Our Therapists

Dr. Dennis Tirch Ph.D

About Dr. Dennis Tirch Ph.D

Dr. Tirch is the Founder of The Center for Compassion Focused Therapy, the first clinical training center for Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) in the United States. Dr. Tirch has been described as one of the country’s foremost leaders in compassion training and evidence-based therapy. He is an internationally acknowledged expert therapist, supervisor and trainer in CFT, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Buddhist Psychology (BP).

Dr. Tirch is an author of 6 books, and numerous chapters and peer reviewed articles on mindfulness, acceptance and compassion in psychotherapy. His books include the new Guilford Publications release, Experiencing ACT from the Inside Out, a self-practice/self-reflection workbook for therapists, and The Compassionate Mind Guide To Overcoming Anxiety, the first evidence-based self-help book to apply the science of compassion to the treatment of anxiety. With Dr. Laura Silberstein-Tirch and others, Dr. Tirch is currently developing a research protocol involving behavioral science and CFT for treating anxiety, worry and fear-based difficulties through compassionate courage cultivation.

Dr. Tirch serves as:

  • President of the Association for Contextual Behavioral Science (ACBS)

  • President of The Compassionate Mind Foundation of North America

  • Associate Clinical Professor at The Icahn College of Medicine at Mt. Sinai Medical Center

  • Fellow of ACBS

  • Founding President Emeritus of The New York City Chapter ACBS

  • Fellow & Certified Consultant & Trainer for The Academy of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

  • Fellow and Past-President of The New York City CBT Association

Dr. Tirch’s work has been covered by numerous media outlets, including; The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The New York Times, The New York Post, NPR, WIRED, and O Magazine.

Dr. Tirch regularly conducts training workshops and courses globally, live and online, and has served as an invited speaker for many organizations, such as Columbia University, The University of New South Wales, The University of Hong Kong, The NYC-CBT Association, ABCT, ACBS, New York Univeristy, Cornell University, and the Kagyu Samye Ling Buddhist monastery, and The Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy.

In addition to his work in clinical psychology, Dr. Tirch has based his life upon meditative and contemplative disciplines for over 40 years, beginning at age 10 with his first Zen teacher and uncle, Sergeant Michael A. Hughes of the 555th Battalion of The 82nd Airborne Division. Dr. Tirch has taken Dharma Holder vows in Soto and Rinzai lines, with The Zen Garland Order; Sanjujo Kai vows in Tendai Shu Buddhism; serves as an Ambassador for The Ram Dass Fellowship; and is a long time practitioner in the J.G. Bennett Line of the Gurdjieff Work, with Robert Fripp and The Guitar Circle community. Dr. Tirch’s work in this area can be found in his book Buddhist Psychology and CBT: A Clinician’s Guide with Laura Silberstein and Russell Kolts, as well as in private instruction. Dr. Tirch is involved in Bhakti Yoga and Kirtan practice, blending American traditional, guitar based, country-blues music with Kirtan and mantra musical forms of meditation.

Prior to founding The Center, Dr. Tirch collaborated with leading CBT therapist, Dr. Robert Leahy, at The American Institute for Cognitive Therapy for 12 years, serving as Associate Director of The Institute. Dr. Tirch has worked closely with CFT Founder, Dr. Paul Gilbert, in the development of compassion focused approaches for anxiety.

Dr. Tirch has benefited by participating in numerous trainings with many mentors, experts, friends and colleagues such as Paul Gilbert, Robert Leahy, Kelly Wilson, Steven C. Hayes, Robert Fripp, Robyn Walser and Zindel Segal.  Dr. Tirch is a founding participant in the ACT peer consultation group for New York City and Environs (ACTNYCE).

Dr. Tirch is a New York State licensed clinical psychologist who has served as an Assistant Clinical Professor at Weill-Cornell Medical College, and as an Adjunct Associate Professor at Albert Einstein Medical School.

Dr. Tirch received his PhD from Fairleigh Dickinson University.

Dr. Dennis Tirch Ph.D

Dr. Paul Gilbert


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