Alyssa Milbee is Marshall University’s Student Leader for the Collegiate Strategic Prevention Framework Partnership for Success (C-SPF) project, a grant-funded initiative from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Alyssa is an honors graduate of Marshall University with majors in Biological Sciences and Health Sciences and minors in Chemistry and Pre-Professional Healthcare Studies. Additionally, Alyssa has accepted a seat in the class of 2026 at the Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine. Alyssa has conducted research on substance use and its implications on the health outcomes of minority and vulnerable populations, in addition to general health disparities, HIV/AIDS and hepatitis C, hypertension, and COVID-19 at the West Virginia Minority Health Institute within Marshall University’s Department of Public Health in addition to her previous work with the Men’s Health Equity Institute and the Putnam County Health Department. As a member of the Health Science Society within Marshall’s Department of Health Sciences, Alyssa assisted with a National Public Health Week campaign for climate justice and environmental equity funded by the American Public Health Association’s Center for Climate, Health, and Equity. Alyssa served as a Senator for the College of Health Professions as a member of Marshall’s Student Government Association, sitting on several association committees, and was a member of several on-campus student organizations. Citing passions for healthcare and public health in West Virginia, Alyssa was excited to join the C-SPF initiative to promote prevention infrastructure and improve the overall health of individuals in her community.
Amy Saunders, M.A.
Marshall Center of Excellence for Recovery, MURC
Amy Saunders, M.A., is the managing director of the MU Center of Excellence for Recovery at Marshall University, where she oversees multiple behavioral health initiatives on campus and in the community. She received a master’s degree in clinical psychology from Marshall University and has over 20 years of experience working in the fields of behavioral health and public health. Saunders served as the director of Marshall’s Wellness Center for over fifteen years where she implemented multiple health and wellness initiatives on campus. She has served as the director of a school-based mental health program overseeing services to students in five middle schools. She has authored and received over 25 public and mental health-related grants where she has served as a Principal Investigator (PI) or as an Evaluator. Saunders has assisted with strategic planning and coalition development on campus and within the local community and state. She is a founding member of the Cabell County Substance Abuse Prevention Partnership and the West Virginia Collegiate Initiative to Address High-Risk Drinking and Substance Use, coalitions working to provide substance use education and prevention in West Virginia. She serves as an advisory member on the Governor’s Council on Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment.
Originally from the northeast, Ashnee Patel is currently living in West Virginia while attending her second year of medical school at West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine. Ashnee has always been passionate about amplifying the voices of those around her, especially voices that are often underheard. Throughout her time in medical school so far, she has been using her passion to advocate for equity in medicine and diversity representation across all aspects of healthcare. Additionally, Ashnee has served on the executive board of WVSOM’s Medical Student Pride Alliance for the past two years, currently as the President, promoting LGBTQIA+ inclusion both in the community and across the nation. Her primary goal in life is to make spaces where anyone can feel safe, heard, and included, so that we can all learn from each other and make our communities better for everyone.
Ava Mick is a High School student from Wheeling, WV, who co-founded the non-profit organization The Fun-Raiser. They also work on the qualitative research method Photo-Voice and serve as a youth advocate on many councils including West Virginia University’s Youth Advisory Board.
Barri Faucett, MA received her Master of Arts degree in Clinical Psychology from Marshall University in 2003. Currently serving as the Director of Prevent Suicide WV Mrs. Faucett oversees and implements directives designed to address suicide prevention and intervention for all West Virginians. Her work managing and developing program objectives, activities, procedures and protocols for effective suicide prevention and intervention efforts; oversight and technical assistance in implementation of evidence-based practices and works towards capacity building initiatives for statewide suicide prevention efforts across systems and agencies. Her clinical experience includes direct service in intensive outpatient programs related to children and adolescents with mental health and substance abuse issues, covering a broad array of diagnoses. Mrs. Faucett is a Master Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR); safeTALK; Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST); and suicide2Hope Trainer, providing trainings for thousands of professionals, consumers, and community members in efforts of increased awareness and efficient referral intervention procedures for at risk individuals.
Bruce Whitten is passionate about helping West Virginians lead healthier lives. He brings a diverse set of experiences to the WVDII and is excited about taking Don’t Keep Rx Around programming to the next level.
Bruce has spent the past 3 years in the role of Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Specialist with the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources. During his time there, he completed training in numerous curricula and has delivered presentations and lessons to thousands of students across West Virginia. He helped develop and appeared in Real Talk, a video series created for students, teachers, and parents, centered around personal responsibility.
