Tonya D. Armstrong

Tonya D. Armstrong, Ph.D., M.T.S., LP

For Dr. Armstrong, a Durham native, The Armstrong Center for Hope has been a dream a long time in the making. By age 12, she knew that she wanted to pursue child psychology and music, and proceeded to double major in both at Yale University. As a person of deep faith, she also knew that spirituality is a vital component in the lives of many. Thus, after she completed her doctorate in child clinical psychology at UNC-Chapel Hill, she pursued a Master of Theological Studies degree at Duke Divinity School.

In addition to embracing her role as Minister of Congregational Care and Counseling (beginning April, 2000) at Union Baptist Church in Durham, Dr. Armstrong taught courses in pastoral care at Duke Divinity School, including introductory and capstone courses for the Duke/UNC M.Div./M.S.W. dual-degree program. She recalls, “I understood how vital it was to offer concrete and detailed instruction from both clinical and theological perspectives for those seeking to integrate a faith perspective into mental health care.” While she continued part-time clinical work during her years at Duke, her passion for deeper clinical involvement in the community led her to establish the ACFH as a group practice in August, 2010. “The sheer volume of calls, the complexity of the presenting concerns, and the dearth of therapists with specialized training in child and family issues, not to mention spiritual integration, were clear signs of a contribution I could make to our community.” In 2012, Dr. Armstrong was recognized in June as one of the female entrepreneurs of the year by the Durham Section of the National Council of Negro Women. Since July of 2013, Dr. Armstrong has served the Apex School of Theology as the Dean of the Master of Arts in Christian Counseling program.

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Clinically, Dr. Armstrong works primarily with children, adolescents, couples, and families on issues of depression, anxiety, ADD/ADHD, grief and loss, and relationship challenges. As much as she enjoys providing, managing, and supervising clinical services at the ACFH, Dr. Armstrong also immensely enjoys speaking on a host of topics at local, regional, and national events. Since the release of her debut gospel album, “Choose Hope” in 2009, Dr. Armstrong has renewed her enthusiasm for vocal music and has performed in over 10 states from coast to coast. In 2018, Dr. Armstrong released the award-winning Blossoming Hope: The Black Christian Woman’s Guide to Mental Health and Wellness and Blossoming Hope Companion: Soothing Songs and Spoken Word Recordings, available on Amazon and Kindle. Family, including nuclear, extended, and church, has been a significant foundation for Dr. Armstrong’s success. She has been married for 27 years to her college sweetheart, with whom she enjoys raising their two children. Whether laughing, singing, speaking, or teaching and encouraging her clients, Dr. Armstrong loves living life out loud!

“Meeting at the Well” should be renamed as “Wednesdays at the Well.”

Dr. Armstrong’s Initiatives…

Meeting at the Well

A Therapist Consultation Group Focused on the Integration of Spirituality and Mental Health Practices

  • Facilitated by Tonya D. Armstrong, Ph.D., M.T.S., Licensed Psychologist & Minister
  • Meets the 4th Wednesday of each month from 12:00-1:30 pm
  • The group will meet at The Armstrong Center for Hope (Highgate Centre, 5315 Highgate Dr., Suite 102, Durham, 27713—between Regional Pediatrics & Durham Pediatrics)
  • We will use a combination of the following approaches to facilitate dialogue:
    • Discussion of various theoretical frameworks and their views on spirituality
      • Case consultation o Readings that inform the integration of our spiritual and mental health practice
      • Reflection on how our own spiritual paths affect our clients
  • Open to all professionals and students in mental health disciplines
  • Bring your lunch; drinks will be provided.
  • There is no charge for participation!
  • Please confirm your intent to participate by 5 pm the day before each meeting.


Uzima is a black therapists’ group founded in 2003 by Tonya Armstrong to promote collegiality, peer consultation, and self-care to its members. From Swahili, “uzima” means wholeness, vigor, and vitality, all qualities that are not only promoted by therapists, but hopefully embodied by therapists, as well. We covenant to meet monthly to share a meal, listen carefully, and provide encouragement and care for each other in our vocation as professional caregivers. In addition to our member-focused care, we engage in community outreach. For the past seven years, Uzima has hosted annual networking luncheons for black mental health professionals across the Triangle. Currently comprised of four members (Tonya Armstrong, Anita Daniels, Ava Hinton, and Paula Newman), we are currently seeking to launch similar covenant groups. For more details on these initiatives, contact Tonya Armstrong at