PEACS is a specialized team that offers coordinated specialty care (CSC) for early signs of risk. There is evidence that CSC is the best treatment for young people showing early psychosis and their families.
Several members of the PEACS team are certified in an evidence-based assessment (the “SIPS”), which was developed to assess for signs of risk for psychosis (https://thesipstraining.com/).
Anschutz Health Sciences Building (AHSB), 5th Floor
Johnson Depression Center - Specialty Practices
1890 N Revere Ct, Aurora, CO 80045
Phone: 303-724-6693 (new referrals), or 303-724-3300 (front desk)
Dr. West is a licensed clinical psychologist and director of PEACS. She has expertise in assessment and treatment of early psychosis, including early risk and first episode psychosis (FEP). She was previously the assistant director of an early psychosis program in Massachusetts (CEDAR Clinic, of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center – Harvard Medical School and the Brookline Center for Community Mental Health). Dr. West supervises referrals to PEACS, completes diagnostic and psychosis risk evaluations with young people and their families, conducts individual and family therapy, does case consultations with providers, and supervises the PEACS team. She also does outreach presentations to raise awareness about early psychosis and reduce stigma. Finally, Dr. West maintains ongoing collaborations with other experts in the early psychosis field, to ensure that PEACS is informed by and involved in cutting edge understanding of how to best help young people and their families.
Clinical and Clinical Research Interests: Dr. West has experience working with psychosis spectrum symptoms in clinical, research, and forensic contexts, at all stages of development of these symptoms. Her research has investigated stigma and self-stigma of mental illness. Her current projects focus on understanding and treatment of clinical high risk for psychosis, including outcomes assessment for a coordinated specialty care treatment, developing a school/work treatment, and developing a treatment for co-occurring risk for self-harm. Her clinical and research interests include diagnosis and treatment with complex clinical presentations, cognitive behavioral therapy for psychosis (CBT-p), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), and assessment/collaborative management of suicide risk.
Academic: Dr. West is an Assistant Professor at the University of Colorado – Anschutz Medical Campus. She was previously an Instructor in Psychology at Harvard Medical School and at Massachusetts Mental Health Center Public Psychiatry Division of the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Dr. West earned her undergraduate degree in psychology and philosophy at Colgate University, her master's in forensic psychology at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, and her doctorate in clinical psychology at the City University of New York Graduate Center at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
For fun: Dr. West loves the CO mountains, so enjoys hiking, rock climbing, kayaking, and bike riding in her spare time. She is attempting to remember how to ski.
Gautam Rajendran, MD
Dr. Rajendran is a child, adolescent, and adult psychiatrist and an Assistant Professor at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and Children’s Hospital Colorado (CHCO). Dr. Rajendran provides medication evaluations, consultations, and medication management visits at PEACS. He has been an attending psychiatrist on the CHCO Intensive Services (Inpatient Child and Adolescent Unit) for over 10 years.
Clinical and Clinical Research Interests: Dr. Raj’s clinical and research interests focus on early onset psychosis – with a focus on studying early assessment of children and young adults at risk for schizophrenia. He has treated several of the more complex, challenging, and high risk patients in the state of Colorado at Children’s Hospital and has assisted with training psychiatry residents and medical students for over a decade. His other interests include neurological illnesses with psychiatric manifestations (neuropsychiatry), attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and somatic symptom disorders.
Academic: Dr. Rajendran completed his General (Adult) Psychiatry Residency training at Southern Illinois University where he also served as a Chief Resident. He then completed his Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship at the University of Colorado.
Anika Guha, PhD
Dr. Guha is a postdoctoral fellow at PEACS through the Developmental Psychobiology Research Group. She has significant experience working with individuals experiencing serious mental illness including psychosis spectrum disorders. As a member of the PEACS team, she conducts diagnostic and psychosis risk evaluations and provides individual and family therapy. Dr. Guha is also a researcher in the Colorado Neuroscience of Behavioral Health and Wellness Research Group led by Drs. Jason Tregellas and Kristina Legget.
Clinical and Research Interests: Dr. Guha's clinical approach draws from evidence-based practices to best serve each individual’s strengths and areas for growth. She believes in adopting a collaborative, flexible, and tailored approach to treatment. She has experience with a variety of therapeutic orientations including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT), and Prolonged Exposure (PE)/Written Exposure Therapy (WET).
