When you’re ready to begin with aaddiction treatment program, take the time to learn about our trained addiction treatment staff. With a vision to work within the most difficult dual-diagnosis domain, we intentionally only brought on master’s or Doctoral level clinicians to work with our patient population and their family members. Our primary therapists have achieved numerous specializations (i.e. grief, trauma, problematic sexual behavior, gambling) and hale from all across the nation, drawn to work at Santé. Santé’s staff also maintains various credentials including: CSAT (Certified Sex Addiction Therapist), CMAT (Certified Multiple Addiction Therapist), EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy), DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy), CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy), CPT (Cognitive Processing Therapy), EFT (Emotionally Focused Therapy), shame resiliency, psychodrama, relapse prevention, and grief and loss training. Santé clinical and medical teams are adept to extending patience, compassion, guided expertise, and both realistic and challenging short- and long-term goals for our clients and patients. Our dedicated Intake and Admissions team, comprised of master’s level clinicians, are available at any time. Our professional team has the experience and training to offer a variety of addiction therapy services and programs to help clients achieve their recovery goals. 

Executive Staff

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SAM SLATON, M.ED., LPC-S, MBA, MHSM – CHIEF Executive OFFICER

Sam Slaton is the CEO of Santé Center for Healing. With a Master’s in Business Administration and Master’s in Health Systems Management from Texas Women’s University and his Master’s in Counseling and Bachelor’s in Psychology from the University of North Texas, Sam has magnified his education with more than two decades of mental and behavioral health experience and leadership. Sam started his Santé tenure in 2004, working in Santé’s Intake and Admissions Department. When Santé needed additional leadership for an expanding and evolving team, Sam oversaw all aspects of Intake and Admissions. As Santé has grown, so has Sam’s career working his way up from Director of Outpatient Services to Chief Operations Officer and being the go-to person for system improvements and program expansions company-wide. His knowledge of addiction treatment, key processes, and system capabilities has helped Santé Center for Healing become what it is today. He stewards the mission-centric culture that staff describe as “family” and is known as a conscientious leader who prioritizes the clients and what gives them the best chance at long-term recovery. He takes great pride in that his team has a reputation for integrity, quality treatment, and life-changing impact. Sam loves spending time with his family – especially at Disney – and shaping our greater community as a former President of the Argyle Education Foundation and Argyle ISD’s current School Board President.

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MICHELLE LUTTRELL, MA, LMFT-S, MBA, MHA – CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER (COO)

Michelle has been with Santé Center for Healing since 2013 as an Intake and Admissions Counselor, and now as the Chief Operating Officer (COO) in addition to the Director of Intake and Admissions, Student Training. Michelle has achieved success in her multiple roles here at Santé, and has been integral to Santé’s mission in helping as many individuals and families as we can.

Michelle received her Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy from Appalachian State University and undergraduate in psychology from the University of Saint Mary in Kansas. She is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist-Supervisor. Michelle is currently pursing a MBA with an emphasis in Healthcare Administration at Texas Woman’s University. She is driven and passionate to help clients and their families recover from the disease of addiction.

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George W. Straw, JrCo-Owner

George became the co-owner of Sante Center for Healing in September 2007, but has been involved with Sante since its inception. He is retired from Xerox where he was Manager of Collection Services, Manager of Accounts Receivables, and Corporate Trainer. George was also a bank officer in San Antonio and Branch Manager for a Savings and Loan. He was Executive Vice President for Sun Financial.

Staff–Deborah
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M. Deborah Corley, PhD Co-Founder, Co-Owner and Clinical Consultant

Dr. Corley is co-founder and co-owner of Santé Center for Healing. She serves as clinical consultant to the Santé treatment team. She won the 2008 Merit Award from Society of the Advancement for Sexual Health (SASH), the 1999 Carnes Award for outstanding achievement in the field of sex addiction and was the co-recipient with Dr. Schneider of the Clinician’s Most Valuable Article Award by the American Foundation for Addiction Research in 2003 for their work on disclosure. She is a past president of the Board for SASH and a clinical member of the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists. Licensed both as an addiction treatment specialist and marriage and family therapist, Deb has over 35 years of experience working with and conducting research on addictive disorders and high risk families. She is also recognized as an international speaker with her focus on treatment of addictions, trauma resolution, disclosure, interpersonal neurobiology and meeting attachment needs. In addition to co-authoring Disclosing Secrets and Surviving Disclosure, she also co-authored Making Advances: A Comprehensive Guide to Treatment of Female Sex and Love Addicts.

