This is a  staff list for Gatehouse Academy in Wickenburg, AZ (and Canada, New York?)

(All Locations Are Closed as of March 19th, 2012)

(aka Gatehouse residential, Wickenburg Therapeutic Health Services, Gatehouse Academy, Transitional Living Corporation, etc.)

(we are working to acquire the complete records for ALL years)

 

We advise current and/or former staff to report any abuses you may have witnessed while working at Gatehouse Academy.  For information on your rights and how to take action, visit www.heal-online.org/blowthewhistle.htm.  If you were fired or forced to resign because you opposed any illegal and/or unethical practices at Gatehouse Academy, you have the right to take action. 

 

If you were harmed (family or survivor) by Gatehouse Academy, please contact info@heal-online.org if you remember the long-term employees and from which years.  This will help!   Also, if you recognize any of these staff as having worked at another program, please send in any information about their past or present employment at other facilities and/or cults.

 

This program is closed.

 

Name

Unit/Position

Additional Information
Jim Hanley CEO Reportedly a "mover and shaker" in Hollywood before coming to Gatehouse Academy.
Stephen Cole CFO  
Kent Sherman Managing Partner
Gatehouse CEO sentenced:

 
Kent Michael Sherman, the 43-year- old CEO of the Gatehouse Academy, was recently sentenced in a Maricopa County Superior Court criminal case to three years probation.  The incident included charges of dangerous drugs, narcotics, misconduct involving a weapon and money launder- ing. Sherman was charged with two counts of solicitation of a crime and one count of illegal control of enterprise. He was not sentenced to any jail time. 

 
 
Allison Earl Secretary Allison is the daughter of Ted Earl, the founder of the Gatehouse cult. 
Edward Lacy VP Global Marketing Lacy no longer appears to work for this program.
Leah Briik Director of Operations  
Anthony Marengo Director of Admissions Anthony's only qualifications for being a director at Gatehouse is that he has "graduated" the program.  He has no professional education or training in appropriate treatment for addiction or mental health issues.
Matt Brown Director of Sales Matt Brown pursued a failed career as an actor in Hollywood and is now using his skills to deceive families by selling them on Gatehouse.  He has no expertise or training in the proper treatment for addicts or the mentally ill.  Brown no longer appears to work for this program.  Brown currently works for Burning Tree Ranch.  Burning Tree Ranch appears to be affiliated with San Cristobal Academy and/or Gatehouse Academy.
Mike Baldassare Director of Marketing Mike Baldassare got his start at Second Nature Wilderness, a confirmedly abusive program in Utah.  Baldassare no longer works for this program. (according to an e-mail received from Baldassare in October, 2010)
Todd Welch Admissions/Marketing Todd's only qualifications for being employed by Gatehouse is that he has "graduated" the program.  He has no professional education or training in appropriate treatment for addiction or mental health issues. 
Billy Gregg Director of Family Communications Billy Gregg has worked for multiple residential treatment facilities (a.k.a. coercive cults and scams).  Gatehouse does not go into detail as to his history. 
Lisa Rivers Finance Manager  
Ken Dunlap Asst Dir of Family Communications  
Tambra Curtis Asst Dir of Family Communications  
Lonna Lock Admin. Asst.  
Melissa Haymore Purchase Manager Haymore no longer appears to work for this program.
Bonnie Wells Admin. Asst. Wells no longer appears to work for this program.
Brian Eisenhauer Information Tech Eisenhauer no longer appears to work for this program.
Arne Stenseth Information Tech Stenseth no longer appears to work for this program.
Kas Page Asst Dir of Family Communications  
Dan D. Sours Clinical Director Reportedly worked at Remuda Ranch prior to working at Gatehouse Academy.
Donald Durham Director of Clinical Training/Development Reportedly worked at Remuda Ranch prior to working at Gatehouse Academy.  Dr. Don Durham (of New Life Clinics--on many cult watchlists)--Donald "earned" his degree from Texas Woman's University.  It is not accredited by the Department of Education or any valid accreditation agency, government agency, medical or psychiatric associations.  Durham no longer appears to work for this program.
Joseph King Psychiatrist King no longer appears to work for this program.
JoAnn Bennett Therapist
JoAnn's profile is at http://www.gatehouseacademy.com/jo_ann_bennett.php.  If the education she has posted in true, then they are properly accredited schools.  However, the information about her degrees is sketchy as you can see on her profile.  And, her "specialty" training for Gatehouse was done through an online/"emotional growth" series.  See: http://www.option.org/.   See this report on the Option Institute: http://www.freedomofmind.com/resourcecenter/groups/o/option/oi_statements.htm  The Option Institute is a known cult. 
Veronica Jeffus Therapist Her "qualifications" come from multiple brainwashing seminars, hypnosis studies on "induction techniques", and similarly bizarre and cult-like training/education.  She has also worked for the Rosewood Ranch and studied with the Mennigers (If meaning Menninger, associated with a known sexploitation cult on the East Coast) and Pittsburgh Center for Ericksonian Hypnosis.  (Also suggest you read "Cults in our Midst" by Dr. Margaret Thaler Singer.)
Sandy Richardson Therapist Her degree is from Capella University.  Capella University is an online degree program only.   Richardson no longer appears to work for this program.
Debrah Delos-Santos Resident Also worked for Rosewood Treatment Center and Remuda Ranch.  Both programs are on HEAL's investigative watchlist.   Delos-Santos no longer appears to work for this program. 
Name: Debrah Delos-Santos
 
