About Me

I spent 30 years as a first responder, retiring in 2012. This experience put me up close and personal to the negative emotions of people and the traumatic experiences effecting one’s life, as well as their negative behaviors, which sometimes resulted with their incarceration or death. 

In 2014 I returned to school and began working on a master’s degree in social work and a master’s degree in forensic psychology. My focus since leaving law enforcement has been to help those who have suffered traumas in their life, either from childhood, military deployments, their experiences as a first responder, or anything else.  Since graduation in 2016, I have worked in both outpatient substance use programs and inpatient jail programs, providing individual and group therapy. I discovered many if not all of those clients incarcerated had significant traumas in their life which resulted in the use of substances to cope with their emotions.   Since 2017 I have worked in private practice groups providing individual therapy for adolescents and adults and facilitating DBT and mindfulness focused groups. 

I have used Dialectal Behavioral Therapy (DBT) to help clients manage intense emotions, suicidal ideation, and learn effective coping skills.  I am Shapiro trained in EMDR to specifically help clients with their traumas and reducing the emotional responses to them.  I am actively working with clients who are experiencing symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) due to childhood traumas, serious medical conditions, domestic violence, car accidents and numerous other intense events, to reduce their emotional responses to those events.  To watch the shift in their thoughts from EMDR therapy is truly amazing. 

I have countless hours of training and experience with trauma focused care, child abuse, domestic violence, mindfulness, substance use, anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and many other mental health conditions. 

I encourage clients to use mindfulness and self care to help create balance ad peace in their lives.  For me, self care is playing with my Labrador retrievers, being outside in nature, traveling as much as I can, and photography.  All of the photos on this page are my own.


Masters Degree in Social Work - University of New England - 2016

Masters Degree in Public Safety (forensic psychology) - Saint Leo University - 2017

Bachelors Degree in Psychology - Saint Leo - 2013

Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing (EMDR) - Shapiro trained - 2019

FSU Trauma and resilience certification - levels 1 and 2 - 2022

Active member - Tampa Bay Regional Critical Incident Team 


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Cheryl A Hurley LCSW LLC


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