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About Us

The clinical staff at Ames Therapy have been chosen with great care and each has experience and expertise.  This allows the practice to accommodate a wider variety of schedules and budgets.  Appointments with Ames Therapy Associates are available 6 days per week, with hours ranging from 8am-7pm. Wondering which Associate to see?  Read the bios below, or just request your free 15-minute call so we can recommend the right fit for you.

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PROFESSIONAL CLINICAL STAFF                                            


Amy Mooney, PhD, LMHC, NCC, ACS - Clinical Director 

Dr. Mooney brings over 18 years experience in the mental health field. Dr. Mooney has a Doctorate of Philosophy specializing in Counseling Psychology and has been with Liberty University as an Associate Professor of Counseling Education and Family Studies since 2008. She is a licensed in the state of Iowa as Licensed Mental Health Counselor, a National Certified Counselor, and  Accredited Clinical Supervisor. Additionally, Dr. Mooney supervises both Master's and Doctorate level practicum, internship & post graduate students at her private practice.  Dr. Mooney has extensive experience and training in Independent Mental Health Evaluations (IME'S). Ames Therapy is one of the only few in the state of Iowa that offers a comprehensive Independent Mental Health and Psychiatric Evaluation for workers compensations requested IME's.  Academic and professional experience in evaluating and treating individuals with mental health and medical disorders have contributed to Dr. Mooney's dedication in both forensic work and behavior health managment. Dr. Mooney has completed over 150 IME evaluations in the state of Iowa since 2011. In regards to individual clinical mental health counseling Dr. Mooney specializes in chronic pain, long term illness, anxiety disorders, PTSD, depression, and catastrophic trauma cases. Dr. Mooney has spoke at state, regional and national conferences on chronic pain and depression. She additionally works with cancer patients and is a cancer survivor herself. 

  • Licensed Mental Health Counselor, National Certified Counselor, Accredited Clinical Superivor
  • Diplomate of the AMHCA with designation of Clinical Mental Health Specialist in Developmental Disability Counseling
  • Professional Biofeedback Certificate Program with Stens and the Biofeedback Institute
  • Mediator:  Harvard Law School



Terry Augspurger MD, DLFAPA  - Consulting Psychiatrist

Dr. Augspurger has over 33 years experience in psychiatry evaluating and treating children, adolescents and adults in outpatient, inpatient and residential settings. He will be doing Medical Psychiatric Examinations as part of a comprehensive independent mental health evaluation package in conjunction with Dr. Mooney, additionally offering his expertise in providing psychopharmacologic evaluations/recommendations specific to the client's individual needs for PCP's or Occupational or Pain Physician. Dr. Augspurger has completed over 150 Independent Mental Health Evaluations since 2012. Dr. Augspurger holds a Permanent Iowa License for Medicine and Surgery, is a Diplomat of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, and is a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association

  • Diplomat, American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology since June, 1984
  • Permanent Iowa License for Medicine & Surgery 
  • Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association



Mike Luttrell MS, LP - Licensed Psychologist

Mike has over 41 years experience in psychology. For the past 17 years he worked at the Iowa Veterans Home evaluating and treating veterans. He specializes in Neuropsychological Assessments. He additionally has experience with evaluating and treating children, adolescents and adults in outpatient, inpatient and residential settings, and family, group therapy and marriage counseling.



Dustin Ernberger, MA, LMHC, CHt - Mental Health Counselor

Dustin has been helping adults, adolescents, and children achieve their goals since he began practicing in 1995. He has a master’s degree in community-based counseling from Ball State University, and has been licensed in Iowa since 1997. Currently, his clinical focus is on helping adults struggling with anxiety and stress, mood difficulties, life transitions, chronic pain, relationship issues, and habit reversal.

Dustin views effective helping as a partnership that develops in the context of a safe, non-judgmental relationship.  He will work together to help you develop the skills necessary to achieve the goals that you have identified as being important to you. Dustin's goal is to help all of the individuals and couples that he works with to develop an awareness of the ways in which they contribute to their own healing process.  This can result in an ability to use one’s own strengths and skills to maintain or continue progressing.

His counseling style and choice of interventions is reflective of his desire to help make our counseling sessions “useable” beyond the session itself.  To this end, he employs the use of the evidence-based cognitive therapies such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), and dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT).  In addition, his has training and certification in the use of clinical hypnosis, a set of skills that he uses to teach his clients to implement for themselves as a means of accelerating their progress.


Ellyn Nitchals-Kellner, LMHC, NCC

Ellyn is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and is trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). EMDR Therapy is an integrative psychotherapy approach that has been extensively researched and proven effective for the treatment of trauma, anxiety, depression, stress, pain, and complicated grief among others. Ellyn earned her Masters of Science in Counseling and Human Resource Development from South Dakota State University and has a Bachelors of Science in Psychology from Iowa State University.

Ellyn specializes in working with college students, Veterans and their families, the LGBTQ+ population, and immigrant/refugee populations. Ellyn’s clinical focus is on the treatment of PTSD, depression, anxiety, adjustment disorders, relationship issues, adoption issues, and intergenerational trauma.

Ellyn believes that therapy is a collaborative process between the client and therapist. Her approach will set the stage for you to find and develop the strengths and skills that help you move towards health. Ellyn believes that therapy is an individual process and as such will be tailored to your specific situation and goals.

  • Licensed Mental Health Counselor 
  • National Certified Counselor
  • Trained in EMDR


 Anna Zuidema, B.A - Counseling Intern 

Anna comes to us from Van Meter, Iowa. She is currently working towards her Master's degree in Clincial Mental Health Counseling through Northwestern University's counseling at Northwestern program. Anna holds a B.A. in Sociology from Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts. Beginning in July of 2016, Anna is working towards completing her practicum and internship with Ames Therapy. Anna has been with Ames Therapy over one year and will continue with Ames Therapy after graduation for her post graduate training.  

  • Graduate Counseling Intern
  • National Certification in Prepare and Enrich


 Chris Johnson, B.S - Counseling Practicum Student

Chris Johnson joined us in March of 2017 from Walden University. Chris holds his B.S. in Art and Sciences at Iowa State University. He is a retired Army Major serving 25 years!  Chris joins us for both practicum and internship. Chris has extensive experience with the military and will continue to expand his training, knowledge and expertise in mental health counseling for active and retired military and their families.

  • Graduate Counseling Intern
  • Veteran of the Army/ Retired Major serving 25 years




Sidney Presnell

Sidney comes to us from Des Moines, Iowa. She is currently a student at Iowa State University working towards her Bachelor's Degree in Event Management and minoring in Public Relations. In July of 2016, Sidney joined our team as an Administrative Assistant and Billing Specialist. 



Abrah Meyer

Abrah hails from Readlyn, Iowa. Currently a student at Iowa State University, Abrah is working toward her Bachelor's Degree in Agricultural Business and Supply Chain Management. In March, she joined the team as an Administrative Assistant.