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Counseling Psychology

Pilar Hernandez-Wolfe


  • Copyright, Steve Hambuchen

Rogers Hall

Pilar Hernández-Wolfe teaches and conducts research in the Marriage, Couple, and Family Therapy program. She is a licensed family therapist and a licensed clinical professional counselor, a clinical member and approved supervisor of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, an approved clinical supervisor in the state of Oregon, and a consultant and trainer. In addition, she served as board member of the American Family Therapy Academy and is a member of the American Psychological Association. Pilar has over twenty years of experience working with individuals, couples and families in outpatient clinics and in private practice. She has also worked with refugees and survivors of torture in San Diego and displaced populations in Colombia, her native country.  As a consultant, trainer and presenter, she has collaborated with organizations in the U.S., Colombia (Pontificial Universidad Javeriana, Cali) and México in the areas of clinical supervision, traumatic stress, resilience, equity and contextually responsive family therapy, the animal human bond and ecoinformed family therapy. She is fully bilingual (English/Spanish - written and oral).

Personal Statement

I am a family therapist devoted to healing the wounds of social and historical traumatic stress and fostering resilience. I am committed to training culturally responsive and globally informed MCFT practitioners to serve the unique needs of diverse communities, both locally and internationally. As an educator, I believe that education is a drawing out, not a putting in.  Knowledge is not simply transmitted from the teacher to students, but is actively constructed in the mind of the learner through dialogue, reflection and various hands-on activities. I believe that students make their ideas by constructing their own knowledge structures, and that they learn by integrating new information from their own life experience.

Areas of Expertise

Traumatic Stress, Resilience, Vicarious Resilience, Decolonization, Clinical Supervision, Domestic Violence, Animal-Human Bond and Counseling, Ecoinformed Family Therapy

Current Research

Pilar’s scholastic research examines applications of contextually responsive models to couple and family therapy clinical practice, consultation and supervision; decolonization in education and therapy; domestic violence; socially just international and intercultural collaborations; psychosocial effects of state-sponsored terror and organized violence; and resilience. Her current projects include examining Latin American approaches to decolonization and historical trauma, resilience and vicarious resilience (Cali, Colombia), privilege in family therapy education (U.S.). In addition, she is pursuing her interests in the environment, the animal-human bond and therapy in social context through her teaching and research. Her book, A Borderlands View of Latinos, Latin Americans and Decolonization. Rethinking Mental Health, was published by Rowan & Littlefield.


Latest Publications:

  • Hernandez-Wolfe, P. (2018). Ecoinformed couple and family therapy, systems thinking, and social Justice, Ecopsychology, 10(3), 151-157.

  • Hernandez-Wolfe, P. & Acevedo, V. (2018). La resiliencia vicaria en las relaciones de ayuda. Cali, Colombia: Universidad Javeriana.
  • Hernandez-Wolfe, P. (2018).  A journey to and within the borderlands: Courage, sustenance, and transformation. In L. Comás Días (Ed). The Psychological Practice  of Latinas: Reflections on Psychotherapy, Scholarship, Empowerment, and            Mentoring. Routledge Taylor and Francis Group Publishers
  • Hernandez-Wolfe, P. (2018). Vicarious resilience: A comprehensive review. Revista de Estudios Sociales, Special issue: Investigations in clinical psychology and health in situations of violence.

  • Acevedo, V. & Hernandez-Wolfe, P. (2017). Community mothers and vicarious resilience: An exploration in a Colombian community. Journal of Humanistic Psychology. doi/abs/10.1177/0022167817717840Victoria, I., Hernandez-Wolfe, P.,
  • Acevedo, V. & Gonzalez, A. (2017). Dialogo de saberes e interculturalidad: Una experiencia con mujeres Afrodescendientes Colombianas. Revista Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales, Niñez y Juventud, 15 (1)263-275
  • Killian, K., Hernandez-Wolfe, P., Engstrom, D. & Gangsei, D. (2017). Development of the Vicarious Resilience Scale (VRS): A Measure of Positive Effects of Working with Trauma Survivors. Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice, and Policy.9(1), 23-31
  • Hernandez-Wolfe, P.,Acevedo, V., Victoria, I. & Volkmann, T. (2015). Transnational Family Therapy Training: A collaborative Learning Experience in Cultural Equity and Humility, Journal of Feminist Family Therapy. 27(3-4), 134-155.

  • Hernandez-Wolfe, P., Killian, K., Engstrom, D. & Gangsei, D. (2014). Vicarious resilience, vicarious trauma and awareness of equity in trauma Work, Journal of Humanistic Psychology, doi: 10.1177/0022167814534322
  • Acevedo, V. & Hernandez-Wolfe, P.(2014). Vicarious resilience: An exploration in work with Colombian educators. Journal of Trauma, Aggression and Maltreatment, 23(5),p. 473-493.DOI:10.1080/10926771.2014.904468


  • Hernandez-Wolfe, P. (2016, September). A Borderlands’ View of Latinos, Latin Americans, and Decolonization Rethinking “Mental” Health. Latina/o Psychology: Advocating for social justice, liberation and equality for our familias. National Latino Psychological Association. Orlando, FL.
  • Hernandez-Wolfe, P. (2015, June). The professional helper’s resilience. Pathways to resilience III: Beyond nature vs. Nurture. Halifax, Canada.
  • Hernandez-Wolfe, P. (2015). “El buen vivir:” Interdependence, Harmony and Equity. First Annual Oregon Ecopsychology Symposium, Lewis & Clark College, Portland, OR.
  • Hernandez-Wolfe, P., Acevedo, V. & Hyman, M. (2015, June). Wonder, Humility, Equity & Play in International Training. Annual AFTA Conference, Portland, OR.
  • Hernandez-Wolfe, P. (2014, April). The animal human bond and counseling, Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Cali, Colombia.

Academic Credentials

Ph.D. University of Massachusetts, Amherst; M.Ed. University of Massachusetts, Amherst; B.S. Universidad de Los Andes, Bogotá , Colombia

From the Newsroom

  • In two short videos, director Antonia Mueller and faculty member Pilar Hernandez-Wolfe discuss the community needs addressed by the center, and the importance of culturally competent services when working with community members from diverse backgrounds.