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GSSWGraduate School of Social Work

Stephen von Merz

Clinical Associate Professor
MSW, University of Denver


  • child, adolescent and family mental health
  • individual, group, family and couples therapy
  • social work with Latino families
  • juvenile justice
  • clinical case management and supervision
  • program development and administration


Clinical Associate Professor Stephen von Merz serves as chair of the Family Systems Practice concentration. With professional experience that includes more than 20 years of bilingual clinical social work practice in a number of clinical and community settings, von Merz is highly practiced in implementing intensive in-home therapy and outpatient therapy that includes using empirically based models of treatment, such as structural family therapy, solution focused family therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy.

Professor von Merz provides bilingual clinical supervision and consultation with an emphasis on culturally responsive family therapy in social work practice and holds certificates in Multi-Systemic Therapy (MST), hand-drumming therapy with psychotherapy, and secondary trauma resiliency training.

As part of a collaborative partnership with faculty from DU's Graduate School of Professional Psychology, Professor von Merz is a member of the Colorado Resilience Collaborative (CRC) developed to address identity based violence. The CRC is an interdisciplinary initiative that addresses those impacted by identity based violence due to radicalization and discrimination based on race/ethnicity, nationality, faith, and ideology. The program works to mobilize efforts that support insight, healing, and action at individual, family, organizational, and community levels.

He has also worked closely with the mental health treatment team at Mount View Youth Services Center, as a contract therapist, in developing a Therapeutic Mentoring Program for residents and paroled youth involved in the Colorado Division of Youth Corrections.

See Web page and CV.