Counseling Master's Degree

Graduate Counseling Faculty

Judith Harrington, Ph.D.
Program Coordinator and Associate Professor of Graduate Counseling
Dr. Harrington coordinates the Couples and Family Counseling major within the department. Her professional interests include suicide prevention, suicide bereavement, trauma, loss and grief, crisis intervention, clinical supervision and the training of clinical supervisors, including having co-edited Critical Incidents in Clinical Supervision. She was in private practice full time for many years and has extensively functioned in elected and appointed roles in service to the profession at the state, regional and national levels. Currently, she serves as the Chair of the Advancement for Clinical Practice Committee for the American Mental Health Counselor’s Association and served for five years on the Standards, Training and Practices Committee for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, a SAMHSA sponsored national network of 160 crisis centers.
Dr. Harrington’s CV
(205) 665-6375

James L. Jackson, Ph.D.
Professor of Graduate Counseling
Dr. Jackson is the coordinator for the Clinical Mental Health Counseling major. He earned his Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision at The University of Alabama. James is a National Certified Counselor, a Licensed Professional Counselor and Counseling Supervisor, and a Registered Play Therapist – Supervisor. His professional experiences include serving as a training clinic director, school counselor, outpatient therapist, group and foster home therapist, and he continues to serve clients through his private practice in Montevallo, Alabama. James’ interests include identity development, social justice, trauma work, creative arts and play therapy, and self-care, and he integrates creative work in his teaching and practice with students and clients.
Dr. Jackson’s CV
(205) 665-6362

Latofia Parker, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Graduate Counseling
Dr. Parker joined the University of Montevallo Counseling Program faculty in the fall of 2015. Prior to coming to Montevallo, Dr. Parker was an Assistant Professor of Counselor Education at Troy University Montgomery. She has many years of experience as a Rehabilitation Counselor and has been a longtime advocate for clients who experience intellectual and physical disabilities. Dr. Parker earned a B.S. in Psychology from Xavier University of Louisiana, a M.S. in Rehabilitation Counseling at Troy University and a Ph.D. in Counselor Education at the University of Alabama. She is an active member of many professional organizations and currently serves on the Alabama Board of Examiners in Counseling. In the fall of 2016, Dr. Parker oversaw the successful implementation of the University of Montevallo Community Counseling Clinic, a center where clients from underserved populations can receive free counseling from supervised counseling interns.
Dr. Parker’s CV
(205) 665-6377

Daniel Birdsong, Ph.D., Ed.D.
Assistant Professor of Graduate Counseling
Dr. Birdsong is the coordinator of the school counseling major in the Graduate Counseling Program. He earned a Bachelor of Music degree in choral music education from the UM, a Master of Education degree in school counseling from the UM, an Educational Specialist degree in school counseling from Jacksonville State University, a Doctor of Education degree in educational leadership from Samford University, and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in counselor education and supervision from the University of Holy Cross. Previously, he served as an elementary school counselor in Alabaster City Schools for five years. Dr. Birdsong holds multiple state- and national-level credentials. In Alabama, he is a Licensed Professional Counselor, Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor, and Certified School Counselor. Nationally, he is a Registered Play Therapist, Approved Clinical Supervisor, National Certified Counselor, and National Certified School Counselor. In addition to serving at the UM, Dr. Birdsong provides part-time private practice counseling in Alabaster and counseling licensure supervision in the Shelby County and Birmingham-metro areas. He is actively involved in the Alabama Counseling Association and is a past-president of the Alabama School Counselor Association.
Dr. Birdsong’s CV
(205) 665-6378

Connie Couch, Ph.D., LPC (CO)
Assistant Professor of Graduate Counseling
Dr. Couch’s clinical career has spanned over 15 years, the majority of which has been in the Birmingham area in a variety of substance use treatment and clinical mental health settings. Most recently, her clinical practice focused on working with children and their families in a community mental health center in Longmont, CO. Dr. Couch is a proud alumni of the University of Montevallo (B.S. in Psychology, 2004; M.Ed. in Counseling, 2006) and completed her Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision at the University of Northern Colorado (2022). Her clinical interests include Play Therapy, TF-CBT, child and caregiver relational development, Animal-Assisted Interventions (AAI), trauma recovery and resiliency, counselor burnout, and clinical supervision. Her academic and research interests include Animal Assisted Interventions in Supervision (AAI-S), creativity in clinical supervision and pedagogy, counselor career development and transitions, Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL), and qualitative research methodology. She is excited to have joined the faculty of the Graduate Program in Counseling at the University of Montevallo as Assistant Professor. Dr. Couch teaches Career and Lifestyle Development, Human Grown and Development, Trauma and Crisis Intervention, Research Methods in Behavioral Science and Education, and field experience courses.
Dr. Couch’s CV
(205) 665-6309