Derek Novacek, PhD


Clinical Expertise

Dr. Novacek has expertise in providing evidence-based treatments including cognitive-behavioral therapy and trauma-focused therapies to help youth with emotional disorders.


University of Notre Dame, BA

Emory University, MA

Emory University, PhD

University of California, Los Angeles, Predoctoral Internship

VA Greater Los Angeles / UCLA, Postdoctoral Fellowship


Dr. Novacek was born and raised in Illinois. He received his undergraduate degree in psychology from the University of Notre Dame. He went on to complete his master’s and PhD in Clinical Psychology at Emory University. At Emory, his research focused on youth at risk for serious mental illness. He then moved to Los Angeles to complete his clinical internship at the UCLA School of Medicine where he worked with both adolescents and adults. Dr. Novacek then completed a three-year postdoctoral fellowship at the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System and the UCLA School of Medicine.


Dr. Novacek is a psychologist at the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System. His research focuses on understanding sociocultural determinants of community integration in homeless-experienced adults to inform the development of culturally responsive rehabilitative interventions. He recently received a Career Development Award to examine stress, inflammation, and resilience among homeless Veterans. He has also conducted research on racial disparities in mental health and identifying signs of serious mental illness in youth. Dr. Novacek has published his research in numerous academic journals as all as presented scientific findings at international conferences.


Dr. Novacek regularly gives guest lectures and presentations to students, clinical trainees, and researchers. He has taught courses at Emory University and Pitzer College.

General Approach

Dr. Novacek takes a collaborative, culturally responsive, and evidence-based approach to psychotherapy. Viewing the client as the expert of their life, Dr. Novacek works with them to build a life that aligns with their values and goals.

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Our team provides comprehensive DBT and other evidence-based treatments to help make positive changes in the lives of children, young adults, and their families.

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