospital/UPMC. He has experience working with people suffering from OCD, anxiety, body dysmorphia, depression, bipolar disorder, intense unusual perceptual experiences, and psychosis.
Dr. Riley takes a collaborative approach, helping people identify what is truly valued and important to them and assessing their experiences to determine what might be standing in the way of pursuing those values. Medications can be a helpful part of living a life worth living but not all problems need a medicine and no medication is right for every single person, no matter what their diagnosis might be. He works with people as a guide, someone who is knowledgeable about different options and approaches and will recommend a path but ultimately remembers that you are the one taking the journey.
Licensed Clinical Social Worker
Emma Smith is a dedicated LCSW who specializes in providing exceptional behavioral health services to adults grappling with mood and anxiety disorders. She obtained her graduate degree in social work from the University of Pittsburgh, complemented by an undergraduate degree in psychology from American University. Emma’s passion lies in the treatment of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD), and her expertise shines through extensive training and hands-on experience with Exposure and Response Prevention Therapy (ERP).
Emma’s profound understanding of ERP was honed during her tenure at UPMC Western Psychiatric Hospital, where she served as the lead clinician for the OCD Adult Intensive Outpatient Program for a remarkable four years. In pursuit of broadening her impact, Emma transitioned from her role as lead clinician to develop the Hoarding Outpatient Program, where she skillfully facilitated as a group leader for nearly two years. Additionally, she actively contributes to the field as a board member of OCD Pennsylvania, the local affiliate of the IOCDF.
With a genuine and warm style, Emma swiftly establishes rapport, enabling her to delve into her patients’ concerns and initiate effective therapeutic work. Her eagerness to collaborate with clients at OCD Spectrum stems from her unwavering dedication to assisting them in reclaiming their lives from the clutches of OCD.
Licensed Clinical Social Worker
Akirah Wyatt is a highly regarded Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and brings a wealth of expertise to her practice. In 2013, she completed her graduate degree in social work from the University of Pittsburgh, paving the way for her impactful career. Notably, Akirah served as one of the lead clinicians at the Adult Mood and Anxiety Intensive Outpatient Programs at the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of UPMC, where she delivered evidence-based behavioral health treatment to adults grappling with a diverse range of mood and anxiety disorders. More recently, Akirah provided trauma-informed treatment to adults at WellSpan Philhaven, a prominent behavioral health clinic situated in Central Pennsylvania.
Beyond her proficiency in evidence-based individual therapy, Akirah possesses remarkable skill in facilitating group sessions and has undergone specialized training in Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), DBT Prolonged Exposure (DBT-PE) for PTSD, and Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) for Anxiety and OCD. With a particular interest in assisting new parents in their recovery from perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, she is actively pursuing certification in Perinatal Mental Health, further deepening her expertise in this field. Akirah takes great joy in helping her patients cultivate confidence in their inherent capabilities, empowering them to lead lives aligned with their core values. As a valued member of the OCD Spectrum team, she is thrilled to offer telehealth services, expanding access to her compassionate care.
Licensed Clinical Social Worker
Kara Taylor (LCSW) has cultivated a remarkable depth of knowledge in her field and is a senior therapist at OCD Spectrum. Graduating with a graduate degree in Social Work from the University of Pittsburgh in 2003, Kara’s educational foundation serves as a solid framework for her practice. In 2008, she embarked on a transformative journey by joining the United States Air Force, where she dedicated 13 years to mental health clinics across the Air Force, providing invaluable care to active duty service members and their families.
With over 15 years of experience in behavioral health, Kara’s passion lies in assisting clients, particularly those contending with a range of anxiety disorders such as Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Panic, Social Anxiety, Phobias, PTSD, and others. During treatment, she primarily employs evidence-based techniques such as Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Motivational Interviewing, Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT), and Prolonged Exposure (PE).
Kara’s warm-hearted and compassionate approach enables her to quickly establish rapport and trust with the clients she has the privilege to serve. She wholeheartedly endeavors to empower her clients with the skills necessary to transform their thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, granting them the confidence to manifest the life they have always aspired to lead. As a valued member of the OCD Spectrum team, Kara is delighted to offer telehealth services for both individual and group therapy, further expanding the accessibility of her exceptional care.
Licensed Professional Counselor
Kasey Puleo is an accomplished Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) who specializes in providing exceptional care to children, teenagers, and young adults. Holding a graduate degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Waynesburg University and an undergraduate degree in psychology from Slippery Rock University, Kasey’s educational background reflects her commitment to fostering mental well-being. Her journey in the field commenced with an internship at the UPMC Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinics pediatric OCD Intensive Outpatient Program, where she gained invaluable experience with this population. Building on this foundation, Kasey pursued her graduate studies and undertook an internship at a community mental health agency as an outpatient therapist, ultimately transitioning into employment there. Since 2016, she has had the honor of assisting children and their families in the realm of mental health.
Kasey deeply values the profound impact of the therapeutic relationship and firmly believes that effective therapy thrives on a solid bedrock of trust, genuine care, and a sense of safety. Employing a humanistic approach to therapy, Kasey collaborates closely with her patients, helping them discover their innate strengths and empowering them to reclaim control over their lives. With specialized training in evidence-based treatments for anxiety and OCD, Kasey primarily employs Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP), and client-centered therapy. Additionally, Kasey has honed her skills in SPACE therapy, skillfully guiding parents to modify their behaviors in ways that effectively alleviate anxiety and OCD in their children.
Michelle Camper is OCD Spectrum’s Office Manager. She has over 15 years experience managing Mental Health Practices in Pennsylvania and Georgia. Michelle graduated from Duquesne University with a Bachelors of Science, majoring in Criminology and minoring in Psychology. She also obtained her Bookkeeping Certification from Cambridge Accounting Center in Pittsburgh, PA. Michelle is always available to answer your questions and her knowledge and experience in regards to billing, scheduling and general practice information is just a phone call away.