Our Staff

All our clinicians are licensed to practice in North Carolina. We are committed to the requirements to continue our education and professional development. We abide by the ethical guidelines of our respective professions.  Additionally, we give time and attention to our personal lives.

(**Please note we do not have any physicians on our staff and do not prescribe medication.)


Clinical Staff

Barbara Givens, MA, LMFT, MHDL is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and specializes in working with couples seeking engagement counseling, marriage enrichment, and affair recovery. Barbara has training and experience through her first master's degree in Human Development and Learning in helping individuals navigate challenges related to life stage changes and exploration of identity development through life transitions. Her experience also includes assisting clients dealing with issues related to grief, depression, and anxiety with an integration of several approaches including systems, narrative, cognitive behavioral, and solution focused theories. Barbara is committed to helping her clients heal, grow and know the joy and strength available through God's unconditional love and acceptance. She has been married for 36 years and is mom to two young adult children.

Michelle M. Tolison, MS, LPC, LMHC, RPT, NCC is a Licensed Professional Counselor and a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (Florida) and specializes in childhood and adolescent disorders including self-esteem improvement, depression, suicidal ideation, sexual abuse and trauma, ADHD, Asperger’s and social skills development. Michelle also provides counseling to adults who need parenting assistance, as well as the above mentioned areas. Michelle is a Registered Play Therapist and specializes with ages 3 years to young adult. Michelle also utilizes other techniques including: Filial Therapy, and Client Centered Therapy to create a welcoming atmosphere for any age. Read Michelle's blog here.

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Alisha Hill, MACC, LMFTA is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Associate and loves the opportunity to work closely with children (8+), adults, couples and families dealing with a variety of emotional and behavioral challenges. She practices counseling by integrating spiritually aligned, evidence-based interventions in order to create change. Her experience consists of counseling children (8+) with anxiety, depression, and trauma. Additionally, she is passionate about helping couples sanctify their bond with one another while increasing security, closeness, and connection through using Emotion Focused Therapy, in which research has shown great effectiveness. Her experience also extends to adults dealing with anger, self-worth issues, grief and loss, anxiety, depression and other emotional challenges. **Friday evening appointments available.** 

Michael Bollin, MA, LPCA is a Licensed Professional Counselor Associate who loves helping people heal and grow so that they can thrive being all God created them to be.  Michael has experience working with children, adolescents, families, couples, and individuals.  He specializes in treating anxiety, self-esteem, spiritual issues, OCD, depression, emotional wounds, marital, addictions, anger, and instilling hope and motivation to those struggling for breakthrough.  Using a counseling framework that incorporates the truth of God’s Word with cognitive behavioral therapy and motivational interviewing, he empathetically guides his clients to experience new levels of healing, restoration and freedom. 

Jennifer Parsons, MA, LMFT is a Licensed Marriage and Family therapist that loves working with families of all kinds at various developmental stages. She also has experience working with children ages 3 and up, women with depression and anxiety, and cross-cultural counseling. Jennifer received an MA in Marriage and Family therapy from Bethel Seminary in San Diego, CA that integrated theology and psychology. She has additional training in play therapy, cross-cultural counseling and emotionally focused therapy. She uses family systems theory and attachment theory with cognitive-behavioral and solution-focused interventions. In light of her training and experience, Jennifer finds working with the nuclear family to be most beneficial for bringing change whether it be behavioral problems or relationship struggles. She works to create a safe, compassionate environment for individuals to create more intimate relationships. **Saturday appointments available.**

Amanda Cherry, MA, LPC, LCAS, NCC is a licensed Professional Counselor, Licensed Clinical Addiction Specialist, and National Certified Counselor. She specializes in helping adults who struggle with difficult life transitions, high stress/crisis, conflict, depression, anxiety as well as women's issues. Amanda's has expertise in treating addictions, both substance and process addictions. Amanda is a person-centered/CBT therapist that approaches each client with empathy and compassion while providing a welcoming space for individuals to feel validated and empowered. She is a provider of EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing) and works with clients living with past trauma or present distress due to past memories that leave negative emotions, beliefs and physical sensations. Amanda has been married for 30 years with 3 adult children. 

