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Meet the Team

A National Network of Clinical and Therapeutic Expertise

The Newport Academy staff is comprised of the best mental health leaders and treatment teams in the country. Our growing roster of experts includes more than 600 psychiatrists, psychologists, family therapists, eating disorder therapists, nurse practitioners, counselors, equine therapists, art and music therapists, adventure therapists, registered dietitians, teachers, private tutors, and more, with a wide range of degrees and experience. As part of the Newport Healthcare family, Newport Academy cultivates an inclusive and collaborative workplace environment in which diverse identities and voices are honored, as together we help teens and their families find hope and healing.

Executive Leadership

Joe Procopio

Chief Executive Officer

About 

Joe brings to Newport Healthcare a wealth of insight and knowledge gleaned over more than 30 years in the medical and treatment field. His successful history of executive leadership includes 16 years with Acadia Healthcare Company (NASDAQ: ACHC) and CRC Health Group. Prior to that, Joe served in management positions with Susquehanna Health and Geisinger Health System. In his role as CEO, Joe is expanding Newport’s services into new markets, to reach more communities and ultimately help more families in need. His fresh ideas and initiatives support our mission to provide the highest-quality care to teens, young adults, and families across the country.

Barbara Nosal, PhD, LMFT, LADC

Chief Clinical Officer

About

Dr. Nosal is the founding Chief Clinical Officer of Newport Healthcare and oversees the clinical and family programs for all of Newport’s residential and outpatient treatment locations. Dr. Nosal has worked with adolescents and families in the field of mental health, teenage depression, and addiction treatment for more than 30 years. She believes that family involvement is critical to successful outcomes during and post-treatment. Dr. Nosal’s work focuses on deepening family relationships and improving communication through healing early childhood attachment ruptures and relational trauma. As a result, family members build respect, trust, and accountability, and feel safe to be vulnerable and authentic with one another.

Clinical Expertise

Dr. Nosal has a doctorate in Transpersonal Psychology and a master’s degree in Counseling Psychology, and is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Licensed Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor, among other clinical credentials. She specializes in relational and family therapy, with training in Attachment-Based Family Therapy, Family Systems, Post-Induction Therapy, and various other therapeutic modalities. Dr. Nosal has held managerial positions in inpatient and outpatient treatment programs throughout California and nationally.

Jameson Norton, MBA, FACHE

Chief Operating Officer

About

Jameson has created, led, and served on trusted and high-performing teams in some of the most challenging and dynamic environments in the world. Prior to joining Newport, he served as CEO of Vanderbilt Psychiatric Hospital and Clinics, where he led behavioral health services for Vanderbilt University Medical Center, the Vanderbilt Health Affiliated Network, and school-based mental health programs administered by the company. During his time there, he achieved unprecedented growth in outpatient, inpatient, emergency psychiatry, telehealth, and integrated behavioral health services across the company. Before that, Jameson was CEO of Acadia Healthcare’s North Tampa Behavioral Health facility, where he oversaw a large inpatient expansion and launched three new services, including a military program commended for its innovative approach to empowering post-traumatic growth and recovery.

Jay Campbell

Chief Growth Officer

About

Jay Campbell has more than 20 years of professional experience in business development, marketing, management, and operations for the behavioral health, medical device, and pharmaceutical industries. Before joining the Newport Healthcare team, Jay was the Vice President of Business Relations for Acadia Healthcare, and prior to that, the National Director of Business Development for CRC Health Group. Throughout his career, Jay has advocated for people with healthcare needs by working with providers in frontline positions and building teams of multidisciplinary professionals dedicated to offering clients the highest-quality care. Jay’s skill, experience, and passion inspire him to deliver results and develop future leaders.

Kristin Wilson, MA, LPC, CCTP

Chief Experience Officer

About

Kristin is passionate about the delivery of integrated care in the treatment milieu to address the myriad of stressors that today’s teens and young adults face. She believes that higher levels of emotional resilience allow young people to more easily adapt to stressful situations or crises, with fewer negative effects. Kristin has been working in the treatment field since 1997, in a variety of mental healthcare settings, including inpatient, residential, and outpatient levels of care; and with numerous types of addictions, including chemical dependence, process addictions, and eating disorders.

