Brian Ogawa, D.Min.

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Dr. Brian Ogawa is Professor and Department Chair of Human Services at Washburn University, where he has taught since 2001. The department has academic programs in addiction counseling, mental health, gerontology, youth services, developmental disabilities, victim/survivor services, non-profit management, and Morita Therapy. Dr. Ogawa’s areas of expertise include Eastern therapies, post trauma, cultural competence, and hate and bias crimes. He is internationally recognized as a primary educator and practitioner of Morita Therapy in the United States, having formally studied Morita Therapy for more than 45 years. Dr. Ogawa’s father was born and raised in the Meiji-era in the same hometown as Dr. Shoma Morita: Kochi, Shikoku. Dr. Ogawa was born in Manzanar and has lived most of his life in California and Hawaii.

Dr. Ogawa’s past appointments include Director of the Crime Victims’ Institute, Office of the Texas Attorney General; Director of the National Academy for Victim Studies, Department of Criminal Justice, University of North Texas; director of a prosecutor-based victim/witness assistance division; university-based mental health researcher; and counselor in private practice focused on Morita Therapy. His education includes a Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) in counseling from San Francisco Theological Seminary (doctoral dissertation on the adaptation of Morita Therapy to the West); Master of Divinity (M.Div.) in theology from Fuller Theological Seminary; and Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in social sciences from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA).

Dr. Ogawa has been a consultant on many national research and curriculum projects on death, dying and bereavement; hate crimes; multiculturalism; and crime victim rights and services. He has served on numerous national boards and committees, including the National Advisory Council on Violence Against Women for the U.S. Department of Justice and Department of Health and Human Services; Center for Substance Abuse Prevention of the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration; Executive Committee of the National Organization for Victim Assistance; National Victim Assistance Standards Consortium; and Victim Issues Committee of the American Probation and Parole Association. In 1995, Dr. Ogawa received the nation’s highest award for service to crime victims, the National Crime Victim Service Award, presented by the President and the Attorney General in ceremonies at the White House.

Dr. Ogawa is the author of a number of book chapters and journal articles as well as the following books: Walking on Eggshells (Kendall Hunt), which describes Morita
Therapy for women in or leaving an abusive relationship; To Tell the Truth (Volcano Press), written to assist children through the criminal justice system incorporating Morita principles; Color of Justice, 2nd Edition (Allyn and Bacon), the landmark study on minority crime victimization (including a section on Morita Therapy); and A River to Live By: The 12 Life Principles of Morita Therapy (Xlibris/Random House). Dr. Ogawa’s current book project is a practitioner’s guide to Morita Therapy for the treatment of anxiety and depression.


Dr. Ogawa directs an academic certificate program on Morita therapy, offering courses to undergraduate and graduate students in psychology, social work, human services, and other helping professions. The following description is from this published website:

Certificate of Completion in Morita Therapy

Morita Therapy is a holistic therapeutic system, practiced and taught internationally as a trans-cultural counseling approach, applied across the range of human services. With its long history in the medical, psychiatric, research, and clinical fields, Morita Therapy is presently used in a variety of inpatient and outpatient settings, including psychiatric hospitals, residential clinics, counseling centers, support groups, and private practices.

Awarded upon completion of at least a Bachelor’s degree and completion of 15 credit hours as follows:

  • HS374/574 – Eastern Therapies in Intervention and Treatment (3)
  • HS376/576 – Morita Therapy Intensive (Residential) (3)
  • HS477/577 – Morita Methods in Counseling (3)
  • HS478/578 – Morita Therapy Research Seminar (Study Abroad) (3)
  • HS481 – Internship IV (180 clock hours) (3) or HS360 Directed Study (3)


TEL: (785) 670-2116

Mailing address: Washburn University Human Services Department, Benton Hall Room 311, 1700 SW College Ave., Topeka, KS 66621 USA