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Meet the Ozark Trails Staff

Frequently Asked Questions

Click the Question to See the Answer.

What therapies are used?

Therapy Techniques at Ozark Trails Academy for Troubled Teens

  • Brain Mapping
  • Narrative Therapy
  • Trauma informed-CBT
  • EMDR
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy-CBT
  • Individual Therapy
  • Family Therapy
  • Group Therapy
  • Adventure Therapy
  • Experiential Therapy
  • Attachment Therapy
  • Horticulture Therapy
  • Animal-Assisted Therapy
  • Parelli Horsemanship Therapy
  • Music and Art Therapy
  • Sand Tray Therapy
  • Trauma Sensitive Yoga
  • Strength-based Therapy
  • Solutions Focused Therapy
  • Problem-solving Therapy
  • Eclectic Therapy
  • Mindfulness
  • Play Therapy

Are parents and family members involved in the therapy?

Parents and family members are very much involved in therapy and are encouraged to be as involved  as possible. Anyone who is a part of the student’s support is someone that we want to be included in therapy.

How long does the residential treatment program last?

We suggest to families a minimum of 9-12 months of treatment with us but sometimes can be as long as 2-3 years.

How can I pay for treatment?

Insurance, cash, check, and loans for treatment, as well.

What payment methods are accepted?

Cash, credit card, checks, Venmo, PayPal.
 

 

Meet our Staff at Ozark Trails Academy:

Richard Jones

Executive Director
M.S. – Social Work, Mental Health & Substance Abuse
B.S. – Exercise and Wellness

Richard Jones holds a Bachelor’s degree in exercise and wellness and a Master’s in social work with an emphasis in mental health and substance abuse.

He loves the outdoors, music, and sports, and played sports all through high school and college. He even had the opportunity to play rugby after college for a few years. Richard grew up on a horse ranch, taking on many responsibilities, including caring for and feeding the horses. He also gained an appreciation and love for the outdoors through hunting and fishing with his dad. As the 6th of 10 kids, Richard feels very blessed to have grown up in a home that valued family, relationships, and the opportunity to learn from experiences and mistakes.


Charlie G. Christensen

Program Director
M.S. – Counseling – University of Phoenix
B.S. – Psychology – Utah Valley University

Charlie brings a wealth of knowledge and refined experience to our Ozark team. Working with adolescents and families for over a decade, his passion guiding youth is unmatchable. Charlie’s unconditional love for each person has an innate way of influencing others for good.

His individualized, relationship-focused approach mirrors the Ozark model. He deeply believes everyone has value and purpose to offer the world and Ozark Trails is a supportive stepping stone that can benefits countless lives.

Charlie feels Ozark Trails Academy offers an incomparable environment of treatment. He has said, “The opportunities students have to be able to learn life skills, resilience, and self-confidence here is like no other in the therapeutic industry.”

From the intentional variety of outdoor adventure, equine therapy, and active sports, to the individualized treatment families receive – healing is balanced and long-term. Charlie loves the outdoors; including hunting and playing any sport. His highest and ultimate delights are Heather, his sweet wife, and their precious children.


Tracy Dockler

ACSW, LCSW, BCD

Tracy Dockler is a certified and licensed social worker with over 25 years of experience in the clinical treatment of adolescents and their families. She is a Board Certified Diplomate in Clinical Social Work (BCD), which demonstrates an advanced-practice status with a high level of clinical competency. Tracy holds certifications in social work and as a behavioral health consultant. Currently, she has been trained in EMDR and is working on certification, while she is also receiving training in NMT to complete brain mapping and increased knowledge of developmental trauma and the impact on the brain. Academically, Tracy has a Bachelor and a Masters in Social Work, and she is in the research portion of her doctorate in social work with a research interest in wilderness therapy and a specialization in Clinical Expertise.

Tracy’s career has focused on trauma in children and youth with a strong emphasis on behavioral disorders, inclusive of attachment struggles, and mental health issues. She has a specialization in family therapy with a focus on troubled teens and their families, including a history of working with violent abusive families encompassing sexual abuse, physical abuse, neglect, and the death of a child. Tracy has had a diverse career history with schools, shelters, residential treatment centers, private practice, clinic settings, and psychiatry hospitals. These settings have resulted in Tracy developing policies, consulting, training, advocating, developing new operating standards, group treatment, and individual and family therapy. Her passion is youth and their families and making a change in their personal growth and wellness.


