Our professional staff includes different disciplines in health care from individuals with extensive experience and training in clinical medicine, as well as counseling and psychology to individuals who are trainees and being supervised by senior clinicians. We collaborate to provide the best care for the individuals and where possible being very sensitive to health care costs and also where possible collaborate approaches to utilize different therapeutic treatments, including medical approaches, cognitive behavioral therapy, DBT, behavioral therapy, interpersonal therapy, as well as relaxation approaches and other types of therapy. If our expertise is limited in an area, we gladly collaborate with professionals in the community and provide collaborative relationships where we exchange information as appropriate to maximize the benefits of our patient’s care.
Saad A. Shakir, M.D., D.F.A.P.A., Chief Medical Officer
San Jose San Francisco Santa Cruz Pleasanton
Dr. Shakir is certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology and also is a Diplomate and Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. He is trained in medicine, neurology and psychiatry. Dr. Shakir finished medical school in Baghdad, Iraq with highest distinction being the first graduate in his class (as well as the highest graduation average in the history of the medicine school) obtaining highest honors in different fields of medicine. He also did part of his medical training at the London University in London, England. After finishing his medical training, he did a rotating internship in Obstetrics and Gynecology, Surgery, Internal Medicine, Cardiology, and Neurobehavioral Medicine. Then he did one year of Chief Residency in Neurology at Baghdad City, teaching hospital. His U.S. training has been at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center and New York State Psychiatric Institute for two years and subsequently Stanford University Medical Center where he did his last year of residency and another extra year as Departmental Chief Resident and also acting Chief of the Outpatient Services in Psychiatry. Dr. Shakir has been an educator all of his life including since finishing his residency he has been on the clinical faculty at Stanford University School of Medicine where he served starting as a Clinical Instructor to most recently he has been with the rank of Adjunct Clinical Associate Professor, Emeritus of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine.
In addition to his activities in the clinical care of patients as well as his teaching at Stanford University, he has been very active in a variety of leadership positions including:
- Chairman of the Department of psychiatry at El Camino hospital in Mountain View, California
- Co-founder and Past president of the Iraqi medical science Association in the United States(IMSA-USA)
- National and international visiting professor to a variety of universities, continuing medical education programs, and other medical education formats on a variety of topics including Depression, Anxiety, Bipolar disorders, ADHD, and other topics
- Consultant and serving on advisory boards and advocacy groups locally and nationally
- President of the Northern California TMS Society, which he recently cofounded
- Sports coach: In his free time he has coached youth sports for about 20 years including Soccer, Basketball, Baseball, and softball. He was elected “best youth volunteer sports coach in Santa Clara County”
- For many years in a row has been chosen by peers, patients, and medical research companies as “Best doctor” in Silicon Valley, and the United States, receiving dozens of community awards including “the most compassionate doctor award” in 2010
Erin Griffiths, D.O.
Associate Medical Director Silicon Valley TMS of San Francisco
Dr. Erin Griffiths (or “Dr. G”) joined the practice in November after moving to the Bay Area in August 2013. She holds a license to practice psychiatry in the state of California. Dr. G is originally from the east coast where she received her B.A. from Rutgers University in English Literature and Women’s Studies. After completing her Master’s Degree in English Literature at the University of Chicago, she completed her premedical training at Northwestern University. Dr. G obtained her medical degree at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine in Philadelphia. She then completed her internship at Drexel University College of Medicine and her Psychiatric residency at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey School of Osteopathic Medicine.
Dr. G received training in psychotherapy, medication management, and trained under the tutelage of Dr. Johnny O’Reardon in Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation. Dr G’s osteopathic medical degree frames her thinking to always look at the whole person and to guide the patient to health and wellness. Dr. Griffiths is especially interested in Women’s Issues, mental health in pregnancy, sleep difficulties, treatment-resistant depression and anxiety, mood disorders and neuromodulation. She is a member of the American Osteopathic Association, the American Psychiatric Association, and the Northern California TMS Society. She is thrilled to join the practice of Saad A. Shakir, M.D. and Associates and Silicon Valley TMS and in her free time loves to explore the wonders of the Bay Area with her family.
