Jennifer Shepard Payne, PhD, LCSW

Jennifer Shepard Payne, Ph.D., LCSW, is an Associate Professor at Azusa Pacific University in the Department of Social Work. She received her doctorate from the UCLA School of Public Affairs and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with many years of experience in mental health clinical practice and administration. Her research interests include developing culturally tailored community-based depression and trauma interventions and addressing minority mental health disparities.

For several years, Dr. Payne has been working on culturally tailoring Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) for African American communities, both clinically and via research. She has a private practice, DTG Counseling and Consulting, where she provides ACT counseling and coaching primarily to African Americans of faith suffering from anxiety or trauma. She is also writing a book with New Harbinger Publications entitled “Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Black Trauma: A Culturally Embracing Guide to Pulling Yourself Out of the Fire and Emerging Whole,” November 2021. For more information about her work, visit

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