Address:
Gatehouse Academy
159 W 'Wickenberg Way
Wickenburg  AZ  85390
Phone: (928) 668-0710
License(s): License Type License No Status Issued Expires
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist - Temporary LMFT-5020T Closed - Superseded 11/9/2004 11/9/2005
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist LMFT-10229 Revoked 11/1/2005 10/31/2011

 Pending Complaints: None


 Discipline:

Complaint#: 2011-0071 View Board Order
  In 2009, the professional submitted an application to the Arizona Board of Psychologist Examiners ("Psychologist Board"). In 03/09, the professional was hired at a licensed agency ("Agency"). The professional advised Agency that her psychologist license was pending. In 12/09, the professional withdrew her psychologist license application due to curriculum deficiencies. In 06/10, Agency asked for a copy of the professional's psychologist license. Instead of advising Agency that she had withdrawn her application, she told Agency that she would provide a copy of her license. After Agency reviewed the Psychologist Board's website and determined that the professional was not licensed, the professional told Agency that she had a provisional license and a letter from the Psychologist Board to prove it. On 06/17/10, the professional was suspended pending proof of licensure in all areas of practice. The professional removed her personal belongings from her office and resigned from Agency. On 06/24/10, the professional sent Agency a 04/30/10 letter purporting to be from the Psychologist Board indicating she had been issued a provisional license. The Psychologist Board advised Agency that it does not issue provisional licenses and that the letter appeared to be fraudulent. The professional also sent Agency documents allegedly from the Colorado Nursing Board's website indicating that she held a nurse practitioner's license. The license she provided belonged to another person and the Colorado Nursing Board verified that it has not issued any license to the professional. During Agency's investigation, it discovered 4 prescriptions written by the professional by using another person's prescription pad and signing her name with a RN designation. While employed at Agency, the professional had access to a locked safe used for medications. After the professional's resignation, Agency discovered multiple discontinued client prescriptions in the safe that had not been properly disposed of. These medications had been recorded as destroyed by the professional. In 07/10, the professional submitted another licensure application to the Psychologist Board. In 08/10, the Psychologist Board denied the professional's licensure application for unprofessional. Agency also discovered sample medications in the safe with the "discontinued medications" that lacked any type of log to indicate how many samples were received or how they were distributed. The professional entered into a Consent Agreement with the AZ Board of Nursing based on employment termination issues at 2 other agencies regarding HIPAA violation when she looked into employees' medical records, failure to accurately disclose employment termination on an employment applicaiton and breach of confidentiality issues. Board Action 05/31/11 Consent Agreement and Order: The professional's license shall be surrendered. The surrender shall be considered a revocation of his license.

