This is a  staff list for Cornerstone Programs in Centennial, Colorado

(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 the Cornerstone Programs.  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 Cornerstone Programs, you have the right to take action. 

 

If you were harmed (family or survivor) by Cornerstone Programs, 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.

 

HEAL is currently investigating Cornerstone Programs.

 

Name

Unit/Position

Additional Information
Bob Dillinger Human Resources Dillinger is not a licensed mental health nor medical professional in Colorado.  Source: https://www.colorado.gov/dora/licensing/Lookup/LicenseLookup.aspx
Bob Meehan Program Development Meehan is reportedly no longer affiliated with the program.  Meehan is not a licensed mental health nor medical professional in Colorado.  Source: https://www.colorado.gov/dora/licensing/Lookup/LicenseLookup.aspx
Greg Swenson Business Development Swenson is not a licensed mental health nor medical professional in Colorado.  Source: https://www.colorado.gov/dora/licensing/Lookup/LicenseLookup.aspx
Joe Newman President Newman is not a licensed mental health nor medical professional in Colorado.  Source: https://www.colorado.gov/dora/licensing/Lookup/LicenseLookup.aspx
Dan Maldonado CEO Maldonado is not a licensed mental health nor medical professional in Colorado.  Source: https://www.colorado.gov/dora/licensing/Lookup/LicenseLookup.aspx
Rich Bourquard CFO HEAL does not do background checks on office staff that have no contact with clients.
Alice Puening Accounts Admin. HEAL does not do background checks on office staff that have no contact with clients.
Lou Sillstrop Controller Sillstrop is not a licensed mental health nor medical professional in Colorado.  Source: https://www.colorado.gov/dora/licensing/Lookup/LicenseLookup.aspx
Jane O'Shaughnessy Board of Directors O'Shaughnessy is not a licensed mental health nor medical professional in Colorado.  Source: https://www.colorado.gov/dora/licensing/Lookup/LicenseLookup.aspx
Frank Szachta Director Szachta is a licensed/certified Addictions Counselor and has been since 2011.  His license # is ACC.0007159 and complaints about this licensee can be filed here:  https://apps.colorado.gov/dora/licensing/Activities/Complaint.aspx 
Clint Stonebraker Staff Stonebraker is not a licensed mental health nor medical professional in Colorado.  Source: https://apps.colorado.gov/dora/licensing/Lookup/LicenseLookup.aspx
*(Cornerstone Programs, like many other programs in this industry, keeps a "tight lid" on any specific information regarding their staff, qualifications, and practices.  Please contact us with the names of any staff of which you have firsthand knowledge or experience.  Thank you for your help.)
Garza County Regional Juvenile Center, Garza County, Texas
July 29, 2007 Dallas Morning News
Executives of the Colorado-based Cornerstone Programs Corp., which manages the Garza County Regional Juvenile Center in West Texas, have a history of involvement in troubled juvenile facilities in other states. Cornerstone closed its Swan Valley Youth Academy in 2006 after a Montana State Department of Public Health and Human Services investigation found 19 violations, including neglect and failure to report child abuse and an attempted suicide. "Intake process was particularly harmful to youth, and many have been made to vomit due to excessive exercise and drinking large amounts of water," Montana officials wrote in their findings. According to Montana officials, the state and Cornerstone had developed a corrective plan to keep the facility open. "There was a number of charges of abuse filed against the director of the program and the second in charge," said Cornerstone chief executive Joseph Newman. The bad press hurt business and so it closed, he said. Mr. Newman said state officials later cleared them of all the abuse charges, but Montana officials said they had no record of that. In Texas, Cornerstone's Garza facility has been put under corrective action plans to improve staff training, documenting grievances and group therapy sessions. But the company has hired a new director and added new staff to Garza, which it began managing in 2003. In 2005, a 17-year-old inmate at the facility became paralyzed after falling on his head in an attempt to do a back flip off a table. A lawsuit by his family against the facility, settled in 2006, alleged that a guard not only failed to prevent the stunt, but challenged the youth to attempt it. The officer was fired after the incident. The Garza County facility consistently has received positive reviews by the Texas Youth Commission. "The Garza County Regional Juvenile Center is an exemplary program," a TYC monitor wrote in the facility's 2006 contract renewal evaluation – the same year Swan Valley closed. Cornerstone was founded in October 1998 by Mr. Newman and board chairman Jane O'Shaughnessy, about six months after another company they operated ran into trouble in Colorado. That other company, called Rebound, operated the High Plains Youth Center in Brush, Colo., which housed juvenile offenders from around the country. In December 1995, a University of Illinois at Chicago psychologist hired by the state's Department of Children and Family Services issued a damning report on High Plains, and the agency later began removing its youth from the juvenile prison. "Unit staffing practices appear to be a numbers game where management attempts to balance the competing pressures of safety and profit," wrote Dr. Ronald Davidson, a faculty member in the university's psychiatry department. The facility also had a "consistent and disturbing pattern of violence, sexual abuse, clinical malpractice and administrative incompetence at every level of the program." A Human Rights Watch report later found that High Plains "fell short of reasonable, even minimal, performance." Colorado officials closed High Plains in 1998 after a 13-year-old inmate from Utah committed suicide and a state investigation found widespread problems with physical and sexual abuse. State officials also had uncovered problems at other Rebound facilities in Colorado. Rebound's nonprofit Adventures in Change program did not meet requirements to be licensed for drug and alcohol treatment nor meet "acceptable standards for habitation," according to a 1996 state audit. Auditors said the services, such as education, family counseling, vocational training and employment, "are not routinely provided." In his resignation letter as the facility's clinical coordinator, Paul Schmitz wrote: "This is no longer a professional treatment environment ... and is not supported by the company as such." In 1997, Florida officials severed the state's contract with Rebound to operate the Cypress Creek juvenile detention facility after repeated problems, including reports of disturbances that led to the arrests of several inmates for inciting a riot. Rebound also had operated in Maryland, where it ran the Charles H. Hickey Jr. School briefly in the early 1990s. Mr. Newman was the deputy secretary of Maryland's Department of Juvenile Services from 1992 to 1994, according to the state. He joined Rebound in 1995. The Hickey contract ended in 1993 after dozens of escapes, cases of alleged abuse and other policy violations. Dr. Davidson, the Illinois psychologist, said the past performance of Cornerstone and Rebound should raise concerns. "Anyone who had bothered to check the record of this corporation in Colorado and Florida and Maryland ..... would have easily discovered a troubling history of incompetence and fecklessness," he said.  (Source: http://www.privateci.org/rap_cornerstone.html)
HEAL has received one parent report against this program.  The report claimed that this program was founded by Bob Meehan and that the counselors are not properly trained.  There were additional issues and violations alleged in the report.  HEAL is investigating.
This program appears to be solely private juvenile detention centers for adjudicated youth.  Program locations include:

