Marisa Nuñez, Marisa Hair, Long Island City, NY

Sherry Hightower

Clinical Care Offices

Boston, MA

“I loved working with Ascendus, I am so grateful for them and for their help.”

Healing a Community, One Patient at a Time


Sherry has been working as a Trauma Specialist in her community since 1998. “I have people in my caseload that I started seeing when they were children, now they are grown, and I am working with their families.” She has been a staple of healing and comfort for those in her care and is looked upon as a necessity in her community. Sherry specialized in the “Living After Murder” program, which deals with the littlest victims. “They are often forgotten, and the patients that other clinicians didn’t want to deal with. It’s hard for clinicians who don’t understand those behaviors, but just because they are small doesn’t mean they don’t hurt. Pain is pain, everyone wants to be loved and to communicate.”

Sherry had been working in the same office since the inception of her practice, but in 2022 the owner decided to sell the building. Because her office was rent stabilized, finding a new location would be an incredible financial burden. It would also require Sherry’s patients, over 150 of them, to leave a place they consider a safe zone and reacclimate themselves to a new environment. This could be detrimental to their healing process. In addition, looking for a new space would force Sherry to put a pause on seeing patients, and this would prevent those patients from getting the care they needed, often at a time that was most necessary for them.


Luckily, the owner offered Sherry the option of buying her office from him. Sherry was ecstatic, but she didn’t have the funds to cover the costs. She reached out to Ascendus and was able to receive a loan to purchase her office. “I loved working with Ascendus, I am so grateful for them and for their help.” Because of the loan, Sherry did not have to close her practice for a single day, and she never had to pause the treatment of her patients. “All I kept thinking was what would happen to my patients if I had to close the doors? Who wants to go through all their trauma, and tell their story again with a new therapist? I couldn’t bear to halt their healing process. I am so thankful that I found Ascendus and got that loan.”

Sherry says that there is often a stigma when it comes to mental health, and that in the future she hopes to see mental health normalized. “Trauma crosses every socioeconomic and ethnic boundary, but in communities of color, especially poorer communities of color, mental health can often be judged. I wanted to give my community a safe space to not feel judged and to know that there was nothing wrong with seeking help.” However, throughout her years practicing, Sherry has seen a significant change in her community regarding mental health. “I was in the grocery store and one of my little patients spotted me, she brought her friend and said this is my therapist. I felt so proud that she could be so open, cheerful, and normal about it.”

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