About us

Advanced Career Online Resource Network (ACORN) is at the forefront of connecting counselors, therapists, social workers, prevention specialists, and educators with university professors and other highly qualified professionals willing to share their expertise. We bring more than 30 years of experience developing and delivering advanced professional education to life by collaborating with a wide range of content experts to create high-value online learning opportunities.

What we believe

ACORN is all about helping you help others! We are here to assist as you take the next steps in your career, keep up with the latest advances in your field, and move toward becoming the best professional you can be. We believe that the better prepared and more successful you are, the more likely you will remain hopeful, positive, and effective.

We're dedicated to

  • sharing the wisdom of advanced professionals through interviews and short lectures;

  • demonstrating skills by observing video clips of counseling sessions;

  • identifying core competencies and using competencies to inform courses;

  • providing up to date readings, research, and resources;

  • making professional learning accessible; and

  • helping those in counseling-related fields meet accreditation and continuing education requirements.

Our story

After years of collaborating with each other on research projects and scholarship, we decided to share our passion for discovery and learning by starting ACORN. It has been an exciting adventure! Having designed curricula for family therapy programs, completed research on core competencies for problem gambling treatment, written extensively on sociocultural attunement, and provided education and supervision for hundreds of students, we knew that ACORN was the next step in our own careers. ACORN is much bigger than the two of us. It is only possible because of our partners–including the Oregon Health Authority–and wonderful colleagues that we have worked with over the years—highly experienced clinicians, prevention specialists, educators, administrators, and clinical supervisors.

ACORN founders

Senior Instructor Teresa McDowell

Teresa McDowell, Ed.D., LMFT is a professor emerita at Lewis & Clark, in Portland, Oregon, where she served as Department Chair and co-founded Lewis & Clark’s Problem Gambling Services. Dr. McDowell has served as a licensed marriage and family therapist, family therapy educator, program director, educational administrator, and consultant over the past 40 years. Her work has primarily focused on counselor education and workforce development, organizational consultation, international family therapy, equity-based clinical practice, integrated treatment for problem gambling, and clinical supervision. She currently serves as a social researcher, program evaluator, and consultant with Partners in Social Research and is the senior instructor for the Advanced Career Online Resource Network (ACORN). Dr. McDowell has published over 50 refereed journal articles and book chapters. She has presented her work at numerous conferences across eight countries. She is the author of Applying Critical Social Theory to Family Therapy Practice and first co-author of Socioculturally Attuned Family Therapy: Guidelines for Equity-Based Theory and Practice (1st and 2nd Editions). Her work in problem gambling treatment includes authoring the Working with Families in Problem Gambling Treatment handbook, research on core competencies for problem gambling counselors and prevention specialists, and extensive contributions to the development of Oregon’s problem gambling treatment workforce.

Evaluation Researcher Iva Kosutic

Iva Kosutic, PhD is an evaluation researcher at Partners in Social Research, and she currently serves as an evaluator for the Connecticut Personal Responsibility Education Program (CT PREP) grant to Connecticut Department of Public Health. Iva obtained her doctorate from the University of Connecticut in 2010. She has conducted a number of program evaluations, including, most recently, evaluation of the Connecticut Department or Public Health Office of Oral Health programs and a Genomics Office program. She taught undergraduate courses at the University of Connecticut, Human Development and Family Sciences Department for 10 years, and graduate courses at Lewis & Clark College, Marriage, Couples, and Family Therapy Program for 6 years. Her peer-reviewed publications pertain to youth development, evaluation of sex ed and youth development programs, gambling treatment and prevention, and marriage and family therapy.

ACORN/OHA instructors

OHA Instructor David Corse

David Corse (he/him/his), LPC, CADCIII, CGACII has worked in the behavioral health field for over a decade. David has worked as a crisis counselor, gambling counselor, SUD counselor and mental health counselor in community mental health settings. David has also worked as a program director and clinical supervisor in both non-profit agencies and County Mental Health Organizations. David has worked at Oregon Health Authority since 2018 – initially in coordinating the Oregon Problem Gambling Treatment System, and most recently in developing the OHA Integrated Co-Occurring Disorders Treatment and Recovery system. In addition to his work at OHA, David maintains a small private practice where he works with individuals and couples, and provides post-graduate clinical supervision for Licensed Professional Counselor Associates. David lives with his spouse and youngest of their three children – and their four cats – in Lincoln City, Oregon.

