Our Staff

Our Staff 2018-04-20T19:02:01+00:00

Our Staff

Ben Patterson

Ben Patterson

FOUNDER

As co-founder of Brazos Intensive Outpatient Program LLC, Brazos Recovery Center LLC and Ebby’s Place LLC, Ben Patterson brings the vision of hope to all three organizations.

Ben’s vision to offer quality recovery and accountability to the on-going journey of newly recovering addicts and alcoholics has become the basis for hope for the many recovered addicts that have come through his organizations. Through Ben’s own 23 years in and around the treatment industry, his recovery has brought about an experience that he now passes on to others, not only those tied with Brazos Recovery Center and Recovery Intensive Outpatient Program but in all aspects of drug and alcohol treatment and recovery. His passion is in chasing addicts and drunks and showing them that there is a new way to live. Ben is very passionate about the recovery process that has saved his life and countless others. Ben believes in residents transforming their lives through living by and following the 12 steps and developing a personal relationship with God.

Josh Slay

Josh Slay

CEO

Josh came to us from a nationally known treatment facility. He brings to Brazos a wealth of passion and experience. Josh has served on the front lines, battling addiction since 2011. He brings his personal recovery experience, winning his own war over chemical dependency. He dedicates his life to helping others achieve the freedom he has been given.

Josh is a strong advocate of meeting people where they are at and being an example for them as he lives what he teaches. He brings a no nonsense approach laced with love and compassion to help reach those who are lost as Josh once was. Josh is currently pursuing his degree in business and is certified by the Texas Certification Board of Addiction Professionals as a Peer Recovery Support Specialist. Josh is an invaluable member of our team.

Raul Cartagena

Raul Cartagena

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

Raul Cartagena comes to Brazos after experiencing a full range of treatment experiences, from state funded facilities to predominantly known private residential centers. Along with his loyalty, he brings to the Brazos team a high caliber of love and compassion for the real deal addict and alcoholic. His wealth of knowledge and experience with recovery and treatment contributes greatly to the Brazos treatment model. Raul is dedicated to the pursuit of equality of the addict and alcoholic worldwide, and he is on the front lines for mental health reform. With his ability to be straightforward and dependable, he influences the Brazos family to continue to be motivated to help our clients.

Aside from being a leader at Brazos, Raul is a family man and celebrates his children. His sole vocation and devotion to carrying the 12 step message is what keeps him driven and continue in this field.

Dana Audette

Dana Audette

CFO DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS

Dana Audette brings to the Brazos team a wealth of accounting experience and operational abilities. Dana holds dual degrees and has a keen grasp of finance and checks and balances. Before making Brazos her professional home, she was Controller of a major real estate company in Dallas for over 20 years. Dana keeps up to date with the latest financial rules and regulations and has been a driving force in the day to day operations of Brazos since joining the Brazos family. She loves being part of an organization that is dedicated to helping others and hopes to put her skills and strengths to good use and help Brazos to continue to grow.

When not working, Dana is a wife of 17 years and the mother to a 15 year old and a 10 year old. She plays an active role in her children’s extracurricular activities and is an avid reader and loves movies and outdoor activities.

Emily Violet Lusk

Emily Violet Lusk

ADMISSIONS ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

Emily Violet is originally from San Antonio and got sober by way of Kerrville, Texas. She has had multiple treatment episodes and stints of sobriety before she was able to maintain long term results. Emily is now consumed with passion for recovery and is a firm believer that involvement is where change becomes possible. “I had been to so many 12 step classes and could practically recite The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, but I could not stay sober. It wasn’t until I involved myself in this way of life and showed up and owned up in ways I hadn’t before, that I was able to stay sober and above all, learn!”

