Described as “a driven person with out of the box insights,” Lannon has successfully built and operated 6 healing centers. With a bold vision to bring 1 million warriors home from addiction and PTSD, Warriors Heart is leading the way in chemical dependency treatment for our Warriors.
Growing up, Josh apprenticed under his father’s direction by operating the family owned nightclubs in Las Vegas, Nevada. Josh’s leadership and team led the Vegas nightclubs to be voted the #1 country club, five years in a row.
In 2002, Josh refocused himself to creating a career in sobriety and building businesses that are more socially conscious. He retired from the nightclub industry and, together, Josh and Lisa Lannon launched their first recovery center, Journey Healing Centers, a private drug and alcohol treatment center. JHC grew to six locations with 100 team members. Then in late 2013, Elements Behavioral Health, a leading nationwide provider, acquired JHC.
Josh has also dedicated three decades to studying the martial arts. He has a “Senior Professor of Arts” ranking as a 7th degree black belt as a personal student to the Grandmaster, Mr. Paul Mills. Josh is a leading Professor at the AKKI annual international seminars and teaches worldwide. Josh is currently getting his butt kicked going through the ranks in the Brazilian Jujitsu. He loves learning and taking on challenges.
Josh’s continued passion for building businesses assisting those who are struggling from addiction is one of the driving forces behind Warriors Heart.
Co-Founder and Former LEO
Described as “a protector with compassion.” Lisa has a bold passion in building businesses and providing safe world class healing environments assisting warriors in sobriety and healing. Her mission is to build healing facilities for our Warriors – Veterans, Active Military, Police Officers and other 1st Responders/Protectors.
Lannon is a Social Entrepreneur, author and international speaker. Lisa is the Founder of Brooke Property Management and is an investor in commercial buildings, residential homes, apartment complexes with holdings of over 2600 units and commodities.
Lisa has been featured in interviews on PBS’s Rich Woman Show, Fox News, JetSet Magazine, EmpowHer, Rich Dad Radio, along with other media outlets and speaks at financial education events worldwide.
Lisa was a commissioned Law Enforcement Officer for the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, where during her time with LVMPD, she primarily worked on the booking floor. She dealt with addiction and combative people on a daily basis. Lisa trained other officers on the AFIS system and sat on a panel to interview new civilian potential hires.
Lisa and Josh have been inseparable since 1995, and are proud parents of two young amazing children. They’ve dedicated themselves to building a businesses that makes sense and address social problems.
US Army (Ret) & Co-Founder
Tom Spooner’s service to our nation in the U.S. Army spanned twenty-one years. His career included time in the 82nd Airborne, as a Green Beret in the US Army’s 7th Special Forces Group and, ultimately, in the elite US Army’s 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment Delta. In his military career that included 3 years of direct action combat deployments, Tom was able to accomplish what less than .001% of US military personnel have by becoming a Delta Force Operator.
After retiring from the Army, Tom approached his struggles with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) with the same tenacity and commitment to excellence that he did his military career. He began speaking candidly about the repercussions of his experiences and the reality of the difficulties he had coping with them. Determined to help his community cope with suicide and addiction as a result of their experiences in war, Tom has rededicated his professional efforts to healing. With a voice nearly unmatched in credibility and experience, Tom has successfully enabled thousands of military and law enforcement personnel to admit their struggles, seek treatment, and understand that they are not alone.
Tom has been married for 24 years to the love of his life and is the proud father of 2 young men.
Angel L. Lugo, FACHE, MPA
Colonel, U.S. Army, Retired and Chief Strategic Officer, Warriors Heart
Angel L. Lugo is a retired U.S. Army Colonel who served 30 years on active duty as a Healthcare Operations/Administration Officer. Prior to retiring in 2012, he served as Chief of Staff/COO for the Army’s Northern Regional Medical Command and Walter Reed Army Medical Center where he provided staff oversight of the Army’s largest regional health system including the Army’s largest Wounded Warrior population. Prior to that, he was the first Chief of Staff/COO for the Defense Center of Excellence for Psych Health and TBI where he established a joint staff organization focused on policies, procedures, guidelines, research, and tools in Psych Health & TBI to support Warriors and their Families. After his retirement, Angel is founder & CEO of his own Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business (SDVOSB), Lugo Vantage Solutions LLC, providing consulting services within the federal health sector specializing in military and Veterans health management. He also provides no cost job placement assistance to Veterans in transition. Angel’s career has been about serving our nation alongside Soldiers and supporting Warriors. He joined the military to serve and provide for his Family but stayed because the military is a unique Family of those dedicated to serve and protect our nation. That is why he is both excited and humbled to join the Warriors Heart Team as CEO and lead its mission to heal and support Warriors to bring them home.
In addition to the capstone Chief of Staff positions, COL (Ret) Lugo held many command and staff positions including: Director, DoD Executive Agencies (Medical), Office of The Surgeon General (OTSG), U.S. Army, Falls Church, VA; Hospital Commander, 212th MASH and CSH, Miesau, Germany; Commander, Task Force 212th MASH (Pakistan Earthquake Relief), Pakistan; Program Director, Medical Reengineering Initiative (MRI), OTSG; Battalion Commander, 61st Area Support Medical Battalion (ASMB), Fort Hood, Texas; Chief, Medical Operations, XVIII Airborne Corps and Deputy Assistant Chief of Staff for Operations, G-3, 44th Medical Brigade (Airborne), Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Executive Officer, 61st ASMB, Fort Hood, Texas; Deputy Chief of Plans, Operations, Training, & Security Division and Plans Officer, 97th General Hospital/Frankfurt Medical Center, Germany; Commander, C Company (Medical), 45th Forward Support Battalion, 3rd Armored Division, Germany and South West Asia (Persian Gulf War); Administrative Officer, Fort Dix MEDDAC and Executive Officer and Commander, 556th Medical Company (Ground Ambulance), Fort Dix, New Jersey; and Operations Officer, S-3/PAD, 2nd MASH and Med Platoon Leader, 2/69th Armor Battalion, Ft. Benning, Georgia.
He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Microbiology and Hispanic Literature from Rutgers College in New Jersey and received his commission from Rutgers University ROTC Program as a Distinguished Military Graduate in 1982. He earned a Master of Public Administration (Health Services focus) at the University of Missouri at Kansas City, Missouri. COL (Ret) Lugo is also a graduate of the United States Army Command and General Staff College and the Army War College Fellowship at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. He is a certified joint medical planner and trained as a Project Management Professional (PMP). He is Board Certified in Healthcare Management and is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives.
Awards and decorations that COL (Ret) Lugo earned include the Bronze Star Medal, Valorous Unit Award, Legion of Merit, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (7th award), Army Commendation Medal (4th award), Army Achievement Medal (5th award), Humanitarian Service Medal, U.S. Public Health Service Unit Commendation, Parachutist Badge, Air Assault Badge, Expert Field Medical Badge, Army Staff Identification Badge, Staff Identification Badge – Department of Health and Human Services, and Order of Military Medical Merit Medallion.
Director of Finance
Christina Moreno was raised in Bandera and is a graduate of the University of Texas at San Antonio. After college graduation, Christina was appointed the youngest County Auditor in the State of Texas at the age of 22 by the 216th District Judge. Christina continues her role as a public servant of Bandera in the capacity of County Auditor.
In her free time, Christina serves as the “Ultimate Team Mom” for youth sports, CrossFits, travels, and reads. Her and her husband, Louie, are active in the community and are proud to call Bandera home. Christina and Louie have been married since 2014 and have a blended family of three: Taytum, Giovanni, and Maddox.
