Derek Cragun, CSW
Derek came to work with adolescents in a wilderness therapy setting in 2008, transitioning from his previous career in stone masonry. He found the field of work to align perfectly with his passion for spending time outside, as well as engaging in challenging, meaningful work. Derek was immediately astonished by the healing powers of the wilderness, and filled with gratitude to be able to companion young men and women through their journey of self discovery. He spent three years working as a senior field instructor before returning to school to pursue a bachelor’s, as well as a master’s degree in clinical social work, emphasizing in mental health.
Derek continued to work full time with adolescents and young adults in clinical settings while attending school. He spent several years supervising an outdoor experiential education program for a therapeutic boarding school, assisted in the development and management of a young adult transition program, and worked as a mentor for young men transitioning from wilderness back home. These experiences have provided him with a comprehensive understanding of the different stages of recovery, as well as the unique challenges presented to young men as they work towards being their most authentic self.
Derek completed an advanced field practicum working as a therapist at the University of Utah Counseling Center. In that setting, he was provided with the highest quality clinical training and supervision from a team of specialists in trauma informed care. Though he thoroughly enjoyed working in that setting, Derek could not be happier to be back in the wilderness working with young men and their families again.
In his free time, Derek can be found wandering around in the mountains on skis, bike, or by foot with his wife and dogs. He also enjoys going to local concerts, fly fishing, trying to learn how to keep a proper garden, or lounging around reading books about any of those things.