Broderick Sawyer, Ph.D.

Clinical Psychologist

Dr. Broderick Sawyer obtained his master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Louisville, completing his internship at Stony Brook University Counseling and Psychological Services. At Stony Brook, Dr. Sawyer conducted mindfulness meditation, self-compassion, and emotional processing groups, along with seeing individual psychotherapy clients. Dr. Sawyer has clinical experience working with anxiety, depression, trauma, OCD, eating disorders, race-based stress/trauma, sexual/gender identity development, and relational difficulties. Dr. Sawyer also routinely provides lectures on culturally competent psychotherapy at national psychology conferences and in other settings. In the therapy room, Dr. Sawyer is an “integrative” psychotherapist, using multiple empirically based techniques to 1) help clients overcome longstanding psychological difficulties, 2) understand why and how those difficulties developed, 3) safely experience challenging emotions once trust is established, and 4) develop a positive sense of self. As far as specific theories, Dr. Sawyer integrates Cognitive Behavioral, Mindfulness and Acceptance, Compassion, Relational Psychodynamic, Narrative, Attachment, and Neuroscientific based approaches.

While there may be many moving parts to the way he thinks about psychological health and wellbeing, a large focus is placed on the comfort and safety offered in the therapeutic relationship. Dr. Sawyer is a strong believer that an intervention’s strength is dependent on a strong client-therapist relationship, and he actively works each session to get to know clients not only for their difficulties, but for their strengths, interests, and overall personhood. He believes that if he can see the positive sides of his clients, they can begin to see the positives, too.

Dr. Sawyer has an enthusiastic interest in mindfulness and compassion-based meditation, and has had a personal meditation practice for nearly 2 years. He spends much free time reading empirical literature, as well as original spiritual texts, to continue to enhance his own meditation practice and knowledge; this allows him to effectively and thoroughly teach those interested in meditation, beginners and advanced practitioners alike. Dr. Sawyer’s primary focus when teaching meditation is to help clients become aware of, and ultimately gain some control over, the “thinking” mind. Once the “thinking” mind is seen and understood, through practice, clients can begin to identify how their thoughts might be limiting their behavioral responses to stress.

Beyond clinical work, Dr. Sawyer collaborates with community members in the West End of Louisville to spark community change, utilizing his understandings of race relations and oppressive systems. He is also an avid reader, loves video games, and as a former basketball player, loves spending time watching and playing.


Selected Publications

Williams, M. T., Sawyer, B. A., Ellsworth, M., Singh, S., & Tellawi, G. (2017). Obsessive-compulsive disorder in ethnoracial minorities: Attitudes, stigma, & barriers to treatment. In J. Abromowitz, D. McKay, & E. Storch (Eds.), Handbook of Obsessive-Compulsive Related Disorders, Vol. 1. Wiley.

Sawyer, B. A., DeLapp, R. C. T., & Williams, M. T. (2016). Community violence exposure and racial discrimination as barriers to treatment: Implications for African American males in counseling. In W. Ross (ed.), The African American Male Series: Counseling in African American Males: Effective Therapeutic Interventions and Approaches. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.

Sawyer, B. A., Williams, M. T., DeLapp, R. C. T., Davis, D. M. (2016). Posttraumatic stress disorder, Chapter 14. In A. Breland-Noble, C. S. Al-Mateen, & N. N. Singh (Eds.), Handbook of Mental Health in African American Youth (pp. 237-247). Springer

Sawyer, B. A., Williams, M. T., Chasson, G., Davis, D. M., & Chapman, L. K. (2015). The impact of childhood family functioning on anxious, depressive, and obsessive–compulsive symptoms in adulthood among African Americans. Journal of Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders, 4, 8-13.

Williams, M. T., Malcoun, E., Sawyer, B. A., Davis, D. M., Bahojb-Nouri, L., Leavell, S. (2014). Cultural adaptations of prolonged exposure therapy for treatment and prevention of posttraumatic stress disorder in African Americans. Behavioral Sciences, 4, 102–124.