Garza County Regional Juvenile Center in Post, Texas
Davy Crockett Regional Juvenile Center in Crockett, Texas

Salt Lake Valley Detention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah
Farmington Bay Youth Center in Farmington, Utah

Southeastern Wyoming Juvenile Center in Cheyenne, Wyoming
Regional Juvenile Detention Center in Casper, Wyoming
Futures Family Wellness Center in Cheyenne, Wyoming

Cornerstone Philadelphia Reintegration in Philadelphia, PA

The information available through the Cornerstone website does not include any staff names for any of their eight locations.  It is interesting to note that they are headquartered in Colorado, yet operate no facilities there. 



Garza County Regional Juvenile Center, Garza County, Texas July 29, 2007 Dallas Morning News Executives of the Colorado-based Cornerstone Programs Corp., which manages the Garza County Regional Juvenile Center in West Texas, have a history of involvement in troubled juvenile facilities in other states. Cornerstone closed its Swan Valley Youth Academy in 2006 after a Montana State Department of Public Health and Human Services investigation found 19 violations, including neglect and failure to report child abuse and an attempted suicide. "Intake process was particularly harmful to youth, and many have been made to vomit due to excessive exercise and drinking large amounts of water," Montana officials wrote in their findings. According to Montana officials, the state and Cornerstone had developed a corrective plan to keep the facility open. "There was a number of charges of abuse filed against the director of the program and the second in charge," said Cornerstone chief executive Joseph Newman. The bad press hurt business and so it closed, he said. Mr. Newman said state officials later cleared them of all the abuse charges, but Montana officials said they had no record of that. In Texas, Cornerstone's Garza facility has been put under corrective action plans to improve staff training, documenting grievances and group therapy sessions. But the company has hired a new director and added new staff to Garza, which it began managing in 2003. In 2005, a 17-year-old inmate at the facility became paralyzed after falling on his head in an attempt to do a back flip off a table. A lawsuit by his family against the facility, settled in 2006, alleged that a guard not only failed to prevent the stunt, but challenged the youth to attempt it. The officer was fired after the incident. The Garza County facility consistently has received positive reviews by the Texas Youth Commission. "The Garza County Regional Juvenile Center is an exemplary program," a TYC monitor wrote in the facility's 2006 contract renewal evaluation – the same year Swan Valley closed. Cornerstone was founded in October 1998 by Mr. Newman and board chairman Jane O'Shaughnessy, about six months after another company they operated ran into trouble in Colorado. That other company, called Rebound, operated the High Plains Youth Center in Brush, Colo., which housed juvenile offenders from around the country. In December 1995, a University of Illinois at Chicago psychologist hired by the state's Department of Children and Family Services issued a damning report on High Plains, and the agency later began removing its youth from the juvenile prison. "Unit staffing practices appear to be a numbers game where management attempts to balance the competing pressures of safety and profit," wrote Dr. Ronald Davidson, a faculty member in the university's psychiatry department. The facility also had a "consistent and disturbing pattern of violence, sexual abuse, clinical malpractice and administrative incompetence at every level of the program." A Human Rights Watch report later found that High Plains "fell short of reasonable, even minimal, performance." Colorado officials closed High Plains in 1998 after a 13-year-old inmate from Utah committed suicide and a state investigation found widespread problems with physical and sexual abuse. State officials also had uncovered problems at other Rebound facilities in Colorado. Rebound's nonprofit Adventures in Change program did not meet requirements to be licensed for drug and alcohol treatment nor meet "acceptable standards for habitation," according to a 1996 state audit. Auditors said the services, such as education, family counseling, vocational training and employment, "are not routinely provided." In his resignation letter as the facility's clinical coordinator, Paul Schmitz wrote: "This is no longer a professional treatment environment ... and is not supported by the company as such." In 1997, Florida officials severed the state's contract with Rebound to operate the Cypress Creek juvenile detention facility after repeated problems, including reports of disturbances that led to the arrests of several inmates for inciting a riot. Rebound also had operated in Maryland, where it ran the Charles H. Hickey Jr. School briefly in the early 1990s. Mr. Newman was the deputy secretary of Maryland's Department of Juvenile Services from 1992 to 1994, according to the state. He joined Rebound in 1995. The Hickey contract ended in 1993 after dozens of escapes, cases of alleged abuse and other policy violations. Dr. Davidson, the Illinois psychologist, said the past performance of Cornerstone and Rebound should raise concerns. "Anyone who had bothered to check the record of this corporation in Colorado and Florida and Maryland ..... would have easily discovered a troubling history of incompetence and fecklessness," he said.