Physicians

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MELISSA PENNINGTON, D.O., FASAM, CEDSMEDICAL DIRECTOR

Dr. Melissa Pennington is the Medical Director of Santé Center for Healing. She is a board-certified psychiatrist, a board-certified addictionologist, and a Certified Eating Disorder Specialist. Since joining the Santé team in 2015, she has also completed advanced training in the treatment of problematic sexual behavior. In 2022 Dr. Pennington was elected onto the national Board of Directors for the Society for the Advancement of Sexual Health (SASH), following a successful second term as Medical Liaison on the Board of Directors for the Dallas-Fort Worth chapter of the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals. Prior to joining Santé, she served as Medical Director of the Eating Disorders Program at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas from 2010-2015. She attended medical school at the University of North Texas Health Science Center and completed her psychiatric residency at John Peter Smith Hospital, where she was awarded intern of the year and served as chief resident for two consecutive years.

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PREJI SOMAR, MS, MSN, LPC, APRN, CARN-AP, PMHNP- BCPSYCHIATRIC NURSE PRACTITIONER

Preji Somar is board certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner by American Nurses Credentialing Center. She is a graduate of Advanced Master Psychopharmacology Program from Neuroscience Education Institute accredited by Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education. She is also a Licensed Professional Counselor. Preji has 10 years of combined education, training and experience in the field of psychology and psychiatry and has experience working with all ages and variety of populations. After obtaining her Associate Degree in Liberal Sciences from Dallas County Community College and Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from University of Texas at Dallas, she further pursued her interest in behavioral sciences by obtaining her Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology from Abilene Christian University. She then further expanded her education and training in psychiatric care by becoming a registered nurse and obtaining her Master’s Degree in Family Mental Health Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Program at The University of Texas at Austin.

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DYKSTRA FREEMAN, MSN/RN, PMHNP-BCPSYCHIATRIC NURSE PRACTITIONER

Dykstra Freeman, APRN has more than 10 years of experience in the behavioral health field. In addition to APRN, he has served as an RN and an MHT. Education is fundamental to his work and his expertise. He has a Master of Science degree in Nursing from Walden University, two Bachelor’s degrees (biology and nursing) from Northwestern State University at LA, and an Associate’s in Nursing from Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University of LA. Before coming to Santé, he worked as an advisor for the LSU-E Office of Accommodated Services for students with disabilities. He also worked for the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality. At Santé, Dykstra collaborates with his patients to find a suitable approach to treating their mental health. He believes in Santé’s team atmosphere, holistic approach and priority of patient treatment outcomes.

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Tara R. Fuller, DNP, APRN, FNP-C, PMHNP-BC PSYCHIATRIC NURSE PRACTITIONER

Dr. Tara Fuller has over ten years of nursing experience. She is double board certified as a Family Nurse Practitioner as well as a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. Her nursing background includes emergency medicine, cardiac critical care, and cardiothoracic transplant management. She earned her Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing from Midwestern State University in 2011. She completed a Master’s of Science in Nursing in Healthcare Systems Management from Loyola University New Orleans in 2016. She earned her family nurse practitioner and psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner certifications from Midwestern State University in 2020 and 2021. She received her Doctorate of Nursing Practice at Loyola University New Orleans in 2023. Tara believes in compassionate, up-to-date care, and a collaborative approach to achieve mental health success. Tara values the importance of therapeutic relationships, embracing one’s mental health, and patient-involved care to facilitate successful mental health outcomes. In her free time, Tara enjoys reading, baking, spoiling her dogs, a good cup of tea, and movie marathons.

