Meet Our Team
Director of Development
Gene Conroy has more than 35 years of nonprofit leadership experience in executive nonprofit management, fundraising, grant writing and advocacy on state and local levels. He has held various positions in recovery programming and advocacy and is the Director of Development for the Georgia Council on Substance Abuse (GCSA). He is a Certified Addiction Recovery Empowerment Specialist (CARES 9, CPS-AD) and a Certified Peer Support Specialist for South Carolina. Mr. Conroy is also a certified Science of Addiction and Recovery and Cultural Competency Facilitator, and has assisted in Peer Recovery Coach training in South Carolina and Georgia. His current duties for GCSA include organizational and fundraising development, and supervision of the New Staff Orientation Program Coordinator, the RCO Development Project Coordinator, the Grant Coordinator – Building Communities of Recovery (BCOR), and other special projects as assigned. Mr. Conroy has over 31 years in long term recovery.
Director of Peer Services
Laurisa Barthen was born in Chicago, Iowa and moved to Lawrenceville, Georgia with her family in 1996. She has since spent time living in different states along the east coast. She currently resides in downtown Atlanta. Laurisa earned her bachelor’s degree from Kennesaw State University where she majored in Political Science with a concentration in Legal Studies.
Director of Training and Technical Assistance
In 2006, Jermaine was sentenced to thirteen years in federal prison. During his time there, Jermaine recognized a direct correlation between criminality and substance use disorder and felt a need to talk candidly about this connection. This realization fueled his own recovery journey and inspired him to create new ways to fuse recovery with his passion for fitness.
Jill Hooper is a person in long-term recovery from substance use disorder and mental health challenges. What that means to her is that she has not used drugs or alcohol since March 3, 2015. Because of her recovery, Jill has the opportunity to be a part of many amazing things today that she could have never imagined.
Administrative Financial Coordinator
William Carnes was born in upstate New York, and later relocated with his family to Atlanta, GA in 1995. He is the second oldest of six children. William graduated from Cedar Grove High School in 2007. Shortly after, he started his professional career in administration and finance. During his spare time, William loves to travel, attend concerts/local festivals, cook, and spend time with his loved ones. Currently, William resides in the city of Atlanta.
RCO Development Coordinator
Brian Kite was born in Atlanta and raised just outside the perimeter in Conyers, Georgia, where he attended Salem High School. After high school, Brian spent some time studying at Perimeter College at Georgia State University for Business Administration. He has now been in long-term recovery since January of 2015 and resides in Grant Park, Atlanta.
Emergency Department Team Lead
Emergency Department Team Lead
ED Recovery Coach
Beth is a person in long term recovery from substance use. For her, that means she has not used illegal or mind altering substances since September of 2013. Long term recovery has afforded her the opportunity to “Turn her mess into her message.” Beth’s passion is to see others who have substance use disorder find long term recovery and peace.
ED Peer Recovery Coach
Jeremy Moore is a graduate of CARES Academy 37 and is currently working as an Emergency Department Peer Recovery Coach. Jeremy has been in recovery since February 2013 and began his work in the recovery field in 2014. Jeremy is passionate about sharing his story of hope and supporting others as they explore their own personal journey of recovery.
CARES Warm Line Team Lead
Jody Dodson was born and raised in the beautiful small town of Bainbridge, GA, by the mighty old Flint River. The oldest of three, he has always had a sincere desire to support and encourage others. Whether he was cheering on his teammates on the swim team, teaching swimming lessons to the youth or lending a hand with a local production at the town’s community theatre, Jody grew up with a servant’s heart.
Warm Line Peer Recovery Coach
Renee’ Bolin was born and raised in California. She is a person in long term recovery who struggled with substance use disorder for 31 years. She moved to Georgia in 1992 and has since considered this to be home. She currently lives in Jesup, Georgia. Renee attended nursing school at Armstrong State University in Savannah, Georgia and considers herself a born caretaker.
Peer Recovery Coach
Beth Bowen is a person in long-term recovery. Through her determination and self-discipline, Beth has found it unnecessary to use alcohol, nicotine, or any other mind-altering drug for the past eleven years, beginning December 2007. To her, being in recovery has many rewards, such as being a better mother, daughter, sister, friend, and citizen.
CARES Warm Line- Peer Recovery Coach
Unique Dixon is an Atlanta native. She is an open book, has a huge heart, and is willing to help anyone in need. She has offered many volunteer services with Hosea Help, Women Resource Center of Domestic Violence, Senior Citizen homes, and a few others. Unique has shared her powerful story with people in treatment, prisons, and schools.
CARES Warm Line Peer Recovery Coach
Steve Gainer is a person in long term recovery. What that means to him is that he has not used alcohol or drugs for 15 years. Steve is committed to his recovery because it has given him new purpose and hope for the future while allowing him to gain stability in his life. Steve is an advocate for recovery because it has improved his life so much that he wants to make it possible for others to experience the benefits of recovery that he has experienced.
Warm Line Peer Recovery Coach
Michelle Murray is a woman in long term recovery, and what recovery has done for Michelle is allow her to have a stable home as a single parent, and maintain a professional job working on the Cares Warm line as a Peer Recovery Coach. Michelle is a Certified Addiction Recovery Empowerment Specialist (CARES-3 CPS-AD)