Clinical Expertise

Kristin holds a master’s degree in Psychology and Creative Arts Therapies and presents workshops nationally on using the creative arts to foster authentic connections with teens. Her dedication to an integrated model of care is further demonstrated by her certification as a yoga teacher. Kristin is a licensed clinician who formerly served as a clinical supervisor, executive director, trainer, interventionist, and clinical outreach representative. She previously held the title of Senior Regional Director of Marketing for a major behavioral health network, after spending seven years running an outpatient behavioral health department in Pennsylvania.

Danielle Roeske, PsyD

Vice President, Operations, Residential Services

About

Dr. Roeske has worked in the mental health field since 2003, providing a wide range of clinical services, including acute psychiatric care, outpatient community therapy, and residential treatment for those dealing with the challenges of sobriety and mental health. Her experience as a CEO, clinical director, program developer, family program director, therapist, and supervisor have afforded her an intimate understanding of the key ingredients for providing quality treatment, and the essential components of a strong clinical and organizational team. She currently serves as Vice President of Operations for Residential Services.

After obtaining her undergraduate degree in philosophy, Dr. Roeske discovered her passion for working with young people and their families. She went on to earn her Master’s in Counseling and Human Relations, and thereafter her doctorate in clinical psychology. She is trained in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, family systems therapy, and relational psychoanalysis, and has a deep appreciation of the complex nature of substance use and mental health disorders. Inspired by her combined personal and professional experience, Dr. Roeske has committed her career to helping young people and families find hope and healing.

6,000+
families served

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Ed Speedling, MHA, MSW, FACHE

Vice President of Outpatient Services

About

A healthcare executive and consultant for more than 16 years, Ed Speedling has spent his career participating in, establishing, and leading successful, diverse teams to make a meaningful impact on public health issues. He consistently seeks to help build communities where all people can succeed and achieve their full potential, especially children, families, and those facing health disparities and social injustice. As president of ES Healthcare Consulting, LLC, Ed specializes in working with corporations and organizations to integrate behavioral healthcare services and find innovative solutions that improve outcomes, quality of care, and access to care. Before joining the Newport team, Ed served in leadership roles for BlueSprig Pediatrics, Inc., Corporation of America’s Capital Division, ProMedica Health System, and Arrowhead Behavioral Health, among others. In addition, Ed has worked in the not-for-profit Nemours pediatric health system as a forensic child abuse specialist, trauma and emergency department social worker, and State of Delaware medical subcommittee chair.

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Julie Fortune, LMFT

Vice President of Outpatient Services

About

Julie has more than 15 years of experience in the mental healthcare industry, in direct care, supervisory, and leadership roles. A Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with a Master’s degree from Fuller Theological Seminary, she began her career as a therapist at Pacific Clinics, and advanced into a series of executive leadership positions, including director of clinical and administrative operations for Mental Health Systems programs in the Greater San Diego Area, and director of clinical operations for Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Most recently, she spent four years at Providence Hospitals and Health Care, rising to executive director of the company’s Mental Health Institute Southern California. Julie is passionate about using her strengths to be an advocate and voice for those who are struggling with mental health conditions.

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Blake Kinsey

Vice President of Admissions

About

Blake Kinsey brings to Newport Healthcare extensive experience in finance and admissions. In addition, he has strong skills in communication, interpersonal relationships, and creative conflict resolution. He works closely with incoming clients and families and serves as a liaison with insurance companies to guarantee coverage for clients’ treatment needs. Blake’s past experience includes managing companies’ insurance contracts, benefits, policies, and managed care. He worked with employer groups and state, local, and academic entities to fund treatment costs. In addition, he developed strategies for holding insurance companies accountable for providing coverage to their members.

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Cassie Pastula

Associate Vice President of Admissions

 About 

Cassie joined the Newport Healthcare team in 2013. She works closely with our Executive and Clinical Directors to ensure appropriate placement for clients and a seamless admissions process for both clients and the internal team. Cassie’s previous work experience includes event planning and management for the M&M Group in Huntington, California, planning, producing, and managing billing for more than 10 events each month. She also managed marketing, crafted advertising strategies, and oversaw content dissemination for NJ Law, APC, in Newport, California. Cassie holds an undergraduate degree in finance from the University of Colorado, Boulder.