CLINICAL PROGRAM DIRECTORS

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ADAM KARAZUBA, LCSW – Director of Clinical Services, Residential and Outpatient

A leading authority on addiction treatment therapies, program implementation, and “people development”, Adam has orchestrated several key programmatic transformations during his 20-year career, including the Daytime Intensive Outpatient Program and Virtual Intensive Outpatient Program at Santé Center for Healing, where he’s been making impact since 2018.  As the Director of Clinical Services for Santé, an internationally renowned addiction continuum of care for individuals seeking long-term recovery from addictive substances and behaviors with a focus on dual diagnosis and trauma resolution, he helps provide the long-term vision, clinical methods and system processes to provide long-term recovery for Santé clients and their families. With a collaborative style and a penchant for humor, Adam draws on his extensive experience as a Santé Residential Case Manager/Primary Therapist, Santé Director of Intensive Outpatient Services and more than two decades of working in quality inpatient and residential facilities working with children, adolescents, adults and their families. He’s an avid proponent for dual diagnosis and trauma-informed care, which addresses the core issues often related to chronic relapse. Although he hasn’t fully adopted a Texas drawl, he comes to Santé via New York, attaining his Masters of Social Work from Syracuse University and a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Le Moyne College, Syracuse, NY. In his time away from Santé, Adam enjoys time with his family and friends, golfing, and Syracuse basketball.

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Meredith Sims, MS, LPC, NCC – Assistant Director of Outpatient Services, Outpatient Case Manager

Meredith believes recovery is as unique as the person who sets out to pursue it. Meredith utilizes and individualized approach by integrating values identification, identity exploration, trauma processing, and adaptive needs-fulfillment strategies to help individuals achieve their highest potential. Meredith uses frameworks such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Gestalt therapy to help individuals reframe their thoughts and identify and adjust faulty needs-meeting strategies. She believes that culture is an important part of identity and cannot be overlooked in treatment. Meredith is passionate about LGBTQ+ affirming counseling, trauma-focused treatment, and Dreamwork counseling. Meredith is a certified SMART Recovery facilitator, knowledgeable about the 12-Steps, and open-minded toward the various recovery pathways available.

Meredith’s passion for serving individuals with addictions and mental health concerns alongside their loved ones and a team of dedicated, qualified professionals, is evident through her academic achievements, professional experience, and volunteer work. Meredith earned her Bachelor of Science in Rehabilitation Studies with two minors: Addiction Studies and Human Development & Family Science, along with two certificates: Drug Use & Addiction Studies and Drug & Alcohol Use with the highest honors. A true Mean Green fan, Meredith received her Master of Science in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from The University of North Texas with the highest honors and a focus on addiction, dreamwork, and human sexuality. During her time in graduate school, Meredith participated in process addiction research with professionals from multiple universities. Meredith has been a part of Santé since 2020, and she volunteers with local recovery organizations.

In her free time, Meredith enjoys camping, hiking, swimming, and petting all the dogs!

Residential Case Managers

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JENNY NORTON, MS, LPC, LCDCRESIDENTIAL CASE MANAGER/PRIMARY THERAPIST

Jenny Norton received a Master’s in Counseling and Development from Texas Woman’s University and completed her practicum and internship at Santé. After many years of counseling in the field of addictions, she has returned to Santé as a Case Manager. She has past experience in equine therapy, private practice and contract therapy work. She holds a Biology degree from The University of North Texas. Jenny is a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor and a Nationally Certified Counselor. She is a licensed teacher and a lifetime member of the Girl Scouts of America. In her free time, Jenny enjoys writing fiction, interior design and baking.

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Josh Pitre, MSW, LCSW, EMDR Trained, CSAT – RESIDENTIAL CASE MANAGER/PRIMARY THERAPIST

Josh is a Licensed Clinical Social worker. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Social Work from Southeastern Louisiana University and a Masters of Social Work from Louisiana State University. Josh has worked with many populations internationally and locally. His experiences have included working in various Partial Hospitalization and Intensive outpatient clinics, college counseling centers and community based intervention services. It is his belief that healing begins with self-awareness and vulnerability. It is Josh’s hope and desire to be a guide for those who are searching and attempting to find a voice amidst their pain. Josh is passionate about working with those struggling with addictions, trauma and mental health.

