SKYLER CRUZ, LMSW
I’m an award winning advocate and facilitator; highly motivated & passionate bilingual social worker with more than 15 years of experience in the therapeutic & educational fields. I have extensive knowledge of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, & Questioning/Queer (LGBTQ) community issues, in addition to HIV/STI education & prevention, addiction and grief counseling, and comprehensive, inclusive comprehensive sex education- including consent/coercion.
In September 2012, I was selected as part of a cohort of about 150 LGBT Leaders under 30 to attend a special reception with President Joe Biden in the White House. In November 2014, I received an award from the Translatina Network for my work in the Trans Latinx communities. In 2015, I was selected to join an LGBTQ BIPOC Scholars Network and The LGBTQ Task Force Trans Leadership Academy. I’ve facilitated workshops and trainings for young people, adults, and social services workers from all over the country- ranging from training young adults in leadership development and training MSW students how to work with Queer adolescents to presenting at the National After school Conference and the Creating Change National Conference. I also provide consultation and supervision for colleagues as needed.
Ok, now that we got that out the way…
¿Qué lo que, mi gente? What’s good, my people? I am a first generation Afro-Dominicano born and raised in Washington Heights/Inwood, NYC. Experiencing the city in the 80s-90s, growing up in a low income, dangerous neighborhood, I learned early on the importance of finding “your people”- that group that has your best interest at heart and with whom you have mutual respect and support. For me, those were the folks who lived in my building (our village) and my karate dojo (my second home).
When pursuing my Social Work Master’s Degree, specializing in group work was a no brainer. I truly believe we are best supported when we know we’re not alone. Through the course of my career, I have facilitated an infinite number of groups and I’ve trained others to do the same.
In practice, I love to connect and build trusting relationships with my clients. I listen without judgment. I’m direct, but nurturing. I’m genuine and supportive without enabling. My interests and specialties are fitness and mental health, anxiety, sex, sexuality, and gender identity, as well as relationship dynamics surrounding identity, grief support, and issues relating to cultural identity, poverty, and imposter syndome.