4333 California St., San Francisco, CA 94118
 (415) 831-4339

Raya Smail: Russian, Hebrew Speaking Psychotherapist in San Francisco

I have received my BA degree in liberal studies from Tel Aviv 
University in 1998.


My training as a therapist began with a master’s degree in
psychology  Dominican University of San Rafael, in 1995.


Subsequently, I have trained and worked in a variety of clinical

settings in San Francisco, which afforded me the opportunity to
gain experience in working with diverse clinical and ethnic



Psychology Intern, Sunset Mental Health Services, San


The Sunset Mental Health clinic was the setting for my first

encounter with the massive wave of Russian-speaking
immigrants that
came to San Francisco in the 90s.  There were
very few Russian-
speaking clinicians at the time, and little
experience with the particular
needs of this new population. 
Since psychiatry was associated with a 
great deal of shame
and stigma in the former Soviet Union, the
challenge was to
modify the American model of mental health in such
a way that
it is culturally sensitive and acceptable.  In addition to the
traditional short and long-term individual and group therapy, we

developed tools for crisis intervention, case management,
and processing of Social Security disability claims,
and psychosocial 
therapy for Russian-speaking clients. 

The Sunset Mental Health clinic was also my first experience
working with the more sever spectrum of psychiatric disorders,
well as dual diagnosis patients, with drug and alcohol issues.


Psychology Fellow, UCSF/Mount Zion Outpatient Psychiatry Department


Here, I continued working with adults, mostly monolingual,

Russian-speaking émigrés. Psychedelically oriented long and

short-term work with patients suffering from major depression,
bipolar illness, somatoform disorders and anxiety disorders.  A
of my practice was devoted to providing therapy and
counseling for women recently diagnosed with breast cancer as well as those in the metastatic stage of the disease.


Psychotherapist, UCSF-CPMC Psychosocial/Lifestyle Intervention Trial for Breast Cancer


Provide group psychotherapy for women recently diagnosed
with breast cancer, as part of a research trial designed to
compare the efficacy of individualized vs. an integrated
intensive support program for women with breast cancer.                     


Psychotherapist RAMS—Richmond Area Multi Cultural Services


Psychotherapy and case management to Russian speaking
with Axis I and Axis II diagnosis.  Supervision for MFT
trainees and 


Mental Health Counselor and Russian Program Coordinator

Geriatric Services, Family Service Agency of San Francisco


Coordinate a comprehensive mental health program for
Russian speaking  seniors (age 60+) émigrés
from the former Soviet 
Union. Program components: day
treatment, outpatient counseling, 
home visits, medication
management, case management and referrals. 


Psycho-educator, Kaiser Permanente Medical Group, San Francisco


Lead a four-week educational group for patients with chronic insomnia, based on a cognitive behavioral model.


Counseling Trainee, Marin Rape Crisis Center


Crisis intervention services for clients in acute distress following
incident of rape or sexual assault.  Ongoing individual and
therapy for rape victims and sexual abuse survivors.
referrals and arranged for emergency services. 
Assisted clients
in working with the criminal justice system to
obtain restraining
orders, determine victim-witness eligibility, etc.






1992-1995       Dominican College of San Rafael, Department 
Counseling Psychology

                        Master of Science Degree in Counseling Psychology


1984-1988       Tel -Aviv University, dual BA degrees,

                        History and Political Science




1995                 Outstanding Student Award”,

                        Dept. of Counseling Psychology,

                        Dominican College, San Rafael





1993-Present CAMFT—California Association of Marriage

                                         and Family Therapists


1999-20004 School for Lacanian Psychoanalysis, Berkeley.


2005-Present NCSPP, San Francisco

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