Michael DiPaolo, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist and certified Imago Relationship Therapist in private practice in West Los Angeles, California.  Dr. DiPaolo provides individual, couples, and family psychotherapy, consultation, and education.

Dr. DiPaolo received his Bachelors Degree (B.A.) in psychology, with a double major in business from the University of Notre Dame.  He received a Masters Degree (M.A.) in human development from Columbia University/Teachers College.  He received his Doctoral Degree in clinical psychology (Ph.D.) from the California School of Professional Psychology in Los Angeles.  Dr. DiPaolo also completed a one-year postgraduate training program in psychoanalytic psychotherapy at the Institute for Contemporary Psychoanalysis.

Prior to obtaining his doctorate, Dr. DiPaolo worked for several years with Covenant House, an international agency which works with homeless and runaway youth.  This started with one year as a full-time volunteer living in community with Covenant House Texas, in Houston.  Dr. DiPaolo was later involved in the start-up of Covenant House California, in Hollywood, where he worked for five years in multiple supervisory positions. Dr. DiPaolo completed the research for his doctoral dissertation at Covenant House California.  This work was subsequently accepted for publication in its entirety by Garland Publications in 1999.  The book, The Impact of Multiple Childhood Trauma on Homeless and Runaway Adolescents, is registered in the Library of Congress (LC 98033192).  The second edition of the book was published in 2016 by Routledge.  Dr. DiPaolo also has a published article entitled “Ready, Set, Engage!:  Gaining Skills for Counseling Street Youth” in the book Street Children:  A Guide to Effective Ministry, published by MARC.

Dr. DiPaolo completed his American Psychological Association (APA) approved full-time internship at Pacific Clinics.  It was here that Dr. DiPaolo received advanced training in working with individuals and families with major mental illness under the mentorship of Dr. Chris Amenson, former National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) psychologist of the year.   Dr. DiPaolo’s work in this area includes has included consulting with the UCLA PsychRehab program under the direction of world renowned expert Dr. Robert Liberman.

During his training and into his practice, Dr. DiPaolo has remained active working with several community based organizations.  He worked as a therapist and supervisor for Pacific Clinics, an adult outpatient community mental health center.  He was also staff psychologist for Jump Street, a crisis residential program operated by Didi Hirsch Community Mental Health.  Among his volunteer efforts, Dr. DiPaolo was on the board of directors for Step-Up on Second, a full service psychosocial rehabilitation program for adults with mental illness. Here he maintains a role on the Advisory Board of Daniel’s Place, Step-Up’s outreach to young adults and their families.  He is also past president of the Parish Council at St. Monica Church.

Dr. DiPaolo has consulted and collaborates with:

  • National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)
  • Pacific Clinics Institute
  • St. Monica Catholic Church
  • The Archdiocese of Los Angeles
  • Step-Up on Second
  • UCLA


Dr. DiPaolo works extensively in the area of relationships. He has received advanced training to become a Certified Imago Relationship Therapist. Imago is based on the bestselling work, “Getting the Love You Want” by Harville Hendrix (learn more about Imago at www.gettingtheloveyouwant.com). In this area, Dr. DiPaolo provides couples therapy, premarital counseling and educational workshops for couples. Dr. DiPaolo works in the marriage preparation program at St. Monica and other churches where he has counseled over 1,000 engaged couples.  For this work, he is a trained facilitator of the FOCCUS (Facilitating Open Couple Communication Understanding and Study) inventory and leads the “Start Right, Stay Connected” workshop.

Providing education and training – to both professionals and the general public – is an active part of Dr. DiPaolo’s practice.  The annual public education series, “How to Survive and Thrive with a Mentally Ill Relative” has been provided for over 30 years, the past 17 with Dr. DiPaolo as its presenter.  This seven session series has been filmed twice, with its more recent filming available on YouTube where it has received over 100,000 views.  Dr. DiPaolo has traversed California in providing professional training to organizations such as NAMI, California Family Court Services, the Occupational Therapy Association of California, USC School of Social Work and the LA County Department of Mental Health.

Dr. DiPaolo has maintained a passion for the integration of psychology and spirituality, bringing this to his work in psychotherapy and retreats.  Dr. DiPaolo has been active at St. Monica Catholic Church, in Santa Monica, California for over ten years.  Among his work includes the facilitation of retreats, including Finding Light Amidst the Darkness, a retreat focused on finding healing for depression.

Dr. DiPaolo has been married for 17 years and has three wonderful children.