William “WP” Miller, LCSW

Clinical Social Worker
M.S. Social Work, Marywood University, Scanton, PA
B.S. Psychology, South West Baptist University, Bolivar, MO

WP is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has experience working with the clinical treatment of Children, Adolescences and Families. He has been trained in Play therapy, EMDR therapy. He has committed himself to working with individuals to address concerns of depression, trauma anxiety and other stresses that have impacted them. WP believes joint collaboration is the key to helping individuals become successful. By working cooperatively with his clients they can identify a treatment goal that is tailored to meet their needs.

WP has a high focus on using EMDR as a main treatment modality due to its use for the treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. EMDR has also been successfully used to treat: Anxiety and Panic attacks, Grief and loss, Depression, Addictions, Anger, Phobias, Social anxiety, Sleep problems and Feelings of worthlessness/low self-esteem. With EMDR being the treatment modality of choice, WP also borrows from various evidence based treatments such as: Stress Management, Increasing Self-worth, Mindfulness, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Client Centered.

WP is an Army veteran who worked as a Military Policeman after high school. At completion of his military enlistment he went on to work in the state of Missouri Prison system as a correctional officer, promoted to Sergeant where he supervised 14 correctional officers and was responsible for the safety of 576 offenders. WP transitioned over to Correctional Case management where he facilitated programs, helped offenders gain the appropriate documentation and resources for their reentry into society. During his time working within the state prison system, WP decided to pursue a career where he would be able to help address issues that have lead others to make poor decisions.

Academically WP attended South West Baptist University (Bolivar, Mo.) where he received his Bachelors of Science in Psychology. Upon Graduation he went on to pursue his Master of Social Work degree from Marywood University, (Scranton Pa.)

Before Joining the Ozark Trails Youth Services team, WP has a history of working with Substance Use issues in the Substance Abuse Recovery and Rehabilitation Treatment Program (SARRTP) at Wilkes-Barre VA hospital (Wilkes-Barre, Pa.), a Medical Social Worker for Guardian Home and Community services (Nanticoke, Pa.), and a Community Mental Health Therapist for Ozarks Medical Center, Behavioral Health Care (West Plains, Mo.). His passion is working with youth and their families to help promote change, personal growth and equipping them with skills to be successful in their future.


Chris Mantell

Chief Financial Officer

Chris is the CFO of Ozark Trials Academy. He manages and oversees the financials and operations for the organization. Chris has been in medical administration for over seven years.

He enjoys being in an industry where lives are changed in a positive way.

Chris enjoys spending time and going on vacations with his wife, Alison, and four children. His hobbies are sports and real estate investing.


Jamie Caldwell

Admissions Director

Jamie has been involved with Program Admissions for the past 10 years. She loves working for Ozark Trails where students and their families find healing and peace. She says, “as I help parents navigate the admissions process for Ozark Trails it gives them hope. They are always surprised that their insurance will help, and Ozark does a great job getting reimbursement from insurance. I not only help with the insurance piece, but I try to eliminate all barriers to receiving help and treatment.”

Jamie is the first point of contact with parents who are generally in crisis. As she helps them work through the steps for admissions, she is inspired by the Ozark parents who sacrifice so much to give their students the gift of Ozark Trails Academy. ​She is amazed at how the parents show great love and patience with their kids and examine and work on their own lives in an effort to help their students be successful.

When she’s not doing admissions for Ozark she can be found with her children or grandchildren. ​Lee and Jamie’s children are actors and cowboys. So they can often be found at plays or rodeos.​ Her favorite thing to do is spend time with her husband Lee. They enjoy traveling, golfing, shopping, and cooking together.

“I love talking to people about Ozark Trails Academy because it is my passion. I believe that families are the greatest gift we are given here on earth. I love doing my part to strengthen and heal them. I love working with young people. The staff at Ozark Trails seek for the good in all students and help them recognize their own strengths.”


Sadie Young

Admissions Specialist

Sadie developed a passion for psychology and working with teenagers at a young age. She started working for a treatment center for teens 10 years ago in pursuit of her passion. Her talent and insight seem to know no bounds. She started working as support staff and later designed training protocol for that department. She loved working with the students so much she went to school part time to earn a degree in psychology. She spent some time in the school assisting the English teacher and helping the students academically. She designed and taught a fitness and self-esteem class for the girls. Finally she moved to admissions and learned how much she loved talking with people about the program and giving heavy hearted parents hope. She has a passion for the program at Ozark Trails and the healing that comes from the adventure therapy in a beautiful mountain setting.

“Because I have seen the lasting change that long term residential treatment can bring, I love answering the phone or responding to an email of a parent searching for help and hope, and being able to tell them they have called the right place!”