Director of Operations
Troy Konvicka grew up in Bandera, Texas and married his wife Karen before enlisting into the U.S. Army in 1996. He served 22 years starting with 101st Airborne at Fort Campbell, KY. 2nd BN 3rd Field Artillery in Germany. Attended Special Warfare Center and School at Ft Bragg, NC. After completing his training as a Green Beret and being assigned to 1st Special Forces Group, Fort Lewis, WA, he had multiple deployments to Iraq and throughout Pacific Command.
He earned the rank of Master Sergeant and serving as an Operation Detachment-Alpha Team Sergeant specializing in Military Freefall operation. Then He was assigned to the United States Special Operation Command as a Warriors Care Program liaison at San Antonio Military Medical Center. While in this position He directly influenced the recovery, rehabilitation of wounded warriors, and assist with family member during the process. After retiring Troy wants to dedicate his time to support the healing and recovery of warriors to let them come home.
Troy has been married 25 years, with two children and 3 grandchildren.
Misty Anthony was born and raised in the heart of Bandera, Texas! Prior to working at Warriors Heart, Misty worked for Purple Sage Ranch Resort and Conference Center. She served as a lead Guest Attendant for 5 ½ years. Misty would oversee all aspects of guest service, meal service/flow, cooperate meeting service, and the overall needs of the guest staying at the Ranch.
Misty continues to be in service to others and works in the Client Relations department for Warriors Heart. She is a concierge of sorts for the Warriors coming in for treatment. With 10 years of customer service behind her she is able to zero in on the needs of her clients very well.
We are honored to have Misty on the front lines serving our Warriors.
Misty and her husband Russell met High School and have been inseparable since 2004. They have their hands full raising their incredible young son.
Kayle Christian was born and raised in Bandera, Texas. She graduated from Sam Houston State University with a Bachelor of Business Administration in 2011. Over the past several years she worked in the construction industry for General Contractors and found a passion for Human Resources. Kayle has a strong work ethic and has been taught the values shared by the military community such as Integrity, Loyalty, Service, Honesty and Excellence.
Kayle and her husband Clint have been married since 2015. In her spare time, Kayle enjoys event planning, spending time with family, good coffee and her two black labs, Badger and Blaise.
Brittany Lee was born in Witchita Falls, TX and she is 23 years old. She has two siblings a 17-year-old sister and a 21-year-old brother. When she was 1 year old her family relocated to San Antonio, TX when her grandfather got stationed at Lackland Airforce Base. After living in San Antonio for a few years her mother and grandparents decided they wanted their family to grow up in a small country town. They went to school and graduated from Bandera, TX. She is married to her husband Michael Lee. Together they have 3 children all boys age 1, 3 and 4 years old. They will continue to raise their babies in Bandera, TX.
Dr. Jeffrey R. Holt
Dr. Holt was born in Kerrville and grew up in Comfort, where he graduated from high school in 1996. He received his B.A. at the University of Texas at Austin, then went on to the University of Texas at Houston medical school. He then completed his Family Medicine residency training at the Waco Family Medicine Residency Program. He returned home to the Hill Country in 2008, and joined the Fredericksburg Clinic.
In addition to his busy family medicine clinic, he has worked in the field of addiction medicine since 2008, when he started working at Serenity House Drug & Alcohol treatment facility. He received board certification in Addiction Medicine in November 2014 and became the medical director of the One-Eighty detox service at Hill Country Memorial Hospital in May 2015. He also accepted the position of medical director at Awakenings Hill Country, which opened in August 2015 and is a drug and alcohol detox and rehabilitation center for women.
In January 2017, Dr Holt added the position of associate medical director for Hill Country Memorial Hospice to his extensive experience. He has now accepted the medical director position at Warriors Heart, and is excited about the opportunity to help serve those in the military, veterans and first responders.
Dr Holt enjoys playing the piano and guitar, and he also enjoys camping and fishing. He lives in Fredericksburg with his wife and their four sons. He loves spending time with his family.
Rick Levada is originally from Middletown, Rhode Island. Prior to joining Warrior’s Heart, Rick spent over 20 years with the United States Army as both an enlisted medic and a physician assistant. He has extensive operational, medical treatment and teaching experience. Rick has served operationally in every position within the medical platoon, up to Medical Platoon Sergeant and BN Physician Assistant. He has multiple operational and combat deployments. Rick has served as an enlisted instructor as well as the OIC of the Soldier Medic Training Site, within the Department of Combat Medic Training. His final assignment was as an instructor within the highly regarded Tactical Combat Medicine Course. He received his master’s degree in Physician Assistant Studies through the Interservice Physician Assistant Program in 2008.
During his time in San Antonio Rick has worked in several local urgent care centers as well as several busy urban emergency departments.
He enjoys spending his free time with his two boys, riding his Harley and working out.
Nurse Team Lead
Shannon Bryant obtained her Bachelors of Science in Nursing while attending the University of Texas in the Permian Basin. Over the past two years she has been practicing as an RN in the Emergency Room setting. While working in the ER she developed a passion for helping patients struggling with addiction and co dependencies. She has witnessed first hand the struggle involved in sobriety and the devastating effects it can have on the person and their loved ones.
Born in a small town in west Texas, Shannon was raised by her loving mother and marine corp father. Being raised by a Vietnam vet shaped her childhood in a positive way and strengthened her affection towards her country and military. Recently she demonstrated her support by marching two marathons at the Bataan Memorial Death March in honor of family fighting over seas. She has been married to her highschool sweetheart for 12 years, they have two beautiful children together.
Nurse Shift Lead, Night
Born and raised on a small horse ranch just south of San Antonio, Jose learned what hard work was. The second youngest of 8 children, he had many bosses in his family and quickly learned how to multitask. Between horses, school and sports (in that order) he had his hands full. Upon graduating from high school, he set out into the workforce for several years traveling around Texas before landing a job as a crew lead for a cabling company that sent him traveling across the United States. The experience he would gain from that he would later apply to a long IT career for the largest distributor of electronic goods in the world. Working with the IBM business unit he helped lead the way to introduce some of the top technology for business computing.
After many years in IT, he would actually find his true calling in the Nursing profession, where he decided he wanted to help people instead of replacing them with machinery. Going to nursing school with his wife, who would be a beacon of inspiration for him through his journey into reeducation he would successfully complete school and begin a new journey. With the experience he would gain while working with the elderly in many dementia units and working as a psych nurse for the State of Texas, he would find his way to Warrior’s Heart to truly serve a higher purpose in helping the veterans and first responders that make our world a safer place.
Licensed Vocational Nurse
Timothy Stephenson grew up in Loysville, Pennsylvania and has lived in several states before landing in Texas. He spent several years working in management before having the opportunity to attend nursing school. After graduating from nursing school, Tim worked in the Emergency Department, as well as Telemetry, Orthopedics and Hospice.
Tim attended Galen College of Nursing, and his future aspirations include becoming a family nurse practitioner.
Penny wasn’t born in Texas, but she got here as fast as she could. She came by way of Canada and Louisiana. She was raised in northern Ontario, then went to nursing school in Toronto where she got her diploma from George Brown College.
After working for a year on a bone marrow transplant unit, she decided she wanted to see something different. She secured a job in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, based on the fact that she didn’t know where it was – so different! – and that she had heard that Mardi Gras was a lot of fun. Both the job and Mardi Gras turned out to be great. She worked on an oncology/hematology unit then transferred to a burn unit.
Looking for something different again, she tried travel nursing and had a few adventures going to several hospitals. She ended up in a pediatric intensive care unit in San Antonio, which she loved and so decided to stay. It helped that she had also met her future husband, who was stationed in San Antonio with the Air Force.
