Dr. Bonnie Lee

Research Affiliate




Dr. Bonnie Lee is Associate Professor in the Addictions Counselling Program, in the Faculty of Health Sciences, at the University of Lethbridge. She is also a Research Affiliate of the Prentice Institute for Global Population and Economy. Dr. Lee was awarded the University of Lethbridge Board of Governors Research Chair (Tier II) in Healthy Futures (2016-2019). Her peers and the University recognize her excellence and international reputation for pioneering a conjoint congruence couples therapy for addiction treatment and for her leadership in advancing a relational framework in the addiction field. Dr. Lee obtained her doctoral degree from the University of Ottawa with two postdoctoral fellowships in the same institution. She received the Distinguished Contribution Recognition from the Alberta Association of Marriage and Family Therapy in 2010. She was also awarded the YWCA (Lethbridge) Woman of Distinction Award in the Spirit of Women category in 2010.

Prior to settling in Lethbridge, Dr. Lee had resided in nine cities around the world. A Registered Marriage and Family Therapist and a Clinical Fellow with the American and Alberta Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, she espouses an ecological, human systems paradigm in her teaching, clinical practice and research. Her driving force is the enhancement of the lives and health of individuals in their contexts of family, culture, and society.

Dr. Lee’s significant contributions in formulating a clear theoretical integration and new applications in carrying forward the work of Virginia Satir, a pioneer in family therapy, was recognized by the President of the Virginia Satir Global Network. Her integrative model works with a couple’s communication, psychological awareness, intergenerational influence and spiritual resources. In partnership with Alberta Health Services Addiction and Mental Health and funded by a major grant by the Alberta Gambling Research Institute, she is currently studying the outcomes of clients with alcohol and gambling disorders receiving Congruence Couple Therapy versus treatment-as-usual.

A mentor and thesis and practicum supervisor of Masters and PhD students, her mentees have been awarded graduate studentships by Alberta SPOR Patient-Oriented Research and the Alberta Gambling Research Institute.


Research Interests: Congruence Couple Therapy efficacy study; Congruence Couple Therapy training; Pathological Gambling; Ethnography on Cultural Values and Beliefs Related to Gambling and Recovery; Counsellor training evaluation; Qualitative to Clinical Trials; Ethnographies; Relationship Model for Addictions Treatment; Trauma; Couples and Families; Innovations in Addictions and Mental Health Assessment and Treatment; Counsellors' Training; Parenting and Early Childhood Development; Health Promotion; Knowledge Translation; Social Capital and Social Change; Immigrants' Mental Health; Global Homogenization, Capitalism, Construction of Mental Health and Addiction, Trauma, Relational Ethic, Cultural Values and Beliefs; Couple Therapy Evidence-based Research; Counsellor Training; Pathological gambling, Addictions; Immigrants and Pathological Gambling; Chinese Cultural Beliefs and Values in Gambling; Spirituality and Healing; Immigration Stress; Pre-migration Trauma in Immigrant Mental Health and Addiction.