Casey is a licensed clinical social worker and psychotherapist who specializes in holistic and resilience-based models to help adults, children, and families cope with trauma, stress, and illness. A UC Davis Regents scholar, she received her BA in communications and managerial economics. She is certified in holistic techniques including traditional Chinese medicine, Nambudripad's Allergy Elimination Technique (NAET) and Reiki. She is business manager for the family-owned business, Scott Hersch Construction.
She has written two books, I Am Pawso and Running on a Broken Foot (coming soon), which integrate her years of experiences and professional training for both children and adults. She enjoys educating others on the Pawso Principles and Healing Wheel while providing consultation, one-on-one services, and creating group enrichment activities. Casey feels blessed to be taught and influenced by exemplary therapists, healers, social workers, and patients. Part of her service is integrating this information and giving it to the world.
"We all depend on each other.
Paying it forward is my mission"
Social work ethics are at the heart of Casey's work and she is a loyal human and animal advocate. She empowers people to be experts of their own lives and to find and use their voices. Her foundation draws from many modalities with the mind and body connection, attachment principles, and strength-based approaches at the heart. Trained in CSU Chico's School of Social Work generalist model, she is guided by systems theory. We don’t exist in isolation. Instead, we are affected by everything and everyone around us. Therefore, her approach looks at each person in their environment and how their unique situations affect their well-being. Casey does not believe in one-size-fits all solutions. Treatment should be tailored to each individual's history, goals, resources, culture, and strengths. Casey prioritizes creating a safe and nurturing space for learning, growing, and self-activation. She invests in building trusting relationships with her clients and colleagues because when humans feel seen, valued, and respected, mental health, self-esteem, and agency naturally follow.
"Physical and Mental Health Start When You Identify, Accept, and Incorporate All The Parts of YOU!"
The Path to Psychotherapist
Casey's journey to becoming a psychotherapist started in childhood. She lived in a home with abuse, domestic violence, and alcoholism. As an only child, she experienced first-hand what therapists call parentification: When a child "parents the parent" by meeting their parents' needs while sacrificing their own. Naturally, her stressful home made her keenly sensitive to her environment and deepened her empathy and emotional intelligence, which has positively served her as a therapist. Casey coped with her intense home life by escaping to the safety of her rural community. She volunteered, fundraised, and coordinated extracurricular outlets for residents and at-risk youth. She felt most alive when she played the piano for her community. She planned the music curriculum for Vacation Bible School, was piano accompanist for the Elementary and High school choirs, and entertained hospice patients and elders in care homes. She made a commitment early in life to help children and adults foster healthy neural pathways, empower communities in poverty, nurture and build her own resilience, and model and teach others how to overcome adversity.
Casey received national and local recognition for her community service from organizations such as the Soroptimist, Rotary, Elks, Masons, and Chamber of Commerce. Her service combined with her dedication to academics awarded her the honor as Valedictorian of her high school class. When she wasn't helping humans, she was volunteering as a cat rescuer and animal advocate.
At age eleven, she was fortunate, despite mental health stigma and financial hardships, to see a mental health therapist. Her therapist modeled the importance of unconditional love and acceptance and how to self-advocate. This positive therapy experience coupled with the community relationships Casey fostered provided a foundation for her lifelong commitment to mental health and self-care. She received her Master's Degree in Social Work from CSU Chico (2006) and was awarded the CSU Chico Social Worker of the Year Award. She immediately pursued licensure and has been offering psychotherapy and clinical social work services ever since.
Casey continues to volunteer her time in the community and supervises student interns working on volunteer community-based projects. Community service, she believes, should be part of everyone's life.
"When a relationship is created authentically and with unconditional positive regard, the power is immeasurable."
Social Work in the Workplace
Casey fulfilled diverse roles as a social worker in the Family Law system. She created high-conflict parenting classes and advocated on behalf of “children-in-the-middle” of divorce and parental conflict. She wrote grants, provided community outreach, facilitated groups, and offered one-on-one services. She was a primary county child custody investigator and supervised visitation coordinator who testified in court and made recommendations to the court regarding the best interests of children. With children front and center, she witnessed how many are lost in the system and never receive early interventions, which pave the way for health and adaptability. She worked for a non-profit, Youth For Change, where she intervened and learned from all ages and populations of peoples in different settings such as schools, group homes, resource centers, crisis centers, and psychotherapy facilities.
One of Casey's favorite projects was working in the community of Paradise (Camp Fire) and completing her thesis/community intervention Empowering Youth Voice in the Paradise Ridge Community. After many years of substance abuse overdoses and suicides plaguing the Paradise/Ridge community, Casey responded by joining the Renewing the Vision Community taskforce group. She completed a qualitative data analysis to understand what the community needed in order to stop the crisis. Through focus groups, interviews, and research from the Search Institute's 40 Developmental Assets, she provided a series of recommendations to the county, made by the youths themselves, to ameliorate the devastating problems. During this time, she studied ballroom dance's profound impact on youth resilience and continues to endorse ballroom dances many benefits for all ages.
She completed her licensure hours at Butte County Department of Behavioral Health Youth Services Division where she provided therapy and outreach services to youths and their caregivers. Her supervisor was a well-known expert in treating small children, in particular, using Play Therapy modalities with the 0-5 population. She credits this time as solidifying the importance of providing early interventions to young children and their caregivers. To expand her horizon, she joined the team at Northern Valley Indian Health as a lead clinician treating the Native American population and addressing the side effects of generational trauma. In this medical clinic, she acted as a bridge for the patients between their medical providers and behavioral health team. This intersection of healthcare and mental health and the evident need for integrative services paved the way for much of Casey's later work. She spent many years working for Gary Bess Associates as a grant writer, helping nonprofits secure resources for programs and also coordinating training for various counties and their behavioral health divisions. She was also a member of her county's Methamphetamine Strike Force.