DRA. SANDRA LEON-VILLA
Dr. Sandra León-Villa is a first gen, daughter of immigrants, Autistic Xicana, Activist, Speaker, Liberation Psychologist. Her work primarily focuses on the treatment of trauma, BIPOC mental health, and first generation BIPOC career professionals. She has been in the mental health field for 15 years working directly with trauma survivors and is a survivor herself. Dr. León-Villa published her research study, Exploring Gender and Racial/Ethnic Differences in the Effects of Child Sexual Abuse in the Journal of Child Sexual Abuse in 2018. She is trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy, Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT), and is certified in trauma informed yoga & is a registered yoga teacher (200RYT).
In 2020, Dr. León-Villa lobbied for legislation that would require mental health professionals to obtain cultural competency, diversity, equity, & inclusion (DEI) training for license renewal, and in May 2021, Assembly Bill 327 passed & was signed into law with the support of other community organizations. In early March, during the 2023 legislative session, Dr. León-Villa, along with Assemblywoman Selena Torres, and Dr. Lauren Chapple, returned to present and provide testimony on AB267, and the importance of amending AB327 and increasing the requirement to 6 hours of continuing education for mental health providers. AB267 passed and was signed into law in May 2023. As a result, mental health providers are now required to complete 6 hours of continuing education on DEI for license renewal.
Dr. León-Villa additionally specializes in bilingual (English/Spanish) and culturally informed psychological and neuropsychological testing of conditions including Autism Spectrum Condition (ASC), ADHD, learning disorders, personality disorders, mood disorders, trauma, and in diagnostic clarity/differential diagnosis. She additionally works with immigrant communities and provides evaluations, including evaluations of extreme hardship, asylum, VAWA, and medical certifications. Dr. León-Villa served on the Executive Board of the Nevada Psychological Association (NPA) as the Diversity Chair from 2017-2019.
Dr. León-Villa earned her bachelor's degree in psychology with a minor in family studies counseling from the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) in 2006. She later earned a master's degree in mental health counseling in 2012 from Walden University. Dr. León-Villa earned a second master's degree in psychology in 2014 and completed her doctoral training (Ph.D.) in Clinical Psychology at Walden University in 2016.
I approach assessment and healing from a trauma informed & culturally responsive perspective, using a decolonization and liberation psychology framework. Trauma has a way of impacting us both in the short term and long term. It changes the way our brain develops, negatively impacts brain functions, like attention and concentration, but also results in medical conditions like stomach problems, high blood pressure, diabetes, and other health conditions most people don't know are related to trauma. It's not only our trauma that impacts us, but that of our ancestors. Research shows that trauma can be passed down genetically! Therefore, I approach my work using a trauma informed lens.
Media & Speaking Engagements
Click the text for media links.
Todo Pro Mi Familia. 3-Hour Presentation/Speaking Engagement: Reclaiming Identity & Healing Through Decolonization. 04/28/2023
Vamos Foods. "Vamos Talks with Dr. Sandra León-Villa" Feature 03/10/2023.
Seneca of California/Alameda County. 3-Hour Presentation/Speaking Engagement: Neurodiversity in BIPOC Communities: Rethinking Autism and the Female Phenotype. 03/10/2023
Seneca of California/Alameda County. 3-Hour Presentation/Speaking Engagement: Reclaiming Identity & Healing Through Decolonization 02/24/2023
Seneca of California/Alameda County. 3-Hour Presentation/Speaking Engagement: Reclaiming Identity & Healing Through Decolonization 05/06/2022
Touro University. 1-Hour Presentation on Latinx Mental Health. 11/04/2021
Telemundo Las Vegas . Feature Negocios Locales Y Servicios Durante La Pandemia 04/24/2020
NoticiasYa Nevada Univision: Después De Un Tiroteo Masivo 10/03/2017
Speaking Engagement Topics
Reclaiming Identity & Healing Through Decolonization
Liberation Psychology Approaches
Culturally Responsive Assessment of Trauma
Neurodiversity in BIPOC Communities
Autism Assessment in BIPOC Communities & in Women
Latinx Mental Health
FIrst Gen Mental Health
Clinical & Cultural Considerations in Psychological Assessment
Consulting & Supervision Services
Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion
First Gen Professionals
Private & Group Practice
Decoloniality in the Work Space & in Practice