They decided to make San Antonio their home and started their family, which eventually came to include two daughters and multiple pets. After not working – as if that is what at-home moms are not about! – for 16 years she decided that that it was time to pursue her love of nursing again and was welcomed home to Warrior’s Heart.
I was born in Johnson City, TX, but I was raised in Blanco, TX. I currently live in San Antonio, TX. During my free time, I love traveling with my son and husband.
In 2007 I became an LVN and began my nursing journey at the Audie Murphy VA Hospital in San Antonio, TX. I worked on a medical-surgical telemetry unit for three years, when I decided I wanted to become an RN.
I began working at a rehabilitation hospital while pursuing my degree. I became an RN in 2011 and continued working in rehabilitation medicine. I decided I wanted to work from home, so I began working for Coventry insurance company helping injured workers across all 50 states. In 2016 my husband and I welcomed our son and working from home was a dream.
Fast forward three years and I couldn’t wait to get out of my house and rejoin a workforce where I could actually see co-workers and feel like I was making a difference as a nurse. My late father was an Army Veteran, but his life was tragically cut short in 2010 when he was hit by a drunk driver while riding his Harley Davidson home.
I hope to follow in his footsteps by continuing to help those in need. My oldest brother is also an Army Veteran. I could not have been more excited when the opportunity arose to work at Warriors Heart. I look forward to assisting with the healing process in the lives of those who have sacrificed so much.
Registered Dietitian, RDN, LD, CDE
Anna is a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator who’s personal and professional goal is to inspire people to unlock their full health potential by discovering the joy of cooking and eating natural, minimally processed foods.
Anna was born and raised in Alaska and had an early affinity to cooking beautiful and tasty food. She worked several years in the restaurant industry in her early 20s before realizing that her calling in life was to help others by pairing her love of food with the science of how to eat for optimal health. She moved to Seattle, Washington in 2006 to pursue a degree in nutrition with an emphasis on natural health from Bastyr University.
Anna then found her way to Texas to follow her career path as a dietitian. She worked as a clinical dietitian in a large county hospital for one year then worked the following four years as a nutrition counselor specializing in weight loss and chronic disease management, including diabetes.
In 2014, Anna opened her private practice where she offers cooking classes, individual nutrition counseling, and group classes throughout Bandera County. In her free time, Anna can be found quilting, tending to her vegetable garden or hanging out with her pygmy goats.
Anna is delighted to be able to bring her passion and expertise to Warrior’s Heart and serve the men and women who have and are serving our country.
Vonnie Nealon is a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor and Certified Anger Resolution Counselor. She has a passion for working with those with the disease of chemical dependency, due in part to her own struggle with drugs and alcohol. She has been in recovery since 1987 and has worked as a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor since 2002.
Vonnie initially began working in the chemical dependency field as a nurse for Serenity House of Abilene, while working as a nurse she returned to college to pursue her counselor’s license. Vonnie has taught chemical dependency classes for Cisco Junior College helping others to become counselors. Vonnie has worked in all types of chemical dependency treatment facilities ranging from the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, to inpatient facilities including La Hacienda for five years as the relapse track counselor, Origins Recovery Center South Padre Island as the Director of Clinical Services. She has also worked in outpatient programs including Archway Recovery Center Intensive Outpatient Program where she served not only as a counselor but also as the Clinical Director.
Due to Vonnie’s family’s deep love for this country she is very familiar with the demands and stressors of military life as many of her family members are either serving or have served in the Armed Services including her husband who is retired Air Force and her son who served in the Army.
CD Team Lead
I grew up in Odessa, Texas and the surrounding areas. From there, I graduated from Odessa High and moved to New York before attending school for computer programming. I joined the US Navy in 1970 and went to basic before training in San Diego and Vallejo. I received an honorable discharge on July 22, 1972. From there I got married and my wife gave birth to my daughter during this time. After struggling with my addiction for years I got sober on January 6, 1984 in 12 step programs, most notably PDAP. I went to work in this field soon after and have continued to be a part of the recovery movement.
I am an LCDC #2590 (License Chemical Dependency Counselor), CCS #1, 0032R1095 (Certified Clinical Supervisor), NCACII #002524 (National Certified Addiction Counselor), ADCIII #15018Ro795 Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor), AADC (Advance Alcohol and Drug Counselor), CCJP #11660905 (Certified Criminal Justice Professional). I have had the privilege to serve on several board and volunteer committees including TAAP, And TCBAP.
I have also worked in the non-profit and for profit areas with youth, families and adults struggling with the problems of addiction. I have been trained in non-violent crisis intervention and developing capable young people. I enjoy the challenges of this work and the individuals I work with and the client that are seeking help with the problems of addiction.
Dual Team Lead
Kelly is currently a therapist who has a passion for working with active duty and veteran service members (SM) in inpatient and residential settings. She started as a substance abuse clinician and quickly realized that although addressing the presenting problem of substance was needed, a deeper passion began to emerge. Kelly began to discover the core issues of depression, anxiety, fear and trauma were not being addressed and began to train as a trauma therapist specializing in Prolonged Exposure therapy for PTSD. She also has a love for group therapy and enjoys leading SM groups in combat trauma, non-combat trauma, military sexual trauma, spiritual devotionals and substance education/process. Her treatment style is in line with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy with an emphasis on teaching the skills of Dialectical Behavioral Therapy.
Kelly also works as a Triage Coordinator therapist and shift lead in a Psychiatric ER in San Antonio. It is a highly stressful job working closely with first responders and trauma clinicians to oversee a safe and thorough intake process for anyone who walks through the doors of the ER. She is use to staying on her toes in an adrenaline rush environment, all the while trying to be a calming presence for SM’s and civilians during a difficult time in their lives.
In addition to counseling, she has 13 years marketing & communication experience for multiple nonprofit organizations and has business owner experience as a communications contractor. Kelly’s passions of communications and counseling have been two of her goals over the last 20 years. She is married and has 3 children and enjoys spending time with family, traveling and working out.
Psychology and Health, Physical Education, & Recreation were Tricia’s majors at Southern College. She found a sense of fulfillment in helping people live life to the fullest by providing support, guidance, and hope.
Tricia has a Masters of Science (MS) in Clinical Psychology from Abilene Christian University in 1996. Her career choices often involved a combination of recreation and non-traditional counseling working as a team supervisor.
Tricia started working towards becoming a fully licensed Counselor (LPC) interning in various counseling modalities discovering a passion for providing motivation and help for people struggling with alcohol and drug abuse.
Tricia has a passion for animals and works with Warriors Heart’s K9 program. As a masters level LPC, Tricia has committed her life to being an objective, compassionate and caring in assisting warriors find and hone their strengths.
My name is Tim Pharo. I am a veteran and Licensed Professional Counselor. I grew up in Texas. I am the 2nd of 7 children. I found my niche growing up playing organized sports running track, boxing, and football and more recently Brazilian jiu-jitsu. As I completed high school, my goal was to continue pursuing my education and football in college and I chose Hardin-Simmons University from 1997-2000. I ended up finishing my degree in August of 2002. I soon enlisted in the U.S. Army in 2003 as a 91Whiskey (medic).
My time in the military was cut short due to a prior existing injury and I was medically discharged after almost 2 years of my initial enlistment. I remember thinking, “what is next for me? “ It was not acceptable to just wallow in circumstances out of my control. I decided to head back to school and further my education. I started a Masters program in Counseling Psychology at Hardin-Simmons and completed the program in December 2005. I then went to work at Serenity House in Abilene, Texas as a clinician working with those suffering from addiction. In the past 12 years I have worked in two different residential treatment facilities in Texas, 3 years in a maximum-security prison and 5 years in a hospital setting helping those suffering from mental illnesses. In all the different settings my calling is addiction and veterans/first responders.