Source: http://www.azbbhe.us/ProDetail.asp?ProfID=42895
April Lain Therapist  
Brenda Fox Therapist  
Alice Bussino Admin Asst. Bussino no longer appears to work for this program.
Kerry Baffa Admin Asst Baffa no longer appears to work for this program.
Chrissy Kensinger Admin Asst  
Michael Carlton Consultant Michael Carlton has bounced around from multiple questionable facilities having been a short-term "director" for each one.  He also runs brainwashing seminars regarding "recovery".  Carlton currently works for A Sober Way Home in Prescott, AZ. 
Denise Hollingsworth Therapist in Training Hollingsworth no longer appears to work for this program.
Stephanie Kool Therapist in Training  
Gustavo Franza Therapist in Training Gustavo Franza also worked for Casa Valle, a residential program for teens in Arizona that is on HEAL's investigate watchlist.  Franza no longer appears to work for this program.
Leann Rosckowff Therapist in Training Rosckowff no longer appears to work for this program.
Stacy Ann Aquipel Therapist in Training Aquipel no longer appears to work for this program.
Jim Hanratty Director of Education  
Sue Emetti Coach  
Joe Bennett Coach  
Traci Maben Admin Asst Maben no longer appears to work for this program.
David Birchall Program Director David Birchall has no training in the field of clinical treatment.  His sole credentials are as a carpenter and liberal art studies.  He trains other untrained and unqualified "inductees" to the Gatehouse cult on how to become cult leaders and perpetuate the cult philosophy of Gatehouse. 
Rodney Zimmers Asst. Residential Director  
Serena Carlin Asst. Residential Director "Graduate" of the program, no other qualifications.
Collin Kelly-Gordon Asst. Program Director--Jefferson House Collin's only qualifications for being employed by Gatehouse is that he has "graduated" the program.  He has no professional education or training in appropriate treatment for addiction or mental health issues.  Kelly-Gordon no longer appears to work for this program.
Margaret Konopacki Activities Director Reportedly taught Yoga out of studio prior to working for Gatehouse.
Vel (Velva/Val) Sass Equine Manager Vel also worked for Rosewood Ranch/Treatment Center in Wickenburg, AZ.  Rosewood is on HEAL's watchlist.
Abby Ketsch Residential Tech Ketsch no longer appears to work for this program.
Adam Dixon Residential Tech Adam's only qualifications for being employed by Gatehouse is that he has "graduated" the program.  He has no professional education or training in appropriate treatment for addiction or mental health issues.  Dixon no longer appears to work for this program.
Alex Forman Residential Tech "Graduate" of the program, no other qualifications.
Brian Connors Residential Tech "Graduate" of the program, no other qualifications.
David Hopkins Residential Tech David's only qualifications for being employed by Gatehouse is that he has "graduated" the program.  He has no professional education or training in appropriate treatment for addiction or mental health issues.  Hopkins no longer appears to work for this program.
Jason Howard Activities Jason's only qualifications for being employed by Gatehouse is that he has "graduated" the program.  He has no professional education or training in appropriate treatment for addiction or mental health issues. 
Josh Monga Residential Tech Monga no longer appears to work for this program.
Kelsey Bolin Residential Tech Bolin no longer appears to work for this program.
Randy Epps Residential Tech Randy's only qualifications for being employed by Gatehouse is that he has "graduated" the program.  He has no professional education or training in appropriate treatment for addiction or mental health issues. 
Celeste Cope Instructor  
Grace (no last name) Meditation Instructor  
Drake Sass Instructor  
Ralph Ray Driver  
Bill Dillon Security  
Tom Earl Program Director (for Hassayampa River Ranch unit--Canada)
Kim Morrison Asst. Residential Director Morrison no longer appears to work for this program.
Nathan Kunkle Asst. Residential Director Nathan's only qualifications for being employed by Gatehouse is that he has "graduated" the program.  He has no professional education or training in appropriate treatment for addiction or mental health issues.  Kunkle no longer appears to work for this program.
Steve Youngwirth Facilities Manager  
Jim Stocker Ranch Manager Stocker no longer appears to work for this program.
Coleen Adams Admin.Coordinator  
Melissa Love Activities Director  
Megan Pragel Residential Tech Pragel no longer appears to work for this program.
Owen Tanner Residential Tech  
Richard Miller Residential Tech Miller no longer appears to work for this program.
Ron Northcutt Residential Tech Northcutt no longer appears to work for this program.
Valory Zarghami Residential Tech Zarghami no longer appears to work for this program.
Kelly Egan Program Manager (for Gatehouse in the Wilderness unit) 
Destry Forgette Ranch Manager  
Andy Bordelon Base-Camp Supervisor "Graduate" of the program, no other qualifications.
Christopher Good Wilderness Tech  
Justin Klunk Jr. Wilderness Tech Klunk no longer appears to work for this program.
Roy Duprez Program Director (Gatehouse "College" (unaccredited) unit--Prescott, AZ)  Duprez no longer appears to work for this program.
Nicole Hartnagale Advisor Hartnagale no longer appears to work for this program.
Joseph Richards Residential Supervisor  
Justin Bachman Residential Supervisor Justin's only qualifications for being employed by Gatehouse is that he has "graduated" the program.  He has no professional education or training in appropriate treatment for addiction or mental health issues.  Justin Bachman is reportedly now employed with Clean Adventures in Prescott AZ. and OWNS/runs an unlicensed womens transitional residential drug and alcohol abuse facility in Prescott AZ called Canyon Crossing Recovery. Bachman reportedly runs Canyon Crossing with his wife Erin Bachman. 
Will Linner Residential Director (Haven Oaks unit--New York)  Linner no longer appears to work for this program.
Jim Hooper Affiliate Hooper no longer appears to work for this program.
Sue Hooper Affiliate Hooper no longer appears to work for this program.
Bill Alynn Equine Instructor Alynn no longer appears to work for this program.
Justin Dufour Admissions  
Janelle Novick Psychiatric Provider  
Molly Cook Therapist  
Bonnie DenDooven Therapist  
Jennifer Trifari Therapist  
Connie Jensen Admin. Asst.  
Sandra Klar Therapist Trainee  
Jonathan Shelton Therapist Trainee  
Jordan Rigby Therapist Trainee  
Kathy O'Connell Admin. Asst.  
Emily Shenker Residential  
Shannon Thompson Residential  
Marie Tuller Residential  
James Mann Residential  
Scott Williams Residential  
Justin Ganz Residential  
Daniel Ivey Residential  
Daniel Austern Residential  
Daniel Ginnivan Residential  
Meaghan Scott Residential  
Harold Brown Residential  
Liz Trainor Residential  
Chris Yocum Wilderness Tech  
Emily Langman Academic Advisor  
Alana C Brunacini Therapist Reported by survivor to HEAL on September 30th, 2014.
Carl Oldling/Olding Staff/Landlord Reported by survivor to HEAL on October 5th, 2014.  Oldling/Olding now owns and operates Elk Mountain Academy in Idaho.
Colin Moore Admissions Reported by survivor via e-mail dated October 15th, 2014  Moore reportedly now works referring to programs such as Prescott House.
DJ Kirk Staff  
Curt Maddon Staff Also worked for Burning Tree Ranch.
Ann Balowski HR Also worked for Burning Tree Ranch.
Glenna Conway/Sherman Staff Formerly worked for Morning Side Recovery in CA.
     
