Treatment Team

Nasir Naqvi, MD, PhD is a board-certified addiction psychiatrist and Director of the Columbia Gambling Disorder Clinic. Dr. Naqvi has extensive experience with clinical treatment of substance use disorders and, in addition to serving as the director of the clinic, he is also the Program Director for the addiction psychiatry fellowship at Columbia University.  Dr. Naqvi is also a researcher who examines the neural mechanisms by which treatments for addictions change behavior. He has extensive experience providing cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), the most efficacious treatment for gambling addiction.

Frank Grazioli, LCSW, MSW is a therapist and Assistant Director of the clinic. He holds a master’s in clinical social work from New York University. He has extensive training in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in treating addiction and other disorders and holds certification in CRAFT (Community Reinforcement and Family Training), an evidence-based approach in helping those impacted by a loved one’s addiction. He is a former research fellow with collaborative NYU programs social work, medicine, dentistry, and nursing; he been published for research in addiction treatment.

Liza Martinez, MPH joined the team in 2019 as a volunteer and is responsible for the intake process and provides cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for clients whose first language is Spanish. She holds a medical doctorate from Universidad El Bosque in Colombia and a Master of Public Health from New York University. She is recognized as a Qualified Problem Gambling Professional by the National Council on Problem Gambling.

Michael McKee, PhD is a therapist and research scientist and Assistant Clinical Professor of Medical Psychology (in Psychiatry) at Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons. Dr. McKee specializes in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for problem gambling; he has also been a research therapist for National Institute of Mental Health-funded projects studying the effectiveness of CBT in the treatment of social anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and illness anxiety disorder, and has extensive experience with the treatment of a range of behavior problems. Dr. McKee maintains private practices in Scarsdale and in Cold Spring, NY.

Katie Surrence, MS is a therapist at the clinic.  She obtained her master's degree in psychology with a clinical specialization from the University of Wisconsin–Madison.  Previously, she practiced in the UW–Madison Psychology Research and Training Clinic; the adult inpatient unit of University Hospital in Madison; and as a therapist with New York State Psychiatric Institute’s Depression Evaluation Services.  She has presented and has been published for her research on topics including suicidality.

Cindy Varona, BA has served as the program administrator since 2012. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from the Dominican Republic. She also holds a bachelor’s in Public Health from Monroe College in New York and has completed training on gambling disorder from the National Council on Problem Gambling.

The treatment team also draws talent from participants in the Columbia Psychiatry Fellows program; social work internships; visiting healthcare professionals; and other qualified volunteers. 

If you are interested in discussing opportunity to provide services as part of our team, please contact Cindy Varona at

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