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Amanda Gatlin, LCSW RESIDENTIAL CASE MANAGER/PRIMARY THERAPIST

Amanda earned her Bachelors in Social Work at Texas Woman’s University and her Masters in Social Work at University of Texas at Arlington. Amanda has experience in providing trauma informed care to children, families and adults. Amanda utilizes the theoretical framework of attachment, interpersonal neurobiology, polyvagal theory, Cognitive Behavioral therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and EMDR in her practice. Amanda is experienced in inner child work and also uses the Internal Family Systems model to help clients focus and generate awareness of their own ego states and somatic experiences. Amanda comes to Santé from an inpatient facility where she worked with active-duty military service members, veterans and first responders to address trauma and maladaptive behaviors. Before inpatient Amanda worked with victims of assault and domestic violence. Amanda’s view of patient care is to provide a safe and nonjudgmental space in effort to empower those who are on a journey of growth and healing. In her free time Amanda enjoys relaxing in her swimming pool, playing board games, decorating, and spending time with her dogs, family and friends.

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M. Ty Howeth, MA, LPC-Associate RESIDENTIAL CASE MANAGER/PRIMARY THERAPIST

Supervised by Treva Waters-Barham, LPC-S 

An evolving clinician excelling in working with those who suffer from issues relating to addiction, anxiety, depression, domestic abuse, grief, and process addictions, Ty is a therapist with years of experience in community and nonprofit counseling centers, intensive outpatient and now residential levels of care. A Santé Residential Case Manager/Primary Therapist since 2023, Ty has additional experience providing therapy to individuals, couples and families struggling with intimacy, communication and conflict resolution. He believes a quality therapeutic relationship is absolutely critical for successful treatment; he is committed to an environment where vulnerability, integrity and trust permeate every interaction. This approach is influenced by attachment theory, mindfulness-based therapy, and relational psychoanalysis.

Ty achieved his Bachelor’s degree in Communication from Texas A&M University and his Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from East Texas Baptist University.

In his free time he enjoys being outdoors with his family, reading sci-fi and fantasy novels, and trying new recipes on the barbecue pit.

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Lisa Yang, MS, LCDC RESIDENTIAL CASE MANAGER/PRIMARY THERAPIST

With more than a decade of professional experience in substance use disorders for adults, adolescents, and their families, Lisa joined Santé as a Residential Case Manager/Primary Therapist in 2023. With a professional interest in family systems and the influence of family members on one another, Lisa achieved her masters in Marriage and Family Therapy from Amberton University. Her bachelors degree is from Texas Tech University in Human Development and Family Studies, with a minor in Addiction Recovery Studies. Recognizing addiction as a generational, family disease, Lisa is a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor alongside the work towards Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Associate. Because she is committed to ongoing learning and effectiveness for those with whom she has the privilege to serve, she is also a National Certified Addiction Counselor, Level II; this is a national and international certification for professionals working within Substance Use Disorders/Addiction-related disciplines who have demonstrated their skills gained through years of supervised work experience and specific course work. In addition, Lisa is certified in Prepare/Enrich, which is considered by many to be the #1 premarital and marriage assessment tool, using evidence-based skills and insights to foster healthy relationships. Lisa sees this profession as her calling as helping others is a genuine passion. In her free time she loves to watch sports (college football and golf) and spend time with family and friends.

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Jessica Hutchinson, PhD, LPC RESIDENTIAL CASE MANAGER/PRIMARY THERAPIST

Jessica is a licensed LPC, specializing in addiction and mental health dual diagnosis treatment. Jessica earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and Sociology from Texas Woman’s University, a Masters in Counseling Psychology from Tarleton State University, and a Doctorate of Philosophy degree in Psychology to obtain her PhD from the University of North Texas.

Jessica’s counseling background and experience includes work with individuals, families, and couples, as well as teaching Psychology at the University of North Texas. She has experience in helping clients with addiction, mental health diagnoses including psychosis, relationship issues, past trauma, chronic illness, and overcoming life barriers.

Jessica believes in treating patients with respect, sensitivity and compassion with individualized treatment plans to meet each patient’s need to recover and develop the skills necessary to maintain long-term sobriety and mental health wellbeing. Her modalities include extensive experience and knowledge using CBT, CBT-p, DBT, REBT, SMART Recovery, and Family Systems therapeutic approaches to meet each patient with empathy, genuineness, and safety.

In her free time, Jessica enjoys spending time with her family and children, DIY projects and decorating.

