Jonathan Foiles, M.Div, LCSW, is a licensed clinical social worker and a staff psychotherapist at Claret Center. Prior to receiving his training in social work he completed a master’s of divinity degree. He is a graduate of the University of Chicago, School of Social Service Administration and has also completed a fellowship at the Chicago Center for Psychoanalysis.
Jonathan has long had a passion for meeting people where they are and addressing their innermost needs. During his time in seminary he served in various parish settings and also worked in a recovery home on Chicago’s West Side. After completing his degree he felt called to more intentionally pursue mental health training. He felt drawn to the practice of social work for the way that it combined an emphasis on social justice with a focus upon the individual and their needs. For five years he worked at Mt. Sinai Hospital to help individuals with varying levels of need and with diagnoses across the spectrum.
Jonathan believes what draws all of us to therapy is a search to better understand the stories we tell ourselves and think about how they might be different. He considers his role to be helping clients clarify their inner sources of conflict in the hopes of living a better, more fulfilling life. For some this involves drawing upon a spiritual and religious tradition, and he welcomes these explorations within the therapeutic relationship. While he has been most influenced by the psychodynamic tradition, he is also well-versed in mindfulness-based approaches to treatment and integrates them into his practice as well.
In addition to his work as a therapist, Jonathan is also an adjunct professor at the University of Chicago, School of Social Service Administration. He has written extensively on issues related to mental health and social justice, and his writing has been featured in Slate, The Chicago Review of Books, Belt Magazine, and Psychology Today. His first book, This City is Killing Me: Community Trauma and Toxic Stress in Urban America, was released in August 2019. He has also appeared on WNYC’s The Takeaway, Doin’ the Work: Frontline Stories of Social Change, WGN Radio, and Chicago Tonight.
Jonathan believes that his social justice commitments and his therapeutic work are deeply connected. He welcomes clients of all races, ethnicities, sexualities, gender expressions, abilities, and faith traditions.