Lakelands  (02) 4953 7111     East Maitland    (02) 4934 7000


Meet Our Psychologists

We have a dedicated team of child specialist clinical psychologists ready to help you and your child.

You can read about each of our psychologists below. 



John is a clinical psychologist with over 30 years experience working directly with children, teenagers and their families. John is a clinical masters graduate of the University of Newcastle. In his early career he worked in the area of paediatric developmental disabilities and child protection before opening his private practice in 1997. 

John has a particular passion for assisting children of all ages to improve their mental health and strengthen their family relationships. He is very experienced in helping parents manage difficult behaviours that are often present in a range of childhood disorders but sometimes simply present in children as a response to life or developmental changes.

John also enjoys assisting parents to make child focussed decisions around custody and contact when they are experiencing separation and divorce.
John's desire to assist children has seen the private practice grow into a large team of child specialist clinical psychologists working across two locations in the Hunter Valley. (Lakelands and Maitland).


Dr. Natalie Smith is a Clinical Psychologist who has worked at the practice for over 10 years. Natalie completed a Bachelor of Psychology (Honours), as well as a Doctorate of Clinical and Health Psychology at the University of Newcastle. Natalie is a warm and engaging psychologist who is passionate about providing assistance to children, teenagers and their parents. She is experienced in a broad range of issues including depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, behavioural difficulties, social skills concerns, learning problems and relationship issues. Natalie is also skilled in the administration of cognitive and behavioural assessments and diagnostic assessments of Autism Spectrum Disorder.


Dr. Sarah Edwards is a Clinical Psychologist who holds an Honours degree in Psychology, as well as a Doctorate in Clinical and Health Psychology both from the University of Newcastle. Sarah helps children, adolescents and parents dealing with anxiety, depression, behavioural problems, learning difficulties, and peer and family relationship issues including parental separation. She also completes formal assessments including IQ tests, and Autism diagnostic assessments. Sarah has been with the practice for four years and remains passionate about helping children develop life skills and reach their full potential.



Wendy is a registered psychologist who graduated from the University of Newcastle in 1988 with a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree in Psychology. She began her career working with young people with severe traumatic head injuries, helping them reintegrate into the community. She has also worked for the Royal Australian Navy, for community-based organizations such as Centacare and Headspace, and in private practice both in Australia and New Zealand. Wendy currently works at Newcastle Grammar School (Park campus), providing support and screening assessments for students. In this role, Wendy works collaboratively with teachers, learning specialists, and parents to ensure students enjoy their learning experience and reach their full potential. Wendy’s special interest is in cognitive and educational assessments, particularly identifying young people with specific learning needs, e.g. giftedness, Specific Learning Difficulties (dyslexia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia, etc.). She is trained in the Cattell-Horn-Carroll method of cognitive testing, which is considered by scholars to be the most accurate representation of human cognitive abilities currently available. She also holds a Certificate in Gifted Education (NZ).




Denise is a Registered Psychologist who completed a Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) in 2014. Denise completed the 4+2 internship working with children, adolescents and families. She has worked in the disability (NDIS) sector for several years and as a caseworker in Out of Home Care prior to this. 

Denise is passionate about supporting individuals on the autism spectrum, have other childhood or mental health disorders and those who have been impacted by adverse childhood experiences. Denise is passionate about the importance of play in children's development and is completing a Master of Child Play Therapy through Deakin University to develop further skills in this area. She currently uses play to facilitate learning and enjoyment in sessions and is trained in Autplay (a play therapy intervention for Autism and developmental conditions). 

Denise is also able to complete a range of assessments including autism assessments, as well as cognitive and learning assessments. 

Denise is trained to deliver group interventions such as the Westmead Feelings Program to build children's emotion regulation skills.


Sophie Moss is a Registered Psychologist, commencing with John Waring and Associates in East Maitland in 2020. She completed her studies at the University of Newcastle in 2012. Sophie works closely with adolescents and children, particularly with issues around anxiety, depression, autism and ADHD, along with issues around behaviour management and relationships. She enjoys the dynamic of working inclusively and collaboratively with young people and their families.