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Ian Farrelly, MSc, LCDC-I, LPC-A RESIDENTIAL CASE MANAGER/PRIMARY THERAPIST

Supervised by Emilee Aschenbrenner, LPC-S

Ian was a licensed/master practitioner psychotherapist in the United Kingdom for 10 years before locating to this side of the pond. Ian earned his Bachelor’s of Science in Counseling at the Sherwood Psychotherapy Training Institute, U.K., majoring in Integrative Psychotherapy and Trauma. In addition, Ian obtained a foundation degree in counseling survivors of sexual abuse, he also holds certificates in Somatic Trauma Therapy, and Mindfulness/Meditation Based Stress Reduction. Ian received his Masters of Science in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with the highest honors, from Southern Methodist University in Texas.

Ian has worked in several therapeutic environments related to addiction and trauma, including community addiction/mental health services and psychiatric facilities. Ian is a trauma focused therapist and believes strongly that addiction can be formed as a way to solve emotional responses to isolation and traumatic experiences.

Ian believes that everyone’s program of recovery should be reflexive and responsive to the patient’s needs, believing each person requires a unique approach to treatment. Ian loves nothing more than helping others to empower themselves to lead a rewarding life.

In his free time, Ian likes to practice what he preaches with mindfulness and meditation, volunteers time in commitment to social justice causes, goes swimming with his son and enjoys the company of his nearest and dearest.

Family Programming

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Mackenzie Brasher, MA, LMFT Associate, LCDC FAMILY THERAPIST

Supervised by MICHELLE LUTTRELL, MA, LMFT-S, MBA, MHA 

Motivated by an unwavering commitment to helping others, Mackenzie made the conscious decision to re-enter the mental health field after earning a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology in 2002, working several years in another profession, and raising a family. She earned her Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Amberton University, while completing an internship at Santé. She is passionate about helping couples and families navigate the impacts of addiction. She guides families in identifying patterns and dynamics that hinder growth, while helping them rebuild trust and foster healing. With an empathic approach and an emphasis on hope, Mackenzie helps families forge stronger and more fulfilling relationships by developing greater resilience, healthier coping skills, and clearer communication. She believes that support from partners and families is essential to individuals in treatment and recovery.

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Nancy Wainscott, MS, LCDC FAMILY THERAPIST

Nancy has worked with Neurodiverse families in the DFW area for more than 30 years. In that time, she provided individualized therapy, group therapy, and family training. More recently, Nancy has expanded her scope of practice to include addiction treatment and family therapy. She believes a supportive family environment can play a significant role in recovery. As a Family therapist, she strives to improve family-relationship functioning and support the person in recovery.

Nancy graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Applied Behavioral Analysis, earning Magna Cum Laude distinction, before proceeding to her Master of Science degree in Addiction Counseling from Purdue. Nancy is a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor and has experience in individual and group counseling. In her free time, she enjoys decorating, cooking, and spending time with her dog, family, and friends.

Nursing Staff

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Renee Stone, APRN, FNP-BCDirector of Nursing

Renee began serving as Director of Nurses in 2015. She has been with Santé since 2005 starting out as a staff nurse. She has been a nurse since 1993 and has worked in various hospital settings and mental health hospitals.

She holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing from the University of Texas at Arlington. She is certified in Chemical Addiction Registered Nurse (CARN), and a member of the International Nurses Society on Addiction. Renee’s additional education, testing and experience secured her achievement as a Family Nurse Practitioner. She is passionate about educating staff to grow their knowledge to better care for our clients.

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Craig Vance, RNAssistant Director of Nursing

Craig’s career in the medical field began in 1989 while serving in the US Army as a combat medic, then as a nurse. He worked in varies areas of nursing over the years, but ultimately found that mental health/addiction nursing was his passion. He is board-certified as a Psychiatric and Mental Health Nurse.

Susie Becker, RN – Nurse

Kenda Blaylock, LVN – Nurse

Paula Byler, RN – Nurse

Alejandra Castaneda, LVN – Nurse

Cedric Casteel, RN – Nurse

Alana Duckworth, RN – Nurse

Crystal Enyart, LVN – Nurse

Lauren St. Clair, RN – Nurse

Emily Thompson, RN – Nurse

Intake & Admissions

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Emily Pelon, MS, NCC, LPC – Assistant Director of Intake

Emily is a National Certified Counselor and a Licensed Professional Counselor in the State of Texas. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at The University of North Texas in Denton. Her previous experience includes working in local non-profits by providing trauma-informed care to those who struggle with eating disorders, trauma, and gender-based violence. Emily has a passion of providing integrated care within the community and working across the lifespan. She spends her free time baking for friends and family as well as spending time with her pets.