Tammy Saah, MD
Associate Medical Director, San Jose Office
Dr. Tammy Saah, MD, joined the practice in August 2015, after relocating back to her hometown in the Bay Area. She is licensed to practice Medicine in both California and Georgia, She is also board-certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology to practice General psychiatry.
Dr. Saah received a BA in Psychobiology from University of California, Santa Cruz, an MA in Neurophysiology from San Jose State University, and an MD from the American University of Beirut. She completed her psychiatric internship and residency at Emory University in Georgia, where she also served as Chief Resident from 2013-2014. Dr Saah was then employed as a senior associate and the first Treatment Resistant Depression Fellow in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Emory University. During her fellowship, Dr. Saah was centrally involved in the development of the Treatment Resistant Depression (TRD) Clinic at Emory. She was also a supervisor of the department’s Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) group.
Dr. Saah’s clinical and research interests are focused in Treatment Resistant Depression(TRD), with emphasis on advanced psychopharmacology, novel therapeutics (ketamine), and Neuro-modulation (rTMS) in the management of this population.
Linda Wolbers, MD, MPH
Associate Medical Director, Santa Cruz Office
Dr. Wolbers is Board Certified by both the American Board of Pain Medicine and the American Board of Family Medicine. She has dedicated her professional life to treating those patients who suffer from chronic illness including chronic pain.
She received her BA degree from University of California, San Diego and a Master’s degree in Public Health from University of California, Berkeley. She worked for many years in the field of worker health and safety as an Industrial Hygienist before following her passion to become a physician. She earned her MD degree from George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences and completed her residency in Family Medicine at David Grant Medical Center affiliated with University of California, Davis. She served her country as a Family Medicine physician in the US Air Force serving in Korea and the San Francisco Bay Area. Later she treated both active duty and veterans at the VA Hospital, Palo Alto Health Care System.
She then founded the Pain Clinic of Monterey Bay and partnered with other health care professionals to treat patients suffering with chronic pain using an integrated patient-centered approach including physical and psychological modalities, medication management and when needed, injections and advanced neuromodulation treatments.
She is passionate about ensuring that patients with chronic illness including chronic pain are well educated about their options for treatment including risks and benefit and always emphasizes lifestyle changes to optimize overall health and to maximize the benefit of the patient’s individualized pain management strategies.
She has been involved in medical research, most recently as Primary Investigator for the ACCURATE study which investigated the safety and utility of a new dorsal root ganglion implanted device for lower extremity pain which was recently FDA approved.
She is very excited to join Dr. Shakir and colleagues in introducing transcranial magnetic stimulation to the Santa Cruz area. She is interested in studying the many applications for this non invasive neuromodulation treatment and being on the forefront of broadening the indications for this treatment.
John Misa, Ph.D.
San Jose San Francisco
John Misa, Ph.D., is a licensed clinical psychologist. He graduated with a B.A. in Psychology from UCLA and earned his M.A. in Psychology from Pepperdine University. He received his Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Pacific Graduate School of Psychology/Palo Alto University in 2013. Dr. Misa has training and experience providing individual and group therapy as well as psychological and neuropsychological assessments to the adult population. Dr. Misa also has experience providing behavioral intervention and consultation to patients diagnosed with developmental disabilities such as Autism. In addition, he has worked with elderly patients diagnosed with Dementia and other cognitive impairments. He has been involved in a variety of clinical settings which include working at the Stanford Depression Research clinic, Stanford Schizophrenia clinic, Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, Kaiser Permanente, Portia Bell Hume Mental Health Center and Fremont Hospital. He has a particular interest in working with adults with Depression, Bipolar Disorder and Anxiety. He is very proud to be a member of the integrated clinical Neurosciences team to provide the best care for our patients.
Josh White, Psy. D.
