ANXIETY SPECIALISTSAbout Us
Providing compassionate, expert therapy for anxiety and OCD
Who We Are
We are a small group of highly trained specialists dedicated to providing the highest quality treatment for anxiety and OCD. Our training in evidence-based treatments and experience allow us to help you reach your goals as productively as possible. Because we work exclusively with anxiety and OCD, we know what you’re dealing with. We understand your symptoms on a deep level because we work with people just like you every day.
We use highly researched treatments that have been shown to be effective. These evidence-based treatments for anxiety and OCD include Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP). Other techniques we use include mindfulness, self-compassion, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and EMDR for PTSD.
We’ve chosen to dedicate our careers to working with anxiety and OCD because we’ve seen how powerful evidence-based therapy can be.
We’re honored to work with our clients, helping them face fears and take big steps forward. We see lives transformed by the hard work our clients do in therapy. Our clients are starting families, changing careers, and moving across the country, freed from anxiety to make their own decisions and start the next chapter of their lives. We can help you get there too!
Sam Kramer, PhD
Dr. Kramer received his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Southern Illinois University – Carbondale and completed his predoctoral internship at the Salem VA Medical Center in Salem Virginia. He went on to complete his postdoctoral fellowship at the Center for OCD and Anxiety-Related Disorders at Saint Louis Behavioral Medicine Institute, where he continued to practice for over four years treating anxiety at the outpatient and IOP level of care.
Dr. Kramer specializes in treating adults with OCD. He also enjoys treating panic disorder and phobias. Dr. Kramer recognizes that facing anxiety can feel like a daunting task. He works to meet clients where they are and to collaboratively help them identify their goals and create a step-by-step path to recovery. He approaches therapy with a relaxed and personable therapeutic style, and he encourages clients to not only understand what strategies work, but also why they work. Clients can expect to learn how to address their anxiety during sessions with Dr. Kramer and then apply what they learned with daily homework between sessions. He aims to empower his clients by teaching them the strategies they will need to act as their own therapist and continue to maintain their progress after they have completed therapy to experience lifelong change.
In his free time, Dr. Kramer enjoys spending time with his wife and two children, hiking and enjoying the outdoors, and playing guitar every chance he gets.
Amy Kurz, MSW, LCSW
Amy completed her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Illinois Wesleyan University and a master’s degree in social work from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She has been a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) since 2009 and in the past worked in foster care and with girls exiting sex trafficking. While working in foster care she discovered her passion for individual therapy, especially working with kids and teens.
Amy specializes in the treatment of OCD and anxiety related disorders including social anxiety, generalized anxiety, phobias, panic, separation anxiety, and body focused repetitive behaviors such as trichotillomania (hair pulling) and excoriation disorder (skin picking). She is also trained in EMDR (eye-movement desensitization and reprocessing) which is an evidence-based treatment for trauma and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Amy has over seven years of experience specializing in the treatment of anxiety and OCD.
Amy’s style is open and collaborative. She welcomes questions and works hard to ensure that her clients feel seen and understood. Her goal is to help clients take skills and strategies learned in session and use them independently. She firmly believes that therapy is an investment in the future, even though it’s hard work now. Most things that are worthwhile in life are not easy and this is no exception!
In her free time Amy enjoys curling up with a cup of tea and a good book, listening to live music, taking walks in the park, playing with her dog and watching HGTV.
Bailey Durbin, Practicum Student
Bailey completed her bachelor’s degree in psychology from McKendree University, and is currently enrolled in a doctoral clinical psychology program at Ponce Health Sciences University – St. Louis. While studying in her program, Bailey has had the opportunity to work as a school counselor, conduct psychological assessments, and provide individual therapy to clients. She provides services to children, adolescents, and adults from all backgrounds.
Bailey’s current clinical interests include working with people with mood disturbances, anxiety disorders, and OCD. She aims to provide a safe, open and non-judgmental environment for each of her clients. Bailey follows a structured cognitive behavioral approach and is focused on teaching new skills and strategies to deal with anxiety. She collaboratively works on developing goals that are meaningful and will improve the quality of life for each of her clients.
Sarah Kertz, PhD
Owner and Director of Anxiety Specialists of St. Louis
Dr. Kertz is a Harvard trained clinical psychologist and the owner and director of Anxiety Specialists of St. Louis. She completed her PhD in Clinical Psychology at the University of Louisville in 2011 and then went on for two additional years of training at McLean Hospital/Harvard Medical School for her internship and postdoctoral fellowship. While at McLean she trained at the OCD Institute, a nationally recognized program for treating OCD.
Following her postdoc, she worked for almost a decade in a psychology department as an assistant professor and then a tenured associate professor. She taught graduate coursework and provided training to doctoral students in the clinical psychology program and supervised doctoral dissertations and masters thesis projects. She also provided individual and group supervision to over 25 doctoral level clinical psychology students in providing effective Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Exposure and Ritual Prevention (ERP) therapy for anxiety and OCD. She published over 35 peer-reviewed articles and over one hundred conference presentations on topics related to anxiety and OCD.
Dr. Kertz specializes in working with adult women with OCD. Dr. Kertz’s style is down to earth and focused on her client’s progress. She strives to teach practical skills and strategies to work with anxiety in new ways in order to reach meaningful goals. She uses a structured approach and asks her clients to complete homework assignments between sessions and to track their progress. Dr. Kertz loves to celebrate her client’s successes and is impressed every day by her client’s bravery and vulnerability.
In her free time Dr. Kertz enjoys talking about cats, coffee, and true crime and spending time at the library, estate sales, and hanging out with her husband and son.