OHA Instructor Brandie Lyday

Brandie Lyday, LMFT, CGACII, CADCIII is an AAMFT Approved Supervisor and the Oregon Health Authority Problem Gambling Treatment Program Development Analyst. She provides family therapy supervision to Problem Gambling Services at Lewis & Clark College, where she is an adjunct faculty member in the Graduate School of Counseling, Therapy, and School Psychology. Brandie’s recent work has focused on problem gambling program development and clinical supervision. She has previously worked with clients involved in the criminal legal system as an outpatient addiction treatment specialist providing individual, group, couple, and family therapies.

OHA Instructor Roxann Jones

Roxann Jones is currently the Problem Gambling Statewide Prevention and Outreach Specialist with the Oregon Health Authority. She brings over 35 years’ experience in designing and implementing prevention programs to address risky behaviors, as well as program management in problem gambling prevention/treatment, and children’s intensive mental health wraparound services. Roxann is passionate about building healthy communities and has provided leadership on a various task forces and committees at the community, state, and national level addressing issues that impact the overall health and well-being of communities.

ACORN on-demand course instructors

Senior Instructor Rick Berman

Rick Berman, MA, LPC, CADC III, CGAC II specializes in integrated treatment of co-occurring mental health and addictive disorders. He trained and supervised addictions and mental health counselors for more than 20 years. In recent years his work focused more specifically on problem gambling. He has presented at national problem gambling conferences in Canada and the United States. He is the past coordinator of Lewis & Clark’s Problem Gambling Services and instructed Gambling Counselor Pre-Certification Courses for many years.

Senior Instructor Carmen Knudson-Martin

Carmen Knudson-Martin, PhD, is a professor emerita of marriage and family therapy at Lewis & Clark’s Graduate School of Education and Counseling. She is an American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) clinical fellow and approved supervisor, as well as a licensed marriage and family therapist. She is a long time member of the American Family Therapy Academy (AFTA). Dr. Knudson-Martin is highly influential in the field of family therapy, having edited numerous books, presented internationally, and authored many articles and chapters on sociocultural attunement, power, and equity. She is a co-author, along with Drs. McDowell & Bermudez, of Socioculturally Attuned Family Therapy: Guidelines for Equitable Theory and Practice. Dr. Knudson-Martin is a founder of Socio-Emotional Relationship Therapy (SERT), which addresses the political and ethical implications of therapist actions on personal and relational development. Her text on the SERT model will be coming out soon. u

Counselor precertification instructors

Instructor Cort Dorn-Medeiros

Cort M. Dorn-Medeiros, PhD, LPC, CADC III is an Assistant Professor in the Professional Mental Health Counseling - Specialization in Addiction program and current Department Chair of the Counseling, Therapy, and School Psychology department at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, OR. Areas of specialization include substance use and process addictions, co-occurring disorders, integrated care, and motivational interviewing and motivational enhancement therapy. Dr. Dorn-Medeiros is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor III in the state of Oregon. Dr. Dorn-Medeiros is a co-founder and program director of the Gaming and Tech in Excess (GATE) program at the Lewis & Clark Community Counseling Center. Dr. Dorn-Medeiros is published in a variety of academic outlets and most recently has published a book chapter on promoting technology safety and digital citizenship in school counseling.

Instructor Raul Ramirez

Raul Ramirez has been in the counseling field since 2015 and is currently the Outpatient Services Supervisor for the Yamhill County Mental Health team in McMinnville, OR. He provides supervision for clinicians in Yamhill County who have or are working towards their CADC and CGAC. He works closely with OHA and is a member of the Multicultural Advisory Committee (MAC) whose mission is improving and expanding awareness of gambling to underserved populations, and to support each other in creating community. He is an advocate for equity and is a member of the Equity and Diversity Team within Yamhill County. He has passion and commitment to serving individuals and leading with compassion in the work he does.

ACORN Instructor Dave Hsiao

Dave Hsiao MA, LPC, CADC III, CGAC II has been working in the counseling field for 20 years. He specializes in Substance Use and Problem Gambling with other co-occurring mental health diagnoses. Focusing on improving outcomes, Dave compassionately addresses multicultural issues in the program he manages by working closely with his team in communication with vulnerable populations and their families. He trains and supervises recovery mentors and counselors, and he provides leadership in outreach to communities with developed programs he facilitates in the Portland area and at the Oregon coast.