Mrs. Tophoven (Ortega) grew up in San Antonio, Texas, USA. She graduated from Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, with a B.S. in Psychology. In 1991 Mrs. Tophoven ventured out to Regent University in Virginia Beach where she obtained her M.A. in counselling psychology. It was at Regent University where she met her future husband, Ingo Tophoven, a German native. They married in Norfolk, Virginia, in 1993, under a big magnolia tree on banks of the Lafayette river. Since graduation Mrs. Tophoven acquired her state license (L.P.C – Texas) and has worked in family therapy and individual counselling specialising on adolescent and women’s issues, especially depression, anxiety and cross-cultural adjustment. Being married bi-culturally and having lived in various places in the world, she especially connects with the expat and military communities of Berlin, Germany, and Europe. Other work experiences include: outpatient clinical settings, psychiatric hospitals, church counselling settings and contract mental health work. She is the mother of three children, Lukas (18), Katharina (16) and Annika (13).
Dr. Ingo Tophoven, M.A., Ph.D.
Mr. Tophoven was born and raised in Krefeld, Germany, near the border to Holland. After his Abitur and civil service in a senior citizen home, Mr. Tophoven travelled to the USA with a suitcase and a backpack in order to find a college where he could study. He received his B.A. (English Literature and Psychology – Double Major) from Evangel University in Springfield, Missouri. An M.A. degree in Counselling Psychology followed from Regent University (Virginia Beach, VA). In 2014 Mr. Tophoven finished a CACREP accredited Ph.D. in counsellor education and supervision from Regent University with a dissertation entitled Long-Lasting, Satisfied, Bicultural United States Veterans and German Spouses: A Phenomenological Study.
Dr. Tophoven specialises on developing and doing effective marriage counselling with couples, especially with bi-cultural couples. Over the course of the last 20 years, Dr. Tophoven has established an approach to marriage counselling that helps couples in crisis deal with their issues in a comprehensive, contextual, and intensive way, in order to effectively assess a marriage and create hope-focused trajectories towards change.
Other key work experiences: psychiatric hospitals, residential treatment facilities, director of a church-based counselling center, and private practice both in the USA and Germany. Mr. Tophoven has spoken regularly at professional conferences, businesses, non-profit organisations, and government events. For five years, Ingo and Capri also co-led a live call-in radio show reaching southern Texas and northern Mexico.
Dina Gehr, M.A. (USA)
Mrs. Gehr grew up in Winterthur, Switzerland. After her Matura she studied at the University of St. Gallen and obtained a BA in International Affairs and Governance. Mrs. Gehr then completed an internship at Metro World Child in New York City, USA, where she worked with inner-city children. This experience led her to her studies in Counseling Psychology at Trinity International University in Miami, USA. Mrs. Gehr now holds a MA in Counseling Psychology with Summa Cum Laude. She has successfully completed two internships of which one was at a counseling center in Miami, USA, that specialized in supporting families in crisis situations and unwanted pregnancies. The other internship took place at the psychiatric unit for mood disorders at the Evangelisches Krankenhaus Königin Elisabeth Herzberge in Berlin, Germany.
Mrs. Gehr focuses on depression and anxiety, on supporting women throughout their pregnancies and first years of parenting, and on athletes. She is married bi-culturally and the mother of a son (1). She lives in a quadrilingual home and was an actively competing figure skater for over 12 years and a figure skating coach for 6 years.