I am deeply proud to be an American and having an opportunity to live and learn in a free country as well as having an opportunity to serve as a military member. It is my honor to serve and give what I can to help the ones who put it on the line everyday for my family and me. I am married to my life partner Angelica and we are blessed with 3 young children with a black lab named Hurley!
My name is Joanne Snyder. I am a Licensed Professional Counselor and I am EMDR trained. I have a Master in Science in Counseling from The University of North Texas and I have worked in substance abuse counseling with individuals and families since 2012. I am passionate about walking along side of others who are hurting and who desire to work the 12 steps and journey through their own history of trauma to create hope and positive beliefs about themselves and their recovery.
Julie Lloyd-Atkinson has worked in the field of Chemical Dependency since 1985. She has worked in many different settings making her experience fairly well rounded.
She began her career with the Palmer Drug Abuse Program working with adolescents and families. She has worked at Parkside Lodge; Mexican American Unity Council’s residential treatment programs; Uvalde Cares for Children. Treatment Associates-San Antonio and Laredo; the Joe Ney Unit (therapeutic Community); San Antonio Youth Residential Program (now the Cyndi Taylor Crier Juvenile Correctional Treatment Center); Connections Individual and Family Services covering multiple counties and Alamo City Treatment Services/ Institute of Chemical Dependency Studies/ The Right Step IOP/ Addiction Counselor Training School before joining Warriors Heart.
Julie has developed programs for treatment and prevention at various facilities. She has worked out-patient, residential and prevention programs and has assisted in grant writing, policy and procedure revisions, starting new grant funded programs and developing residential programs and curriculum as well as compliance.
Her specialty became working with youth that have ATOD (Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs) issues and are involved in the criminal justice system, although she enjoys all aspects of working with those affected by ATOD use/abuse.
She was the 2014 recipient of the Elves Smith Counselor of the Year Award. This annual award recognizes a counselor in the field of addictions treatment who has worked in the trenches with the clients and their families, and who has contributed both to their industry, community and the TAAP organization in the true spirit of recovery.
Julie is actively involved in the Texas Association of Addiction Professionals. She was the secretary for the San Antonio chapter for over 13 years, president for 6 years, and is currently the Immediate Past President. She is also currently serving on the Texas Certification Board of Addiction Professionals.
Casey is a Waco, Texas native who had struggled with alcohol and drug addiction for over 20 years. After numerous attempts at sobriety, in 2014 Casey was given the ultimatum to either seek help or again lose everything in her life. After 90 days in a treatment center in the tiny town of Gonzales, Texas, Casey was able to start her life over. Through 12 steps and God, Casey has been blessed with the gift of sobriety. She is now a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor and has a passion for guiding others into a solution of freedom from drugs and alcohol. While blending a clinical approach with the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, Casey loves to watch as men and women in the clutches of this disease find hope, healing, and the ability to love themselves again.
Melissa Robbins is the daughter of a USAF pilot who earned the Distinguished Flying Cross and other decorations in Vietnam (A1 Skyraider). He went on to teach other pilots and taught a short stint of Sea Survival.
At the age of 18, Melissa began working with her local EMS/fire service and soon fell in love with the job. When she was 23, she experienced her first mass casualty incident, which forever changed her. She then moved to a larger fire department where she suffered a severe back injury. There were no options except for her to change careers. In 1995 Melissa began working in a detox unit, finished her Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice, and then finished her Master’s degree in Human Services. She then became a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor and finished Graduate certificates in Addictions Counseling and Mental Health Counseling. Melissa developed an Opioid Treatment Tract for a local facility and thoroughly enjoyed helping those with Opioid Use Disorder as she does with anyone struggling with a Use Disorder of any kind. Service is all Melissa knows.
Melissa feels she is married to the best man on the planet, David, who has put up with her for over 13 years. He is also a counselor and has been working in the field for 25 years.
LCDC, LPC-I, NCC
Rachel Mickelsen is Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor, a Nationally Board Certified Counselor, and a Licensed Professional Counselor Intern, supervised by Dr. Michael Moyer, LPC-S. Before coming to Warriors Heart, Rachel worked as a mental health counselor intern for the Boerne Independent School District at Champion High School and in a private group practice.
As an Army brat, she spent much of her childhood in Germany, but also lived in Hawaii, Virginia, and Texas. She and her husband Kyle met while attending Heidelberg American High School in 1992 and continue to pursue their “happily ever after” together. After Kyle’s Air Force career, they decided to settle in Texas. They’ve called Boerne home since 2006 and have five children, a sweet rescue dog, a ball python, and 2 fish.
In her spare time, Rachel enjoys crochet, bowling, watching hockey, and spending time with Kyle—sometimes all at the same time.
I was born in Atlanta, GA. I was raised mostly in San Antonio, TX, but I spent time living in California, and moving back and forth to GA from TX. I acquired an interest in helping others and in 1985 started working with adolescents who experienced substance abuse issues at an inpatient psychiatric hospital. Soon after this, I went to work at Palmer Drug Abuse Program as a peer counselor. After becoming a Certified Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselor in 1988, I enrolled in the University of Texas at San Antonio in 1990. I earned a BA degree in Psychology, and then a MA degree in Counseling & Guidance. I became a fully Licensed Professional Counselor in April 2000. Since then, I have worked with children, teenagers, and adults in outpatient, inpatient, and residential settings. This includes work at a 24 hr. crisis center.
I spend much of my spare time with Tara. We have been together almost 12 years. We enjoy watching European movies and TV series, spending time with family and friends, and playing with our new Yorkshire Terrier named Sophie. I have not served in the military; however, both my Father and oldest Brother served in the Navy. My older brother went on into the Air-Force Reserves for 25 years. I have immeasurable respect for our veterans and military. I am also honored to work at Warriors Heart.
Mikah was born in New York City and has been a San Antonio transplant since the age of 11. She was born to a mother who immigrated to the United States from Haiti. She received her associate’s degree in psychology via the Alamo Community College District. She strongly believes in the value of the community college as being a springboard for first-generation college students like herself.
She completed her bachelor’s degree in Psychology at The University of Texas at San Antonio. Mikah obtained her Master’s in Mental Health counseling at Texas A&M San Antonio, with a program focus on military cultures. There she earned her LCDC and LPC-Intern licenses. She began a doctorate program at St. Mary’s University in Counselor Education and Supervision. There she took an interest in researching the relationship of the construct of forgiveness to an individual’s emotional healing. She is currently matriculated in this program as she missed fully devoting her time to interacting with clients.
Upon completing her counselor internship at Starlite Recovery Center, she knew this was the population she wanted to serve. She took extra course work to further her understanding of the disease of addiction. Mikah became passionate about her work in substance abuse because it affects individuals from every walk of life. She enjoyed the variety of clients, dual diagnosis environment and range of experiences. In keeping with her desire to be able to serve the populations in our community effectively, Mikah began studying Spanish. Post-graduation she continued her Spanish studies at “Habla Ya Spanish School”. She received real-world application of her language skills backpacking to multiple campuses throughout Panama.
In her spare time, Mikah enjoys roller disco, novels and hiking. She also enjoys spending time with her rescued therapy dog in training “Sam”. He is a well-mannered old soul who goes almost everywhere with her. On her off hours, it is important to her that she continues to expand her body of knowledge on personality disorders, trauma, and the treatment of male victims of sexual assault. She is passionate about these issues and is known for saying “If I didn’t have to pay these student loans, I would happily do what I do for free”. Mikah’s clinical orientation is Person-Centered, and she also often incorporates aspects of Narrative, Trauma-Focused CBT, and Dialectical Behavioral Therapies.