High Plains Youth Academy, Brush, Colorado July 29, 2007 Dallas Morning News Executives of the Colorado-based Cornerstone Programs Corp., which manages the Garza County Regional Juvenile Center in West Texas, have a history of involvement in troubled juvenile facilities in other states. Cornerstone closed its Swan Valley Youth Academy in 2006 after a Montana State Department of Public Health and Human Services investigation found 19 violations, including neglect and failure to report child abuse and an attempted suicide. "Intake process was particularly harmful to youth, and many have been made to vomit due to excessive exercise and drinking large amounts of water," Montana officials wrote in their findings. According to Montana officials, the state and Cornerstone had developed a corrective plan to keep the facility open. "There was a number of charges of abuse filed against the director of the program and the second in charge," said Cornerstone chief executive Joseph Newman. The bad press hurt business and so it closed, he said. Mr. Newman said state officials later cleared them of all the abuse charges, but Montana officials said they had no record of that. In Texas, Cornerstone's Garza facility has been put under corrective action plans to improve staff training, documenting grievances and group therapy sessions. But the company has hired a new director and added new staff to Garza, which it began managing in 2003. In 2005, a 17-year-old inmate at the facility became paralyzed after falling on his head in an attempt to do a back flip off a table. A lawsuit by his family against the facility, settled in 2006, alleged that a guard not only failed to prevent the stunt, but challenged the youth to attempt it. The officer was fired after the incident. The Garza County facility consistently has received positive reviews by the Texas Youth Commission. "The Garza County Regional Juvenile Center is an exemplary program," a TYC monitor wrote in the facility's 2006 contract renewal evaluation – the same year Swan Valley closed. Cornerstone was founded in October 1998 by Mr. Newman and board chairman Jane O'Shaughnessy, about six months after another company they operated ran into trouble in Colorado. That other company, called Rebound, operated the High Plains Youth Center in Brush, Colo., which housed juvenile offenders from around the country. In December 1995, a University of Illinois at Chicago psychologist hired by the state's Department of Children and Family Services issued a damning report on High Plains, and the agency later began removing its youth from the juvenile prison. "Unit staffing practices appear to be a numbers game where management attempts to balance the competing pressures of safety and profit," wrote Dr. Ronald Davidson, a faculty member in the university's psychiatry department. The facility also had a "consistent and disturbing pattern of violence, sexual abuse, clinical malpractice and administrative incompetence at every level of the program." A Human Rights Watch report later found that High Plains "fell short of reasonable, even minimal, performance." Colorado officials closed High Plains in 1998 after a 13-year-old inmate from Utah committed suicide and a state investigation found widespread problems with physical and sexual abuse. State officials also had uncovered problems at other Rebound facilities in Colorado. Rebound's nonprofit Adventures in Change program did not meet requirements to be licensed for drug and alcohol treatment nor meet "acceptable standards for habitation," according to a 1996 state audit. Auditors said the services, such as education, family counseling, vocational training and employment, "are not routinely provided." In his resignation letter as the facility's clinical coordinator, Paul Schmitz wrote: "This is no longer a professional treatment environment ... and is not supported by the company as such." In 1997, Florida officials severed the state's contract with Rebound to operate the Cypress Creek juvenile detention facility after repeated problems, including reports of disturbances that led to the arrests of several inmates for inciting a riot. Rebound also had operated in Maryland, where it ran the Charles H. Hickey Jr. School briefly in the early 1990s. Mr. Newman was the deputy secretary of Maryland's Department of Juvenile Services from 1992 to 1994, according to the state. He joined Rebound in 1995. The Hickey contract ended in 1993 after dozens of escapes, cases of alleged abuse and other policy violations. Dr. Davidson, the Illinois psychologist, said the past performance of Cornerstone and Rebound should raise concerns. "Anyone who had bothered to check the record of this corporation in Colorado and Florida and Maryland ..... would have easily discovered a troubling history of incompetence and fecklessness," he said.