Bruce received a bachelor’s in advertising and marketing communications from the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC and spent time working in public relations, media planning, and ad sales. In addition, he earned a bachelor’s in health sciences from WV State University. He is currently in his final semester at Marshall where he’ll graduate with a master’s in public health in May of 2022.
C-SPF-PFS Student Leader: WVU Institute of Technology
My name is Carley Knuckles, my pronouns are (she/her) and I am a junior nursing student at WVU Tech. My passions include advocating for mental health awareness, suicide prevention, and substance use prevention and awareness. In my freshman year of college, I noticed there were no mental health awareness clubs on campus, and brought a chapter of Active Minds to WVU Tech.
When I graduate from WVUSON in Beckley, I plan to obtain my master’s in psychiatric nursing at Ohio State University online to ultimately becoming a pediatric nurse psychotherapist. This career allows me to combine my two passions and make them into a career.
I am a very outgoing individual who loves the outdoors. My favorite activities are reading on the beach, mountain biking in the woods, and waterskiing on my favorite lake. I have a lot of care in my heart for the planet and hope to explore as much as I can. My favorite places I have been to are Costa Rica and Lake Tahoe, California. My dream travel destination is Greece or Australia.
I spend my free time studying at my favorite local café (I am basically a walking Panera Bread ad), spending time with friends, going on drives at night, and cuddling my dogs!
My main character strengths are leadership, honesty, courage, resilience, and bravery. Well… on my good days! At the end of the day, I am a sister, daughter, mentor, advocate, and vegetarian (I know… but would I be a true vegetarian if I didn’t mention it just once?).
Devin is the Marshall University C-SPF Student Leader on his campus at West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine. Outside of his studies as a second-year medical student, Devin devotes much of his time to efforts within the realm of community outreach and primary prevention. At WVSOM, Devin serves as president of a service organization titled Sigma Sigma Phi and is the co-founder of “Fit Kids”, a student-led initiative centered around the promotion of health and wellness for youth aged 6-11 in the surrounding region. Devin feels that his efforts in prevention have afforded him the opportunity to step outside the classroom and assess the needs of his community through various initiatives. An area of prevention that he has devoted significant attention to is that of inclusive language and its far-reaching, systemic impact both on his campus and the medical community at large. Regardless of the audience, youth prevention groups, community members, or medical curriculum faculty, the overarching takeaway remains constant: to initiate a conversation regarding the power of our written or expressed language and its inherent potential to heal or to harm. Another project Devin has taken great pride in is his work with the student-led podcast “The Change We Seek”. Whether it was initiating a conversation regarding primary prevention for the LGBTQ+ community, substance use/misuse and its related stigmatization, or prescription drug misuse in conversation with a physician, Devin has enjoyed the opportunity to hear from his guests and share his own perspective on topics. Through his work with C-SPF, Devin has grown both as a future physician but more importantly as a caring and compassionate ally, and his patients will be the beneficiary of his culturally sensitive and inclusive approach to medicine.
Flannery Peterson, M.P.H., P.M.P.
Senior Project Manager, National Council for Behavioral Health
Flannery Peterson brings over 10 years of public health and project management experience that includes implementing and managing technical assistance initiatives throughout the project life cycle. Subject matter expertise in behavioral health, substance use disorders, HIV/AIDS, suicide prevention, trauma-informed care, psychosis, and leadership and workforce development. She currently leads a diverse portfolio of practice improvement projects at the National Council that improves access to care for behavioral health and addiction services providers. Ms. Peterson has worked on a portfolio of opioid use disorder initiatives that include the coordination of several regional meetings, the development of public health resources to promote the CDC Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain, and other SUD/OUD best practices and recommendations. She also has experience in the development of training curricula for the behavioral health workforce. Prior to joining the National Council, Ms. Peterson worked in the public health non-profit association field in both Washington, DC and New Haven, CT where she spearheaded several technical assistance, leadership, and training programs. Additionally, Ms. Peterson served as an AmeriCorps member where she worked as an HIV/AIDS youth prevention specialist for at-risk youth involved in the juvenile justice system in Northern Virginia.
As Executive Director of Community Connections, a community based 501(c)(3) non-profit, Greg Puckett advocates for strong public policy, and leads others to combat the opioid epidemic and community revitalization/stabilization efforts. He currently serves on several state committees and serves as Secretary on the Board of the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA), where he is a past recipient of CADCA’s National Advocate of the Year award.
