Education & Experience


  • B.S. 1978 – Psychology – University of California, San Diego
  • M.S. 1988 – Clinical Psychology – San Diego State University
  • M.A. 1991 – Counseling Psychology – University of Humanistic Studies
  • Honors: Valedictorian Speaker

Selected Achievements

Designed and developed a Comprehensive Evidence Based Treatment Program for Private Practitioners Treating Opiate Dependence with Buprenorphine (Suboxone)

Developed and implemented a highly confidential Student and Staff Assistance Program for Thomas Jefferson School of Law that has successfully provided hundreds of law students with support services throughout the last ten years and the school with a counseling program required for Bar Accreditation

Co-Founder and Clinical Administrator – California Stepfamily Institute – Developed a multiple family group treatment program. Authored a column entitled “Stepfamily Life” which received an award for excellence from the “Study Web”. Guest Speaker on “These Days” A KPBS Radio Talk Show – “Stepfamily Siblings and Dynamics.”

Nationally recognized Intervention Specialist – Facilitated “The Move to Change” Basic/Advanced Intervention Seminar in Conjunction with Dr. Vernon Johnson for UCSD and Scripps Memorial Hospital McDonald Center. Consultant for Nationally Acclaimed Video “Intervention: Help is at Hand” for Project Drug Free. Performed hundreds of interventions.

Continuing Ed. Instructor – Substance Abuse Disorders – Calif. Assoc. of Marriage and Family Therapists – CAMFT

Clinical MFT Intern Supervisor – Intern passed both written and oral tests on first attempt and is now employed in a 30 hour/week managed care position and a part time private practice


Professional Experience

1988 – Present Marriage and Family Therapist – Private Practice – Solana Beach and San Diego, California Incorporated in 1996, David L. Christopher, A Psychotherapy Corporation providing individual, couples, group, and family counseling and therapy.

Using a comprehensive and common sense approach, assisted thousands of individuals, couples and families to become more effective communicators, establish stronger relationships and feel more satisfied with their day to day lives.

Recognized as a court-level expert in substance abuse treatment and assessment. Clients received counseling and family therapy for addictive disorders. Intervention services have continued into private practice and have been integrated into family treatment when appropriate.

Effectively managed all business, legal, clinical, marketing and administrative aspects of a corporate private practice to insure a ROI and strong community reputation throughout the last thirteen years.

1986 – 1988 Scripps Memorial Hospital, McDonald Center for Drug and Alcohol Treatment – La Jolla, California.

Trained concerned family members in the effective use of intervention strategies and facilitated hundreds of family interventions with family members of alcoholics and addicts resulting in a high admission percentage and an important revenue stream for the hospital.

Developed and delivered highly effective lectures, workshops, and information sessions – Provided over two hundred and fifty presentations on intervention and substance abuse to various professionals and local groups.

1983 – 1986 Scripps Memorial Hospital, McDonald Center for Drug and Alcohol Treatment – La Jolla, California.

As a founding staff member of this prestigious treatment program, researched relapse prevention models and implemented Terry Gorski’s now famous Relapse Prevention Model. Provided clinical follow-up and relapse prevention with patients.

Designed and implemented a state of the art computerized aftercare tracking system and patient database – managed a large hospital volunteer staff, providing instruction in computer usage and techniques.

Early Clinical Positions

  • 1982 – 1983 Scripps Memorial Hospital, Chronic Pain Treatment Center – La Jolla, California
    Implemented state-of-the-art BioLab comprehensive computerized biofeedback system and accompanying microcomputer database. Administered cognitive-behavioral stress management protocol with chronic pain patients.
  • 1982 – 1983 San Luis Rey Psychiatric Hospital – Encinitas, California
    Responsible for intake and initial assessment of psychiatric patients for a locked intensive-care unit.
  • Assisted in care of patients with severe thought and mood disorders. Interviewed family members as part of comprehensive case presentation.
  • 1978 – 1979 Veterans Administration Hospital, Mental Health Clinic Research Center – La Jolla, CA
    Performed neuropsychological assessment of adult psychiatric inpatients using the Halstead-Reitan Neuropsychological battery, WAIS, MMPI and structured interviews.
  • 1978 – 1979 The Bridge, Adolescent Crisis House – San Diego, California
  • Provided face to face and telephone counseling with adolescents in crisis.

Professional Associations

Clinical Fellow, American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (AAMFT)

Clinical Member, California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT)

Personal & Other Professional

  • Married thirty years with two great adult children
  • Four Time Marathon Finisher Including the 2004 Chicago Marathon
  • Co-Founder Study Depot Tutoring Center
  • Founder Study Depot Extra Mile College Scholarships
  • Founder & CEO Local Expert Systems, Inc
  • Adjunct Faculty – Palomar College Cabinet & Furniture Technology Program
  • Recipient of San Diego Fine Woodworker’s Scholarship for Excellence
  • Recipient of Woodworking Special Award for Best of Show within Class at Del Mar Fair
  • Awarded Patent by the United States Patent and Trademark Office, December, 2011 “Local Directory Network”