Sophie’s approach to Psychology is founded on the best interests and best possible outcome for the young people she works with. Sophie endeavours to assist clients in developing and maintaining healthy relationships, as well as improving their mood and behaviours through her client tailored approach. She utilises evidence-based treatment models, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), and dialectic behavioural therapy (DBT). Whilst working with young clients, Sophie prioritises developing a therapeutic rapport to support achieving the young persons therapy goals.

Sophie works to guide children, adolescents and young adults through life transitions whilst focusing heavily on developing healthy connections, resilience and self-esteem. Sophie is also skilled in the administration of a range of diagnostic assessments, including cognitive, learning, and developmental assessments to assess for autism, ADHD and specific learning disorders.


Sean has 25 years experience with qualifications at the Masters level in clinical psychology. Sean has worked exclusively with children and young people, and their families in a range of clinical settings including public health and child protection services. Sean's interests and expertise in child and family psychology is broad, encompassing developmental issues such as intellectual disability, reading disorders, and the autism spectrum disorders; those affected by trauma and adversity; ADHD and other disruptive behaviour issues along with anxiety and mood concerns. 

Sean's passion and commitment is with supporting children and adolescents feel valued and important, and to reach their potential with the support, guidance of their family and others which play a critical role in children's lives including teachers and schools.


Hannah is a Provisional Psychology Registrar. Hannah completed her Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) in 2020 and her Master of Professional Psychology in 2021 at the University of Newcastle.

Hannah is passionate about working with children, young people, and families and is interested in working with a variety of mental health presentations and concerns. Hannah has previously worked with presentations of depression, anxiety, and trauma and delivered the Cool Kids Anxiety program as part of her postgraduate training. Hannah utilises evidence-based treatment models including Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and sometimes incorporates aspects of narrative therapy and mindfulness practice.


Rachel is a warm and engaging registered psychologist. Rachel completed her Psychology Honours program through Charles Sturt University in 2015.

Rachel worked previously as a Child & Family Practitioner, and Therapeutic Specialist working with children, young persons and their families impacted by trauma, and presenting with emotional and behavioural problems.

Rachel is enthusiastic about supporting children and young people with emotional and behavioural problems, anxiety disorders, depression, sexualised behaviours, ADHD, intrusive thoughts & low self-esteem using evidenced based interventions. Rachel enjoys working with young people feeling overwhelmed as they transition to high school, and changes in their family and to manage tricky friendships.     

Rachel is also experienced in facilitating evidenced based parenting programs, including Circle of Security, Tuning into Kids & Tuning into Teens.  


Sarah is a Psychologist with General Registration, who has worked in the disability sector for the past 11 years. Sarah is passionate about working with vulnerable people and supporting them to reach their true capacity. She is outcome-focused, and enjoys working with people, their families, and stakeholders to strengthen relationships and create mutually respectful environments.


Sarah’s clinical practice is strengths based, allowing strategies and solutions to be individually developed and implemented successfully. Sarah enjoys working with people who have complex presentations, and has many years of experience working with families and stakeholders to support management of a variety of behavioural concerns. Sarah also conducts IQ tests, functional behaviour assessments, and other psychological assessments as needed.


Emily is a Clinical Psychology Registrar who completed her Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) in 2021 and her Master of Clinical Psychology in 2023 at The University of Newcastle.

Emily’s postgraduate training included experience working with women and children who have experienced Domestic and Family Violence as well as completing cognitive and behavioural assessments in the primary school setting. She has also co-facilitated the Cool Kids Anxiety program and has prior experience with autism spectrum disorders in children and young adults.

Emily is a warm clinician who prioritises rapport and a collaborative therapeutic space. She is passionate about working with children, young people, their families and other people within their circle to help them reach their full potential and increase their confidence.