I am Licensed Professional Counselor, Licensed Clinical Addiction Specialist, and a Clinical Supervisor Intern. I have know Michelle professionally since March 2008, when she started working under my supervision with Meridian Behavioral Health Services. During Michelle’s tenure with Meridian I was the Program Director and Lead Recovery Educator at the Haywood County Recovery Education Center. Our center provided counseling services to over 2,000 individuals per year, and was the largest counseling center in Haywood County. During her time at Meridian, Michelle served as our eating disorder/obesity specialist, an outpatient therapist, conducted assessments, coordinated care with psychiatrists and doctors, and facilitated groups. In addition, Michelle’s Licensed Clinical Addictions Specialist licensure made her uniquely qualified to facilitate the recovery of those with co-occurring eating disorders and substance abuse challenges, disordered eating, and those with obesity challenges. Ultimately, throughout the agency’s different programs and staff, Michelle was our primary source of consultations for those clients challenged with eating disorders. In that role, Michelle provided consultations, and educational lectures and presentations around the topic of disordered eating. Michelle impact continues to be felt in Western North Carolina, as she created a group curriculum that Meridian uses in four counties, which educates those in recovery about healthy eating habits and the connection between food and our mood.
I have been able to witness Michelle’s dedication and passion to the field, as exemplified by her founding of Balance Point Collaborative, which I understand to be Asheville’s first outpatient treatment center for eating disorders and obesity. After Michelle resigned from her position and transitioned into private practice in 2010, I continue to receive consultations from Michelle with regard to her speciality, she conducts presentations in the community as a leading expert in the field of eating disorders, conducts trainings, and facilitates the development of graduate level interns. I am always enlightened by Michelle’s consultations, as she continually provides me with new research and reminders of the best practices for successful outcomes. My clients continue to benefit from the leadership that Michelle has taken in the field of eating disorders and co-occurring disorders. Therefore, I highly recommend Michelle to receive status as a CEDS, so that she can continue to expand her positive impact on those struggling with eating disorders.