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About Donna Laikind


Donna Laikind, MS, LMFT, LPC is a licensed marriage and family therapist who has worked for over 30 years with individuals, couples and families.

She has private practices in Manhattan, New York and Fairfield, Connecticut and has served for many years on the faculty of New York University Medical School in the Department of Psychiatry.

She was Chairman of the Board of the Ackerman Institute For The Family, where she trained, and which is the premiere family therapy institute in the country. She was also Chairman of the Board of Family Dynamics, a child welfare agency in New York.

Donna has a BA from Cornell University and a MS from the Bank Street School.


As a therapist, teacher and leader in the field of systemic therapy, she has written extensively, including a chapter in the book "Feminism and Addiction" and articles for "New York Family Law Journal". She is quoted frequently in the press: Smart Money, The Economist, The Daily News, and Gentleman's Quarterly.

She has appeared often on TV (including an hour-long special with John Gray and Joy Brown on affairs) and news shows including GoodDay NY and Fox News. She lectures widely on such issues as the psychology of money, illness and addiction in the family, recovering from the affair, communication skills, mothers and daughters.

She has been honored with Associated Black Charities Volunteer of the Year Award, Family Dynamics Special Recognition award and appears in Who's Who - USA, WORLD, and WOMEN'S editions.


  • Cornell University
    B.A. 1965
    Dean's List

  • Bank Street College of Education
    M.S. 1984 (Class rank #1)

  • PREP (Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program)
    Level 3 Training, 1991

  • Ackerman Institute for the Family 

    Advanced Training in Family Therapy Certificate, 1990​


  • New York License in Marriage and Family Therapy

  • Connecticut License in Marriage and Family Therapy

  • Connecticut License in Counseling


  • New York University Medical School
    Faculty, Department of Psychiatry
    2001 – Present

  • SCAN New York
    South Bronx and Manhattan
    Family Therapy Consultant
    1990 – 1999

Board Service

  • Ackerman Institute for the Family
    Chairman, Board of Directors 1996 – 1999
    Member, Board of Directors, 1991 – 2008

  • Family Dynamics, Inc.
    Chairman, Board of Directors, 1990 – 1994
    Member, Board of Directors, 1985 – 1995



  • American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy
    Clinical Member

  • American Psychotherapy Association



  • Supportive Children's Advocacy Network
    Family Therapy Consultant, 1990 – 1996

  • U.S. District Court
    Consultant, 1997 – 1999

  • NYU Child Study Center Divorce Project (PDF)
    Co–Founder, 2007

  • The Marriage Center

    Co-Founder, 2000​





  • Mothers and Daughters Lecture
    Manhattan Eye Ear and Throat Hospital 1993

  • Domestic Violence
    Panelist in all day symposium
    Jewish Women's Resource Center
    International Council of Jewish Women 1993

  • Mothers and Daughters Workshop
    Ackerman Institute For The Family 2002

  • The Ten Commandments: Adultery Workshop
    YMHA of Bridgeport 2004

  • Psychology of Money in the Couple
    New York Association of Certified Financial Planners 2005

  • Can Marriage Survive The Affair? (PDF)
    Metro Chapter of AAMFT 2005

  • After The Affair
    The Ackerman Institute For The Family 2006

  • Couples and Money: Renegotiating the power issues and creating a joint financial vision
    AAMFT National Conference
    Atlanta, Georgia, 2010

  • Siblings: Best friends; worst enemies
    Westport - Weston Coop
    Westport, CT, 2010

  • Way Beyond Words: Understanding underlying messages
    Metro AMFT
    New York, NY, 2011

  • Way Beyond Words: Understanding underlying messages
    NYU Medical School
    New York, NY, 2011

  • Couples and Money: Understanding the Systemic Meanings; negotiating a joint financial vision
    The Ackerman Institute for the Family
    New York, NY, 2011


Media – Print


Media – Television/Radio

  • “Your Cheatin' Heart”, Lifetime TV, one hour special with John Grey and Joy Brown,
    narrated by Swoozie Kurtz, 1997.

  • Guest expert on a range of family topics on New York broadcasts including Good
    Day New York, Rolanda, Fox News, NewsTalk TV,and WBIS.



  • 1992, Volunteer of the Year, Associated Black Charities

  • 1992, Who's Who USA, World Women Editions

  • 1995, Special Recognition, Family Dynamics, New York, NY

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