San Jose Santa Cruz
Dr. Josh White received his Doctorate in Psychology (Psy.D.) from the California School of Professional Psychology in San Francisco and received his B.A. in Psychology from the University of California Santa Cruz. He completed his Internship at San Mateo Medical Center and his Post-Doctoral training at Mission Psychology Group with a focus on chronic pain and PTSD. His specialties include mindfulness-based approaches to treating depression, anxiety, chronic pain, and trauma. Dr. White believes that transforming one’s life perspective from what is wrong to building and strengthening one’s relationships, values, creativity, and life goals can help one rediscover a more fulfilling life.
Lawrence Poree, MD, MPH, PhD
Consulting Pain Management Physician
Dr. Poree holds the position of Clinical Professor in the Department of Anesthesia at the University of California in San Francisco where he serves as the director of the Neuromodulation service. He started his career in the pain field at UC Berkeley where he earned his PhD and investigated the pain-relieving properties of compounds found naturally in the human body. He continued his pain research during his postdoctoral training in the department of biomedical engineering at Johns Hopkins where he studied how spinal cord stimulation activates the pain control circuits in the spinal cord. He decided to apply his basic science research to medical practice and enrolled in the medical degree program at Stanford University where he earned his medical degree and completed his residency in anesthesia while continuing to conduct research on new non-opioid based pain medications. He then completed an interventional pain fellowship at UCSF. He worked in private practice for 15 years in Santa Cruz county during which time he also served on the Board of Directors for the North American Neuromodulation Society and the California Society of Interventional Pain Physicians. He served as a primary investigator for the FDA PMA dorsal root ganglion stimulator trial and continues to work with various companies on the development of new neuromodulation devices. He was recently recruited back to UCSF to direct the neuromodulation program but continues to provide consult services 1 day a week in Santa Cruz.
Hope Thao, Psy.D.
San Jose Pleasanton
Dr. Thao received her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology (Psy.D.) from California School of Professional Psychology, San Francisco-Bay Area. She graduated with a B.A. in Psychology from CSUS and earned her M.A. in Counseling from SJSU. Dr. Thao has clinical training and experiences in utilizing evidence-based treatment modalities; Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and Psychodynamic Theory. She has trained and worked at Community Mental Health Programs, Assessment Clinic, John George Psychiatric Hospital, Fairmont Hospital, Palomar Hospital, and Fremont Hospital. Dr. Thao has experience treating patients with acute and chronic mental illness (psychotic disorders, mood disorders, personality disorders, and substance abuse disorders: PTSD, OCD, Depression, Bipolar, Anxiety, Eating Disorder, and dual diagnosed) and medical conditions (developmental and physical). In addition, she has experience working with behavioral and cognitive concerns, crisis interventions, psychological and neurological assessments. She is culturally diverse and has worked with patients across the lifespan. Dr. Thao is passionate about helping patients strive for recovery to live life through enhancing strengths and building resiliency.
Thanh Nguyen, PhD
Dr. Nguyen has received her Ph.D in Clinical Psychology with emphasis in Depth Psychology. She is a mental health professional with 20 years of experience working with adults, children, family, couples, and group therapy. The many areas that Dr. Nguyen has worked under the umbrella of mental health management include Stress, Anxiety, Trauma, Domestic Violence, PTSD, Depression, Bipolar, Addictions, Chemical dependency, Prop 36, HIV/AIDS, and Post-incarceration syndrome. She draws from treatments that are supported by research and combine those treatments with an approach tailored to meet the specific needs of each individual. Dr. Nguyen has extensive training and experience in providing evidenced based treatments and her treatment orientation includes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy(CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Acceptance Commitment Therapy(ACT) Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), and Brief Therapy.
