ChildHealing.com was developed by a group of professionals whose clinical expertise is matched only by their compassion and their desire to promote healthy families. We warmly invite you to learn more about the people behind the scenes.
- Richard P. Fitzgibbons, M.D.
- Peter C. Kleponis, Ph.D., L.P.C.
- Neal R. Niznan, M. Div,, M.S.W.
- Thomas F. O'Brien, Ph.D., Ed.D.
- Ian Buterbaugh, L.S.W.
Dr. Rick Fitzgibbons is the director of the Institute for Marital Healing outside Philadelphia and has worked with several thousand couples and families over the past 40 years. Trained in psychiatry at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and the Philadelphia Child Guidance Center, he participated in cognitive therapy research with Aaron T. Beck, M.D.
In November 2014 the second edition of his American Psychological Association Book on the treatment of excessive anger in adult and child psychiatric disorders was published and was retitled Forgiveness Therapy: An Empirical Guide for Resolving Anger and Restoring Hope. This book was coauthored with Robert D. Enright, Ph.D., professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
A former president of the American Psychological Association, Dr. Frank Farley, endorsement on the cover reads, “This ground breaking book by forgiveness pioneers Enright and Fitzgibbons elevates forgiveness therapy to its rightful place among the important psychotherapies of our time.”
The child chapter in this book uncovers the excessive anger present in most child psychiatric disorders and describes the benefits of forgiveness therapy in their treatment.
He has given many conferences on uncovering and resolving anger in youth to parents groups, teachers, school counselors and school administrators. An article that he coauthored with Dr. Enright and Dr. Tom O’Brien, on addressing excessive anger in the classroom, Learning to Forgive in the Classroom, was published by the American School Board Journal. He is on the Pediatric Psychosocial Development Committee of the American College of Pediatricians, www.acpeds.org.
Dr. Fitzgibbons is a consultant to the International Forgiveness Institute's research projects of addressing excessive anger through forgiveness education programs in elementary, middle and high school youth in Belfast, N. Ireland, in central city Milwaukee and other countries with Robert Enright, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin.
Divorce prevention and the treatment of the children of divorce have been a major priority for us. Dr. Fitzgibbons presented a paper entitled, The Traumatic Effects of Divorce on Masculine and Feminine Development in Children and Teenagers, at a two day conference on this topic at the St. John Paul II Institute for Studies in Marriage and Family at Catholic University of America in 2012.
In 2015 we launched a new website in our efforts to protect marriages, youth and families, www.childrenofdivorcehealing.com.
Dr. Rick Fitzgibbons has been an adjunct professor at the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for the Studies of Marriage and Family at the Catholic University of America, Washington, DC and a consultor to the Vatican's Congregation for the Clergy.
Dr. Peter Kleponis is a Licensed Clinical Therapist and Assistant Director of Comprehensive Counseling Services in Conshohocken, PA. He holds an M.A. in Clinical-Counseling Psychology from LaSalle University in Philadelphia, PA and a Ph.D. in General Psychology from Capella University in Minneapolis, MN. His doctoral thesis evaluated the relationship
between narcissism and spiritual well-being in 200 Roman Catholic
Dr. Kleponis has over 18 years of professional experience working with individuals, couples, families, priests, religious, seminarians and organizations. He specializes in marriage & family therapy, pastoral counseling, resolving anger, men’s issues, and pornography addiction recovery. He is Certified in the Diagnosis and Treatment of Sexual Addictions by The American Association of Christian Counselors' Light University and by Dr. Mark Laaser's Freedom Begins Here Program.
Dr. Kleponis is founder of the successful Integrity Restored Recovery Program for pornography addiction. He travels extensively throughout the U.S. and abroad educating people on how to win the battle against pornography through his Fighting Porn in Our Culture and Winning! conference program. He has presented conferences to numerous dioceses, colleges, seminaries, religious communities, parent’s groups and other Catholic organizations.
Dr. Kleponis has also been a guest on EWTN television programs such as Women of Grace, Franciscan University Presents, and Crossing the Goal, and is a regular guest on Relevant Radio’s On Call program and Catholic Answers. He is author of two books: The Pornography Epidemic: A Catholic Approach (2012, Simon Peter Press) and Integrity Restored: Helping Catholics Win the Battle Against Pornography, 2014, Emmaus Road Publishing.
Neal is a master's level licensed social worker. He also holds a master's degree in Pastoral Ministry from Immaculate Conception Seminary at Seton Hall University. He received certificate training in family therapy from the Multicultural Family Institute of New Jersey.
Over the past fourteen years Neal has provided therapy for individuals, couples, and families throughout northern New Jersey and the Southeastern Pennsylvania. He recently expanded the scope of his clinical practice to individuals and families coping with life threatening illness and issues of bereavement through his affiliation with the Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania.
Dr. O'Brien received his graduate degrees from Villanova University, Immaculata University, Saint Joseph University, Southwest University and Holy Family University. His majors include: Counseling Psychology, Educational Administration and Leadership, Counseling, Guidance and Student Services, Elementary and Secondary Education and Pastoral Theology. He is licensed to practice in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Dr. O'Brien holds several certifications in both states that include elementary, secondary, supervision, administration and superintendency. As a life-long educator and learner, he has taught at all levels of education including elementary, secondary, undergraduate, graduate and doctoral level courses. He has served on dissertation committees and as Chair. He has been recognized as a Nationally Certified Psychologist. He is a member of many boards and commissions and has authored several articles in addition to giving numerous workshops and conferences. Dr. O'Brien was previously the Superintendent of Schools for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and is presently an associate Dean at Immacualta University. He was ordained a deacon in 1988.
Ian Buterbaugh has extensive experience with youth & young adults, both from his educational and professional experience, and from his previous professional experience as a college campus minister and as the assistant coordinator of CYO for the Diocese of Allentown, and as a Theology teacher at a diocesan high school. Ian also has clinical experience with marital and family conflicts.
Ian takes an eclectic approach to clinical mental health, recognizing the uniqueness of each individual. He particularly focuses on insight-oriented therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, and forgiveness therapy. Ianís passion for integrating an authentic anthropology into the mental health field drives his mission of being an excellent clinician. His theological studies have greatly influenced his worldview, certainly including the writings of Pope St. John Paul II, and especially his Theology of the Body. Ian received a Masterís of Social Work from Marywood University, and is a Licensed Social Worker through the state of Pennsylvania.
Ian spent 2 Ĺ years as a seminarian for the Diocese of Wilmington, which is where he earned a degree in Theology. Before entering into the seminary, Ian studied theatre at DeSales University, and worked for 5 years in theatre.