Introducing CHOICES


Throughout our life we have periods where we struggle or feel stuck. Whether it is biological, or through life circumstances, we come to a place where we need a helping hand to get us through the toughest of circumstances. At Choices we offer comprehensive behavioral health programs geared to meet the psychiatric needs for individuals 18 and over.


Richard Granese, MD

Dr. Granese completed his residency in psychiatry at West Virginia University and served as Associate Residency Training Director before starting private practice in 2005.  He specializes in mood disorders.



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Lianjie Du, MD

Dr. Du completed his residency in psychiatry at The University of Iowa and completed fellowship training in addiction medicine at The University of Minnesota.  He has been practicing both inpatient and outpatient psychiatry in Orange County since 2004. 

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Brynn Bailey, MS, PA-C

A licensed health care professional who practice medicine in partnership with Richard Granese, M.D. 

She graduated from UCLA with a degree in psychology during her undergraduate studies, then went onto SCPA, where she evaluates, diagnoses and treats all spectrums of behavioral health.

Received her Masters in Physician Assistant studies from Western University of Health Sciences.

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Taya Varteresian DO, MS

Dr. Varteresian received her bachelors and masters of Science degree from the University of Southern California in gerontology, where she learned the multidisciplinary study of aging. She graduated from Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine -AT Still University, where she developed a holistic approach to evaluating patients.  She graduated from adult psychiatry residency at Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center in Phoenix, Arizona, and completed a geriatric psychiatry fellowship at UCLA. She is dually board certified in adult psychiatry and geriatric psychiatry. 


Lisa Bailer, MHS, PA-C

Lisa Bailer, MHS, PA-C Board Certified Physician Assistant that practices medicine in partnership with Dr. Granese. Lisa received her Masters of Health Science and Physician Assistant degree from Duke University.  In addition, she holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Biopsychology with an emphasis in Neuroscience from the University of California, San Diego. Lisa is passionate about providing and encouraging health and wellness to all of her behavioral health patients.


Brian F. Licuanan, PhD, MS  Chief Psychologist (PSY# 27276)

Dr. Licuanan completed an MA in Psychology from Pepperdine University as well as an MS in Industrial/Organizational Psychology and a PhD in Counseling Psychology from the University of Oklahoma. He completed his pre-doctoral internship at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and post-doctoral training at Moorpark College, Moorpark, CA. He also acquired sleep training at St. Luke's Hospital of Kansas City, MO. Dr. Licuanan has extensive experience working with clients presenting with a wide-range of concerns including depression, anxiety, bi-polar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, substance dependence, and dual-diagnosis while also facilitating adolescent and adult process groups as a recommended supplement for his clients' treatment. Furthermore, he specializes in and treats sleep disorders (i.e. insomnia) using an empirically validated treatment. Dr. Licuanan treats from an integrative orientation, drawing particularly from Cognitive Behavioral and Psychodynamic therapeutic approaches.
Additionally, Dr. Licuanan is part of the clinical treatment team for A Mission for Michael, Inc. and is the lead facilitator for the National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI) working with families at Laguna Beach Mission Hospital. He is also the CEO and Co-Founder for Myriad Behavioral Solutions--a medical corporation that provides teams of psychiatric and psychological clinicians to elderly care facilities. 

Dr. Licuanan practices at offices in Newport Beach, Laguna Niguel, and Tustin. For questions or to schedule an appointment, call 714.469.1418 or email


Lisa bahar

Lisa Bahar, MA, CCJP, LMFT, LPCC

Lisa Bahar is a licensed marriage and family therapist and licensed professional clinical counselor.  Lisa received her graduate degree from Pepperdine University in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis in marriage and family therapy and her Baccalaureate from the University of Southern California. In addition, she is certified as a drug and alcohol addiction counselor with the California Certification Board of Alcohol & Drug Counselors. Lisa provides DBT Informed Skills Training which provide clients the "How" skills to deal with emotionally reactive behaviors, inability to express feelings and difficulties in managing stress.  Lisa is also known as a creative therapist using Cinema Therapy, a intervention using film stories to facilitate group process. Lisa maintains a private practice in Newport Beach and at Southern California Psychiatric Associates located in Dana Point.

Tel (949) 212-2081

Brandon Vazerian

Brandon Vazirian, MS, LMFT

Brandon Vazirian received his Master’s in Counseling from California State University Fullerton with an emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy. Brandon has experience working with a variety of populations and age groups. He has worked in hospital settings with severe mental disorders, out patient clinics working with children, adults and families, as well as residential facilities working with a variety of mental disorders with a concentration on trauma and PTSD. Brandon is also certified in Triple P (Positive Parenting Program), which is an evidenced based therapy modality that works with families who have difficult children or teens. His current area of focus in practice has been with mood disorders and anxiety disorders with an emphasis on PTSD. Brandon works with adults, adolescents, children and families.

