The Gardiner Center for Stress Management was created with the vision of becoming a resource for those in search of greater balance and perspective in their lives.
Our mission is to provide high-quality, short-term, evidence-based psychotherapy and stress management classes to the central Maine community.
Who We Are
John Agee, Ph.D.
has been a licensed psychologist since 2007. Dr. Agee earned his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology in 2006 from the University at Albany, SUNY, where he specialized in clinical and health psychology. After completing an APA-accreditied pre-doctoral internship at the Togus VA Medical Center, Dr. Agee then completed a post-doctoral residency at the VA, specializing in PTSD treatment and Integrated Primary Care/Mental Health.
Following residency, Dr. Agee served for 3 years as psychologist & team leader for the Integrated Primary Care/Mental Health program at Togus VAMC. While at the VA, Dr. Agee also facilitated a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) class and other therapy groups. Outside of clinical work, Dr. Agee has authored and co-authored several scholarly publications related to health psychology and mindfulness-based therapy.
In private practice since 2011, Dr. Agee provided psychological and neuropsychological assessment services at The Brain Clinic of Central Maine for five years until 2016. Dr. Agee founded the Gardiner Center for Stress Management in 2014, and has been practicing at GCSM full time starting in January, 2017. Professional interests include mindfulness-based therapies, psychological testing, and the integration of mental health and medicine.
Ami Bass, LCSW, RYT
has been a licensed clinical social worker since 2012. Ami earned her master's degree in both macro and clinical social work from The Catholic University of America in a Washington, D.C. Upon graduating, she moved to Maine where she has worked in both medical practices and outpatient counseling settings. Ami is currently the integrated counselor at Augusta Family Medicine where she provides short-term counseling and health coaching to patients as well as behavioral health consultation to the medical providers.
In 2015, Ami completed the 200-hour yoga teacher training at The Big White Barn yoga studio in Readfield, ME. She has taught yoga to adults at The Big White Barn and Downtown Yoga in Augusta and offered a yoga for kids series at the Kennebec Valley YMCA.
In 2017, Ami entered private practice at the Gardiner Center for Stress Management, where she offers individual counseling, health coaching, stress reduction, and yoga classes. Professional interests include mindfulness-based therapies, mind-body work, and the integration of mental health and medicine.
Michael McLaughlin, Ph.D
has been a licensed psychologist since 2003. Dr. McLaughlin earned his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology in 2002 from Oklahoma State University. After graduating, he completed his post-doctoral residency at the Togus VA Medical Center focused on evidence-based treatment of depression, adjustment disorders, PTSD and other anxiety disorders. Following residency, he served for two and a half years at the Tucson, Arizona VA Medical Center as clinical team leader and staff psychologist for the outpatient PTSD clinical team.
Since 2004, Dr. McLaughlin has been employed as a staff psychologist at the Togus VA Medical Center, including in acute psychiatry, outpatient PTSD, and dual diagnosis programs. In his current role, he serves as a behavioral medicine specialist for the Maine VA Healthcare System.
Dr. McLaughlin specializes in relaxation training, mindfulness, clinical hypnosis, and cognitive-behavioral therapy.
Nancy Slobodnik, Ph.D
has been a licensed psychologist since 2000. She earned her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Seton Hall University in 1996, including an APA-approved internship with the NJ State Psychiatric Hospital System. She has worked with children and families in outpatient, school and residential settings.
Since moving to Maine in 2005, Dr. Slobodnik has also worked in vocational rehabilitation at the Department and Veteran Affairs. More recently, she has been providing consulting and therapy services for adults with developmental disabilities.
In 2017, Dr. Slobodnik entered private practice at the Gardiner Center for Stress Management, where she offers individual, group and family psychotherapy.
Dicle Turkoglu, Ph.D.
has been a licensed psychologist since 2012. Dr. Turkoglu earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology in 2009 from the University of Vermont where she specialized in clinical psychology and psychometrics. After graduating, Dr. Turkoglu completed an APA-accredited pre-doctoral internship at the Togus VA Medical Center in Augusta, focusing on evidence-based treatments of depression and anxiety disorders, neuropsychological assessments, and integrated primary care and mental health. After her internship, Dr. Turkoglu completed an APA-accredited post-doctoral residency at the West Haven VA in Connecticut, specializing in Health Psychology, and conducted research at Yale School of Medicine on Cardiovascular Health.
Following residency, Dr. Turkoglu served for more than 5 years as staff psychologist at Colby College's Counseling Services Department. While at Colby, Dr. Turkoglu provided individual and group therapy to college students and provided consultation regarding mental and cognitive health.
In private practice since May 2017, Dr. Turkoglu provides psychological and neuropsychological assessment services at the Gardiner Center for Stress Management. Her professional interests include Cognitive, Acceptance and Mindfulness-based behavioral therapies, relaxation training, psychological testing, the integration of mental health and medicine, and queer and trans mental health.
Yuriy Ustinov, Ph.D.
is a licensed psychologist who earned his doctorate at The University of Alabama in 2013. During his graduate training, Dr. Ustinov specialized in Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for insomnia. Dr. Ustinov completed his predoctoral internship at the Togus VA Medical Center, with rotations in Outpatient Mental Health, Integrated Primary Care/Mental Health, and the PTSD Clinic. Dr. Ustinov also completed a postdoctoral residency at the Lewiston-Auburn VA Outpatient Clinic with an emphasis on Rural Mental Health and Telehealth.
Dr. Ustinov is currently working as a psychologist at the Lewiston-Auburn VA Outpatient Clinic. In his current role he provides individual and group therapy and psychological assessment, as well as supervision for psychology trainees. Professional interests include trauma-focused treatment, Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, and Anger Management. At The Gardiner Center for Stress Management, Dr. Ustinov teaches classes and as well as offering individual and group therapy services on a part-time basis.