Meet the Speakers

Dr. John Gottman

World-renowned for his work on marital stability and divorce prediction, John Gottman has conducted 40 years of breakthrough research with thousands of couples. His work on marriage and parenting has earned him numerous major awards, including:

  • Four National Institute of Mental Health Research Scientist Awards
  • The American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy Distinguished Research Scientist Award
  • The American Family Therapy Academy Award for Most Distinguished Contributor to Family Systems Research
  • The American Psychological Association Division of Family Psychology, Presidential Citation for Outstanding Lifetime Research Contribution
  • The National Council of Family Relations, 1994 Burgess Award for Outstanding Career in Theory and Research

Dr. Gottman was one of the Top 10 Most Influential Therapists of the past quarter-century by the Psychotherapy Networker. He is the author or co-author of over 200 published academic articles and more than 40 books, including the bestselling The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work; What Makes Love Last; Eight Dates: Essential Conversations for a Lifetime of Love; The Relationship Cure; Why Marriages Succeed or Fail; and Raising An Emotionally Intelligent Child — among many others. Dr. Gottman’s media appearances include Good Morning America, Today, CBS Morning News, and Oprah, as well articles in The New York Times, Ladies Home Journal, Redbook, Glamour, Woman’s Day, People, Self, Reader’s Digest, and Psychology Today.

Co-founder of the Gottman Institute with his wife, Dr. Julie Schwartz Gottman, John was also the Executive Director of the Relationship Research Institute. He is Professor Emeritus of Psychology at the University of Washington, where he founded “The Love Lab” at which much of his research on couples’ interactions was conducted. To read more about Dr. Gottman’s research, check out this page for interesting questions and citations to his work.

John co-presents with wife Julie Schwartz Gottman The Art and Science of Love workshops five times a year in Seattle. He also co-presents the Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3 Clinical Training in Gottman Method Couples Therapy. His style of presentation is clear, informative, and filled with humor, and he is beloved by his audiences everywhere.

Dr. Julie Schwartz Gottman

Julie is the co-founder and President of The Gottman Institute. A highly respected clinical psychologist, she is sought internationally by media and organizations as an expert advisor on marriage, sexual harassment and rape, domestic violence, gay and lesbian adoption, same-sex marriage, and parenting issues. She is the co-creator of the immensely popular The Art and Science of Love weekend workshops for couples, and she also co-designed the national clinical training program in Gottman Method Couples Therapy. Her other achievements include:

  • Washington State Psychologist of the Year
  • Author/co-author of books: Eight Dates: Essential Conversations for a Lifetime of Love, Ten Lessons to Transform Your Marriage, And Baby Makes Three, 10 Principles for Doing Effective Couples Therapy, The Man’s Guide to Women, and The Marriage Clinic Casebook
  • Wide recognition for her clinical psychotherapy treatment, with specialization in distressed couples, abuse and trauma survivors, substance abusers and their partners, and cancer patients and their families

Inspiring, empowering, respectful, and kind, Julie’s leadership of the Institute has made it possible to identify and integrate the expertise of her staff, therapists, and the wider research and therapeutic community. Her commitment to excellence and integrity assures that as The Gottman Institute grows, it continues to maintain the highest ethical and scientific standards.

She is in private practice in the Seattle area, providing intensive marathon therapy sessions for couples. She specializes in working with distressed couples, abuse and trauma survivors, those with substance abuse problems and their partners, as well as cancer patients and their families.

Joni Parthemer

Joni holds a Masters in Curriculum and Instruction degree and is both a Master Trainer and Education Director for the Bringing Baby Home Program. She also holds certification as a Childbirth Educator and International Childbirth Association Approved Trainer. Joni is a faculty member at the Simkin Center for Allied Birth Professions at Bastyr University as well as a Birth and Family Educator at Swedish Medical Center in Seattle, WA. She has developed, published and implemented a variety of training materials for educators interested in providing support and growth programs for families. She is married and the mother of two children.

Beth Goss

Beth Goss did her graduate work in Elementary Education and is a Certified Gottman Educator and Training Specialist for the Bringing Baby Home program. She is also a full-time faculty member at North Seattle College where she teaches parent education classes to families raising children birth-5 years. In addition, Beth is a certified childbirth educator and currently teaches classes and runs postpartum support groups for Swedish Medical Center in Seattle, WA. She is married and the mother of two children.

Alysha Roll

Alysha Roll is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Certified Gottman Therapist and Master Trainer and Consultant for The Gottman Institute. She is a compassionate and caring psychotherapist who is dedicated to helping individuals create positive changes in their lives.

David Penner

Dave Penner is a licensed clinical psychologist and is the Clinical Director of The Gottman Institute. He is the author of the Leader’s Guide for Teaching the Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work, which is based on years of experience teaching John Gottman’s Seven Principles book. He has trained therapists in the Gottman Method in North America, Asia and Europe and is the co-developer of the Gottman Seven Principles Program.

Don Cole

Donald Cole, D.Min. LPC-S, LMFT-S, Clinical Director at the Gottman Institute, is a licensed Professional Counselor, a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and an approved supervisor in both disciplines. Dr. Cole received the Doctor of Ministry degree in Pastoral Counseling and Psychotherapy from Garrett-Evangelical Seminary at Northwestern University in 1993. Dr. Cole, along with his wife, Carrie Cole, co-founded The Center for Relationship Wellness, a private practice for therapy, consultation and training in Houston, Texas. His work with couples includes couple’s therapy, workshops, seminars, and intensive marathon sessions. He is committed to training therapists and other professionals and has provided supervision, graduate courses and continuing educational programs throughout his career.

Filiz Kaya Ataklı

Filiz Kaya is one of the founders of Psychology Istanbul. Filiz, who is one of the first graduates of Yeşilköy Anatolian High School, completed her postgraduate degree in Forensic Medicine after her licence degree in Istanbul University Psychology Department. Gottman Couple Therapy, Solution-Focused Therapy, Family Therapy, NLP, Energy Therapy, Mental Training, EMDR and Emotion-Focused Therapy are among the most widely used EMDR techniques in her studies and she is one of the important researchers in EMDR in Turkey. Filiz have received couple and marriage therapy trainings from John and Julie Gottman and she is a Gottman Couple Therapist and instructor of the method. During her professional life, Filiz has been involved in many projects, researches and trainings. In recent years, she has limited her work on couples and performance development. She has been working in the fields of performance and performing arts, and has taught “Performance Psychology” and “Psychological Preparation in Acting ”at Müjdat Gezen Art Center. She is currently one of the founders of Pozitif Atölye, where she teaches acting and performance development.

Özge Altan Aytun, PHD

Özge Altan Aytun is graduated from Middle East Technical University and had her master training in Department of Psychology with a scholarship from Koç University and finished her PHD at Forensic Science department of Istanbul Cerrahpaşa University. In Turkey, Özge is one of two recognized trainer and therapist by the Gottman Institute, she is working with Gottman method especially double-relations problems, marriage preparation, affair, couple conflicts, working in emotional disconnection and divorce. Moreover she trains professionals and organizes supervisions. She has carried out many important projects, scientific research and publications, especially on couples, psychological trauma, EMDR and performance improvement. In her work with adults, she uses Gottman Couple Therapy, Family Therapy, EMDR, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Solution-Focused Therapy and Emotion-Focused Therapy. Özge, who is one of the founders of Psychology Istanbul, continues her therapy and training activities and is also the mother of Yağmur.