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Kristen Hayes

Associate Vice President, Public Relations and Communications

 About 

Kristen is an established public relations and communications professional with more than 20 years of experience in the field. In her previous position as Sr. Director of Communications, she played a key role in supporting the growth of Newport’s thought leadership, connecting our expert clinicians and leadership with publications and outlets including Forbes, CNN, the Wall Street Journal, and the CBS Evening News, among many others. For the past 15 years, Kristen has worked in the mental health and addiction treatment space, providing PR, media, and marketing expertise. She is passionate about promoting treatment, removing the stigma around mental health, and supporting individuals who are struggling. Kristen graduated cum laude from UCLA with a BA in Communication Studies.

Clinical Leadership

Mirela Loftus MD, PhD

Medical Director

About 

Dr. Loftus began her career in a lab, researching a small area of the brain (the hippocampus), specifically its connection to abnormalities seen in schizophrenia. Her desire to make an impact on young people during this critical stage of development led her into direct care, working with children, teens, and families. Dr. Loftus also became an advocate for children’s mental health, testifying at the Capitol on numerous occasions and lobbying in Washington DC in her role as the president of the Connecticut Council of Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists.

Clinical Expertise

Dr. Loftus earned her medical degree at one of the oldest and most acclaimed medical schools in Romania, and received her PhD from the University of California, Davis. Before joining the Newport Healthcare team, she spent 15 years as an attending and consulting psychiatrist at Hartford HealthCare’s Institute of Living in Hartford, Connecticut, coordinating and delivering care for children and teens. From 2017 to 2019, she was Medical Director of the Institute’s Clinical Trials Unit, researching the efficacy of experimental depression and suicidal ideation treatments. Dr. Loftus also served as an assistant professor in the University of Connecticut School of Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry.

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David Laxton, LPC, MEd

Executive Director

About

David Laxton, Executive Director of Newport’s residential and outpatient treatment programs in Kirkland, Washington, most recently worked in private practice providing mental health and substance use counseling to adolescent clients. He also provided counseling and evaluations for clients at The Recovery Center of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, an IOP for professionals (doctors, lawyers, etc.) with co-occurring issues, and Our Lady of the Lake. David was also the clinic director of Baton Rouge Treatment Center, managing day-to-day operations and supervision; and the Director of Outpatient and Family Services for St. Christopher’s Addiction Wellness, a long-term residential treatment center for males with co-occurring disorders.

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Michael Tyers, MA, LMFT

Executive Director

About

Michael brings to Newport extensive leadership experience in the mental healthcare field, primarily working with children and adolescents and their parents. Most recently, he managed statewide education and training for licensed foster parents through the Alliance for Child Welfare Excellence in Seattle. Michael also held management positions with the Juvenile Rehabilitation/Rehabilitation Administration in Washington State, administering juvenile parole services and community facilities for the entire eastern Washington region. Prior to that, he served in clinical director and executive director roles with Northwest Youth Services. A Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with a master’s in clinical psychology from Antioch University, Michael has extensive training in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy in addition to a wide range of other modalities.

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Jep Stokes

Executive Director

About

Jep Stokes, Executive Director for Newport’s residential programs in Minnesota, is an accomplished healthcare administrator and respected leader. Most recently, he was the Market Vice President of Behavioral Health Services for HCA Healthcare. Jep also served as CEO of a 60-bed treatment facility with Acadia Healthcare, and as COO at Universal Health Services. With an extensive background in client relations and account management, and a degree in business administration from Stetson University, Jep has expertise in all facets of program and staff development.

 

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Gary Broadbent, LCSW, JD/MBA

Executive Director

About

Gary Broadbent, LCSW, JD/MBA, the Executive Director of Newport Healthcare’s campus in Oakley, Utah, has more than 20 years of experience in the field. Decades ago, Gary was part of the team that founded the original Oakley residential treatment program for teens. He went on to work for Magellan, providing crisis counseling for its members and traumatic event consultation services to Fortune 500 companies. Following a hiatus to obtain a JD/MBA, Gary became Director of Psychological Health for the Utah National Guard. After 18 months, he was promoted to Regional Director of Clinical Operations for the Western United States for the National Guard Psychological Program, and then became a program evaluator for the Department of Defense. Most recently, Gary was a Regional Sales Manager for Qualifacts + Credible, the leading EHR for large community mental health centers.