Dr. Guha's research aims to characterize neurocognitive mechanisms and biomarkers that can inform targeted interventions and prevention efforts. Her long-term goal is for her clinical work to inform her research activities and vice versa by exploring mechanisms through which clinical interventions, such as mindfulness-based and cognitive therapies, bolster symptom and functional outcome improvements.
Academic: Dr. Guha received her B.A. in neuroscience from Wellesley College and her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from UCLA. She completed her doctoral internship at the West Los Angeles VA Medical Center where she completed rotations in the CBT for Psychosis Clinic, Domiciliary Residential Rehabilitation and Treatment Program, Behavioral Health, Trauma Programs, and Substance Use Disorder Outpatient Programs. In addition to extensive experience treating adults, Dr. Guha also completed Managing and Adapting Practice (MAP) training under Dr. Bruce Chorpita for the use of evidence-based practice for children’s mental health.
For fun: Dr. Guha grew up hiking, biking, skiing, and camping in Colorado. She also loves to cook and brew her own kombucha. In a past life, she was a marching band drum major and saxophone player in her high school and college jazz bands.
Christine Reed, BA, MA
Chris is a Senior Professional, Research Services in the PEACS program. She is the PEACS referral coordinator and assists with conducting psychosis risk evaluations. Originally from Portland, Maine, Chris gained experience working with young people at risk for psychosis at the PIER Program (Portland Identification and Early Referral).
Chris is also a co-founder of a local Denver non-profit organization that focuses on social and racial justice, the Brave Coalition. She works tirelessly to recognize and address implicit bias in herself and others and strives to dismantle discriminating systemic policies.
Clinical and Clinical Research Interests: Chris gained early psychosis experience at the PIER program. She is passionate about addressing mental health stigma and creating a safe place for clients and families to seek treatment.
Academic: Chris holds a Masters Degree in Psychology.For Fun: When not working Chris stays busy trying to keep up with her husband and two energetic young boys who enjoy lacrosse, skiing and eating copious amounts of pizza. She also enjoys trips home to Maine and teaching mindfulness to high school students. A favorite quote of hers comes from the Persian poet Rumi, “Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I will meet you there.”
Shadi Sharif, BA
Shadi Sharif is a Professional Research Assistant and Coordinator at PEACS. She previously worked both in academic research settings and as a behavioral health counselor for pediatric patients. Shadi assists Dr. West in developing the PEACS specialized clinical and research program. She contributes to IRB submissions, documentation, and grant applications, conducts evidence-based assessments, and contributes to early psychosis focused writings and presentations.
Clinical and Clinical Research Interests: Shadi has experience studying child cognitive development and executive functioning. In addition, she has worked with children, adolescents, and young adults struggling with eating disorders and other clinical symptoms, including depression, anxiety, trauma, and self-harm. Shadi is interested in child and family development and understanding clinical psychology through a culturally informed lens.
Academic: Shadi completed her undergraduate degree in psychology at the University of Colorado Boulder.
For Fun: Shadi loves to travel, read, practice yoga, and scope out the best museums.
Melissa Batt, MD, MPH
Dr. Batt is a child, adolescent and adult psychiatrist and an assistant professor at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. Dr. Batt provides medication evaluations, consultations, and medication management visits at PEACS.
Clinical and Clinical Research Interests: Dr. Batt’s clinical and research interests focus on prevention of mental illness. She was most recently involved in the Colorado Family Project by providing research medication visits for adolescents with a mood disorder at risk for developing bipolar disorder.
Academic: Dr. Batt completed both residency and her Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship at the University of Colorado, where she also served as chief resident. She later completed a one year Harris fellowship at the University of Colorado, which is an advanced training program focused on infant and perinatal mental health, specifically in clinical training, advocacy, and consultation.
Charlie Buteyn, BA, LCSW
Charlie is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the PEACS program as well as the Executive Functioning Clinic at the University of Colorado. A native of Colorado, Charlie has worked in mental health with adults, adolescents, and children in a variety of settings such as psychiatric residential, inpatient, and outpatient settings.
Clinical Interests: Charlie has experience in acute psychiatric settings with persons experiencing challenges with depression, anxiety, psychosis, and maladaptive behaviors. He works with clients to develop skills to meet life’s challenges head on using a strengths-based and solutions focused approach to improve their abilities to cope.
Academic: Charlie completed an undergraduate degree in psychology and Spanish and a Master’s Degree in Social Work.
For Fun: When not working, Charlie spends time in the mountains hiking or camping, or spending time with friends and family.
Anschutz Health Sciences Building
1890 N Revere Ct
Mail Stop F546
Aurora, CO 80045