HEAL has received over 25 e-mails detailing concerns and violations at Gatehouse Academy.   HEAL has received only one pro-Gatehouse Academy message from a parent.  HEAL has received no reports stating Gatehouse Academy is helpful or effective from those who have been through the program.
HEAL Review: Preliminary Findings (documents reviewed: Gatehouse Academy Application, Transitional Living Corporation Application, gatehouseacademy.com/family_communications.php (December 23rd, 2008), and gatehouseacademy.com/employment_opportunities.php (December 23rd, 2008)

Gatehouse Academy Application

On page 1, Gatehouse states it is not a medical facility and that it is a "voluntary" program.  The use of the word "voluntary" is at issue.  While adults may sign up for the program, the program reportedly denies inductees communication with the outside world while on the lower levels of the program.  This suggests that while entry into the program may be "voluntary", that the "voluntary" condition loses all meaning once someone is under the control of the program.  This is a serious concern.  It is an additional concern that this program is not a licensed medical facility nor treatment facility (see below under Transitional Living Corporation Application).

On page 2, Gatehouse requests the social security number of the potential "resident" and includes information for a Financial Sponsor (person other than potential "resident" taking financial responsibility for "resident").  The primary concern here is that Gatehouse appears to be a fraudulent program and HEAL would be very reluctant to give any financial information, including social security numbers, to Gatehouse Academy.

On page 3, Gatehouse requests the specific information on the referral source.  Many programs in this industry provide incentives and/or compensation to referrers for "pimping" for the industry.  This is a serious concern and individuals and families considering Gatehouse Academy should inquire whether or not referrers receive any incentives or compensation for referring to the program.  If so, this is highly unethical and a serious concern.

On page 5, Gatehouse requests information regarding the applicant's addictions.  However, the questionnaire appears to be aimed at a third-party and not the individual seeking help.  This is a concern as the motivation for cessation of an addiction needs to generate from the addict, not from outside pressure, to be effective and long-lasting.  So, this is a mild concern.

On page 6, Gatehouse asks if the applicant has been diagnosed by a qualified mental health professional.  HEAL recommends families and individuals demand to know the credentials of Gatehouse Academy and verify that Gatehouse Academy is qualified to review mental health information.  It is very likely that this is not the case.

On page 7, Gatehouse asks what grade the "participant" is in and whether or not they have yet completed high school.  This suggests that the program may accept minors.  And, is a serious concern.  Individuals and families should ask exactly what kind of educational services, if any, are provided by Gatehouse Academy and if such services are accredited and any credits transferrable to legitimate educational programs, schools, colleges, and universities.

