Elizabeth (Betsy) Ritzman, Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor

Elizabeth (Betsy) was trained at Kansas State University (M.S.) and McCormick Theological Seminary (M.Div.) in counseling and psychotherapy. She is licensed to practice in the state of Illinois and is a member of the American Association of Pastoral Counselors. She has been trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) for in-person and virtual settings and for group processing of traumatic incidents. Her fascination with the process of human maturation, intimacy, and couples dynamics led her to specialize in couples therapy for the past 10 years.

She practices the art and science of psychotherapy which is a form of listening and reflecting that engages our capacity to heal and transform the Self, our relationships as well as problems that undermine our mental health and wellness. It is useful for individuals, families, and couples. It creates a safe space where the story of one’s life can unfold and become open for change.

As a health care justice advocate, she articulates the moral imperative for communities to respond with integrity to the magnitude of violence, stigmatized diagnoses, and health care gaps facing our disenfranchised neighbors globally and across the Chicago metro area. Her experience has included building services addressing compromised mental health, the HIV epidemic, and those facing AIDS, breast cancer, diabetes, asthma, infant mortality, and teen pregnancy. She designs and implements model programs integrating spiritual care, mental health, education, and community outreach into comprehensive, community-based treatment programs.

She is a leader and ally for faith communities seeking to build health ministries and healthy congregations, especially as a response to disparities in resources and outcomes for chronic diseases, mental health and addiction issues, and the crisis in access to health care.

A native of rural Kansas, she is an ordained minister in the American Baptist Churches of the USA, a pastoral counselor, and a licensed clinical professional counselor in Illinois.  Previously Betsy directed Midwest Resources, a church-based counseling practice with nine locations in metro Chicago, and the AIDS Pastoral Care Network at Access Community Health Network.