Get to Know Us


Nicole Jalazo Halpern

Nicole Jalazo Halpern, LCSW, RPT-S

Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Registered Play Therapist-Supervisor, Owner

Pronouns: She/Hers

I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and a Registered Play Therapist-Supervisor (RPT-S) in the Commonwealth of Virginia. I graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology before pursuing my Master’s in Social Work. I worked in North Carolina and New York before beginning practice in Northern Virginia and starting Alexandria Place Therapy in 2013 and Fairfax Place Therapy in 2022. 

I provide treatment to children and families, adolescents, and adults managing issues of depression, anxiety, adjustment, trauma, and loss. My clinical experience includes agency and private practice work, providing outpatient therapy to adults, children, adolescents, and their families.

I practice from a stance of cultural humility and cultural consciousness. I value being a part of a healing community that seeks to understand and learn from culture, our experience of the world and others, and the impact of systemic racism and discrimination on the safety, health, and well-being of my clients.

I believe in the transformative power of an authentic therapeutic relationship and work with clients to create a safe space in which they can develop insight, expand coping skills, grieve losses, process traumas, and explore their internal worlds. I feel it is a great privilege to join my clients, both children and adults, in their process to relieve pain, move through suffering, look at their fears, welcome their feelings, and to create and sustain joyfulness.

When it comes to working with children, as a Registered Play Therapist-Supervisor, I am a strong believer and advocate for the power of play and expressive therapies as a means of accessing, expressing, and processing emotions and conflict.


I have specialized training in play and expressive therapies and am a Registered Play Therapist -Supervisor (RPT-S). I am trained in EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) and am an EMDR Certified Therapist through EMDRIA.

Specialized Services

I specialize in treating issues of trauma, depression, anxiety, anger, adjustment, and loss. I’ve worked as a trauma therapist for the entirety of my career.  I utilize play and expressive therapies to work with my child clients whose lives are interfaced with issues of sexual abuse, family violence, loss, and bereavement. I am trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and utilize this model to help clients move through, and beyond stuck places and beliefs.

I have facilitated parenting support, psycho-education and process groups, groups for sexually abused children and adolescents, social skills groups, and non-offending caregiver support groups.

  • Extended Play-Based Developmental Assessment (EPBDA, Gil)
  • Individual, Family, and Group Therapy
  • EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing)
  • Clinical Supervision
  • Professional Presentations and Clinical Workshops

Professional Publications

  • Jalazo, Nicole (2003). “Women in Consecutive Relationships: An Exploration of the Father-Daughter Relationship and Its Contribution to Women’s Patterns in Intimate Heterosexual Relationships.” Smith College School for Social Work.
  • Jalazo, N. (2004). “I Don’t Have a Father,” Smith College Studies in Social Work. Vol. 74(4), 595-605.
  • Gil, E and Jalazo, N. (2009). “An Illustration of Science and Practice: Strengthening the Whole Through Its Parts.” In A. Drewes, Blending Play Therapy with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: Evidence-Based and Other Effective Treatments and Techniques (Chapter 3). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
  • Jalazo, N. (2010). “The Owner of a Broken Heart.” In E. Gil, Working with Children to Heal Interpersonal Trauma: The Power of Play (Chapter 6). New York, NY: Guilford Press.

Professional Affiliations

  • Association for Play Therapy
  • National Association of Social Workers
  • The Greater Washington Society of Clinical Social Workers
  • EMDR International Association
  • International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISSTD)

Teaching Experience

  • Smith College School for Social Work, Northampton, MA: Guest Lecturer to Master’s level class, Treatment of Children, on Integrated Play Therapy with sexually abused children.
  • Smith College School for Social Work, Northampton, MA: Guest Lecturer to Doctoral level class, Practice Seminar, on Integrated Play Therapy with sexually abused children.

A Few of My Favorite Books


  • Commonwealth of Virginia