Arroyo Grande Program Staff

Meet the treatment team at Aspire Counseling Services® in Arroyo Grande, CA
Joesph Ferra, M.S., LMFT, Executive Director - Aspire Counseling Services Arroyo Grande

Joseph Ferra

LMFT, Executive Director

Joseph Ferra has been providing counseling services for over 20 years. He began his career as a group counselor with probation and has continued working with adolescents, adults, and families in a wide variety of areas. He truly has a passion for helping people overcome individual obstacles in order to foster personal development and healthy relationships.

In 2004, Mr. Ferra received mediation training at UCLA and began his private practice, Family Mediation Associates, where he skillfully provides family reconciliation and divorce mediation services. Mr. Ferra has been honored to serve as the President of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Section of the Kern County Bar Association and as a mediation Panelist for the Superior Courts in Kern and Los Angeles Counties.

Prior to being promoted to his current position as Executive Director of Aspire Counseling Services®, Mr. Ferra held the esteemed positions of Clinical Program Manager for the Department of Psychiatry, Kaiser Permanente, San Francisco and Ventura.

A Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Mr. Ferra holds an Master’s of Science Degree in Counseling Psychology from California State University Bakersfield.

In his spare time Joe enjoys spending time with friends and family, playing guitar, riding motorcycles, and engaging in activities that promote health and fitness.

Dr. Thomas Dawes

MD, Medical Director

Thomas M Dawes, Jr, MD has been providing primary medical care on the Central Coast for over two decades. He holds a board certification in Family Medicine and is passionate about treating his patients through prevention (nutrition, exercise and mental wellness) instead of relying primarily on prescribed medication.

Not only is he still in private practice for over 17 years, he holds a Core Faculty Apointment in the Dignity Health Family Medicine Residency Program at Marian Regional Medical Center.

On a daily basis he sees the crucial need for patients to have access to addiction and behavioral health services to help create and/or restore their over-all wellbeing. As the Medical Director for Aspire, he will ensure that patients receive the best care.

Active in the community coaching his kid’s teams, participating in non-profits such as the Make-a-Wish Foundation, he loves to spend time with his kids and family. When he is able to carve out any extra time in a day he enjoys paint ball, paddle boarding, and yoga.

Our Locations

Bakersfield, CA
Aspire Counseling Services®
Aspire Behavioral Health

Arroyo Grande
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Accreditations & Certifications

The Joint Commission National Quality Approval Seal
DHCS Logo - California Department of Health Care Services Certified