Tara Spears is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC, 10886) and a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT,2336). She completed training as a Sex Therapist in 2014. She graduated from the University of Central Florida in 2005 with a Master’s degree in Counselor Education. She worked for two years with the Case Management Organization, Neighbor to Family, providing individual and family therapy to children in care. She then worked as a Social Worker for Hospice of the Comforter for one year providing resources and therapeutic services to terminally ill patients and their families. In 2007, Ms. Spears began working part-time for Community Counseling Center of Central Florida (CCCCF) as a therapist. In 2008, she obtained full-time employment CCCCF whereby she completed Comprehensive Behavioral Health Assessments (CBHA), provided individual and family therapy to children and parents involved in the Dependency System, and offered licensure supervision to registered interns.
In 2012, Ms. Spears accepted a position with IMPOWER (formerly Intervention Services) as the Clinical Manager. Ms. Spears served as the Licensed Practitioner of the Healing Arts (LPHA) for four counties, overseeing 2,000 clients. Ms. Spears provided licensure and administrative supervision for staff to ensure quality of care. Under her leadership, Ms. Spears saw a marked increase in referrals and revenue with an average monthly combined income of $300,000 from all programs. Ms. Spears accepted a position with Psychamerica Behavioral Services, LLC (dba Big Bear) in 2014. Ms. Spears began with Big Bear as the Clinical Director and was promoted to the Chief Executive Officer in March 2015. Ms. Spears saw accelerated growth of the agency during her tenure as evidenced from an 300% increase in billing, the acquisition of numerous contracts with lead agencies, school boards and insurance companies and the start of three new programs: targeted case management, CBHAs, and New Directions pilot program.
In late 2015, Ms. Spears created online learning for parents to assist them in feeling confident and comfortable discussing sex with their children. Discussed within the course was sexual development throughout childhood, sexual safety, parental values, and suggestions for having a successful conversation. After receiving an overwhelmingly positive response, Ms. Spears decided to leave Big Bear in 2016 to pursue the advancement of the online learning material, now called Talk Sex with Me. Ms. Spears currently offers individual, couples, and family counseling in a private practice located in Lake Mary, Florida. In addition, Ms. Spears accepts and writes CBHAs for two lead agencies. Ms. Spears is currently working collaboratively with Heartland for Children, the lead agency for Polk, Highlands and Hardee, to train all adoptive and foster parents using the Talk Sex with Me material with the hope of increasing sexual safety and decreasing failed adoptions and placement disruptions.