Muriah was born in Butte, Montana however, her family relocated to Washington State where she grew up. Muriah’s father served in the Navy on active duty as a Logistics Specialist (LSCS) for twenty-eight years. In 2012 Muriah married her husband, David, whom is currently on his fourteenth year of active duty service as a Master at Arms (MA). David and Muriah have two children, Teigan (5) and Garrick (7mos). They also have a chi-weenie named, Trident.
Muriah completed her graduate degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling (MS) from Capella University. She completed her practicum and internship in community mental health doing Therapeutic Day Treatment, Intensive In-Home Counseling, outpatient therapy and served as a supervisor/ clinical director of an Intensive In-Home Program. Muriah is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in Texas and Virginia, as well as a Nationally Board-Certified Counselor (NBCC).
Megan Rodriguez has lived in Medina County for 18 years after moving to Hondo, TX at the age of 20. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Schreiner University with a BA in Psychology. In the years before returning to college to complete her degree, Megan was a member of the administrative support team for the City of Hondo serving as the Administrative Assistant to the City Manager.
Megan is the mother of three children with whom she prides herself on always being their #1 fan. In 2017, Megan attended an ACTS retreat and found a renewed love for life, living spiritually and accepting God as her guide and “go-to” through life’s trials. Her motto in life is to always “find the positives within the negatives” and she hopes to share on this positive outlook with everyone she meets.
Utilization Review Specialist
Born in Santa Anna California to a military family, Elizabeth quickly moved to San Antonio Texas where she grew up and attended high school at MacArthur High, after graduating she met her husband and relocated to Bandera where her husband lived. Elizabeth and her husband, with their 3 daughters built a small horse farm, currently showing and raising these beautiful animals.
Elizabeth has over 30 years experience in the medical field with 25 years of behavioral health. Elizabeth started her own small business 25 years ago. Today she is blessed with 2 granddaughters and hopes for many more.
At 19, Justin enlisted in the United States Air Force, during his 20 years of service he held a variety of different jobs, everything from Cook to Combat Readiness Instructor. His most taxing job, however, would be when he was assigned as the Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge, Mortuary Affairs.
In late 2012 Justin decided to share his story in the book, “And Then I Cried, Stories of a Mortuary NCO”. His hope was that his story could help others struggling with PTSD. In 2013 Justin was Medically Retired from the Air Force with 20 years of service. Justin continued his advocacy and worked with The Air Force Wounded Warrior Program where he managed the Ambassador Program. He was responsible for teaching seriously injured or ill Airman how to tell and share their stories of recovery with audience’s worldwide.
Justin is also an accomplished artist and his paintings can be seen hanging in the Pentagon. His book continues to help others who are struggling and he continues his advocacy coming to Warriors Heart excited to start his next chapter helping warriors find treatment.
Kiely was born and raised in Odessa, TX and comes from a loving family. When she was twelve years old, she had her first experience with drugs and alcohol. For the next thirteen years she struggled with addiction and alcoholism among other trials and low spots. Kiely moved to the Texas Hill Country in April of 2013 and sought help for her addiction.
At three months sober, Kiely and some friends were swimming on a hot summer day and she wanted to jump off a 50 ft cliff into the water. Unfortunately, she didn’t make it to the river, breaking 14 bones. Kiely survived the accident and eventually lost both of her legs. Now at five years sober, she is an inspiration to many for not only staying sober through thirty surgeries, but for also not giving up on herself.
Presently, she is in school with the goal of becoming a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor and enjoys crossFit, swimming, and conquering things she never thought she would be able to do again. Kiely is an overcomer and continues to inspire and help those in need of a solution to their addictions.
Michael R. O’Dell
Michael R O’Dell was born and raised in the heart of the hill country. During his youth Michael stayed outside. He loved playing baseball with his brothers and skateboarding with his friends. At the age of 19 Michael left his family and the hill country behind to become a United States Marine. During his service to our country Michael was stationed in Hawaii and attached to 3rd battalion 3rd Marine AKA Americas Battalion. His unit quickly deployed and continuously rotated in and out of theater.
CPL O’Dell was a part of and involved with multiple missions which were mostly executed at night. Training the Iraqi Army as well as maintaining a high level of readiness in the battalion’s motor pool. CPL O’Dell was recognized for promotion and multiple awards for his performance and dedication to the corps and was honorably discharged from service in November of 2010.
Shortly after Michael’s return home to the Texas hill country, the struggle with addiction and PTSD began to take control of his life. As a Marine Michael, would refuse to admit to his problems. Michael continued to suffer from his addiction until it landed him in prison.
Michael has been sober since March 2016 and has dedicated himself to helping the warrior class make the crucial decision to choose life and finally return home.
Blake Stansbury was born and raised in East Texas, is a graduate of the University of North Texas, former firefighter and flight paramedic. After battling addiction and PTSD for the majority of his life Blake moved to Kerrville and became part of the recovery community. There he and other men in recovery carry the message of experience, strength and hope to encourage others to find peace in sobriety.
Ella Moreno is a 31-years-old mother of a 14-year-old beautiful little girl. As the child of parents who were both alcoholics and drug abusers, Ella grew up in Child Protective Services. She moved around a lot as a child due to overcrowded youth homes. By the age of 11 she ended up in a small south Texas town at a youth ranch where she met a young man by the name of Chris that became her best friend. She never knew at that point what her friendship with that young man would become.
By the time she reached the 6th grade, Ella and Chris, were a cute childhood couple experiencing their “first love”. As cute as the two were, Ella never would have imagined that he was going to become the father of her daughter and her first actual love. When Ella was 16 and still stuck in the CPS system and Chris, who was 3 years older than her, decided to join the Army to make a life for himself and Ella who had found out when he left for his deployment that the couple would be expecting a baby girl. Ella says she remembers that when Chris returned from his first deployment she was so excited to see him. She was a crazy in love, 16-year-old girl who at first, didn’t notice that Chris came back a little different. He was no longer the silly, happy, huge personality he once was.
She remembers him being super excited about the news regarding their daughter Keara, but he ended up getting injured while deployed and he was sent back to the states. He had been home for a while when his PTSD and drug addiction became apparent. At the time Ella was pregnant and only 17, so she didn’t know how to help him at the time. She would have to, at times, go out and find him and bring him home. He would be so gone, that at times he didn’t know who Ella was. He ended up in the hospital for his injury that turned into a horrible, flesh-eating bacteria due to his drinking and drug use, which resulted in him not caring for his wound properly.
Chris ended up taking his own life when their beautiful daughter was only two weeks old. Ella relates that he was an amazing, smart, caring person, who always put everything and everyone else first.
Ella’s experiences make her an exceptional addition to the Warriors Heart Team. As an admissions advocate, she honestly understands the turmoil that spouses and significant others are experiencing when seeing their loved ones battle with addiction.
Josie is a Texas native, born in Fort Worth. Being a product of divorce she lived in several areas of Texas while growing up, but ended her high school years in the Hill Country. In her early teens she began experimenting with drugs and alcohol and by the time she graduated high school, she was using drugs and alcohol on a regular basis.
Shortly after high school, she moved to Austin where her drug use escalated. She worked in clubs and bars where (as a minor), she had more access to drugs than alcohol and soon became lost in her addiction. After continuous years of using drugs and alcohol, she began experiencing severe consequences. These consequences eventually lead to being spiritually broken, unemployable, homeless and incarcerated.
In 2013, Josie made a decision to come back to the Hill Country and leave her old life behind. She began working a program of recovery and now has over 5 years clean. She has a passion for recovery and helping others learn to live without the use of drugs and alcohol. She has over four years’ experience in the treatment center industry and is actively pursuing a degree in Social Work.