Natrona County Juvenile Detention Center, Natrona County, Wyoming September 6, 2008 Casper Times-Tribune The Wyoming Department of Family Services may provide a "Band-aid" fix for Cornerstone Programs, Inc., so the private corrections company can continue running the Natrona County Juvenile Detention Center. Cornerstone has been steadily losing money since it took control of JDC operations in March because of dwindling inmate populations. In the last two months alone, the company has sustained more than $70,000 in operational losses alone. In a conference call Thursday that included the county commission, Cornerstone representatives, officials from DFS and Sheriff Mark Benton, DFS Director Tony Lewis suggested that there may be a way to subsidize the company's losses with state grant money for at least a few months until the situation becomes more certain. Using a company that works on an average daily payment for each juvenile incarcerated may not be the best decision in the future, he said, if only because DFS plans to send fewer kids for the foreseeable future. According to DFS records, Cornerstone is making about $20,000 less per month because of the department's policy to send fewer juveniles. "If we're using detention the right way, the numbers aren't going to support the contract at a good level," he said. "I think it's a mistake to create a system where you need a quandry of kids for a private company to make money. It was a good investment to go to the kind of standards that Cornerstone has brought, but it's not going to be a money-making endeavor." Numbers are down across the state, he added. The number of juveniles at the JDC from counties such as Converse and Niobrara in December 2007 starkly contrasts with the number in August 2008.

August 28, 2008 Casper Star-Tribune Cornerstone Programs, Inc., the private corrections company charged with running the Natrona County Juvenile Detention Center, may have to terminate its yet-to-be-signed contract with the county because of financial difficulties, the company's CEO Joseph Newman told county commissioners Thursday. "The drain has been significant, to the point where it has had a huge impact on our cash flow, and, quite frankly, if the conditions continue, we won't be able to support the operation," he said. Low inmate population has caused the relatively small business to lose large sums of money over about a six-month period, something the company can't sustain for long, he said. For Cornerstone to break even on operations, the JDC must hold an average of 25 juveniles per day. The average number of inmates over the past month has been 18, with a one-day high of 24 inmates. In July, the company lost about $40,000 in operational costs alone, and expects that August will see about a $35,000 loss. At the current rate of loss, Newman said, the company can't afford to run the facility for more than another month or so. While an exact explanation for the decrease in population isn't available, Gary Miller, chief operating officer for Cornerstone, said the Department of Family Services is placing fewer than half the number of juveniles in the facility than it had over the last five years. "There does seem to be a reluctance on their part to refer kids," Miller said.