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Madison MIRELEZ, LMSWINTAKE AND ADMISSIONS COUNSELOR

Madison earned her Bachelor of Social Work with a minor in Rehabilitation & Addiction Studies from University of North Texas in December 2019. She went on to pursue a Master of Social Work from the joint program at University of North Texas and Texas Woman’s University, graduating in May 2022. Madison gained invaluable experience working with at risk youth and the homeless population in DFW throughout her time in school. Madison is passionate about helping others along in their journey of healing in a comforting and safe space. In her free time Madison enjoys reading, doing puzzles, camping and cuddling with her dogs.

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Alyssa VaughanINTAKE AND ADMISSIONS COUNSELOR  

Alyssa earned her Bachelors in Psychology and Sociology at Southern Nazarene University and is currently pursuing a Masters degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at the University of North Texas. Prior to starting at Sante Center as an Intake and Admissions Counselor, Alyssa worked in a residential program for survivors of sex-trafficking. Alyssa is passionate about creating a safe and supportive community where healing can take place. When she has free time, Alyssa likes to spend time curled up with her dog, Thumper, and a good book.

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Lindsay Sanford, LCDC Intern INTAKE AND ADMISSIONS COUNSELOR  

Lindsay served in the US Army as a behavioral health technician which fostered her love for psychology. She graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelors in Science in Forensic Psychology & is currently attending Purdue University for her Master’s in Psychology specializing in both forensics & addiction.

Lindsay is a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor Intern. She has worked at an acute psychiatric hospital as well as with the homeless population who struggle with legal issues, substance use, & mental health. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, traveling & reading.

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Destiny White, MSW INTAKE AND ADMISSIONS COUNSELOR  

Destiny White graduated with a Bachelor’s in Public Service & Rehabilitation Studies with a focus in addiction studies from the University of North Texas with the majority of Destiny’s career being spent volunteering and working in substance use and mental health. In the soon future, Destiny plans on pursuing a Master’s degree in social work/ counseling.

Destiny’s mission is to erase the stigma surrounding addiction and help people heal from childhood abuse and trauma. With a passion for justice, advocacy, animals, and nature, Destiny believes we all deserve a peaceful life and can all transmute our pain into something useful. Destiny enjoys doing yoga or hanging with 2 cats, Sanger and Loki.

Other Key Leadership

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SUSMITHA THOTA, MHSM, MBADIRECTOR OF COMPLIANCE & CARF INTERNATIONAL SURVEYOR

Susmitha joined Santé Center for Healing in 2014 as an Administrative Fellow after graduating from Texas Woman’s University in Health Systems Management and Business Administration. Susmitha worked as Project and Operations Manager before stepping into her current role. Susmitha leads entire compliance program at Santé including CARF Accreditation as well as oversees Medical Records Department.  After six years of extensive experience with CARF standards, Susmitha branched out her professional journey as a CARF International Surveyor. Along with striving for continuous treatment quality improvement at Santé, Susmitha’s passion as a surveyor is to help different Behavioral Health Facilities in providing high quality treatment to people in need.  Susmitha is also currently working on pursuing ASAM Certification for Santé.

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Stacey ExinerHuman Resources Manager

Bio coming soon.

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Hollie Higgins – DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS & STRATEGIC DEVELOPMENT

Hollie Higgins is the Director of Communications & Strategic Development who has been in the mental and behavioral health field for over two decades. Since 1999, her career through line is what can make a difference, an impact. Her Santé tenure started in 2012 as a Regional Marketing Coordinator, and she has since served as Assistant Business Development Director, then Business Development Director. In her role as Director of Communications & Strategic Development, Hollie spearheads internal and external company communications and strategies, and she works alongside executive leadership to design and execute an organizational strategy to grow company capacity to meet the company’s mission of providing life-affirming, long-term recovery. She oversees the entirety of Santé’s diverse Marketing Team providing a cohesive brand experience across a broad range of communication disciplines and strategies. A Texas resident her entire life, Hollie graduated Summa Cum Laude from Texas Tech University with a degree in Public Relations. Outside of Santé, Hollie spends time with family, traveling and volunteering at her church and within the greater community.

