Team of Professionals

Mount Vernon Counseling Center

Ehsan Habibpour, MD

Medical Director

Child and Adolescent and Adult Psychiatrist

Dr. Habibpour is a professional psychiatrist with training in Child, Adolescent, and Adult Psychiatry. He began working with the prestigious George Washington Psychiatry Department in 2014 as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and then started teaching a course in Child Psychiatry.

He has a strong educational background in his field. After attending a top medical school in Iran Dr. Habibpour was able to complete his Adult Psychiatry Residency at the Medical College of Virginia in Richmond, VA. He then continued his training by pursuing a Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, TX. The Fellowship taught Dr. Habibpour about the normal development of children and how childhood experiences can affect us in the future.

While practicing psychotherapy, Dr. Habibpour has mastered treatment with psychiatric medications. Witnessing the many areas of exciting progress in the field of psychiatry over the last decade has given him the chance to familiarize himself with the most up-to-date medications. Dr. Habibpour’s approach to helping his patients involves the integration of both medications and psychotherapy for the most efficient and effective results. Often times the emotional and behavioral styles people use to protect themselves during childhood carry over into their adulthood. These behaviors may be helpful during childhood, but they are no longer needed in adulthood. To achieve an effective change, one must first explore those feelings and behavioral styles.

Dr. Habibpour has also developed an interest in helping those with anxiety and mood disorders, and gained experience in treating eating disorders. A major area of interest for him is the role of culture and ethnicity in emotional disturbances. He had a chance to study this overlap and learn about it because of the cultural diversity to which he was exposed over the course of his life. His passion was reflected in the paper he co-wrote: “The Treatment of Depression in Culturally Diverse Children and Adolescents.” (Sunita M. Stewart, Alex Simmons, and Ehsan Habibpour. Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology. February 2012, 22(1): 72-79. doi:10.1089/cap.2011.0051.). He is pursuing that passion through his involvement with The Global Mental Health Project at George Washington Psychiatry Department.

Over the years of his practice, Dr. Habibpour has experienced and appreciated the importance of therapeutic relationships. Self-determination, resilience and the power of meaningful relationships are the key factors that nourish human growth.

Sara Bahraini, M.D.

Child, Adolescent and Adult Psychiatrist

I am a board-certified psychiatrist with expertise in treating children, adolescents and young adults. Whether you are seeking help for yourself or you are a parent, seeking help for your child, I value the trust you place in me when taking that step. I provide care that is culturally-sensitive, trauma-informed, LGBT-inclusive and highly-individualized to your needs. I treat a wide range of concerns through a tailored combination of psychotherapy and/or medications. My particular strengths and areas of interest include anxiety disorders, depression, insomnia, ADHD, gender dysphoria, selective mutism and childhood medical trauma, among many others.

As a physician, I provide a holistic assessment for potential medical, dietary, environmental and lifestyle factors that could be affecting your mental health. I am also trained in the judicious and evidence-based use of medications when appropriate. If medications may be beneficial, we can discuss your options and together pick the medication that is right for you.

As a therapist, I seek to support your journey to mental wellness with kindness, empathy and dignity. Through therapy, we can identify and challenge unhelpful habits and patterns of thinking that present difficulties at work, home, school and in social settings. I employ principles of cognitive and dialectical behavioral therapies as well as motivational techniques to deepen self-awareness and inspire change. Together we can devise a practical treatment plan that plays to your strengths, addresses your everyday challenges, and helps you achieve your goals.

When working with youth, I take a collaborative approach with families, schools and pediatricians to devise creative solutions for a wide variety of emotional, behavioral and learning difficulties. I employ an engaging approach that helps children and teens feel heard and encourages them to take an active role in their treatment, strengthening their relationships with their families and educators in the process.

Watching friends and loved ones suffer with mental illness and struggle to find professional help is what compelled me to enter the field. I received my B.A. in psychology from American University and my M.D. from the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine. I completed my adult psychiatry training and my child and adolescent psychiatry fellowship at the University of Maryland/Sheppard Pratt program in Baltimore, MD. As a native of Falls Church, I’m excited to offer mental health services in the DMV region.

Bobby W. Nelson, M.D., D.L.F.A.P.A.

Board-certified Psychiatrist

Bobby W. Nelson, M.D., D.L.F.A.P.A., is a Board certified psychiatrist who has practiced adult psychotherapy with individuals and couples for more than 47 years, utilizing a variety of therapeutic approaches adapted to the needs of the individual patient or couple. Following his medical degree from the Medical College of Virginia (MCV, now part of Virginia Commonwealth University), he served at the NIMH Clinical Research Center in Lexington, Kentucky as an officer in the United States Public Health Service. He then returned to MCV for his residency in psychiatry.

He has been in continuous practice following residency. His work has increasingly focused over the years on the central and often under-analyzed roles of expectation, resentment and loneliness in human suffering, and assisting his patients in facing those emotions in a way that overcomes the obstacles in their lives. He also focuses on helping patients realize how childhood habits and events may currently impinge on their symptoms, which he has found results in greater self- awareness of their habits as an adult. This is particularly powerful where such unresolved childhood issues have subconsciously led to anger, depression and anxiety.

Dr. Nelson additionally enjoys helping his patients break through inter-personal communication barriers. His prior work supervising psychiatric residents with their psychotherapy cases further informed him about the imperfections inherent in language assumptions by both therapist and patient, and he has dedicated a great deal of his practice to overcoming those imperfections in therapeutic ways.
His work in prior years with the Psychiatric Society of Virginia in several positions, including President, resulted in his achieving the honor of Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. He enjoys continuing to gather knowledge from his peer clinicians and, most importantly, from his patients who bring a wide range of important problems to his table.

Susan Nelson, L.C.S.W.