Tel (714) 980-3912

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Mona Dow, MS, LMFT

Mona Dow completed her Bachelor's degree at UCI in Psychology and received her Master of Science in Clinical Psychology from Cal State Fullerton. She is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with experience working with a range of issues including Depression, Anxiety, ADHD, Anger, Bipolar Disorders, and Psychosis. She uses a Cognitive Behavioral Therapy approach and enjoys working with adults, children, adolescents, and families.


Michelle Malloy, MS, MFT

Michelle completed her Bachelor's degree at UCLA in Psychology and her Master's Degree in Clinical Psychology from Cal State Fullerton. She is licensed as a Marriage and Family Therapist. She has worked with the UCLA Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Clinic and has received specialized training in anxiety disorders. She is a BTTI Graduate, allowing her to provide Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Exposure and Response Prevention which is effective for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Panic Disorder, and Eating Disorders. Michelle uses use a combination of Cognitive Behavioral and Psychodynamic therapy in treatment. She has experience working with children, adolescents and adults. Other treatment specialties include Depression, Bipolar Disorder, and Relationship Issues.

Tel (714) 837-8997


Hegi Khajavi, MA, MFTI #73309

Hegi Khajavi received her Bachelor’s degree in psychology from Cal State University Long Beach.  She received an M.A. in Psychology from Argosy University with emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy.  She has experience working with adult population; Chronically Mentally Ill; and Dual Diagnosis. She enjoys working with young adults, and adults dealing with substance abuse and eating disorder.  She has done extensive work with clients dealing with Bipolar, anxiety, depression, and schizoaffective disorder and has provided individual, couples and group therapy.  She believes a combination of Psychodynamic, CBT and Positive Psychology being very effective in treatment.

Hegi Khajavi can be reached at (949) 422-4696 or via  email at for more inforamtion or for Marriage and family therapy in Orange County, California you can see here at

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Leila Entezam,  MA, MBA, MFTI# 75116

Leila has a B.S. in Neuroscience with a minor in Psychology, a M.B.A., a M.A. With Distinction in Counseling and Psychology, and is currently completing a series of certificates through the Mindsight Institute founded by Dr. Dan Siegel.  Mindsight focuses on the way the brain develops and is shaped by interpersonal relationships, and the practical application of this across multiple disciplines.  As an active yogi and mindfulness practitioner, Leila believes in a loving kindness approach to therapy balancing both the left and right brain factors that drive behavior. 

With an extensive background in business management, Leila offers a unique ability to connect with the mental health challenges facing executives and this enables her to provide Executive Coaching to clients as well.  This background is complemented by her many years of service in high-stress environments working with troubled youth, including a teen homeless shelter, Tijuana orphanages, several years in the Emergency Room, and a brief stint in juvenile hall.  Clinically, Leila has also worked in an Early Memory Loss (EML) program for those diagnosed with EML or Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI). 

Leila is a Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health Stipend Award Recipient, Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health Underrepresented Ethnic Populations Middle East Subcommittee Member, Defense Language and National Security Education Office - National Language Service Corps Farsi Volunteer, and contributing writer for several publications.  She also serves as a Board Member for the Child Development Consortium of Los Angeles Charter School.  Additional passions include teaching, public speaking, mentorship, creative writing/spoken word, and volunteering at the equestrian center.  Leila is fluent in Farsi and conversational in Spanish.

Phone:  424-234-MIND (6463)


Reno Galassi, LMFT

A licensed clinician since 1985, the span of my practice has included private and institutional scope lending a wide range of experience from initial assessmet and triage, through skill building and problem solving in daily life, to the discovery and development of the independence self. I am continually encouraged in my work by the experience of accompanying my clients on their pathway to possibility and hope when their lives have been affected by situational misfortune, emotional stress and conflict.

If you are new to treatment or are concerned about a loved one or family member and have questions, a confidential assessment session is a  good place to start.  If you are aware of a problem pattern in your life, let's explore that privately and confidentially.

 Do you need support with stress management, relational conflict, coping skills, anxiety management, habit control, co-dependency or chemical dependency, grief and loss, acceptance of a new diagnosis, or letting go? Taking some private time to sort through and operationally define the problem is an approach that has proven itself to my clients over the years. It is the first step in clinical problem solving.

 Please Remember:

If you need help, give yourself the permission to get the help you need. 

Tel. 949-452- 0077 x4


Tonja M. Gaudette, MA, MSW (ASW # 28817) Clinical Social Worker

Special areas of interest: Mood Disorders, Schizophrenia and other Psychotic Disorders, Relationship and Anger Challenges, Chemical Dependency and Dual Diagnose Impairments. Works with Adults, adolescents, children, and families. 

Services: Individual, family and group therapy. Consultation and advocacy regarding hospitalizations and mental health legal system. Education and linkage to Community Resources

For appointments: (949) 485-1706


Annie H. Lee, MS, RDN, LMFT 

  • Special areas of interest: Mood Disorders, Anxiety, Eating Disorders, Dual Diagnosis,
    Self Esteem and
    Individual, Family,
    and Couples.
  • Offices: Tustin & Laguna Niguel
  • Insurances accepted: Most PPO Insurance Plans
  • Please contact provider directly to discuss fees and sliding scale options.
  • For appointments:  (949) 689-8272