Samantha Willis, M.Ed., LPC, NCC, Registered Play Therapist


Samantha Willis earned a Master’s of Education in Counseling and Guidance with a concentration in Clinical Mental Health from the University of Montevallo. She also earned Bachelor’s Degrees in Psychology and Social Work with a Minor in Philosophy and Religion from the University of Montevallo. Samantha is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the state of Alabama. She is also a Nationally Certified Counselor (NCC) and Registered Play Therapist. Samantha has a certification in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT). Samantha is a member of the American Counseling Association (ACA), the Alabama Counseling Association (ALCA), and the Association for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Issues in Counseling of Alabama (ALGBTICAL).


Samantha has worked in various settings addressing issues including: child and adult sexual and physical abuse/trauma, traumatic grief, domestic violence, bullying, life transitions, interpersonal conflict, depression, anxiety, anger, self-harming behaviors, dissociative disorders, and severe mental health conditions. She is LGBTQ+ affirming and works with the transgender community. She utilizes peer-reviewed and evidenced-based therapeutic techniques in her practice such as play therapy, sand tray therapy, and art therapy. Samantha is a Body-Brain sand tray specialist and uses the techniques with all ages. As a clinician, she works within an eclectic, person-centered, acceptance and commitment therapy, existential, multicultural, solution-focused, feminist, trauma-focused, and cognitive behavioral framework in order to serve clients most effectively.


Samantha co-owns a counseling practice with her husband called Avail Services that provides counseling to clients across Alabama. She is the Clinical Director at Avail Services where she oversees clinical issues and insurance compliance. Samantha also owns and operates Avail Institute where she provides continuing education and consultation services to mental healthcare clinicians. 


Samantha is currently a student at Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN) studying Gender Studies, with research in transgender issues. Her thesis is entitled "Transgender and Non-Binary Lived Experiences among Southern Appalachian Youth: Correlations of Mental Health and Interpersonal Relationship Dynamics Before, During, and After the Coming out Process."