Thomas Ellis, MA, LMFT

As a marriage and family therapist with a special focus on complicated grief and trauma, Tom is also a clinical supervisor, consultant, writer and trainer. He was born and raised in Hastings Minnesota. He is a graduate of the University of St. Thomas, the University of Minnesota and St. Mary’s University of Minnesota where he earned a master’s degree in Counseling Psychology.

He has also completed a certification & licensure in Marriage and Family Therapy. His greatest passion is spending quality time with his two daughters. Tom’s father died in 1986 following ten years of a disability related to a brain tumor. His life experiences and compassion for others is what brought him to this work. Tom was Executive Director of Center for Grief, Loss and Transition for 14 years beginning in 1996. His focus has been in working with individuals and families who have experienced a traumatic loss. Tom was also a 2nd generation Funeral Director. He is a musician, a gardener, enjoys traveling and being outdoors. Tom has a keen interest in the family dynamic within the counseling setting and society.

Tom is a member of the American Association of Marriage & Family Therapy, and received the Distinguished Service Award from the MN Association of Marriage and Family Therapy. He is the author of This Thing Called Grief: New Understandings of Loss.


Gayle Sherman Crandell, MA, LPCC

Gayle has been privileged to work with people living with and affected by life-challenging illness, grief and transition for over 30 years. She is a therapist, professional trainer and clinical supervisor. Since 2011, Gayle has facilitated a group for women living with metastatic breast cancer. She has presented at countless conferences and workshops nationally on the emotional needs of people at the end of life, caregiver grief, resilience among professionals and talking with young people about death.

Gayle’s approach to counseling is deeply impacted by her travel to Thailand, Spain, Bali, Kyoto, Australia, Singapore, and Western Europe, and having lived on both coasts before landing in the middle of the country (which she loves!) She is a political news "junkie" loves to garden without gloves, and cocoon at home with really good coffee. She lives in Minneapolis with her spouse of 25+ years and rescue dog, Joey -an old scruffy terrier who accompanies her to work each day. She loves her time with her adult kids who are peppered throughout the east coast, west coast, and old south.

Prior to Crocus Hill Counseling Center, Gayle was a therapist and program director at Center for Grief, Loss and Transition for over ten years. In Washington, DC, Gayle was in private practice working extensively with people living with HIV and cancer, and education director for Planned Parenthood of Metropolitan Washington and the St. Francis Center. She was part of a team who began LAYN, a homeless youth program in Hollywood, coordinated programs and provided counseling for the LA Response Center for survivors of sexual assault and worked with several former cult members at the California Institute for Women. Gayle contributed a chapter entitled "The Grieving Caregiver" to the book Caring for the HIV/AIDS Caregiver, and is an ADEC certified Thanatologist.


Mitchel Paulson, MS, LPC

Mitchel is a Licensed Professional Counselor and a Licensed School Counselor in Minnesota. He graduated with a Master's Degree in Counseling Education from Winona State University and has been in practice at Crocus Hill Counseling Center since 2015. Mitchel's practice involves individual psychotherapy for adolescents and adults presenting with a variety of concerns, including anxiety, depression, grief/trauma, suicidal ideation/self-harm, addiction, and more. Mitchel also provides family and couples therapy services for families struggling with issues including divorce, communication problems, transition concerns, and family dysfunction. He also works as a School Counselor at a local metro high school.

Mitchel motivates others to discover personal growth and change in ways that feel comfortable and relaxed. Be creative, explore, draw all over the page. There are no constraints when it comes to therapy, wherever you are is the perfect place to start.

A recipient of the Minnesota Jaycees 2014 Ten Outstanding Young Minnesotans Award, Mitchel is a lifelong learner, a fan of tattoos and music, a firm believer in the healing power of relationships, a disability rights advocate, and genuinely interested in teaching and practicing the powerful, positive impacts of therapy.