Emily joined the Brazos team from another prevalent treatment center and she brings a wealth of knowledge on all levels of care. Her experience in addiction and the demonstration of the Power of Recovery gives our clients an opportunity to bear witness to the promises made by the 12 step program. She is devoted to giving our clients the care and attention they deserve to recover from this disease. When she’s not helping her fellows, Emily Violet is a new mother. She has a passion for her art and art history and enjoys collecting eclectic antiques and going to trade shows.

Craig Laseur MA, AADC

Craig Laseur MA, AADC

CLINICAL DIRECTOR

Craig joined the team as our new Clinical Director. Craig has been sober since 1998 and began working in the substance abuse field in 1999 as a nurse’s aide in a locked county detox in St Paul, MN. There he learned that he had the patience and compassion to work with those who suffer from alcoholism and drug addiction. He pursued and completed a Master’s Degree at Hazelden’s Graduate School of Addiction. His first clinical position was working with women on the Lily Unit at Hazelden. From there, he moved to the Pacific Northwest where he worked with young adult males at Gray Wolf Ranch. The opportunity to move to New Zealand and open The Retreat New Zealand and develop the program as Program Director was presented which he happily took. Returning to the States, he became the Clinical Director of New Beginnings Adolescent Treatment Center in Opelousas, LA working with teenagers. Craig joins the Brazos team with a wealth of clinical experience and a passion for Twelve Step recovery and is excited to be a part of the unique culture found at Brazos Recovery.

Thomas McConatha

Thomas McConatha

CONTINUUM CARE DIRECTOR

Thomas has a passion for this field after spending 18 years in and around the treatment industry. Thomas spent 21 years fighting his own battle with alcoholism and addiction. After experiencing the miracle of freedom from active addiction and alcoholism, Thomas feels that his divine calling and real purpose is to help fellow alcoholics and addicts achieve long term sobriety through practical application of the 12 steps and a spiritual way of life. Thomas wholeheartedly believes in our team and our no nonsense approach to breaking the cycle of addiction.

Jimmy Crowley LCDC

Jimmy Crowley LCDC

WEEKEND COUNSELOR

Originally from El Paso, Texas, Jimmy attended school at Texas Tech University and Weatherford College. He battled drug addiction and repeated relapses for 22 years before discovering spiritual solution through the 12 steps. Jimmy has worked in the field of addiction for over 15 years and maintains a strong belief that anyone, no matter how bad things have gotten in their life, can and will recover from drug and alcohol addiction, provided they are open, honest and willing to take direction. Jimmy is a firm believer in service work, carrying the message and growing closer to God. In his spare time, Jimmy loves to play golf and visit family and friends.

Sheila Turner

Sheila Turner

PRIMARY COUNSELOR

Sheila is originally from Crowley, Texas and has been working in the addiction field since 2008.The experience she has gained from her own long battle with alcoholism and building a foundation and a design for living via the 12 steps has allowed her to identify and rely on what works and letting go of what does not work. Sheila’s passion in helping others find their truth has only increased since beginning in the field over 10 years ago.  Not only does Sheila relish working with the clients at Brazos but she also enjoys working with the family members/loved ones. Sheila also enjoys spending quality family time with her family and watching her grandchildren grow up. She also enjoys reading, movies and a new-found love of gardening!

Trey Peveler

Trey Peveler

LEAD RECOVERY ADVOCATE

Trey Peveler is originally from Valley Mills, TX and graduated with an Associate’s degree in Paint and Auto Collision Repair. After many years struggling with his addiction and many attempts to stay sober through state-funded and privately-owned facilities, Trey finally got to a point where he felt that change was necessary. Like most of us, Trey was introduced to a solution-based concept of the 12 steps and he now celebrates multiple years of sobriety and recovery!

“I make it a point to be willing to do whatever to help guys find a new way of life.” Aside from being a family man, Trey continues to participate in his own 12 step recovery, helps run two different self-help groups and enjoys spending his free time with his family.