Kristina Franklin, MACC, LPC, LMFT is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist as well as a Licensed Professional Counselor. She specializes in working with couples to improve communication skills, resolve conflict and rebuild marriages after an affair. Her unique and extensive experience is in working with law-enforcement officers, rescue workers, military personnel and their families. Kristina works with anxiety and panic disorders as well as grief and loss.  She is also comfortable helping people work through cancer. She has degrees in both counseling and theology.

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Michelle Martin Hurlbert, MACC, LPC is a Licensed Professional Counselor and provides therapy for adolescents, adults, couples, and families. Michelle has a Masters Degree in Christian Counseling from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and has worked in various settings including outpatient private practice, crisis management, and inpatient mental health and substance abuse detox. Michelle has specific training in abuse issues, dissociative disorders, PTSD, and complex trauma. She is also a member of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISST-D). Michelle engages her clients in a therapeutic relationship, helping them make sense of their life’s narrative by integrating psychological truths within a biblical framework. She specializes in treating anxiety, depression, grief and loss, theological questions, relational and intimacy problems, sexual and physical abuse, trauma, and infertility.

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Mike Prasse, MACC, LPC is a licensed professional counselor specializing in marital, pre-marital counseling, ADHD and sexual abuse/trauma recovery. His expertise includes parenting, anxiety, OCD, depression, spiritual direction/theological concerns, sexual abuse/trauma recovery, life and career direction, creative problem solving and men's issues. He works with teens, adults, couples and families. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. Read Mike's blog for insights and help with counseling related issues. 

Donna Kanipe, MACC, LMFT is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist.  She graduated summa cum laude with an MACC from Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary. She works with couples, adults, adolescence, and children over seven years old. Donna’s experience includes counseling pre-marital couples, conflicted couples, abuse victims, divorce care, women grieving betrayals (affairs, sex addiction), anxiety, panic attacks, trauma, depression, grief, and adjustment after life-altering accidents/medical conditions. Her specialty includes using Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) to help couples and families move from a conflicted relationship to a more nurturing emotional bond. She also incorporates EFT when working with trauma survivors (sexual, physical abuse, etc.) and divorce recovery. Donna believes clients are resilient and capable of new beginnings so she aims to draw out individual and couple strengths. She is passionate about helping women who feel small rediscover their identity and fostering strong emotional bonds in families. Donna married in 1994 and is raising two adolescent children with her best friend and husband of 20 years. 

Kate Leggett, LPC, MA, NCC is a Licensed Professional Counselor and a Nationally Certified Counselor. She received her BA in psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her MA in Community Counseling from Regent University.  Kate has experience working in a Honduran orphanage, hospital, community-based, and private practice settings.  She specializes in working with children ages 4+, adolescents, adults, couples, and families on an array of mental health concerns including anxiety, depression, trauma, grief, spirituality, relationship concerns, sexual addiction and behavioral concerns utilizing an emotionally focused cognitive behavioral therapy approach. Her passion is reestablishing the sanctity of the family unit through creating a safe and trusting environment for individuals and families to holistically move towards a place of growth and lasting healing.

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Steven Clemons, Jr., MAMFC, LMFT, LPC is a licensed marriage and family therapist as well as a licensed professional counselor.  He received his masters in marriage and family counseling from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, TX. Steven works with adolescents (age 12 and above) and adults in individual, marital, and family therapy.  He specializes in many different life challenges including life-transitions, anxiety, depression, anger, distorted self-image, spiritual problems, death and dying, grief and loss, co-dependency, trauma, and men’s and women’s issues.  He utilize's multiple research-based approaches including Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Structural Family Systems, Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) Emotion Focused Couples Therapy (EFT), and Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR).  He enjoys integrating theology and spirituality into his counseling as desired by clients and their preferences.