On page 8, Gatehouse includes the "Gatehouse Guidelines".  The guidelines state, "I am committed to participate in the Gatehouse Private Residential Community agenda and recognize that the facility is neither a treatment center nor a medical facility...I am committed to dress appropriately and to actively and cheerfully do my share in a weekly rotating schedule, maintaining in a general way the property and the main house...I clearly understand that to remain at Gatehouse, I must remain sober, abstinent, and drug free."  So, this is a cult.  It is is not a residential treatment center and it is not a medical facility.  Gatehouse Academy/Transitional Living Corporation is not recognized as an alternative school/private school in Arizona.  According to the state of Arizona, private "schools" can operate without government oversight.  Regardless, Gatehouse Academy does not appear to be recognized as an academic institution.  We were unable to find any listings of Gatehouse Academy or Gatehouse College Campus as recognized institutions of higher learning in Arizona.  In searching the website for the Office of Postsecondary Education, US Department of Education, we found no listing for Gatehouse College Campus nor Gatehouse Academy.  It is not a legitimate school or college.  It is not a treatment center.  It is not a medical facility.  So, what is it?  According to reports, it is a cult and a scam.  This is a serious concern.

Transitional Living Corporation Application

On page 1, Transitional Living Corporation states, "Transitional Living Corporation is an Arizona Corporation that operates Gatehouse Academy (GA), Gatehouse Therapeutic Health Services (GTHS), Gatehouse College Campus (GCC), Hassayampa River Ranch (HRR) and Adventures in Recovery (AIR) and is affiliated with San Cristobal Academy (SCA)."  HEAL includes the above to show all of the programs that operate under the Transitional Living Corporation umbrella.

Also on page 1, "Transitional :Living Corporation is not a medical facility."  The remainder of this application is nearly identical to the Gatehouse Academy Application above and we will not repeat the issues and comments.  Please compare both applications and review the above for more information on issues already covered.

Website: gatehouseacademy.com/family_communications.php (December 23rd, 2008)

Family therapy is provided by phone.  The focus is on the parents, not the adult who is enrolled in the program.  It has been reported by multiple families that direct and unsupervised communication is not permitted and that adult residents of the program are not permitted to have uncensored/unmonitored communications with the outside world.  This is a serious concern.

Website: gatehouseacademy.com/employment_opportunities.php (December 23rd, 2008)

Direct quote from this page as it read in December, 2008:

"Residential Professionals

Assist in the residential management of a co-educational transitional living program for substance dependent young adults in early recovery. Program is located in Wickenburg Arizona in a rural, modern, and picturesque setting. Individual must be willing to work shift work. Clean ADL, high school diploma or equivalent. The ideal candidate must possess the ability to make critical decisions based on incomplete information, have excellent written and oral communication skills, basic computer literacy, a strong personal commitment to others recovery, and able to lead through personal example. Personal experience to 12 step recovery helpful."

Issues with the above is that there are no professional licensing requirements, training, or qualifications of "residential professionals" who work with young adults and have a lot of control over those residents throughout program duration.  This is a serious concern.

Based on the number of complaints against Gatehouse Academy and the above preliminary findings, we recommend against enrolling or having a loved one enrolled in this program and suggests families assist loved ones by removing them from this facility if currently enrolled.

2008 Citations/Violations Reported by Arizona Officials:

2008--Failure to Comply with Admissions Requirements

2008--Failure to Keep Proper Records

2008--Failure to Warn of Risk of Physical Harm or Death

2008--Citation for Improper Drug Handling

2008--Failure to Renew License

2008--Non-Compliance with Licensing Standards

2008--2nd Non-Compliance with Licensing Standards

2008--Failure to Notify Office of Licensing of Changes in Leadership

2008--Citation for Having Unqualified Staff

2009 Citations/Violations Reported by Arizona Officials:

2009--Citation for Toxic Substances Near Food, Dining Area, and Medicine Cabinet

2010 Citations/Violations Reported by Arizona Officials:

2010--Civil Penalty (FINE) for Providing Unlicensed Services

2010--Failure to Comply with Staffing Requirements

2010--Failure to Protect Client Safety

2010--Failure to Provide Services Claimed

2010--Non-Compliance with Licensing Standards

September 19th, 2011 Letter from Arizona Department of Health Services, Division of Licensing Services, Office of Behavioral Health Licensing stating that Gatehouse Academy is an "outpatient" program and therefore "outside" its jurisdiction.  Gatehouse Academy is a residential program and this letter evidences misrepresentation on the part of Gatehouse Academy to the State of Arizona regarding its program description.  See letter at www.heal-online.org/azobhltr.pdf.  (We removed the information of the complaining family to protect their privacy.)
External Link: http://www.vice.com/video/dying-for-treatment-part-2-261
External Link: http://www.thefix.com/content/adolescence-interrupted

 

 Last Updated: April 26th, 2017

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