Steven E. Meineke, MA, MDiv, LMFT


I graduated with a bachelor's degree from the University of Cincinnati in 1971, then moved to Berkeley, California to study at the Graduate Theological Union. The GTU is the largest and most diverse partnership of seminaries and graduate schools in the United States. It is a place of interreligious collaboration in teaching, research, ministry and service. After three years of full-time study and a one year internship, I was awarded the Master of Divinity degree from the seminary of my religious denomination. At the GTU I became interested in the personality sciences and decided to pursue a degree that would qualify me as a counselor and therapist. I enrolled at Santa Clara University where I graduated with a Master of Arts degree in counseling psychology. My interest in marriage relationships developed while at SCU and I began counseling couples as much as possible.

View of UC Berkeley from GTU schools on “holy hill.”

Post Graduate Experience and Training

In the years following graduation, I worked in two different university settings where I became interested in couples education in addition to couples therapy. I led couples communication seminars at Colorado State University and developed a weekend marriage preparation program for couples at Western Washington University. After two years of post-graduate training at an interdisciplinary family mental health clinic in Seattle, I was accepted into membership in the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy and the American Association of Pastoral Counselors. In 1984, I returned to California, became licensed as a Marriage and Family Therapist, and began my practice in Solana Beach, specializing in marriage and couples therapy. Over the years, I've been taught by many leading marriage experts such as Dr. John Gottman and Dr. Susan Johnson.

Professional Activities

My involvement in activities and with leaders of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy led to my election to the Board of Directors of the California Division of AAMFT in 1992. After serving in various Board roles, I was elected President of the California Division of AAMFT. I am committed to the high standards of ethics and education promoted by the AAMFT.

I began writing for San Diego Family Magazine in 1985 and “retired” as a columnist in 2013. In my column, I told stories from my own experiences raising children, offering both personal and professional commentary. I wrote more than two hundred articles over the years, and San Diego Family Magazine grew to a readership of 300,000. It was a special privilege to be able to share my experiences and knowledge with other San Diego families for so many years. Several times my column won awards from Parenting Publications of America, a national organization of magazine publishers (now called Parenting Media Association).