 

 

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Christopher Burke, PhD

Executive Director

About

Dr. Burke has more than 15 years of experience in the mental healthcare field, including over a decade in leadership roles. Before joining the Newport team, he served in CEO positions at US HealthVest, UHS’s Ceder Springs Hospital, the Colorado Department of Human Services, and the Kansas Department for Children and Families. Dr. Burke holds a PhD in psychology from Fielding Graduate University and is co-author of a study on multicultural psychotherapy competencies, published in Professional Psychology: Research and Practice. His volunteer experience includes 18 months as Chair of the Board of Directors for the Joint Initiatives for Youth and Families. Prior to his career in behavioral health, Dr. Burke served for four years in the US Marine Corps.

 

 

600+
mental health professionals

Joe Vaccaro, PsyD

Regional Executive Director

About

Dr. Vaccaro first joined Newport Academy as a family therapist, working with teens, young adults, and families. In the Regional Executive Director role for Southern California, he supports the Newport Healthcare clinical team and all departments in providing exceptional care and compassion to the families we serve. He is dedicated to bringing patience, connection, progression, and authenticity into his work with staff as well as young people and families.

Clinical Expertise 

Dr. Vaccaro holds a doctorate in clinical psychology and has extensive experience in the field. Before joining the Newport Healthcare team, he was clinical supervisor at Pathways Community Services, Garden Grove, California, supervising and training psychological assistants and interns. He was a clinical psychologist for four years at Pathways prior to that position, and also worked as a psychologist for Sunny Hills Behavioral Health Incorporated in Fullerton, California. He completed his postdoctoral residency at Long Beach Job Corps in California, administering individual and group clinical supervision to doctoral candidates and practicum interns.

Leigh McInnis, LPC

Executive Director

About

As Executive Director at Newport Healthcare’s Virginia location, Leigh McInnis, LPC, supports team cohesion and the management and training of all staff, oversees the clinical team, and supports collaboration among departments. Before finding her professional home at Newport Healthcare, Leigh worked in many public mental health arenas, including nonprofit crisis prevention and response for adults, intensive in-home care for children and adolescents, and residential treatment facilities. Leigh is passionate about partnering with families and communities, and sees them as the foundation that supports teens as they develop and succeed.

Clinical Expertise

Leigh holds a master’s degree in Community Counseling, along with certifications in LPC-Supervision, Family Centered Treatment, and Recognizing and Responding to Suicide Risk training. She also completed a degree in psychology. In 2016, Leigh developed the clinical milieu for a non-suicidal self-injury unit in a Virginia residential treatment facility. Leigh’s approach to treatment is based on the belief that we each have the power to change our current circumstances—and that the impetus for change is within us.

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Pamela Alba, MA, MFT

Executive Director

About

Pamela, our Executive Director in Northern California, is an established healthcare leader with more than 20 years’ experience in residential and outpatient treatment settings for addictions, mental health issues, and trauma. She has overseen all areas of operations, including fiscal, clinical, business development, personnel management, and regulatory compliance. Most recently, Pamela was Chief Executive Officer of Bayside Marin in San Rafael, California, where she also served as Senior Director of Clinical Services and Clinical Director. Additionally, Pamela held leadership roles for Timberline Knolls, Camp Recovery Center, and Caron Treatment Center, where she facilitated impressive growth and development, guiding them through the implementation of best practices and innovative treatment modalities.

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Beth Hanline, LCSW-C

Director of Outpatient Services

About

Beth has more than 10 years of experience in the field as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She excels at treating behavioral issues, depression, anxiety, trauma, ADHD, school anxiety, and school avoidance. Prior to joining the Newport team, Beth worked as a therapist and program director at the Board of Child Care, in multiple capacities as a contractor for the Armed Forces Services Corporation, and as a child psychiatric consultant at the University of Maryland Medical Center.

 Clinical Expertise 

Beth Hanline has participated in specialized trainings in Attachment-Based Family Therapy, play therapy, Trauma-Focused CBT, Trauma-Informed Care, and Solution-Focused Therapy. She holds a BBA in management, a bachelor’s in psychology, and a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Maryland.

Don Grant, MA, MFA, DAC, SUDCC IV, PhD

National Advisor of Healthy Device Management

About

Dr. Don Grant is an internationally award-winning media psychologist, published researcher, Doctoral Addictions Counselor, and educator with specific expertise in technology’s impact on mental health. He is the current President-Elect of APA Division 46 (The Society for Media Psychology & Technology), and Chair of both the American Psychological Association’s Device Management & Intelligence and Strategic Planning Committees. Dr. Grant designs, presents, and facilitates treatment strategy and educational training workshops for clinicians, educators, parents, and school communities, focused on healthy device management and good digital citizenship.

