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Lorna Goldberg is a social worker, certified psychoanalyst, psychotherapist and researcher of cults.

Lorna works full time in a private practice as a therapist. Her focus is on children, adolescents and adults who have had exposure to cultic groups. This includes individuals who entered cults in late adolescence or early adulthood, children and adults who have grown up in cultic groups as well as family members of individuals who are currently still in cults[1].

Goldberg was the Co-Director of the Child and Adolescent Program of the New Jersey Institute, a two-year postgraduate training program for mental health professionals, from 1991 to 1999. She served as Director until June 2004. She also served on the faculty in the five-year post-graduate training program for psychoanalytic certification[1].

Presently, Lorna serves as Dean of Faculty at the Institute for Psychoanalytic Studies, Inc. There, she teaches and supervises mental health professionals in child and adult psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic psychotherapy[1].

With her husband Bill Goldberg, Lorna has co-led a support group for ex-cult members for over 25 years[2].

In 1999, Bill and Lorna Golberg received the Leo J. Ryan Award, from the Leo J. Ryan Education Foundation[3].

Together, they wrote the article: "Group work with former cultists", which was published in Social Work (journal)[4]. This article has been cited by other academicians in scholarly journals, including: Louis Jolyon West,[5], Doni P. Whitsett[6], Michael Langone, and John Gordon Clark,[7], Irene Gasde, and Richard A. Block, Ph.D.[8], a report prepared for Boston University’s Danielsen Institute[9], Kevin A. Harris[10].


Professional associations

Awards, honors




With Bill Goldberg


  • Children and Cults, AFF Annual Conference, May 29–31, 1998, Philadelphia, PA
  • "Welcome and Introduction of conference theme", Psychological Manipulation: The Abuse of Women Conference Chair; Symposium - Treatment and Cults: What Works with Whom; Spouses in Cults; Families with Multi-Year Involvement, AFF Annual Conference: Psychological Manipulation: The Abuse of Women, May 1997, Philadelphia, PA


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 About Lorna, Profile, professional Web site., retrieved 1/3/2006.
  2. Lorna Goldberg, Cultic Studies Journal.
  3. Bill Goldberg, Along with Lorna, Bill is the recipient of the Hall of Fame Award from the Authentic Cult Awareness Network and the Leo J. Ryan Award from the Leo J. Ryan Foundation.
  4. Group work with former cultists, Social Work, v27 n2 p165-70 Mar 1982
  5. A Psychiatric Overview of Cult-Related Phenomena, Louis Jolyon West, 1993. Journal of American Academy of Psychoanalysis, 21:1-19
  6. A self psychological approach to the cult phenomenon, Doni P. Whitsett, Clinical Social Work Journal, Volume 20, Number 4 / December, 1992
  7. Research Implication for Social and Behavioral Scientists, Michael D. Langone, John Gordon Clark, Jr., Cultic Studies Journal.
  8. Cult Experience: Psychological Abuse, Distress, Personality Characteristics, and Changes in Personal Relationships Reported by Former Members of Church Universal and Triumphant, Irene Gasde, Fielding Institute, Richard A. Block, Ph.D., Montana State University, Cultic Studies Journal, Psychological manipulation and Society, Vol. 15, No. 2, 1998
  9. An Investigation of a Reputedly Psychologically Abusive Group That Targets College Students, Cultic Studies Journal.
  10. Kevin A. Harris, MS, NCC, "Spirituality in Counseling",

See also

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