Dave Borba, CSW
Dave first experienced the profound opportunities wild places create for self-discovery and connectivity at the age of 14 while attending a school which emphasized experiential learning through fieldwork and wilderness activities. The wild and scenic landscapes of Utah and neighboring states continued to offer Dave a sense of belonging as he explored a meandering path which ultimately led him to pursue an advanced standing graduate degree in clinical social work, emphasizing in mental health, with the intent to help others explore their own paths of discovery toward self-actualization.
Dave’s journey is that of a non-traditionalist: Prior to returning to college in his late thirties, Dave worked as an industrial designer, professional photographer, and creative director. Dave also spent 3 years traveling the country as a full-time visual artist, selling his interactive kinetic sculptures and listening to people share their stories along the way. Through his own work as an artist and conversations with others, Dave experienced and witnessed the powers of self-introspection and healing embodied within the creative process. It was these observations that inspired Dave to return to school and develop his natural insights into a clinically skilled therapeutic practice.
During graduate school, Dave combined two of the most powerful influences in his life by developing a curriculum for a course in ecopsychology to coincide with a course on the Expressive Therapies Continuum. This combination – pairing expressive art therapy’s ability to facilitate exploration of the internal experience and express what is often difficult to articulate with words, with nature’s innate ability to inspire awe and feelings of connectivity with something greater than the “self” – is what inspired Dave to pursue practicing family therapy in a wilderness setting.
To heal is to make whole. As a therapist, Dave emphasizes the importance of connectivity – connection with self, others, and the earth – as a path toward wholeness. As a family therapist at Elements, Dave’s goals are to create and facilitate opportunities for families to nurture greater understanding and connectivity within a shared experience of wilderness and provide new ways for families to develop stronger connections within their system once they return to their day-to-day lives.
In his free time, Dave often remains unseen in search of remote places on his own, with his partner, son, dog, blended family, or all of the above. Favorite activities include making sawdust, rowing rivers, fishing, mountain biking, and plucking around on stringed instruments (when nobody is listening).