Patti was born in New York and relocated to Texas with her family when she was a child. She grew up north of Austin and is a graduate of Leander High School. She went on to attend Texas A&M University, graduating class of 1994. She went into the US Navy as a Cryptologist where she met her late husband. Upon his passing she left the Navy to raise her soon to be born only son. She later obtained her Masters in Management and has 19 years of insurance claims and investigations as her post military career. Patti comes from a long line of military in her family. Her grandfather was post WWII retired Army, an uncle who is retired USAF, another uncle who is retired Marines; her younger brother is currently in BMT for the USAF, and her boyfriend is a retired Marine.
Patti currently lives in Boerne; her son and her new grandson currently live with her. She enjoys spending time with family, especially her new grandson. In her spare time, she loves reading, crocheting, hiking, biking, or simply taking a walk with her dogs. Patti is passionate about her family and her faith and lives by the words of Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”.
CR Shift Lead
Sarah Whitt grew up in Portland, TX, a small town off the Texas coast. She lives with her mother and was the middle child of 3 girls. She graduated from Gregory Portland High School in 2004 and attended Del Mar College in Corpus Christi, TX from 2004 to 2006. In March of 2010, she gave birth to her first daughter, Lexie. She moved to Pipe Creek in 2012 where she alter met her significant other, Shawn. In 2016 Sarah had her second daughter, August, who would be the fourth child in her blended family.
When she heard about Warriors Heart, Sarah knew she wanted to work there because of her own experience with addiction and recovery. Now established in her sobriety, it is the chance for her to give back by helping others. Sarah is super excited to be a team member at Warriors Heart, and looks forward to a bright future with her family!
CR Shift Lead
Bab Hauk was born in Houston, TX and raised in Matagorda, TX. He graduated from high school in Port Allen, LA. Shortly after graduation, Bob joined the US Army Reserves. In 1984, he went on active duty in the US Army Military Police Corp, he specialized in traffic accident investigations. During his military career, Bob was assigned to the 1st, 3rd, 4th and 5th Infantry Divisions. He served in Germany, Bosnia, Korea, Cuba, as well as stateside. Bob retired from the US Army in 2004, but continued working for the Army as a DA Police Officer for 7 years. Bob met his wife CJ while they were stationed in Germany. They have been together for 33 years, they have 3 children and 1 grandchild.
In his spare time, Bob enjoys long motorcycle rides (escapes) with his wife. Spending time with family and friends or just relaxing at home
Greg Lucas Jr.
Greg Lucas Jr. grew up in a law enforcement family in El Paso, Texas. His father, who recently retired after 43 years as a peace officer, was with the El Paso Police Department for over 23 years and the Texas Attorney General’s Office for 20 years. Greg followed his father into the profession and started out working security for federal facilities in Lubbock and Pecos, Texas.
In 2000, Greg married the love of his life, Jill, and moved to the Lubbock area so she could attend Texas Tech while he worked at the Idalou Police Department. In 2001, Greg and his family moved to New Braunfels where he continued his career with the Comal County Sheriff’s Office. Greg worked there as a patrol officer and traffic officer, earning 5 letters of commendation in his first 4 years. In 2006, Greg suffered his first heart attack and had to change his lifestyle. After 7 years in New Braunfels, and the passing of his mother from cancer, Greg began to suffer from depression and addiction and had to seek treatment.
Greg, Jill and their three kids then moved back to the Lubbock area so Jill could finish her degree at Texas Tech. Working for the Idalou Police Department again, Greg also began working as a volunteer firefighter. During the next 5 years there, Greg became a field training officer and law enforcement instructor, completely rewriting the Idalou Police field training program and authoring a 24-hour course entitled Basic Patrol Interdiction. While in Idalou, Greg suffered another heart attack but continued to work as a peace officer and volunteer firefighter until late 2013 when he moved his family to Kerrville and he began working for the Kerr County Sheriff’s Office. Within 8 months, Greg was promoted to Criminal Investigator but a month after being promoted, had to undergo quadruple bypass surgery. He continued to work as a criminal investigator, maintaining his health and getting more physically fit. In the next couple of years, Greg was assigned several cases. involving child victims, that took their toll on him psychologically. After seeking treatment for depression, Greg was diagnosed with PTSD and major depressive disorder, primarily due to the cases he had worked. He continued to work in Investigations and in March of 2016 suffered a “sudden death event by cardiac arrhythmia”. Greg collapsed in front of Jill and their kids and had no heartbeat or respiration for 5-6 minutes. By the Grace of God, a vacationing nurse ran to his aid and did chest compressions until EMS arrived. Greg’s life was saved and he went back to work in Investigations.
In 2017, Greg had to leave law enforcement due to the depression, PTSD diagnosis and other health problems. In 2018, he found Warrior’s Heart and immediately applied for a job. His qualifications of addiction and its treatment, PTSD and its treatment, and almost 18 years in law enforcement qualified him for the job and he’s now proud to work in client relations for Warrior’s Heart. Greg is honored to serve the warriors that come through the doors here and believes that God’s guiding hand led him through his trials so he could continue to serve his community.
Client Relations / Art Coordinator
Stephanie Ayers was born in Conroe, Texas but grew up and spent most of her life in Medina, Texas. She has traveled extensively across the United States as well as to Mexico, Israel, and even spent a year in Kuwait. Stephanie has been married for ten years and is the mother of three amazing children. She spends her spare time indulging in her loves for painting, gardening, and fishing. While Stephanie indicates that her educational background is in biology and criminal justice, she also states that she still doesn’t know what she wants to be when she grows up but is grateful to be part of the Warriors Heart team.
Dennie began life in a small town in Southeastern Kansas. During his early years he knew that his future was to be in the military or law enforcement, but little did he know that he would be involved in both. Entering the US Army in 1971, Dennie attended basic training at Ft. Leonard Wood, MO. Overseas assignments included Vicenca, Italy; Frankfurt, Germany (3d Armd Div); Stuttgart, Germany (2d Spt Cmd) and South Korea (2d Inf Div). CONUS assignments included 1st Inf. Div (Ft Riley, KS); Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD and Ft. McClellan, AL (US Army MP Center & School).
During his assignment as a MP at Aberdeen PG, Dennie attended and graduated from the Baltimore MD. Police Academy S.W.A.T. course. During future assignments he would serve as SRT (SWAT) Commander at Aberdeen Proving Ground as well as in South Korea during the 1988 Olympics where his teams provided personal security details for VIP’s attending the Games. Dennie’s final military assignment was at Ft McClellan AL where he served as MP Instructor and Doctrine Writer for the US Army MP Corps. After retirement in 1971, Dennie worked as a Police Officer and Deputy Sheriff in Alabama and Missouri. Dennie began his second career as an armed security contractor with assignments in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Iraq (x2) and finished his contracting life with assignment to Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands (South Pacific).
Dennie lives with his wife Tami on an 800-acre ranch just outside Bandera, TX along with their assortment of “furry kids”. Hobbies include amateur radio, fly fishing, or simply sitting on his patio smoking a quality cigar or his pipe, sipping a cold drink and appreciating a sunset over his tiny part of The Republic of Texas.
Shawn Copeland was born in San Antonio, TX. He has lived in Michigan, California, and New Mexico, but Bandera is where home is to him, where he graduated from Bandera High School in 2014. He married his wife Amanda in 2014 and has a son Leon who was born in 2018. Shawn worked for Texas Department of Criminal Justice as a corrections officer at a maximum-security unit for a little over a year. He is currently working on his bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and hopes for a future career in law enforcement. He enjoys fishing, playing guitar, camping, working on cars, and spending time with his family.