Oscar Hernandez-Sutton PhD
San Jose Santa Cruz
Dr. Oscar Hernandez-Sutton was born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He received his Bachelor’s degree from the University of San Francisco, in psychology, and in 2011 he obtained his PhD in clinical psychology from Sophia University. He completed his pre-doctoral internship at Kaiser Permanente, where he was part of the chemical dependency team and had the opportunity to co-lead a chronic pain management group. Dr. Hernandez Sutton also worked as a substance abuse psychotherapist at the Salvation Army, where he offered counseling to recovery victims of substance abuse. He has a special interest in Buddhist psychology and in teaching mindfulness techniques to treat anxiety, depression, chronic pain, and trauma. Dr. Hernandez Sutton believes that to achieve a state of well-being requires cultivation of your physical body, the mind (cognition / emotional components), social relationships, creativity, and spirituality. —
Azmeena Amir Hashem DNP, NP-C, MSN, BScN
Doctor of Nursing Practice/Adult Nurse Practicioner
San Jose Pleasanton
My name is Azmeena Amir Hashem (NP-C). I relocated to Bay area, California in June 2016 from Michigan, which was my hometown for almost 12 years. Before advancing my career as a Nurse Practitioner, I was a Registered nurse at University of Michigan in Ann Arbor where I practiced critical care nursing for almost 4 years. I graduated in 2008 from an Adult Nurse Practitioner program at Madonna University in Michigan. I am also board certified by an American Academy of Nurse Practitioner since 2009. Recently I was awarded Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree in May, 2016 from Madonna University in Michigan. Currently I am also a member of California Association for Nurse Practitioners (CANP).
Before moving to California, I was working as an independent consultant with Senior Psychiatric Services in Michigan. I have more than 8 years of experience working with mental health patients in skilled nursing facilities, assisted living facilities and group homes. I have an experience in treating adult and geriatric patients with dementia, acute and chronic depression, anxiety, psychotic disorder, OCD, bipolar and schizophrenia diagnosis. My clinical research focused on delirium screening in long-term care facility. I am very much interested in educating patients and their families about mental health issues and always encourage them to stay compliant with the treatment plans to maximize their health benefits.
An Binder, RN
Nurse and Ketamine Infusion
An Binder has been a Registered Nurse since 2015. She graduated from De Anza College in Cupertino, CA. She is currently attending the University of Texas at Arlington to obtain her Bachelor’s degree in Nursing. She has previous experience in pre-operative and post-operative surgical care ranging in ENT to orthopedics to general surgery. She specializes in monitoring Ketamine infusions for treatment-resistant depression, here at Silicon Valley TMS. In her free time she enjoys reading, watching movies, hiking, and spending time with family and friends. She loves to learn new things and enjoys seeing people be the best they can be.
Laura Brash, LMFT
San Jose San Francisco
Laura Brash is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, who has been with Dr. Shakir’s practice since 2007. She holds an Honors MA in French and German Language and Literature from Glasgow University in Scotland, and an MA in Counseling Psychology from Santa Clara University. She works with adult individuals and couples and with older adolescents. She has experience of helping people with a broad range of issues, including depression, stress and anxiety, bipolar disorder, substance dependence, relationship problems, trauma, and grief and loss. She integrates techniques from different treatment modalities, and is flexible in her approach. She has advanced training in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and combines it with Mindfulness. She is also trained in EMDR.
Born in Scotland, Ms. Brash has lived and worked in a number of countries and cultures, and understands the challenges of immigration and assimilation. Before becoming a psychotherapist, she worked in education and in technology development, which allows her particular insight into work-related issues.
Ms. Brash speaks Spanish, French and German.
Anupama Nagaraj, MFT
San Jose Pleasanton
Anupama Nagaraj is a licensed psychotherapist who has worked with children, the adolescent population, adults, couples, and families for over 9 years. Ms. Nagaraj worked in community mental health supporting youth and families throughout the East Bay and San Francisco Bay Area. She has worked on mental health issues with youth and families in various systems including schools, the foster care system, juvenile justice and criminal justice systems. She has taught living skills courses to adults and families and has conducted research on programs that help pregnant and parenting youth improve parenting skills. Ms. Nagaraj has extensive experience with trauma, attachment, prenatal and postnatal mental health, depression, anxiety, substance abuse, and working with adolescent and adult populations. Ms. Nagaraj received her BA in Political Science with a minor in Education from UC San Diego and her MA in Counseling Psychology from Santa Clara University.