When she’s not working at Ozark Trails she enjoys, baking fancy desserts, health and fitness, and having fun with her husband, kids, and two yellow labs Abby and Alice.


Mckell

Mckell was born and raised a proud army brat. She has lived all over the world including, Indiana, Hawaii, and Germany where she graduated high school. She later met her husband Scott and they have 3 amazing children.

Mckell has been the insurance specialist for Stillwater Academy for several years and is now a great asset to the Ozark Trails team. She is a licensed insurance agent and has worked in the medical field since 1992.

Mckell has a degree in behavioral science and health with an emphasis in healthcare administration and marketing from The University of Utah. She is passionate about her role in making mental health services more accessible to those who need it. Here at Ozark Trails she advocates for the students by managing insurance benefits and negotiating coverage with insurance companies.

When Mckell is not working she enjoys traveling, cooking, reading, and spending time with her family. She loves being a grandmother and being active in her growing family.


Sheena Barns

Life Coach

A dedicated mother of five children, Sheena enjoys the outdoors and spending time with family. She holds an Associate degree and many certifications that feed her passion of working with kids.

Her experience started with substitute teaching and expanded into working with challenging youths. The most rewarding act for her is being able to witness the look on a child’s face after they have accomplished something they have been struggling with. Sheena looks forward to having many more amazing experiences with all the youth she has the privilege to help.


Victoria Howerton

Nurse

Victoria enjoys being somewhat adventurous and appreciates variety. Her scariest professional experience took place long before she became a nurse: one month as an English Summer Camp Teacher in Madrid, Spain, with 26 students, ages 6 to 12. There were no books, no computers, no air conditioning, no teaching assistant, and no bean bags. Survival Rate: 100%. Besides an ASN from Missouri State University in West Plains, Victoria holds a BA in Latin American Studies, a BJ in journalism, and an MA in Spanish, all from University of Missouri-Columbia.

While living in Washington, D.C., she worked as an HIV/AIDS educator for La Salud, as a housing coordinator for Adelante Advocacy Inc., and as coordinator of HIV/AIDS outreach at National Council of La Raza. Victoria has served as a Spanish interpreter in courtrooms, hospitals, and police departments, and she interpreted for former Ecuadorian president Rodrigo Borja when he visited Columbia, Missouri, in 2005. She has taught Spanish at MU and at North Arkansas College, and her journalism, editorials, translations, book reviews, and interviews have appeared in a variety of newspapers and journals.

Her greatest achievement is raising two high spirited daughters who are now adults and still on speaking terms with their mother.


Erik Carlson

Life Coach/Recreational Manager

Erik worked in both youth recreation and behavioral health industries for a combined 15 years. He graduated from Lindenwood University with a Bachelor’s in Recreation with a Minor in Outdoor Leadership.

His interests include rock climbing, hiking, and video games. Erik’s up for talking about anything from baseball to Pokemon.


Zachary Latta

Life Coach

Originally from Long Beach, CA he currently resides in West Plains, MO with his wife, Sarrah, their three children, and three Siberian Huskies. Zachary is passionate about working out and exercise. He enjoys various outdoor activities like hunting, fishing, and hiking. He is also passionate about serving in ministry and has a background going on various missions trips and doing street ministry in downtown Los Angeles.

Zachary’s passion for youth started at a young age and he has since devoted 10 years to working with adolescents. He has served as a small group leader, junior high and high school youth group leader, camp counselor, assistant youth director, and life guard.

His passions lead him to study youth ministry at Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, CA.

He worked as a personal trainer while competing as a powerlifter in college and will use those experiences to lead clients in workouts and athletic activities that will teach teamwork, self- discipline, and determination. He has since furthered his career by becoming a certified Sud Counselor credentialed with his MAADC II.


Autumn Kuyper

Life Coach/Ranch Manager
M.S. – Early Childhood & Family Development, Missouri State University
B.S. – Child & Family Development, Missouri State University

Autumn has been involved with horses since she was four years old. As a teenager, she began training and showing horses, then moved on to becoming a certified riding instructor as an adult, teaching riders of all ages in the areas of English, Western, and jumping. Autumn has a passion for building long-lasting relationships with horses and riders from the ground up, focusing on natural horsemanship techniques.

In May 2020, Autumn will complete her Master of Science in Early Childhood and Family Development. She has a background in working with adolescents and teens on teaching them life and social skills, building self-esteem and confidence, and teaching advocacy through empowering youth.

Autumn whole-heartedly believes in the therapeutic power of horses and is dedicated to guiding young people into becoming the best version of themselves.

“I believe anyone can change their stars!”

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