Brinkley is the Program Director and therapist of Journey Home East. She majored in Sociology at the College of Charleston, where she became interested in working with individuals and communities to overcome various disadvantages and challenges in their lives. Following her undergraduate degree, Brinkley began working with youth and their families at a residential treatment facility in Asheville, NC.
She spent many years there as a counselor, trainer, and program manager, serving youth with a variety of struggles and helping them to gain the strength, skills, and supports needed to live well-balanced, healthy, and meaningful lives. It was during this experience that her desire to work with others clinically deepened. Brinkley later attended Western Carolina University, where she graduated with a Masters in Social Work. While at Western Carolina University, she was a social work intern with the Charles George VA Medical Center, providing case management services as well as individual and group psychotherapy for veterans.
She also continued to serve as a mentor for youth and crisis manager at a psychiatric residential treatment facility, where she guided and supported staff to safety and stability during times of crises with clients. Brinkley loves being a part of the Journey Home East team and is passionate about helping young women continue on their journey to health, happiness, and recovery through the program’s five core principles. Brinkley brings her experience and training in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Trauma-focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Cognitive Processing Therapy, group therapy, and Mindfulness Based Relapse Prevention. When not at work, Brinkley can be found going on long walks with friends, enjoying a gentle yoga class, and spending time with her family all over the beautiful WNC mountains.
Becca has worked in residential therapeutic girl programs since 2004, beginning as a residential staff at a therapeutic boarding school. Becca was able to apply her professional and nurturing skills to creating a Program Director position in the first year of her time with the program and since has been a founding program staff for two other programs.
Becca is dedicated to working with families and young girls to promote healthy living emotionally and physically. “I truly feel that my mission in life includes empowering and educating young women through their healing process.” Becca is a native to Western North Carolina and enjoys all the outdoor activities, and delicious foods, that the Asheville area offers. As a mother of a little girl, her main focus is her daughter. She also values time with her family and friends who provide strong support and inspiration daily, music and recently has began learning to care for and ride horses. Email Becca with your admissions questions at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Rick brings his extensive and varied experience to be our Executive Director and received his Masters in Educational Leadership from Mercer University. He was employed as a retail District Leader for 16 years before he began his life-changing career in schools. In 2004, he began with the inaugural team of New Leaf Academy of NC, an all girls’ therapeutic boarding school that he helped lead over 5 years. He continued his career in therapeutic education as he led admissions teams for wilderness programs, assisting families with placements for a variety of diagnoses. During the 3 years prior to joining the team at Solstice East, he was Assistant Head of School at Brandon Hall School, an independent boarding school in Atlanta, GA. Rick joined Solstice East in 2015 and considers it a privilege to lead the caring Solstice East team that brings so much positive change and healing to the lives of adolescents and their families. Outside of Solstice East, Rick is pursuing his PhD and with occasional free time, he enjoys a variety of activities including kayaking, hiking, singing, printmaking and painting. He loves his daily walks and time with his Yorkshire terrier daughters, Katy and BeBe
Kris originally went to college on a musical theater scholarship, planning to teach Secondary Theatre and English. While trying to find a teaching job, she found a job as a “Family Teacher”, where she started as a live-in house parent at a mental health facility; living with and helping ten teenage girls with her husband and children. She did this for 4 years and loved working with this population and getting to know this industry. She then moved on to working as an Admissions Counselor and Business Development representative for 2 years.
Because of her connection with referral partners, love of travel, and passion for meeting new people, she moved into the Executive Director of Business Development at the Solstice Programs, being based out of Solstice East.. She has a deep passion and love for all people and enjoys being involved.
Kris was awarded two Gold Presidential Service Awards for her work helping high school students find their passions, through the the Americorps Program. She also produced and developed a Diversity Education curriculum and presented it in elementary schools across Utah for two years. Kris is a founding member of the Southern Program Collaborative that includes all programs in the South Eastern region for NATSAP. Kris serves on the Evolving Women board as well, and enjoys spreading the message of empowering women. Kris is a mother of three girls and is grateful for her chance to learn and grow and take the knowledge she learns back to her own children. She loves being here at Solstice East and is grateful for the opportunity to see the amazing process our families go through. In her spare time, she enjoys photography, crafting, and spending time with her daughters, husband and dog.
Kaitlyn will graduate from Lenoir-Rhyne University with my Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling the Summer of 2019. As a practicum student, she has worked in a day treatment program and outpatient services with youth. She counseled a diverse caseload of children and families using trauma-informed psychotherapy while integrating expressive therapy modalities including art, movement, and play. She had previously done a clinical internship at Solstice East and has specialized training in Brainspotting therapy. She worked with residents on issues of attachment, trauma, family systems, and issues related to identity and relationships. She has also worked at Solstice for three years as a Senior Lead Mentor. Kaitlyn said, “I am grateful to be apart of the sacred work that happens at Solstice, and I am looking forward to becoming apart of the Journey Home family and do the work alongside you all to guide these incredible humans to be ever braver, bolder, and brighter.” When she is not working, Kaitlyn enjoys the simple and small joys — mornings with her husband, a good cappuccino, thrift store finds, a home cooked meal, driving on the Blue Ridge Parkway. She is also an avid explorer and enjoys finding new places to adventure.