Clinical Expertise

Before joining the Newport team, Dr. Don Grant was the executive director of Resolutions Teen Center in Santa Monica, which he cofounded in 2017. He is also the founder of (un)Boot Camp, a treatment program for online dependency issues, and spent 13 years as a dual diagnosis/chemical dependency counselor and case manager for Of One Mind in Brentwood, California. Dr. Grant is also a professional media development consultant for healthcare professionals, organizations, not-for-profit agencies, and treatment providers. His background in media includes serving as editor-in-chief for Start Again Media in Los Angeles, where he was responsible for restructuring, rebranding, and all content and marketing.

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Misty R. England, LCSW, MBA

Director of Outpatient Services

About

Misty, Newport’s Director of Outpatient Services in the Dallas area, was most recently the Director of Clinical Services for Perimeter Behavioral Hospital of Dallas, where she assisted in opening the facility. Previously, Misty held leadership roles at Sundance Behavioral Health Hospital and Mesa Springs Behavioral Health Hospital, focusing on revitalizing and growing outpatient programming. A certified Trust-Based Relational Intervention practitioner, Misty is passionate about creating warm, home-like environments in which young people and families can heal.

 

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Luciana Gonzalez, LCSW, ICS

Director of Outpatient Services

About

Luciana is dedicated to providing individualized care and adaptive environments for our adolescent clients, supporting each one to achieve sustainable recovery from their own unique starting point. She specializes in trauma-informed care and substance use disorder treatment, and is trained in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy and Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, among other modalities. Before joining the Newport team in 2021, Luciana held management and coordinator positions for Norris, a residential youth care facility in Wisconsin; the Division of Youth and Family Services in Milwaukee County; and Wellpoint Care Network (formerly SaintA) in Milwaukee. A licensed clinical social worker with an MSW from the University of Wisconsin, Luciana entered the mental health field because she’s passionate about “being part of the village that creates a safe space for healing.”

 

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Julie Miguel

Director of Outpatient Services

About

With more than a decade in the mental health treatment field, Julie brings to her role at Newport expertise in clinical leadership, supervision, and direct care. She has held positions in a variety of Southern California treatment settings, including program director at Olive Crest, serving at-risk children and families in California, Nevada, and the Pacific Northwest; and director at Phoenix House in Orange County. Julie has also worked in public and therapeutic school settings as a teacher and therapist. As an instructor at Life College, she taught interpersonal communication skills to young adults with special needs. Julie has been a volunteer at Back Bay Therapeutic Riding Club since 2014. She earned her Master’s in Mental Health Counseling from California State University–Fullerton.

 

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Katherine Routt

Director of Outpatient Services

About

Katherine has worked in the mental health field for more than 20 years, primarily serving children and families in environments ranging from inpatient units to in-home situations. Before joining the Newport team in 2021, she held the position of clinical supervisor at the Amherst H. Wilder Foundation, a nonprofit health and human services organization serving the greater Saint Paul, Minnesota area. Katherine also ran her own mental health group, providing services in both rural and urban settings. She holds a Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy/Counseling from the University of Wisconsin-Stout.

 

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Marc A. Rappaport, MA, LMFT

Director of Outpatient Services

About

Marc Rappaport brings to Newport Healthcare more than 20 years of experience in the mental healthcare field. He has worked in a variety of settings, including a 24/7 psychiatric crisis unit, an outpatient treatment facility, nonprofit agencies, and a medical detox center. Before joining the Newport team, Marc’s recent roles included Clinical Director of Non-Residential Services for Swords to Plowshares, providing critical care to military veterans; Project Director at PRC Baker Places’ psychiatric respite program for adults in recovery; and Supervisor for the city of San Francisco’s Comprehensive Crisis Services Department, providing crisis intervention for families and children experiencing emotional distress. Marc holds a Master’s in psychology from the California Institute of Integral Studies.