Bryan Hill

Bryan Hill

DISCHARGE COORDINATOR

Bryan Hill joins the Brazos Family from Alvarado, Texas. Bryan’s light-hearted approach and ability to be a good listener allows him to be helpful and accommodating to our clients. “It’s important for my own recovery to be willing to do whatever it takes to help, both inside Brazos Recovery and outside. I am dedicated to being of service.” Bryan’s personal faith is what opened the door for his own recovery. Aside from being a Personal Advocate, Bryan enjoys making music. His devotion to being of service makes him a pillar in his church community.

Terry Busse

Terry Busse

PRIMARY COUNSELOR
Tyson Womble LCDC-I

Tyson Womble LCDC-I

RESIDENTIAL CLINICAL COORDINATOR

Tyson Womble was raised in Lubbock, TX. He graduated from Texas Tech University and is a passionate Red Raider. He battled with alcoholism and addiction for 18 years. He went to treatment and suffered relapse. He got reconnected spiritually through the 12 steps and has been sober ever since. His passion for recovery lead him back to work for the treatment facility of which he is alumni. He began his career in addiction and recovery there and met his fiancé. He is the newest member of the Brazos Clinical Team and is pursuing his LCDC. Tyson enjoys fly fishing, camping, and spending time with his son and family.

Brandon Skidmore

Brandon Skidmore

RECOVERY ADVOCATE

Brandon is originally from Fort Worth Texas. After going through treatment and working the program, he made a lifelong decision to stay sober and start working toward his future. After finishing treatment and becoming a pillar in his recovery community Brandon chose to continue to help others in the sober lifestyle by joining the Brazos Team. Brandon spends his days on the front lines of this disease, working daily with our clients, making sure they get the care and attention they deserve, When Brandon isn’t at Brazos, he is currently in school majoring in criminal justice!

Orlando Montalvo

Orlando Montalvo

PRIMARY COUNSELOR
Nick Damiata

Nick Damiata

FITNESS COORDINATOR

Nick is originally from Massachusetts and has been through to treatment multiple time before establishing a foundation and design for living that has kept him in long term sobriety. In Nicks journey to getting sober he developed a passion for weight lifting and body building. Since then Nick has kept this passion close to him and utilizes his skills in fitness to help others. Since joining the Brazos Team, Nick has made it his priority to promote positivity and motivation with our clients in getting physically active and strong routines in early sobriety. “Fitness in Recovery has tough me to finish what I start, be a man of my word, and not only has made me physically stronger, but mentally stronger as well.”

David Carroll

David Carroll

DIRECTOR OF UTILIZATION REVIEW
Cindy Casas

Cindy Casas

DIRECTOR OF NURSING

Cindy is originally from Chicago, IL and has nearly 25 years Nursing experience in areas of Trauma, Psychiatric, and Emergency. Cindy has seen addiction in all of these ranges and has a firm understanding of what clients should expect when being treated medically for substance abuse. As Director of Nursing, Cindy partners with the Medical and Clinical team, to provide personal and professional medically managed services, human-to-human, for our clients. In addition to her extensive Nursing and Medical experience, Cindy is a passionate dog owner, mothering 3 Pomeranians.

 

Jamie Huffier

Jamie Huffier

DIRECTOR OF NUTRITIONAL SERVICES

Jamie was raised in Cleburne Texas. She graduated from Cleburne High School where she studied her first passion Veterinary Services. Jamie has worked in hospitality for 30 years and has developed a thoughtful and thorough passion for providing clients with nutritional and heartfelt meals.  In her spare time Jamie enjoys gardening her roses, the outdoors and spending time with her dogs Beggar, Bobo and Bella.

Kathy Reese

Kathy Reese

NURSE
Kathy Reese has been an employee with Brazos since August, 2016 as an LVN. She came with over 10 years of nursing experience. She has been happily married to her husband , Kevin, for 25 years. She has two daughters and one granddaughter. She has always had a passion for helping others. She grew up in a household with addicts and alcoholics and understands the effects of the disease of addiction. She enjoys camping and spending time with her family.