Master Presenter

Arlene (Ari) Istar LevArlene (Ari) Istar Lev LCSW-R, CASAC, is a social worker, family therapist, educator, and writer whose work addresses the unique therapeutic needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. She is the Founder and Clinical Director of Choices Counseling and Consulting and The Institute for Gender, Relationships, Identity, and Sexuality (TIGRIS), a training program in Albany, New York, Arlene has been a part-time lecturer at the State University New York at Albany, School of Social Welfare for the past 27 years, and is also an adjunct at Empire College and Smith School of Social Work. Additionally, she is the Clinical Supervisor for Center Support: Counseling Services, a low-cost therapy program at the Capital District Gay and Lesbian Community Council, and the Founder of Rainbow Access Initiative, a training program on LGBT issues for therapists and medical professional.

Arlene’s expertise is in issues related to sexual and gender identity issues; the focus of her work includes traditional psychotherapeutic modalities, within a feminist and family systems framework. Arlene has authored numerous journal articles and essays including authoring two books: The Complete Lesbian and Gay Parenting Guide and Transgender Emergence: Therapeutic Guidelines for Working with Gender-Variant People and their Families, winner of the American Psychological Association (Division 44) Distinguished Book Award, 2006.

Arlene serves on the editorial Boards of The Journal of GLBT Family Studies, The Journal of Lesbian Studies and The Journal of Transgenderism. She is an active member of the National Association of Social Workers, the World Professional Association for Transgender Health, the American Psychological Association and the American Family Therapy Academy, where she was the 2011 Conference Chair. Arlene has written extensively on LGBT parenting issues, and her work is available on her website:


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