Individual (Adults) and Couples Therapist

Susan Nelson completed her undergraduate degree at Hood College and her master’s degree in social work at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) School of Social Work. She also completed a post-master’s program at Smith College. Ms. Nelson has been in private practice for 45 years.

Ms. Nelson enjoys working with her clients to develop treatment goals and facilitate personal growth in their lives. She uses an eclectic approach integrating a developmental perspective in exploring family of origin issues as they relate to the client’s presenting concerns. Her style is collaborative, empathic, practical and interpersonal. Ms. Nelson often incorporates attachment theory, the development of emotional boundaries, and the power of gratitude in her work with individuals as well as with couples. She has found the principles of Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) particularly helpful in her work with couples. Her long-term interest in the unique features of women’s issues has evolved with the changes in society. She has also found the research by Brené Brown on shame and vulnerability provides useful language to alleviate self-doubt, anxiety and depression. Ms. Nelson also works with clients around the experiences of grief and loss, including the loss of a pet. Her decades of experience have offered her the opportunity to help clients deal with their uniquely complicated life issues.

Kehinde A. Oyekan MSN, PMHNP-BC

Board Certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Adolescent and Adult Psychiatry

I am a Board Certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, with training and years of experience treating patient with psychiatric disorder across the spectrum in outpatient clinics. I have over 16 years’ experience in the medical field. My medical experience as well as Intensive Care Unit experience illustrated the gap between medical and psychiatric care and how the mind / body connection is often ignored. These gaps in care encouraged me to pursue a psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner certificate at Walden University, so I could develop a practice that integrated medicine and mental health for the most effective treatment.
My approach to treatment is to first listen carefully to my patient’s concerns, needs, and expectations for treatment. I also ask about any other symptoms and try to get a full history of his or her stressors, past medical history, and general social history. I feel it is important to understand the whole story of my patient. The narrative and the story enables me to understand my patients in depth.
In my experience, I believe a patient and his or her provider need to have a two-way relationship. I want to make sure my patients are comfortable with their treatment and care plans. I always discuss what medication options are available, the relevant risks vs. benefits, and if there are alternatives such
as psychotherapy that will help. I strongly believe that combining both is usually the most effective plan.
As a Board certified Nurse Practitioner practicing in Psychiatry, my role includes getting to know your whole life story, your current concerns as well as diagnosis, and whether my prescribing medication makes sense for you. My practice approach is a mix of prescribing up to date psychiatric medications and alternative natural treatments including but not limited to vitamins, supplements, lifestyle modification- diet, exercise, etc. I will always discuss with you what medication options are available, their risks vs. benefits, and if there are alternatives such as psychotherapy that would also help. I strongly believe the combination of medication and psychotherapy is usually the most effective however the decision of what’s the right choice of treatment approach is a joined decision.
My attitude is to always first listen very carefully to all your concerns and to find out what your expectations are for treatment. I will also go over any associated symptoms and get a clear history of your stressors, past medical history and general social history. I believe it is important for me to fully understand you.
At Mountvernon Counseling Center I work alongside our team of psychiatrists and therapists in order to meet your specific needs. We consult and collaborate closely to provide an optimal care for you. If you are suffering from anxiety, depression, trauma or issues with focus and concentration, or daily life stressors, please call to schedule a consultation. We will be able to review your concerns in order to give you what you need.
I’ve lived in Maryland since 2011, I enjoy traveling, cooking and spending time with my family.

Atina Sullivan DNP, PMHNP-BC

Board Certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner

As a Nurse Practitioner practicing in Psychiatry I believe that caring for the whole patient by focusing on improving overall health increases an individual’s chance for recovery and enhances the therapeutic relationship. I also like to work with individuals on lifestyle improvements to reduce the need for medication to the minimal amount necessary. My practice philosophy is to consider carefully a mix of prescribing up to date psychiatric medications combined with necessary therapy intervention. I strongly believe a patient and his or her provider have to be a right fit and build an essential relationship that will enable them to tackle the challenges.

I developed a passion for helping others when I was in training and have been working in healthcare in various capacities for many years. I have been working to promote mental health since 2012 and have had a range of wonderful experiences that have shaped my current practice today. I have experience treating child, adolescent, and adult populations since I graduated from George Mason University’s Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner program.

During years of my practice, I primarily focused on adult medication management, group therapies, and development of positive coping skills to improve distress tolerance. Most recently, I have worked as the Medical Director in outpatient psychiatric rehabilitation program.
I currently work with all age groups and enjoy the different challenges that each population brings.

At Mountvernon Counseling Center I work closely with our team of psychiatrists and therapists in order to meet your specific needs. We consult and collaborate closely to provide optimal care for you. If you are suffering from anxiety, depression, trauma, issues with focus and concentration, or daily life stressors, please call to schedule a consultation. We will be able to review your concerns in order to give you what you need.

In my free time I enjoy reading, traveling, and shopping. I am married and have two young sons that I adore.

Mary June C. So

Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, DNP, PMHNP, -BC

I am a Board-Certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP-BC) licensed in Maryland and Virginia. I received my Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) from Georgetown University and my Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) from GMU. My training and experience include treating individuals with psychiatric disorders across practice settings, both inpatient and outpatient. I assess and treat adults and young adults with depression, anxiety, and attention-deficit disorders.

I am committed to giving care that is not only personalized but also comprehensive. I provide medication management with special attention to one’s needs, including consideration for each person’s history, his/her specific context, as well as each individual’s particular concerns or fears about medication.

I approach each interaction with my clients with patience, warmth, understanding and helpful explanations and education that facilitate treatment and the individual’s sense of comfort and trust. I use a flexible, integrative and collaborative approach in order to meet the needs and desired outcomes of each client.

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