 

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Najah Dail, LPC, LCPC

Director of Outpatient Services

About

Najah Dail joined the Newport team in 2019 as a Primary Therapist, and quickly rose to a Program Director role and then to her current position as Director of Outpatient Services for our treatment center in Virginia. She has nearly 10 years of experience in the mental health field, in both direct care and managerial positions, at companies including New Directions, Childhelp, and 1Life1Love, Inc. Najah holds a Master’s in Professional Counseling from Liberty University and a Bachelor’s in psychology from Chowan University, and has specialized training in Attachment-Based Family Therapy and EFT. “In many cases, healing involves a village,” she says. “The effort, commitment, and passion we put behind the work we do here at Newport is endless, and it’s incredibly meaningful to witness the positive impact it has on the young people and families we work with.”

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Hannah Chesser, LCSW

Director of Outpatient Services

About

Hannah has been working in the mental healthcare field since 2013. She began her career as a social worker, serving pediatric, young adult, and adult patients at the Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals of Cleveland, and the NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation. Over her seven-year tenure at Mount Sinai Health System in New York City, Hannah rose from psychiatric social worker to Supervisor of Admissions. Before joining the Newport Healthcare team in May 2022, she was Director of Admissions at Silver Hill Hospital in New Canaan, Connecticut. A Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Hannah holds a master’s in Social Administration from Case Western Reserve University and a Bachelor of Science degree in social work from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

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Anthony Long, LPC, NCC

Director of Outpatient Services

About

With more than a decade in the treatment field, Anthony has experience in a wide range of mental healthcare settings. He began his career as a counselor, first for Centra Health and then for Family Preservation Services, both in Lynchburg, Virginia, and also served as a clinician for Horizon Behavioral Health in an alternative school setting. Over nearly seven years with View Point Health in Lawrenceville, Georgia, Anthony served as a program director and program manager, and worked with leaders of the Department of Behavior Health and Developmental Disabilities to develop the first Autism Crisis Stabilization Unit in the state of Georgia. A Licensed Professional Counselor, Anthony holds a Master of Education degree from the University of Lynchburg, Virginia.

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Allyson Bell, PhD

Director of Outpatient Services

About

Allyson Bell is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who specializes in working with adolescents, young adults, and families. She attended the University of California, San Diego, and California State University, Chico before continuing on to Pacifica Graduate Institute where she received her PhD in Clinical Psychology. Dr. Bell joined the Newport team in 2021 as a Family Therapist and moved into an Associate Clinical Director role before becoming Director of Outpatient Services at our location in Westlake Village, California, in 2022.

Clinical Expertise

Dr. Bell is trained in a variety of treatment modalities and has worked with young people across a range of settings, including inpatient, residential, and outpatient services. She is dedicated to creating a safe space to help teens and families find new understanding and move forward with a renewed sense of connection and purpose.

Michael Roeske, PsyD

Senior Director, Center for Research and Innovation

About

Dr. Roeske is a licensed clinical psychologist who has worked and trained in a variety of settings since 2003, including community mental health clinics, inpatient psychiatric hospitals, and residential and outpatient substance use disorder treatment programs. He has experience as a supervisor, clinical director, and assessor of children, adolescents, and adults. In addition, he has served as a chief operating officer and chief executive officer. His work with the Center aims to establish Newport as a thought leader in the field and an innovator in bridging science and clinical practice.

Clinical Expertise

Dr. Roeske recognizes the importance of exceptional, ethical, and collaborative clinical care; staff and therapist development; community outreach; and open, transparent communications. As an educator, he has been a national presenter, adjunct professor, and trainer of psychotherapy graduate students, as well as developing curriculum for psychotherapy groups in acute care settings. In these ways, he has devoted his life to the science and art of serving those facing substance abuse and acute and/or chronic mental health concerns.

Jennifer Dragonette, PsyD

Clinical Services Instructor

About

Dr. Dragonette is dedicated to helping teams come together to support clients in creating more authentic, meaningful, and fulfilling lives. She was the founding Executive Director of Newport’s Northern California location and now serves in an important clinical training and supervisory capacity. As a specialist in her field, Dr. Dragonette understands the need to take into account every aspect of an individual—their physical, emotional, relational, and spiritual health, not just psychological. She believes that true healing begins when a teen shifts from an external locus of control to an internal locus of control, and she carries this philosophy into her treatment practices.   

