Russ was raised outside of Pittsburgh, PA, and is the youngest of three siblings. Following high school, he decided to follow in his mother’s footsteps as a Licensed Professional Counselor and attended Ohio University to pursue his undergraduate and graduate studies in Psychology and Counselor Education, respectively. He graduated in 1997 with his Master’s Degree in Counselor Education and started his counseling career in Marietta, OH after completing his internship at Marietta Memorial’s Chemical Dependency Unit. He then found a home working at Westbrook Health Services for the next 15 years as a therapist and program director that opened the agency’s Crisis Stabilization Unit. He worked with adults, children and families in individual, group, and couples counseling and was trained in Family Systems Therapy, Grief Therapy, working with trauma survivors and with problem gamblers. Since 2007, he has been a contracted therapist with the Problem Gambler’s Help Network (PGHN) of WV as a network counselor, presenter to problem gamblers, and a trainer for new PGHN therapists. In 2012, he was named the PGHN’s Counselor of the Year. Russ has developed and presented on topics including “Promoting Family Health”, “Forgiveness”, and “Managing Financial Stress”.
After Westbrook, Russ entered into private practice and worked as an independent contractor with the Wood County Youth Reporting Center and Wood County Juvenile Drug Court. As a private practitioner, Russ continues to work with the Juvenile Drug Court clients and their families. Russ provides counseling to individuals, couples, family, and group counseling services to clients dealing with depression, anxiety, substance abuse, grief, marital and family issues, trauma recovery, and anger management issues. His focus is on helping clients and families better understand mental health and finding healthy ways to grow and thrive through life’s changes and challenges. Russ resides in the Mid-Ohio Valley with his wife and three children and enjoys all things related to the Pittsburgh Steelers, Pirates and Penguins!