As County Commissioner, Greg has encouraged reinvestment with its local community mental health system, and diversifying funding to combat the problems associated with overdoses, Hepatitis B/C and HIV problems. Since being elected in 2014, the Commission have reinvested funding to its local community mental health system and placed a heavy emphasis on the county’s litter problem for its community based, award winning “Keep Mercer Clean” initiative.
He serves on the board of the National Association of Counties (NACO) Board of Directors and is Chair of the National Rural Action Caucus. He has served as one of only ten county officials on the National Opioid Taskforce, and on their policy team as Vice Chair of the Healthy Counties initiative, Juvenile Justice and Arts and Culture Subcommittee, the Arts and Culture Subcommittee, and is Chair of the Mental Health Subcommittee.
In 2020, he was awarded the Louis Gorin Award for Outstanding Leadership in Health Education from the National Rural Health Association, and in 2021, he was awarded the National Outstanding Leadership Award by the Alliance for the Arts.
For the past eight years, he has traveled throughout the US to train on community sustainability and has worked with funders from the Benedum Foundation, the Appalachian Regional Commission, and others to revitalize his hometown.
He has two kids, Lauren, and Joseph, who keep him dedicated to making positive changes, and leaving a legacy for the next generation.
Holly Glick Sly, MA
Wraparound and Mobile Response Training Director
Marshall University Center of Excellence for Recovery
Holly earned her Bachelor of Arts degrees in Psychology and Communication Arts with an Emphasis in Theatre from Concord University in 2009 and her Master of Arts degree in Psychology from West Virginia University in 2014. She is currently a licensed psychologist in West Virginia. Holly is a certified therapist in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) and is a certified therapist and within program trainer for Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT). Holly has supervised multiple Wraparound programs as well as one of the pilot grants for Children’s Mobile Crisis. She looks forward to continuing to help West Virginia provide quality service for its children, young adults, and their families.
Jack Stalnaker is an 8th grade student at Notre Dame High School in Clarksburg, WV. He is a member of the National Junior Honors Society, NDHS Student Council, and Vice-President of the 8th grade class. He is a 3-year member of the Notre Dame Soccer Team. He is also a member of the WVU Prevention Research Center’s Youth Advisory Board.
C-SPS-PFS Student Leader for Concord University
Madison is a West Virginia native, living and working in Raleigh County most of her life. She’s a Woodrow Wilson High 2020 alum and graduated with honors, 7th out of 255 students at the Summa Cum Laude status. While in high school she was a mentor for students with academic probation in the Next Step Program. She is now a junior at Concord University pursuing a Health Science Pre-Professional degree. After graduating, Madison plans on continuing her education at the WVU school of Public Health for her master’s degree in Public Health with concentration in Epidemiology. In her free time, she is a tutor with the Student Support Services at Concord University and the Student Government Association’s representative for the CU Prevention and Recovery Organization. As the Concord University student leader for the C-SPF-PFS initiative, she hopes to make a positive impact on her campus and community.
Matthew Parsley is a second-year medical student at the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine. During his didactic years at WVSOM, Matt has made contributions to creating, planning, and implementing community outreach experiences — this includes co-founding the nutrition and wellness-focused program Fit Kids, and being one of the founding members of Greenbrier Valley Pride. In addition, Matt has served at the Vice President of WVSOM’s Medical Student Pride Alliance, where he collaborated on an LGBTQ+ Health Lecture Series, a Diversity in Clinical Skills Lecture Series, and co-presented a seminar highlighting the prioritization of inclusive language in medical school lectures. Through these efforts, Matt’s primary goal is to be a part of a progressive movement of education, inclusion, and the achievement of equity for underserved and underrepresented communities.
C-SPF-PFS Student Leader: BridgeValley Community & Technical College
Hey everyone! My name is Megan Dennis and I’m 18 years old. I was born in Kentucky but moved to WV when I was 7! I am currently attending BridgeValley Community & Technical College on the South Charleston campus. I am majoring in Nursing because it’s always been a part of me from growing up with sick family members to taking care of some of them at the time. I think it’s always been something I’ve been interested in since I was little. This program is really great especially going into the medical field, and I’m so excited to start my journey here! I am so thankful that I was chosen for this position, and I hope to be a big part of this program for our communities!