Maintenance Team Lead
Born and raised in San Antonio Texas. Dan graduated from the University of Texas at San Antonio with a bachelor’s degree in architecture. Dan has an amazing gift for art and also serves as the in-house architect for Warriors Heart.
Dan has worked for various architecture firms in Austin and San Antonio, and throughout this time accomplished many design and graphic art projects. Later, Dan studied art under artist Stephen Fishwick, where he developed skills for caricature and airbrush art.
The man of many talents, Dan now chooses to work with the Warriors on the front line in Client Relations.
Dan is happily married to his life love, Deborah, and is proud to report a daily gratitude of giving Deborah a kiss every morning before heading to work.
Housekeeping Team Lead
Lisa moved to Bandera, Texas from Wisconsin in 1995. One of Lisa’s passions has been involved with fund raising for over 25 years. In 2013 she co-founded the Longhorn Charity Events. They began with the Longhorn Golf Tournament benefiting Meals on Wheels, and hopes to expand assisting additional charitable companies in the area.
In 2010 she started working at the Purple Sage Ranch Resort and Conference Center, which is now the home of Warriors Heart! Lisa maintains a very high standard of cleanliness and environment of care as her main priority, but also assists in customer service when needed.
Lisa truly enjoys working with the team here at Warriors Heart. Some she has known for years and others she has gotten to known, but she can honestly say we are all family.
Lisa has 3 amazing daughters. She was blessed with her first grandson in 2011. To her there is no greater joy than family! She has grown to love country music AND even learned how to 2 step … yee-haw!
Linda Giebeler recently moved to Bandera, TX from Big Bear Lake, CA with her 5-year-old grandson and husband. She is glad to be a part of the team at Warriors Heart.
Born in Germany, Zachary made it to Texas as quickly as possible! His Father Rob Poteat got stationed in DelRio, TX on Laughlin AFB. There Zachary grew up on true Mexican culture food and noticed how the food always brought everyone together! Zachary went from the border of Texas to the Hill Country, where Schreiner University was home to him while he worked on his B.A Sports Management/ B.S Kinesiology. After growing up a bit Zachary found himself in Boerne, TX. There he would meet the love of his life!
Ashley & Zachary met in a local Restaurant where they both worked. Zachary & Ashley then moved up to Austin and the Culinary world began. He got the real taste of the streets in Austin working for a couple top Food Trucks. After that he spent his time in a butcher shop, starting with deliveries then learning all his cuts and processing deer. Continuing, he dabbled a bit in the Corporate cooking world with Whole Foods Market & Central Market. Furthermore, Zachary found a couple well named Chefs in established restaurants to work under and learn from to increase his skills as a Chef.
Zachary found himself back in San Antonio, TX after Ashley started Nursing school. Zachary ended up finding a job back in the Hill Country! He was named Executive Chef and shortly after was asked to fill the General Manager role. During his time here, Zachary made many new friends and started focusing on his dreams and goals.
He recently got Married to Ashley in May of 2018 and they are happily living in Boerne, TX.
Larry hails from San Antonio, but has roots that stretch to the founding of Bandera. He resides on the family homestead which has the distinction to be registered with the Texas Department of Agriculture as a Century Ranch (it has been in continuous operation by the same family for over 100 years).
Larry is a US Navy Veteran with 11 years experience in electronics. He was an instructor at a multi-service school in Denver Colorado, and alter as a technical writer for a government contractor in Memphis, Tennessee.
Returning to Texas, his career field changed to the culinary arts as a means to support his growin family. He has worked under many chefs including one of the few master chefs and another studying to become a master chef. Boasting nearly 30 years experience, he has a passion for cooking, great tasting food, and making divine desserts.
Larry has struggled with eating disorders which included bariatric surgery. When he heard about Warriors Heart, he knew that it was the place he needed to be.
Corey was born in Lakehills, TX and is the youngest out of 4 older siblings (3 brothers,1 sister) so he was used to some strict parenting especially when his dad was in the military. He started to do some cooking at a young age with his mom for family events and family parties where people started to tell him he had a good sense for cooking.
In 2007, Corey and his parents had to move to Iowa to help take care of his Grandma who had breast cancer and cooking had to be put on hold; he lived there for 2 months then had to move back to Texas, ending up in Harper, TX.
In his senior year, he worked at a deer processing facility where he learned to stuff and smoke meats and he had a passion for it. He decided to go to Le Cordon Bleu college for culinary arts in Austin, TX right after high school in 2015 and graduated in 2017. During his time in Austin, Corey got a taste for the great foods they had to offer and working at a high-end retirement community called Longhorn Village he wanted everyone he gets to cook for to have that great experience of eating a great meal as he did.
Sober Living Manager
Annette T. Hill
MC, LPC, NCC
Annette Hill is a Licensed Professional Counselor, Nationally Certified Counselor, and EMDR Certified Therapist. She has a private practice in Scottsdale. Annette has worked with children in the foster care system both as coordinator of the Life Book program with Arizona’s Children Association and later as a therapist in Devereaux, Arizona. Out of these experiences, she created a “turn-key” curriculum, called The Journey of Me, to train foster care agencies in how to create and sustain their own Life Book program.
Annette has 10 years of experience working as a dual diagnosis therapist in residential treatment settings, including The Meadows, and eight years with The Sundance Center.
Though Annette treats patients with a variety of diagnoses, she specializes in the treatment of trauma. She works with Veterans both in her private practice, as well as through a 27-year-old non-profit program called Operation Freedom Bird as a volunteer therapist and board member. Operation Freedom Bird takes Arizona combat vets from all wars to Washington, D.C. on a four-day Healing Journey each year over the Veterans Day holiday.
Annette is also a Gold Star Mother. Her son, Adam Hill Gibson, served two tours in Iraq. He passed away as a result of symptoms of PTSD in 2009.
Donna L Foster
Registered Yoga Instructor
Born and raised in the fertile Central Valley and later in Northern California, Donna always valued the great outdoors as well as proper nutrition and exercise.This has led her to a lifestyle that emphasized fitness, volunteer work as a Missionary in several countries, acupressure, aromatherapy, massage therapy,aerobics, and Yoga.
In her early adult development, she became certified in Aerobics Instruction with AFAA (Aerobics and Fitness Association of America) teaching at the YMCA. Later, she received Certification in Acupressure/Massage Therapy from the Berkeley Acupressure Institute. During these years, she served as a Missionary in areas like Ecuador, and West Africa, where she fulfilled her calling to enhance the lives of those in need.
Having practiced Yoga and Meditation for over 15 years, Donna became a Registered Yoga Instructor through AC Power Yoga of San Antonio. She is currently the owner of Downriver Yoga in Bandera, Texas. Married to husband Scott and the mother of Savanna, in middle school, as well as three older step-children, one of which is currently serving in the US Navy.
Donna loves horseback riding and enjoys the lifestyle of the Texas Hill Country.
Inspired by America’s call to action after the events of 9/11, JD left a promising career and a recently pregnant wife to enlist in the US Army. Mr. Potynsky served in the US Army’s 3rd Special Forces Group Ft. Bragg, NC. His combat experience includes multiple combat deployments in Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) Iraq and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) Afghanistan. He has trained and led the Iraqi Special Forces and Afghan Commandos in combat. Mr. Potynsky’s real world experience includes planning, advising, and leading unilateral and joint force assaults, combat patrols, and reconnaissance missions.
After leaving the Army, JD held several Defense Contracting leadership positions in War Zones, including Security Program Director of a 250 man Private Security Force and Country Manager of Baghdad, Iraq. In 2011, he founded his first entrepreneurial venture, Northern Red LLC, a defense contracting company providing training and security services to both the public and private sector. While continuing to grow his current venture, Mr. Potynsky remains actively involved in the community mentoring veterans who are transitioning to civilian life and fund raising for veteran non-profit Elderheart.