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Jesse Cordova – DIRECTOR OF BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

Jesse Cordova is the Director of Business Development and joined Santé Center for Healing in 2021. He brings over a decade of experience within the behavioral health and substance use disorder field . His expertise in community based health care, acute care hospitalization, and residential treatment helps ensure an individuals’ journey to recovery has the best resources and opportunities to achieve life-long recovery. Jesse’s professional commitment to deliver compassionate care and support to the community makes him a great asset to Santé! In his downtime, he enjoys spending his time traveling and with his family and friends.

Supportive Staff

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Mike Harvison Lead Mental Health Technician

Bio coming soon.

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Brittany Thrash Lead Mental Health Technician

Brittany graduated with high honors from the University of North Texas with a Bachelor of Science degree in Integrative Studies focused on psychology, counseling and certified in Substance Use Disorder Treatment. She is a graduate of Cornell’s Plant-Based Nutrition Certificate program and a member of The National Society of Leadership and Success.

She joined Santé in 2021 as a mental health technician and became a lead technician shortly after. She is committed to supporting individuals in their recovery and believes that a healthy mind, body and soul are essential. Brittany is passionate about working in the mental health and addiction field and her desire is to promote hope, healing and making a positive impact. In her free time, she enjoys spending it with her family, listening to music and reading.

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Will Hare Lead Mental Health Technician

Will began college majoring in Computer Science, but after experiences in his personal life with addiction and recovery, his trajectory quickly changed and he chose to instead pursue Psychology, focusing on Substance Use Disorders and addiction. He graduated from the University of North Texas with a Bachelor’s of Science in Psychology and a minor in Addiction Studies.

Will has been at Sante since fall of 2021. In that time, he has come to love the mental health field and intends to return to school to obtain his LPC.

Will’s favorite ways to spend his free time are playing tabletop games, card games and video games with friends. He also enjoys playing paintball, going on snowboarding trips and cuddling with his cats.

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Kelsey Hardaway Lead Mental Health Technician

Kelsey has been with Santé since 2022. Her past experience includes over half a decade in the disability industry, as well as working in the health and medical field. She also holds a Life and Health license.

At Santé, she was hired as a mental health technician, then, six months later, promoted to lead mental health technician. Kelsey has a passion for helping people and has experienced many of the same struggles as the patients. She utilizes those past struggles to walk alongside them, while letting them know that they aren’t alone.

Kelsey loves spending her free time with her family, reading and sleeping.

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Eric Ryan Lead Mental Health Technician

Bio coming soon.

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AMY MILLER, MBAREFERRAL COMMUNICATIONS AND ALUMNI SPECIALIST

Born and raised in the DFW area, Amy earned her Bachelor’s in Business Administration and her Executive Master’s in Business Administration from Texas Woman’s University. She has been in operations and office management for over 13 years. In her free time, she volunteers as a Girl Scout troop leader and coaches youth volleyball through the City of Denton. Amy enjoys spending time outdoors, fishing, camping, and crafting. She is passionate about helping others and is committed to assisting in Santé’s important work any way she can.

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BRIAN SIMPSON AFTERCARE COORDINATOR

Brian is a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor Intern who received his Bachelors of Science Degree in Anthropology at the University of North Texas. He has been with Santé for more than 5 years, serves as one of Santé’s Certified Ropes Instructors and feels a sense of pride and purpose working in the addiction field. As the Aftercare Coordinator, Brian creates individualized aftercare plans for each residential client as they prepare to discharge.

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NICOLE MILLERCommunication and Event Coordinator & Alumni Team Member

Nicole began working at Santé in September 2019. As the Special Programs Coordinator, Nicole oversees the “Maintaining Proper Boundaries” courses, Intensive Therapy Workshops, Alumni Retreats, and is part of the Alumni Team. Nicole received her degree from Stephen F. Austin State University. She worked for 15 years on the prevention side of addiction and became familiar with Santé through that experience. She is excited to now be at Santé and able to continue to positively impact the lives of individuals. Nicole enjoys spending time with family, friends and her dog.

