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Dr. Rachael D. Goodman
PhD, University of Florida
Associate Professor
Academic Program Co-Coordinator, Counseling

Contact Information

Send email to Dr. Goodman

Phone: (703) 993-5242
Fax: This information is not available
Email: rgoodma2 (

George Mason University
Fairfax Campus
Krug Hall 202B
4400 University Dr.
MS 1H1
Fairfax, VA 22030


Dr. Rachael D. Goodman, LPC, is an Associate Professor in the Counseling Program at George Mason University. Dr. Goodman’s expertise centers around trauma, stress, and trauma-informed care. Dr. Goodman utilizes a social justice lens throughout her work, with an emphasis on historical/transgenerational trauma, systemic oppression/marginalization, immigrants and refugees, and disaster response/community outreach. Her research and clinical work has included outreach and trauma counseling among marginalized populations, particularly in communities that have experienced oppression or natural/human-made disaster.

Dr. Goodman provides consultation and professional development to schools and agencies on issues related to trauma, stress, and trauma-informed care; compassion fatigue and burnout; and community and self care. She is Past President (2017-2018) of Counselors for Social Justice (CSJ), a division of the American Counseling Association (ACA), and currently serves as the CSJ Representative to ACA’s Governing Council. 

Dr. Goodman’s past research has focused on how outreach experiences contribute to the development of critical consciousness, cultural competence, and social justice ideals among counselors, using a liberatory framework. Her work in this area led to the development of a model for training counselors to provide culturally competent disaster response counseling services. Currently, Dr. Goodman is utilizing community-based participatory research (CBPR) approaches with her colleagues, students, and community partners to understand and address the issues impacting local communities, including undocumented immigrants. Using CBPR, a research approach that seeks to work collaboratively to actualize justice and link research with action, Dr. Goodman and her colleagues focus on experiences of trauma, stress, and resilience and the links with policies and systemic issues.

Dr. Goodman has disseminated her work through peer-reviewed publications and presentations at local, national, and international conferences. Dr. Goodman served on the Editorial Board for the Journal of Mental Health Counseling (JMHC) and as the Editor for the special issue of JMHC on Trauma Counseling and Interventions. She currently serves on the Editorial Board for the Journal for Social Action in Counseling and Psychology. In 2009, Dr. Goodman received the Outstanding Research Award from Chi Sigma Iota and the Daya Sandhu Multicultural Counseling Student Research Award from AMCD. She was named an Emerging Leaders Fellow by the Southern Association for Counselor Education and Supervision (SACES) in 2010.

Dr. Goodman is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the District of Columbia. Dr. Goodman completed her Ph.D. in Counselor Education from the University of Florida in 2009. She also received her M.Ed. and Ed.S. degrees in Mental Health Counseling from the University of Florida. She has a Bachelors of Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in Business Administration.

Research Interests

Trauma and resilience/resistance from a social justice perspective, with a focus on

  • Trauma counseling, intergenerational and systemic oppression trauma, and trauma-informed care
  • Immigrant and refugee women and families
  • Counselor training and development
  • Mindfulness, somatic, and "community-care" practices in counseling and counselor training
  • Community-based participatory action research (CBPAR) practices and social action
  • Counseling frameworks that are decolonizing, liberatory, and intersectional
Recent Publications

For complete list, see CV.

Peer-Reviewed Publications                                                                     

Vesely, C. K., DeMulder, E., Sansbury, A., Davis, E., Letiecq, B. L., Willard, I., Goodman, R. D., & Amigas de la Comunidad. (in press). ‘A place where my children could learn to read, write, and play’: The search for early care and education among undocumented Central American immigrant mothers. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 56(2021), 306-319.

Hunt, C. A., Goodman, R. D., Hilert, A. J., Hurley, W., & Hill, C. E. (2021). A mindfulness-based compassion workshop and pre-session preparation to enhance therapist effectiveness in psychotherapy: A pilot study. Counselling Psychology Quarterly. Advance online publication.

Letiecq, B. L., Mehta, S., Vesely, C. K., Goodman, R. D., Marquez, M., Moron, L. P. (2019). Central American Immigrant mothers’ mental health in the context of illegality: Structural stress, parental concern, and trauma. Journal of Family and Community Health, 42(4), 271-282. doi:10.1097/FCH.0000000000000233

Vesely, C., Goodman, R. D., & Letiecq, B. (2019). “Parenting across two worlds”: Low-income Latina immigrants’ adaptation to motherhood in the United States. Journal of Family Issues, 40(6), 711-738.

Vesely, C., Letiecq, B., & Goodman, R. D. (2017). Immigrant family resilience in context: Using a community-based approach to build a new conceptual model. Journal of Family Theory & Review, 9, 93–110. doi:10.1111/jftr.12177

Goodman, R. D., Vesely, C., Letiecq, B., & Cleaveland, C. (2017). Trauma and resilience among refugee and undocumented immigrant women. Journal of Counseling & Development, 95, 309–321. doi:10.1002/jcad.12145. Special Section on Traumatology.

Edited Book

Goodman, R. D., & Gorski, P. (Eds.). (2014). Decolonizing “multicultural” counseling through social justice. Springer.

Book Chapters

Brubaker, M. D., Goodman, R. D., & Emir Oksuz, E. (in press). Client advocacy: In action. In C. Y. Chang & C. Barrio Minton (Eds.), Leadership excellence in counseling: professional and client advocacy (2nd ed.). Routledge.

Vesely, C. K., Letiecq, B. L., Goodman, R. D., Marquez, M., Alves, L. & Moron, L. (2019).  “What does this mean to you?” Partnering with Amigas de la Comunidad to analyze the housing conditions of undocumented Latina immigrants.  In A. Humble and E. Radina (Eds.), Moving beyond ‘themes emerged’: Real stories of how qualitative data analysis happens. Taylor & Francis.

Edited Book Winner of the 2020 Anselm Strauss Award for Qualitative Family Research

Goodman, R. D., Letiecq, B., & Vesely, C. V. (2018). Counseling refugees (pp. 179-192). In J. Webber & J. B. Mascari (Eds.), Disaster Mental Health Counseling: A Guide to Preparing and Responding (4th ed.). American Counseling Association Foundation.

Goodman, R. D., Vesely, C., Letiecq, B., *Marquez, M., & Leyva, K. (2018). Community practice with immigrants and refugees. In A. Hilado & M. Lundy (Eds.), Reorienting transnational practice with immigrants and refugees: Theory, practice and culture (pp. 204-225). SAGE.