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Murrieta Team ~ In Person & Telehealth available

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Judith Villanueva, AMFT

Associate Marriage and Family Therapist Supervised by Esther De La Cruz, LMFT


Judith Villanueva is an Associate Marriage and Family Therapist who earned her Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from the California Baptist University. Judith provides therapeutic services to children, youth, teenagers and adults. Judith has experience working with people who have dealt with anxiety, panic attacks, depression, adjustment disorders, and trauma. She provides services in English and Spanish. Her passion is to support individuals through their journey and support them in overcoming obstacles they experience along the way. Judith joined the Murrieta team in 2023 and looks forward to working with you and your family 

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Kailey Raines, ASW

Associate Clinical Social Worker Supervised by Erica McDaniel, LCSW


Kailey is committed to helping children, adolescents, and families to increase and sustain both individual growth and connection with others. Kailey is an ASW who received her Masters in Social Work from CSU San Marcos and has a diverse background including working in residential care, inpatient hospitalization programs, elementary, middle, and high school settings, and various community-based services. Kailey takes a strengths-based approach to counseling, and utilizes evidence-based modalities, such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) to treat mood and anxiety disorders, self-esteem, adjustment, and stress. Kailey joined the team in 2023 to provide individual and family counseling to children, teens and families in a supportive environment.

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Marylynn Nieves, LPCC

Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor


Are you concerned about your child or teen? Marylynn is dedicated to assisting children and adolescents navigate issues such as mood and anxiety disorders, trauma, self-esteem, and stress. She utilizes evidenced based processes of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy and Play Therapy to take a holistic approach to therapy. As a first generation Latina and bilingual therapist, Marylynn understands the importance of taking a cultural lens to issues and is passionate about breaking the stigma within communities of color. Marylynn has lots experience working alongside families to provide psychoeducation and tools that support the overall well being of the family unit. Marylynn's approach to therapy is warm, person-centered and non-judgmental. Her extremely personable and innate ability to establish trust and build rapport has led to success in providing services to children, adolescents and their families. Marylynn obtained her Bachelor's Degree in Sociology from California State University, Fullerton and her Masters in Educational and Clinical Counseling from Azusa Pacific University. Marylynn joined Grow Through Life Counseling in 2022 to provide care to families in Murrieta and the surrounding communities. 

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Kawika Kahihikolo, APCC

Associate Professional Clinical Counselor Supervised by Esther De La Cruz, LMFT


Kawika enjoys working with clients of all ages and backgrounds. Mentoring and supporting youth is a huge part of his  life. He is a 25-year Navy veteran and his passion for mentoring and guiding junior sailors was evident in various education settings, working with students in K-12, their families, and the community. Kawika graduated from Azusa Pacific University with a Master of Art in Education, Clinical Counseling and a credentialed School Counselor (PPSC). Kawika’s training includes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Family Systems Therapy, and Person-Centered Therapy. As a therapist, Kawika focuses on a person-centered approach. He uses his experience in the Navy combined with experience in the education system to connect with clients who are working through a variety of issues including anxiety, depression, grief, transitions, social concerns and learning challenges. In his free time, he loves camping, going to the beach with his family, grilling, and listening to audiobooks. Kawika believes in giving back to his community and joined Grow Through Life Counseling in 2022 serving the Murrieta and surrounding communities.

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Marlena Galippo, LMFT

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist 


Marlena has over 6 years of experience providing therapy to children, teens, young adults, adults, families, and couples. Marlena has expertise in  working with the following: foster youth and families, trauma, depression, anxiety, and grief. Marlena uses an eclectic theoretical approach. However, some theoretical approaches most often used are, Narrative Therapy, Satir’s Family Communication, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Gestalt/Experiential Therapy, and Solution Focused approach.  Marlena enjoys incorporating expressive therapy that could include utilizing art, play, music, and poetry. She understands that talk therapy can be challenging and may take other forms of creative expression to express the matters of the heart. Marlena has a desire to walk alongside each of her client’s, providing encouragement and a non-judgmental space, so that clients can navigate through various areas of their life. Marlena is available to provide in person and Telehealth services. Marlena has a Master’s Degree from Azusa Pacific University and is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. Marlena joined Grow Through Life Counseling in 2022. 


Kelly Ross, LPCC

Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor


Kelly graduated from Loma Linda University with a Masters of Science in Counseling and is a LicensedProfessional Clinical Counselor (LPCC 9953) and certified School Counselor (PPS).   

Kelly has worked in a variety of settings, including; middle and high schools, partial hospitalization

programs, intensive outpatient programs, and mental health hospitals. Kelly has an extensive history of working with adolescents and various diagnoses. She has been thoroughly trained in Dialectical

Behavioral Therapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Kelly uses her creativity and enthusiasm for the field to provide fun and informative psycho-education groups.  Aside from clinical work, Kelly has an extensive history of working with the public and providing assistance with government aid. Kelly utilizes her sense of humor and strong communication skills to foster connection with clients and their family. Kelly’s background in professional communication has enabled her to effectively advocate for the needs of her clients. Kelly is very passionate towards therapy and has dedicated herself to a career designed to work with those in need.

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Esther De La Cruz, LMFT, RPT-S

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Registered Play Therapist Supervisor 


Esther is passionate about supporting children, teens and families navigate through challenges of their social emotional development. Her integrated background in mental health, early childhood education and child development has allowed her to help children and teens who struggle with anxiety, self-regulation, anger, depression, special needs, challenging behavior, self-esteem issues,  and trauma. She uses play therapy to help children express their needs and resolve their challenges when words are difficult. In addition to her degree, she holds a Child Development Program Director Credential. She also has a certificate in Play Therapy. She is a Certified Positive Discipline Parent & Classroom Educator and a Child Development instructor at a technical college. She looks forward to supporting your child, teen and family to acquire new skills to help him/her succeed in the areas important to your life. Esther also enjoys supporting adults through times of transition including divorce, grief and loss and relational changes. Esther also works with couples to heal and create a more loving and supportive environment. Esther is Bilingual and offers counseling services in both English and Spanish.

Murrieta Leadership Team

Clinical Manager & Supervisor: Esther De La Cruz

Murrieta Location

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