Melody Stotler is the Program Coordinator for Morgan County Partnership and currently works under the SPF grant. She is passionate about addiction, recovery and prevention because of her experience with her own daughter. In 2013 Melody co-founded the group Life or Drugs, Tri-State Support. She is now the Executive Director for the non-profit and leads a weekly support group in Berkeley Springs, WV. She also works as a Advocate Supervisor for CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) of the Eastern Panhandle which advocates for children involved in abuse & neglect cases. Additionally, she works part-time as an Emergency Medical Technician for Morgan County Rescue in Berkeley Springs, WV. Melody previously worked in healthcare for over 20 years providing training and supervision to a Federally Qualified Health Care Center.
She graduated as a Medical Assistant and also obtained a Business/Computer Education certification from James Rumsey Technical Institute. She has received additional training in substance use disorders and prevention. She is an instructor for Naloxone/Overdose Response and provides training to law enforcement, as well as, community members. She serves as a volunteer in various roles within her community and was named Women of Distinction in 2020. She enjoys sharing her story in hopes of helping others.
An advocate and change-maker for mental health awareness and wellness initiatives, Michelle has been delivering suicide prevention trainings and doing motivational speaking for nearly 3 decades. A long-term survivor of suicide loss, she has been a champion for the cause of saving lives and a true pioneer in the movement of breaking the silence on suicide. Working diligently to pass both local and federal legislation, Toman unanimously passed West Virginia legislation requiring mandatory suicide prevention education (for students) in middle and high schools as well as for colleges statewide, in 2015 in both the WV House and Senate. In addition, she has used her voice for advocating on Capitol Hill for the nationwide 988 Lifeline and for mental health parity. She has led thousands of presentations and trainings across the nation pertaining to childhood trauma, suicide prevention, social emotional learning, grief and healing. Michelle has been a beacon of light to countless individuals and families as she has made it her purpose to promote hope, teach coping and resiliency, connecting others to support, while addressing the importance of finding help and being able to heal from within. Michelle is a certified training for multiple prevention and intervention programs; she has also started and facilited numerous bereavement support groups pertaining to suicide loss. Recognized as one of West Virginia’s Top Wonder Women and named National Advocate of the Year in 2016, she has used the most difficult circumstances of her life to address the mental health needs of all human beings. A life-long resident of West Virginia, Michelle operates her own businesses, is the co-founder of You Matter I Matter and lives her life every day with the real intention and actions necessary to create change and make the world a better place.
Olivia Rombold is a rising third year student at the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine where she is studying to become a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine. Originally from New Brighton, PA, she attended Pennsylvania State University to obtain her Bachelor of Science degree in Biology with a minor in Child Maltreatment and Advocacy Studies. This is when she was first introduced to primary prevention and the role it can play in the healthcare system. After spending two years in Boston, MA furthering her skillset, she moved to Lewisburg, WV to begin medical school at WVSOM. As the president of her class, she finds it imperative to be a driving source of increasing prevention campaigns and education through partnering organizations on campus. Through allocating resources on destigmatized speech at tabling events, to participating in a faculty wide presentation on the role of inclusive language in medical education, she has contributed to making positive, impactful change.
Ms. Robin Tabor has been employed at WV State University as the Mental Health Specialist for 21 years providing confidential, personal and academic counseling to students. In addition, she serves on several county and state-wide councils addressing issues such as substance abuse and violence prevention. She is the faculty advisor to “CHOICES” Peer Educators and utilizes her students to assist her with educational outreach via residence hall programs, awareness campaigns and campus-wide events. “CHOICES” was selected in May 2017 as “Outstanding Student Organization of the Year” by WVSU’s Student Government Association for the fourth time since they were created in 2002. Lastly, Ms. Tabor was selected for the WVSU Staff Member of Year in 2017 and was recipient of the Outstanding Advisor for her NASPA region in April 2011.
Stephanie began her prevention journey in 2009 as part of a grassroots effort to engage community youth to lead revitalization projects in their neighborhoods. Together they organized and developed a vacant lot into a Children, Youth, and Families at Risk (CYFAR) agrapreneurship program. From 2012- 2016 Stephanie worked part-time as the youth coordinator as well as part-time as the coordinator for the City of Huntington Police department’s Weed & Seed project, a community policing program to reduce/prevent drug violence in Huntington neighborhoods.
Stephanie discovered a passion for her community and a drive for prevention work that led her to Prestera as the Partnerships for Success (PFS) grant coordinator to prevent substance misuse among most at-risk youth across four south-west WV counties: Cabell, Lincoln, Mason, Wayne. Stephanie works closely with youth serving community centers AND schools to identify evidence-based programs, practices, and policies that match the needs of their youth and students.