Mr. Potynsky earned a B.A. in Entrepreneurial Studies from Fairleigh Dickinson University in 2000.
Mr. Wilson is considered one of the world’s leading experts in uncovering the scientific bases of how we learn and change behavior. He is also the author of the soon to be published book Cracking the Learning Code, the culmination of over 30 years of scientific research into how to accelerate the speed of learning and the rate of behavioral change.
He has suffered from, and overcome, PTSD. In addition, he has successfully developed the country’s only holistic drug and rehabilitation center, accredited by the Joint Hospital Commission. During JW’s tenure, JHC was ranked among the top 10% of all such treatment centers nationwide by the Commission.
JW has practiced meditation for over 30 years. JW has developed and managed many businesses, including corporate training firms serving Fortune 500 clients such as IBM, Kodak and AT&T. In the 1990’s, JW was president of one of the world’s leading accelerated learning companies. He has owned the largest magazine marketing development firm in the Pacific region, developed the country’s only holistic treatment center, was a 23 founder of Convention Television (www.ctvnational.com) and has produced over 200 TV shows and commercials.
The innovative Learning Code research is now being used to create the first school system in the world totally based on neuroscience. It’s used by organizations including the country’s largest employer organization, and the group that implements leadership training for NASA, The UN and the National Institutes of Health. JW’s research is also the impetus for a major African nation to base all of its future learning platforms on neuroscience. In addition, Mr. Wilson has developed over 20 start-ups. His diverse background has placed him in Who’s Who in Medicine and Health Care, Who’s Who in Science and Engineering, Who’s Who in Finance and Industry, Who’s Who in America, and Who’s Who in the World.
JW’s passion, which he calls his crusade, is to bring this essential knowledge to the world.
TC Cummings brings a unique, common sense approach for lasting personal empowerment. Like the yin and yang model, Cummings combines a multifaceted approach with the singular most common denominator to the world’s most universal battlefield: the battle within.
In 1986 TC enlisted in the US Navy, was trained as a Hospital Corpsman and US Navy SEAL where he deployed three times in war time conditions. Decorated on multiple accounts, he was honorably discharged from service in 1994.
Having been a teacher, a trainer, and a confidant to some of the world’s mightiest warriors (and biggest egos) prepared TC Cummings to provide the same services in the civilian sector. Often turning to the journals he kept since childhood and through his career as a SEAL Operator, he effectively translated the mental tools learned for success, proven under fire and easily remembered, to business owners, executives, and staffing.
Refining his skills further, he became a Certified Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming, a Certified Hypnotherapist, and a Time-Line Therapist to better understand people. He brought his leadership experience and commitment level to “the chairman of public speaking” Mr. Jim Rohn. For eight years, TC Cummings served as the first and only Master Coach of the highly revered Jim Rohn International.
TC Cummings has been on the cover of the Wall Street Journal, America’s #1 watched morning news show Fox & Friends, and various radio interviews. His clients vary from small business owners to mega-employers at home and abroad. All clients have a common the desire to do what they have to do today so they can be where they want to be tomorrow.
Liz Kelly founded Goody PR to magnify brands, experts, and causes making an impact through Marketing, PR, Social Media, and Cause Marketing services. After working for Fox Interactive Media/MySpace, Paramount Pictures, and Sprint PCS, she decided to use her marketing experience for GOOD.
As a published author with 500+ media interviews and Goody Awards Founder, her passion is partnering with social impact companies to develop and promote their story. Goody PR clients are primarily in the health, finance, tech, entertainment and cause marketing space.
Recent interviews have included stories for Fox News, CBS News, ABC News Radio, USA TODAY, Investor’s Business Daily, The Atlantic, Closer Magazine, Fit Nation Magazine and Nonprofit Business Advisor. Liz is especially excited to work with Josh and Lisa Lannon and Tom Spooner on Warriors Heart, and previously did PR for Journey Healing Centers until it was acquired.
Liz recently joined the Hollywood 43 Post The American Legion as an Auxiliary Family Member. Her grandfather served in World War II in the United States Coast Guard, and her aunt Katherine also served in the Red Cross during World War II in Europe and the Pacific Theater.
Having been diagnosed with hypertension and high cholesterol at the age of 32, I knew I had to change my lifestyle. Not being active throughout my entire life, it was very difficult to find an activity I could fully enjoy. I started walking, which turned into power walking, which turned into jogging, and soon enough I was bored and needed more stimulation. I came across CrossFit through some friends and it was love at first “workout”, this was in 2011. After doing CrossFit on my own for some time, I thought I would give a professional CrossFit Box a try and see what all the fuss was about. I advanced more within 6 months with professional coaching than I ever had on my own. Having proper coaching makes the difference in many ways. A coach is able to keep you safer due to watching your movement, give you necessary encouragement and most of all, you build a community like no other. Soon you speak the language: “What was your WOD time? Did you PR? How many HSPU did you do?” CrossFit has become more than just weights, distances and times to me, it became a second family.
After completing five years in the Army as an MP and K-9 trainer, Michael has been a Police Officer for 18 years. Only being active when required (boot camp, police academy), Michael discovered CrossFit in 2011 and has enjoyed it ever since. Not having a coach to preach correct form and mobility, Michael fully understands the importance of proper coaching, while doing CrossFit WOD’s on his own he suffered a bulging disk and a torn shoulder. Michael will insist on proper warm-ups before and stretching after each and every workout. With his injury experience he wants to keep everyone safe and having fun.
McKenna was born and raised in Texas, but lived in Virginia the past 15 years. She is 24 years old and is the second youngest of 7 children. She comes from a long line of military and law enforcement going all the way back to her great great grandfather. Currently two of her siblings serve, her younger sister is in the United States Air Force and her older brother is in the United States Navy. Additionally her father retired from the Portsmouth Police Department after 25 years of service.
In her spare time McKenna enjoys training dogs in scent work, competitive obedience and tracking. She has two dogs of her own that she refers to as her fur babies. One is a 4 year old German Shepherd from west German lines, Morgana, whose litter she helped whelped. The other is a Belgian Malinois she rescued at 9 months old, Severus, who McKenna has brought up to a healthy weight and enjoys spoiling and showing the pampered life. McKenna also enjoys spending time with family, which she is no short supply of with most being located in Boerne, TX where she just moved back too. McKenna is passionate about helping others and serving those who served us. She is often spoken of as the animal child in her family, as she will love and cuddle/hold/pet/talk to any animal that will let her.
K9 Bubba is approximately two years old and has transitioned from being a dog in training to his permanent place as a therapy dog here at Warriors Heart. He is living the dream while showing love and support to our warriors.
K9 Jake is a handsome 2-year-old Lab. He is working diligently on his obedience training and enjoys every moment of it. A soft dog with a huge heart, he is eager to please and revels in spending his down time, loving on everyone he can.
K9 Joe is approximately 2-years-old. He is an American Bulldog with a fun, loving personality. He enjoys training and engaging with trainers as well as our clients. Joe recently underwent surgery on his leg but quickly recovered and has been released from the vet’s care to resume training. He should be ready for service dog work very soon.
K9 Juneau is a female German Shepherd who is quickly advancing through the program. She’s a beautiful dog inside and out and loves to be around people. Juneau is a star student and is ready to begin her Service Dog training.
K9 Cinders is the newest addition to the K9 program. At approximately 18 months old, she’s a very smart and very sweet girl. She is in the beginning phase of obedience training but is receptive and eager to do what she is asked. This little girl went from a shelter dog with little hope to watch me shine!! A true find and a pleasure to work with.