Founders & Directors
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Joe and Shirley Bavonese
founded the RELATIONSHIP INSTITUTE in 1992 out of their desire to help others achieve healthy, satisfying intimate relationships. Since that time, they have conducted over 60 workshops and lectures for singles and couples and have appeared on numerous radio and television shows promoting their ideas for healthy relationships. They currently live in Michigan with their three children and their 2 labs Sally and Rufus.
JOE BAVONESE, Ph.D. Co-Director and Co-Founder; Psychotherapist, and Workshop Leader. Joe has a PhD in Clinical Psychology and is a Fully Licensed Psychologist. He has worked as a Research Psychologist and Consultant for General Motors for eight years and was the Clinical Director of Outpatient Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services for Medical Center Psychiatric Associates for four years. He has worked as an Adjunct Professor for the Graduate College of the Union Institute, a Field Faculty Advisor for the Graduate Program at Norwich University. Joe is a member of the American Psychological Association. Joe has taught Psychology classes at the undergraduate level and has given numerous workshops on relationship issues, self-esteem, stress management, weight loss, and the practices of psychotherapy and hypnotherapy. Joe's work with relationship issues has been featured in TIME magazine, the New York Post, the Detroit News, the Detroit Free Press, WXYZ-TV (ABC Detroit affiliate), WDIV-TV (NBC Detroit affiliate), and WJR-AM radio, among other places.
At the Relationship Institute, Joe works with individuals and couples on relationship issues; men's issues; depression; anxiety; EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique); and the integration of psychological and spiritual issues in creating a balanced life. Joe works in our Royal Oak, Livonia and Ann Arbor offices.
You can contact Dr. Bavonese directly through the following email address:
SHIRLEY BAVONESE, A.C.S.W. Co-Director and Co-Founder; Psychotherapist, Workshop Leader. Ms. Bavonese has an MSW in Social Work and is a Certified Social Worker and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. She has an MSW from the University of Michigan and a BEd with honors from Wayne State University. She worked as a teacher for St. Leo's Elementary School for two years, for two years at Henry Ford--Dearborn as a Chemical Dependency Therapist, and for seven years at Key Psychological Services as an outpatient psychotherapist. She has been featured on numerous radio and TV programs speaking on relationship issues and women's issues.
At the Relationship Institute, Shirley works with individuals and couples on relationship issues; women's issues; self-esteem issues; and balancing work and family life. Shirley works in our Royal Oak and Ann Arbor offices.
You can contact Shirley Bavonese directly through the following email address:
The Relationship Institute serves the online community, as well as communities in southeastern Michigan, including: Detroit Royal Oak Troy Birmingham Southfield Warren Sterling Heights Bloomfield Hills Huntington Woods Farmington Novi Northville Ann Arbor Southgate Utica Macomb Oakland Wayne Berkeley Ferndale Pleasant Ridge Plymouth Lathrup Village Livonia Clawson Clarkston Auburn Hills Beverly Hills Waterford St. Clair Shores Grosse Pointe Rochester Dearborn Inkster Wixom Walled Lake and Wyandotte.
We provide marriage counseling, relationship therapy, couples counseling, pre marriage counseling, singles and couples workshops, help with divorce, relationship advice, as well as help with dating, love and communication.