Clinical Expertise

Prior to joining our team, Dr. Dragonette was the Director of Behavioral Health for Petaluma Health Center, a federally qualified health center in Petaluma, California. In that position, she oversaw the Behavioral Health department and coordinated all aspects of operations. Moreover, during the wildfires that ravaged the Petaluma community in 2017, she spearheaded and developed curriculum for a program to support parents and children in the aftermath of that traumatic event. Dr. Dragonette also served in both clinical and leadership roles at Kaiser Permanente Santa Rosa’s Chemical Dependency Services.

Rachel Fortune, MD, FAAP

Consulting Physician and Eating Disorder Specialist

About 

Dr. Fortune is an expert in the treatment of eating disorders, mental health disorders, and adolescent medicine. In her many years of treating teens, she has learned that most eating-disordered adolescent patients recover best with a family-based treatment approach. Dr. Fortune concurrently serves as Medical Director of Eating Disorders at Walden Behavioral Care in Waltham, Massachusetts.

Clinical Expertise

After completion of her fellowship at the Children’s Hospital Colorado in Denver, Dr. Fortune spent two years caring for adolescent patients at Yale University School of Medicine/Yale New Haven Hospital, where 90 percent of patients in her subspecialty practice were being treated for eating disorders, specifically anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa. She is board-certified in Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine by the American Board of Pediatrics and is dedicated to helping young people transform their lives for the better.

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Prakash Thomas, MD

Psychiatrist

About 

Dr. Thomas is an adult, adolescent, and child psychiatrist who values working with Newport Healthcare clients and observing their growth. In addition to his clinical experience, he taught English as a second language to college students for two years in China and, as a result, enhanced his perspective on adolescents and their developmental challenges. He also teaches psychiatrists and medical students and has written scholarly articles and books on psychiatry and children, including co-authoring Psychopharmacology and Child Psychiatry Review and Lewis’s Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Review. It is one of the chief rewards of his work as a Newport psychiatrist to stitch together the different therapeutic perspectives on each client to create a unique and unified framework for growth, change, and healing.

 Clinical Expertise

Dr. Thomas earned his doctorate at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine and is board certified in child and adolescent psychiatry. He has held various professional appointments, including supervising physicians in training nurses, psychologists, and social workers. Dr. Thomas’ clinical experience encompasses both private practice in New Haven, Connecticut, and staff positions at Yale New Haven Hospital, Clifford W. Beers Guidance Clinic, Inc., and Yale’s Developmental Disability Clinic. He was also a recipient of the Bloomberg Award for Distinction in Psychiatry.

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Michel Mennesson, MD

Psychiatrist

About 

Dr. Mennesson thrives on finding new and creative solutions by drawing from a variety of therapeutic approaches. A longtime practitioner of yoga and meditation, he is a strong proponent for integrating mindfulness principles into clinical treatment. Dr. Mennesson is dedicated to providing the highest-quality evidence-based care in a safe, secure environment. He firmly believes in the power of a strong social support network, and he uses Attachment-Based Family Therapy to restore and reinforce healthy relational dynamics for young people and their families.

Clinical Expertise

Dr. Michel is board-certified in general psychiatry and Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, with an added qualification in Addiction Psychiatry. Originally from France, he trained as a pediatrician and internist before entering the field of psychiatry. He is also an Assistant Professor in the Yale University Department of Psychiatry. At Newport Healthcare, Dr. Mennesson specializes in treating young people struggling with issues such as substance use, depression, grief and loss, and Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).

Program Leadership

Ryan Fedoroff, M.Ed

Vice President, Learning and Development

About 

Ryan brings over a decade of academic leadership and classroom experience to her role at Newport Healthcare. As an educator, she is passionate about working with high-risk adolescents and is trained in restorative practices. Ryan works with the Marin County (California) Youth Court and is a member of various community organizations working to combat youth substance abuse. She develops educational and intervention programs to prevent teen and young adult mental health struggles and drug use.

Clinical Expertise 

Prior to joining Newport Academy in 2014, Ryan was a student activities director, leadership teacher, and mathematics teacher at Tamalpais Union High School District in Mill Valley, California. She holds a master’s degree in Education Administration, and has also served as secondary summer school principal, mathematics teacher, and student activities director for the Novato (California) Unified School District. Ryan works alongside clinicians to create interventions to assist students dealing with anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues. She also collaborates with special education teams to create protocols for managing classroom challenges for students dealing with auditory processing and executive functioning deficits.