Summer Rebecca Goller
Summer Rebecca Goller is the director of MC After 3, an afterschool program funded through Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Center funds. She began working for Morgan County Schools in October of 2014 as the site coordinator for the Warm Springs Middle School MC After 3 site and later that year was promoted to program director. She also works part-time with Morgan County Partnership, Morgan County’s lead prevention coalition.
She received both her undergraduate and graduate degrees from West Virginia University. A mother of four, physical fitness enthusiast and writer, she pens her own blog at roastedpeanuts.blog. Her greatest privilege was, is and will be the opportunities she has been given to affect positive change in other’s lives, particularly the lives of young people. It is this mission that drives her to daily to be the best she can be and encourage others to do the same.
Tahnee Bryant is the Substance Use Prevention and Expanded School Mental Health Program Manager II for the WVDHHR Bureau for Behavioral Health. She also serves as West Virginia’s National Prevention Network (NPN) representative. Mrs. Bryant currently serves as the Chairperson for the WV Prevention Steering Committee and WV Strategic Prevention Plan. Mrs. Bryant has over 20 years’ experience within the behavioral health field in various leadership positions. In addition to teaching at the primary level early in her career she has also served as instructor within Higher Education. Mrs. Bryant has an undergraduate degree in Elementary Education and a Graduate degree in Leadership, both from Marshall University.
Tammy L. Collins, PhD, PS II, OCPC
Lead Evaluator & Family Scientist
Marshall Center of Excellence for Recovery, MURC
Tammy L. Collins, PhD, PS II, and Ohio Certified Prevention Consultant, has more than 25 years of experience in translating research into practice and policy in the fields of substance use disorders, mental health, justice, and education. She currently conducts applied research as Lead Evaluator for Marshall University Center of Excellence for Recovery and is an evaluation consultant for projects in Union, Montgomery and Greene Counties in Ohio. Her doctorate of philosophy in human development and family science with a cognate area of adolescent behavioral health risk and protective factors was earned from The Ohio State University. She holds a Master of Arts in Counseling and a Bachelor of Arts in journalism/public relations from Marshall University. Dr. Collins has led administrative and applied research teams at Ohio and WV state agencies including being Deputy Director at the Ohio Department of Mental Health & Addiction Services, Senior Research Analyst at the WV Supreme Court of Appeals, and Policy and Planning Coordinator at WV Division of Criminal Justice Services; as well as leading research and evaluation teams at The Ohio State University and Marshall University. Dr. Collins has served as a subject matter expert for national, state, and local prevention, youth and community development, and applied research projects.
Tinina McCourt is enthusiastic about creating programs to educate college students about the importance of medication safety here in West Virginia. Prior to joining the WVDII education team, Ms. McCourt had spent time working with TRiO programs to help support college-bound high school students as well as fellow college students achieve their academic goals.
As a recent graduate of Concord University, Ms. McCourt has earned her Bachelor’s in Science majoring in Sociology with an emphasis in Criminology, including minors in Psychology and Women’s and Gender Studies. During her undergraduate years, she was also an active McNair Scholar who conducted research on LGBT online dating in Appalachia.
Ms. McCourt continues to be in the process of earning her master’s degree in Sociology, where she will gain the tools necessary to progress in the non-profit sector and help to make a positive impact on her home state here in the mountains.
Vanessa began working in the prevention field by accident in 2012 when her son, then in 5th grade, needed a community leader to step up to become a SADD advisor for the county. Armed with the desire to ensure her child and many others would have the tools to always make sound choices, she jumped in head first. Not realizing the passion for prevention would quickly become all-encompassing to her life. In 2018 she signed on to work for the Partnership for Success grant, growing her love for the work and capacity building. Now, Vanessa runs Safety Town for the City Of Huntington, where she works to create a culture of safe individuals who understand what unsafe situations are and how to respond to the situation appropriately. The larger focus of the program is to combat risk factors with protective factors.
Wes Thomas is a Senior Health Educator with WELLWVU, focusing on alcohol and other drug prevention and education. Wes has been an active member of the WV Collegiate Initiative to Address Healthy Campus Communities (WVCIA) since 2016, previously serving as Treasurer and currently serving as Co-Chair of WVCIA. He is a licensed social worker graduating from WVU’s School of Social Work MSW program in 2014. Wes has been with WELLWVU since 2015. He is a husband, and father of one daughter. He enjoys playing guitar, eating hot wings, and watching stand-up comedy.