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Cheryl Johnson, MA, LMFT is a licensed marriage and family therapist. She works with couples of all ages, including pre-marital couples, young marriages, and couples struggling to break long-term patterns. She has experience with stepfamilies and missionary families. Cheryl has been married for almost 40 years and has three adult daughters. As the mother of three girls, she enjoys seeing families with adolescent girls. In addition to couples, families and adolescent girls, Cheryl works with individuals with relationship problems and those struggling with depression and anxiety. Her graduate training was at St. Mary's University of MN, and Bethel Theological Seminary in St. Paul, MN.

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Chris McCarthy, PhD, LPC is a Licensed Professional Counselor. His specialties include working with individuals of all ages with anxiety, depression, conflict resolution, and relational issues. Chris sees a lot of children, teens, & families for anxiety and behavioral issues, couples for relational issues, and individuals for anxiety and depression issues. His dissertation was in couple communication and he’s co-authored an anxiety program for children which sells world-wide called, Turnaround: Turning Fear into Freedom. Chris is a member of the IOCDF and frequent guest on NBC's Charlotte Today. He’s known around the office as the laughing therapist because he makes his clients laugh while at the same time helping them work through their issues. He has a PhD and 3 Masters degrees in: Counseling, Theology and Christian Education. He was married in 1993 and has 3 children. Read his child anxiety blog here 

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Alicia Collins, MS, LMFT has been a licensed marriage family therapist since 1992. She enjoys working with children (7+), teens and families. Her special interest is in working with couples. She has advanced training in Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFT) which research shows to be extremely effective. Her expertise includes assisting individuals emotionally to heal with issues of separation, divorce, grief/loss, sexual or physical abuse and trauma as well as working with a variety of emotional and behavioral problems. Over the years Alicia has helped adults struggling with depression, anxiety, stress and grief. She has been married to her husband for 34 years and together they have two married daughters with two granddaughters and one grandson.

Chad Kraska, PsyD, is a licensed psychologist specializing in psychological assessment, including educational and personality evaluations for children, teens and adults. He also provides psychotherapy with expertise in the areas of: Asperger's Disorder, ADHD, anxiety disorders, disruptive behavior disorders, depression, spiritual direction/theological concerns, men's issues and career/life direction. He works with children, adolescents, adults, marriages and families. Dr. Kraska earned his M.A. and Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology from Fuller Graduate School of Psychology and completed an APA accredited clinical internship at The Devereux Foundation, Mapleton Campus. To find out more view his website here


FOUNDING PARTNERS

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Patti McMillan, MEd, LPC, a licensed professional counselor, joined the group after working in agency, school, and university settings. She specializes in therapy for children and adolescents. Her experience leads her to focus on anxiety, depression and women's issues. Additionally she offers educational and psychological assessment. Patti is a founding partner of Carolinas Counseling Group

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Linda McGrew, MA, LPC is a licensed professional counselor and enjoys working with adults on individual and marital issues. Special areas of interest include women struggling with life changes and spiritual development. She has graduate degrees in both counseling and theological studies. She is passionate about integrating the Christian Faith with the care of the soul. Linda also enjoys facilitating groups and speaking at local events. Linda is a founding partner of Carolinas Counseling Group. Linda's husband is pastor of Grace Covenant Church where she serves with him. 

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David A Russ, PhD is a licensed psychologist and health services provider. He began practicing in 1985. He specializes and limits his practice to helping individuals of any age with anxiety including; obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), panic, emetophobia, social anxiety, phobias, separation anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and related issues. He has advanced training in treating OCD. He uses CBT and in particular, exposure and response prevention as the primary treatment modality. Dr. Russ is co-creator of an innovative and effective treatment program for children with anxiety called Turnaround: Turning Fear into Freedom. He is co-author of More Than Me, published by NavPress. Dr. Russ's Vita is available here.


Administrators/Patient coordinators

Our Admin staff are available to help make your visit to Carolinas Counseling Group as easy as possible. Admin hours are Monday thru Thursday 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM and Friday 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM.  

Kim Vail, Office Manager

Kim Vail, Office Manager

Jane Moore

Jane Moore

Jen Wilson

Jen Wilson

Megan Philbeck

Megan Philbeck

Erin Bost Testing Coordinator

Erin Bost Testing Coordinator