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Elizabeth Muniz, 35

Co-founder, Thrive Therapy

  • Class of 2018
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Elizabeth Muniz knew she wanted a career in helping people, but the young daughter of Cuban immigrants didn’t expect to be healing the mind rather than the body.

Yet after becoming the first in her family to earn a college degree, in 2012 she teamed with partner Rachel Stewart to open Thrive Therapy, one of the leading providers of children and adolescent mental health therapy in Lee and Collier counties.

They had only one client.

“My interest was one where I was going to go into nursing, but then I realized that was not the route I wanted to take,” says Muniz, 35. “Instead I started taking some psychology classes and became intrigued in the different ways people act and behave, and why. I took an internship working with children and that interested me because they are very resilient and it is so rewarding to help change a child’s life.”

Muniz is a licensed mental health counselor and a registered play therapist supervisor. From starting her company with that one client six years ago, Thrive Therapy now serves hundreds of clients and families with the aid of a team of therapists.

The Miami native emerged from her family’s humble means to earn a degree in psychology from Nova Southeastern University of Fort Lauderdale. Her fluency in English and Spanish provide her the ability to serve a wide range of clients.

Muniz is recognized for her expertise in the field, having presented at numerous conferences on various topics of play therapy throughout Florida. She also serves on the board of the Florida Association for Play Therapy. 

The hours are long, she says, and the financial rewards modest, “but most important, it’s personally rewarding.”



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