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Annie Gendaszek, MA, LAADC

Associate Vice President, Compliance and Licensing

About 

Annie brings to the Newport Healthcare team in-depth experience in quantitative and qualitative research. Additionally, she brings professional communication skills across a wide range of platforms. Annie continues to be fascinated by the interface of psychology and law, and has acquired degrees in both psychology and communication studies, along with a master’s in forensic psychology. With a background in the litigation field, Annie has provided trial support for the Denver District Attorney’s Office and has assisted deputy district attorneys in drug court with trial preparation and courtroom coverage.

Clinical Expertise 

Annie Gendaszek has vast experience in the field of psychology. This includes positions as a program director, case manager, and senior resident manager for Safe Harbor Treatment Center in Costa Mesa, California. She has performed research at Bates College on the illicit use of psychostimulants in college students, which was published in the journal Psychology, Health, and Medicine. She also co-authored an article published in the Journal of the American Corporate Counsel Association, which included findings from a national study she designed on juror perceptions of corporations in the post-Enron era.

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Caydin Sanders

National Director of Experience

About 

Caydin joined the Newport Healthcare team in 2014, and established Newport’s Alumni Program as Director of Alumni Services, before becoming our National Director of Experience. Today, her contributions positively impact young people, families, and our team on a national level. Caydin continues to oversee Newport Healthcare’s Alumni Network while working to ensure that every aspect of Newport’s programming exceeds clients’ expectations. She has a degree in sociology, with an emphasis on social work, from California State University. Caydin is also a community volunteer for Mercy Without Limits, a nonprofit providing humanitarian relief around the world.

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Samantha Quigneaux, LMFT

National Director of Family Therapy Services

About

Samantha Quigneaux is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and has been working from a family systems perspective throughout her career. As Newport’s National Director of Family Therapy Services, she oversees all family programming, which utilizes Attachment-Based Family Therapy to provide support and psychoeducation to families throughout the treatment process.

Clinical Expertise 

Samantha has extensive experience working with adolescents and adults who have experienced trauma, including sexual and physical abuse. She also has expertise working with the LGBTQ community and issues related to gender and sexuality. Samantha believes that a necessary step in the healing and recovery process is a strong and genuine therapeutic connection that creates safety and allows for growth.

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Gary Fedoroff, MC, CADC II

Director of Experiential Learning

About 

Gary has been working with high-risk teens for nearly 15 years, in settings ranging from community centers to juvenile drug court. He excels in treating adolescents who have lost a sense of connection to self and others, and who are open to new experiences and activities that help them build self-esteem and perspective. Prior to moving into his current role, in which he develops and implements curriculum for Newport’s Adventure Therapy program, Gary served as our Program Coordinator of Intensive Outpatient Services.

 Clinical Expertise

Gary holds a master’s in Counseling Psychology from Dominican University of California, and is a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor Level II (CADC II). He is dedicated to engaging adolescents in recovery through multiple approaches, in particular the physical and emotional challenges and rewards of Adventure Therapy. Before joining the Newport team, Gary worked as an Alcohol and Drug Intervention Specialist for the Novato (California) Unified School District, and as a counselor and case manager for Bay Area Community Resources.

Nicole Renée Matthews

Director of Yoga

About 

Nicole Renée Matthews has been practicing yoga for over a decade and is the director of Charym Yoga Studio in Litchfield, Connecticut. Her personal journey with anxiety, depression, and pharmaceutical use as a teen inspired her to find accessible, everyday solutions for healing and wholeness. When she found yoga, she found guiding principles for navigating difficult times. Today, Nicole strives to inspire in her students curiosity, compassion, and lifelong self-study. She is certified in Ashtanga Vinyasa, trauma-informed yoga, and Somatic Experiencing, and also holds an Institute of Integrative Nutrition Health Coach Certification and a bachelor’s degree in holistic health and addiction studies from Western Michigan University.

 

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Robyn Le Ann

Director of Equine Services

About 

Robyn brings a unique blend of education, training, and experience to Newport Healthcare’s Equine-Assisted Therapy program. Her background in yoga therapy, combined with her equine skills and her desire to be of service to others, inspired her to train as a Certified Equine Specialist. Robyn has worked with horses for more than three decades, in various capacities. As a member of the Mounted Patrol Unit in Southern California for seven years, she fine-tuned her ability to observe and interpret the nonverbal communication of horses and humans. This intuitive nature and rich life experience inform her capacity to connect with adolescents in a therapeutic setting.