Paul J. Lesnik, LCSW, TEP is in private practice in San Diego CA. As an Executive Director for a Drug and Alcohol Treatment Facility in Florida, he developed an Expressive Therapies track with Psychodramatic interventions as its cornerstone. Paul has worked much of his career to explore the lives of those often marginalized in society (individuals with disabilities, people in recovery from addiction and the LGBT community) through arts experiences.
Paul has worked passionately to expose undergraduate and graduate students in mental health and social work to the expressive therapies. A frequent presenter and adjunct faculty member for several universities, Paul won Adjunct Faculty Member of the Year at Florida Atlantic University in 2010. He was recognized for his innovative and engaging teaching style that incorporates action methods.
Paul directed Accessible Arts, a not-for-profit agency dedicated to enhancing the lives of children with disabilities through the arts for 6 years. Accessible Arts proved to be a turning point, as the intersection of the arts and psychotherapy proved to be the impetus to create a life marked by service to others and a belief that the arts can heal. Under Paul's direction, Accessible Arts won the 1998 Kansas Governor's Arts Award. On leaving Kansas City, Paul was awarded a certificate of appreciation from the Kansas State Board of Education for making a difference in the lives of Kansas children.
While at Compass, the Gay and Lesbian Community Center of Palm Beach County, Paul worked with LGBT youth and their families and later became their first in-house provider of mental health services through Ryan White funding. In this role, Paul provided psychotherapeutic sessions to HIV positive men and woman and their families and members of the LGBT community. Paul also presented workshops for youth, mental health professionals and teachers. Paul was the 2008 ASGPP Neil Passariello Workshop Presenter, an honor for significant achievement working with HIV+ men and women, at the annual conference.
Paul served as an Executive Council member of the American Society of Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama for 2 years. Paul was honored as a Fellow of the ASGPP in 2012. Paul is Certified Trainer, Educator and Practitioner of Psychodrama (TEP). Paul has co-led a Psychodrama Training Group with Lin Considine, LMHC, TEP, since 2008.
In 2017 Paul relocated to San Diego, CA where has set up a private practice, conducts consultations and training in Psychodrama and other expressive therapies while continuing to travel to South Florida to co-lead an ongoing Psychodrama Training Group with Lin Considine, LMHC, TEP. Paul is also an affiliate of the Action Institute of California, founded by Jean Campbell, LCSW, TEP.