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LISA M. KING, MS, NCC, LPCOUTPATIENT THERAPIST

Lisa King has spent more than 25 years recognizing and responding to people’s needs, having lived, taught, counseled, served and worked with individuals from all walks of life in North America, Latin America, and Asia. Along with being a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional, Lisa specializes specifically in the following areas: Trauma, PTSD, Codependency, Attachment, Identity, Abuse, Neglect, Cultural Adjustment Issues and Addiction. Lisa received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Master of Science in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Capella University. She is passionate about utilizing Cognitive Processing Therapy to challenge stuck points and faulty ways of thinking and to help people find and experience transformational healing and hope. Interested individuals can request an outpatient appointment with Lisa by calling 214-444-7367.

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LAURA DEANE, MS, LD, RDDIETITIAN

I am a licensed, registered dietitian that is passionate about helping people build a healthier relationship with food and body image. My educational background includes a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology as well as a Master of Science degree in Nutrition. I have 15+ years of experience working with adolescents and adults at the residential, intensive outpatient and outpatient levels of care. I now enjoy connecting with clients through one-on-one telehealth nutritional counseling sessions.

My approach to nutrition focuses on identifying ineffective behaviors, habits and beliefs around food and then working collaboratively with a client to create a plan for sustainable change. I often see individuals that are overwhelmed with where to start when making dietary changes, those struggling with disordered eating/eating disorders, as well as those who just need more direction in implementing a balanced and livable approach to nutrition. All sessions are judgement free and include positive reinforcement and support. I also offer supervision/mentoring for new nutrition professionals in the field of dietetics and provide consultation or training to organizations wanting to create or launch nutrition based programming.

My nutrition philosophy is based around the premise that we should focus more on using food to care for our body and less on trying to find ways to use food to control our body. I believe that all foods can be incorporated into a balanced diet and that food can also be enjoyed while nourishing our body.

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RICHARD DAVIS, M.S., LPC, BCNNEUROFEEDBACK

Richard Davis is a Licensed Professional Counselor in private practice in Denton, TX. He has a Master’s degree in Counseling and Human Development from the University of North Texas (UNT) with a concentration in biofeedback, and he is Board Certified in Neurofeedback by the Biofeedback Certification International Alliance. He is trained in all forms of biofeedback, but specializes in neurofeedback and quantitative EEG (QEEG). He has been involved with biofeedback for 19 years and has worked almost exclusively with neurofeedback for the last 15 years. He was a consultant to and a member of the training staff of the former University of North Texas Neurotherapy Lab. He is a former Treasurer and Board Member for the Biofeedback Society of Texas; and is a former two-term Treasurer and now President-Elect of the International Society of Neurofeedback and Research (ISNR), Treasurer for the ISNR Research Foundation, and a former Board Member of the Association for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback Neurofeedback Division.

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Lori Martin, MS, LPC-SPsychodrama

Lori has over ten years of experience working with adults, adolescence and couples in private practice. Her experience is in the areas of gender, sexuality, body image, disordered eating behaviors, trauma and substance abuse. Additionally, Lori has been a student of psychodrama at ETTi since 2014 and Bridging Harts since January 2017. She is pursuing certification in psychodrama and sociometry to assist individuals and groups in a safe and creative exploration of their stories to help find healing. She also has training in bioenergetics and body-focused therapy. Additionally, she enjoys supervising and mentoring LPC-Associates. 

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David R. Mitchell, MDBOUNDARIES COURSE FACULTY

Dr. Mitchell has been a psychiatrist in the state of Oklahoma since 1995. He currently practices at the Oklahoma Forensic Center. Dr. Mitchell volunteers for the Oklahoma Health Professional Program facilitating a Boundary Group for impaired professionals. As a physician in recovery himself, he has a vested interest in helping others and co-founded the group “Doctors without Boundaries” to promote further study and education in the field of professional ethics and boundaries.

Begin with Santé Center for Healing

If you’re ready to begin with an addiction treatment program for recovery, reach out to our addiction treatment staff today. Contact Santé Center for Healing today by calling 866.238.3154 now.