Laurie MacKinnon MSW, PhD


Laurie MacKinnon PhD has been in private practice in Sydney Australia for over 30 years providing:


  • Counselling for individuals, couples and families. Common concerns are anxiety and depression, relationship conflict, separation and divorce, parenting issues.


  • Training and supervision of couple and family therapists and of mediators.


  • Consultation to many of Sydney‘s counselling and government organizations, including several years as an ongoing consultant to: Relationships Australia;  RAPS Family Therapy and Mediation; Unifam Counselling and Mediation; Dalmar Child and Family Services; and NSW Area Health Child and Adolescent specialist mental health services.


  • Training  therapists in integrating trauma processing skills into a counseling framework.


   Laurie has had a long-time interest in helping families heal from the destructive effects of abuse and violence. In providing supervision to psychologists and social workers at health centres in New South Wales, she became aware of the difficulties therapists faced when working with families referred from child protection authorities.  This inspired her to undertake qualitative interviews with parents in 50 families who were clients of both therapists and child protection authorities, asking for their views on the “help” they were receiving from professionals. By gaining their perspective, Laurie was able develop an alternative approach to working with these families that was inherently more respectful and ultimately more successful, an approach  published in her book "Trust and Betrayal in the Treatment of Child Abuse" (1998) (see Publications).

Dr. Laurie MacKinnon

 Laurie's current interest is in helping more therapists, help more people, more effectively by teaching therapists trauma-based techniques that can more quickly resolve individual and couple issues charged with negative affect.

In 2012, The American Family Therapy Academy honored Laurie with the Distinguished Contribution to Family Therapy Theory and Practice Award. 

Also in 2012, the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy presented her with the Special Award for Distinguished Contributions to Family Therapy.