Salt Lake Valley Detention Center, Salt Lake, Nevada September 17, 2008 Deseret News A California-based company that previously ran a Salt Lake juvenile detention facility for 11 years is suing the state of Utah after a new five-year contract was awarded to another firm. Cornell Corrections of California, which does business as Abraxas Youth and Family Services, recently filed a lawsuit in 3rd District Court requesting that the decision regarding the multimillion-dollar contract be overturned and that Abraxas get the new contract instead. Abraxas alleges that the decision-making process used by the Utah Department of Human Services and other state agencies in awarding the contract was "arbitrary and capricious" and was "clearly erroneous." In fiscal year 2008, the budget for the Salt Lake Valley Detention Center was about $3.8 million, according to Liz Sollis, DHS public information officer. Abraxas in the latest round of bidding submitted a proposal containing a budget of approximately $5.2 million for fiscal year 2009, Sollis said. Meanwhile, Cornerstone Programs Corp. submitted a proposal that had a budget of about $4.4 million for fiscal year 2009. Cornerstone, based in Centennial, Colo., has operated the 60-bed Farmington Bay Juvenile Detention Facility in Davis County since 1995. Sollis did not comment on the litigation. However, she said contract proposals are initially reviewed by DHS and then referred to the state's Department of Administrative Services Division of Purchasing and General Services for final decisions. The Salt Lake Valley Detention Center is a 160-bed locked facility for juveniles ages 10-18 who are being held temporarily until their cases are resolved in court or DHS can find another place for them. While in the center, the young people receive a variety of services, including such things as schooling, medical and dental care, psychological help and other assistance. The center at 3450 S. 900 West is owned by the state, but services are provided through contracts with other organizations. The lawsuit said there were 4,190 admissions to the center during fiscal year 2007. Abraxas said in its suit that it had operated the center successfully and DHS recently gave it a 100 percent rating. "Cornerstone received 164 points for its proposal, while Abraxas received 161.22 points for its proposal. Because the scoring was so close, even a minor error in the scoring process would have resulted in Abraxas being awarded the contract," the lawsuit said. When notified that Cornerstone was getting the contract instead, Abraxas filed a protest with the state making several allegations: that Cornerstone's proposal did not comply with state requirements as far as employee education and other standards; that Cornerstone's proposal contained "blatant misstatements" regarding the services it would or could provide; and that Abraxas' score in one section was rounded down while Cornerstone's was rounded up. Attorneys representing Abraxas and representatives for Cornerstone were not available for comment at press time. (Cornerstone is not a party to this lawsuit; Abraxas is suing the state of Utah.) The Utah Attorney General's Office declined comment.

Swan Valley Youth Academy, Swan Valley, Montana July 29, 2007 Dallas Morning News Executives of the Colorado-based Cornerstone Programs Corp., which manages the Garza County Regional Juvenile Center in West Texas, have a history of involvement in troubled juvenile facilities in other states. Cornerstone closed its Swan Valley Youth Academy in 2006 after a Montana State Department of Public Health and Human Services investigation found 19 violations, including neglect and failure to report child abuse and an attempted suicide. "Intake process was particularly harmful to youth, and many have been made to vomit due to excessive exercise and drinking large amounts of water," Montana officials wrote in their findings. According to Montana officials, the state and Cornerstone had developed a corrective plan to keep the facility open. "There was a number of charges of abuse filed against the director of the program and the second in charge," said Cornerstone chief executive Joseph Newman. The bad press hurt business and so it closed, he said. Mr. Newman said state officials later cleared them of all the abuse charges, but Montana officials said they had no record of that. In Texas, Cornerstone's Garza facility has been put under corrective action plans to improve staff training, documenting grievances and group therapy sessions. But the company has hired a new director and added new staff to Garza, which it began managing in 2003. In 2005, a 17-year-old inmate at the facility became paralyzed after falling on his head in an attempt to do a back flip off a table. A lawsuit by his family against the facility, settled in 2006, alleged that a guard not only failed to prevent the stunt, but challenged the youth to attempt it. The officer was fired after the incident. The Garza County facility consistently has received positive reviews by the Texas Youth Commission. "The Garza County Regional Juvenile Center is an exemplary program," a TYC monitor wrote in the facility's 2006 contract renewal evaluation – the same year Swan Valley closed. Cornerstone was founded in October 1998 by Mr. Newman and board chairman Jane O'Shaughnessy, about six months after another company they operated ran into trouble in Colorado. That other company, called Rebound, operated the High Plains Youth Center in Brush, Colo., which housed juvenile offenders from around the country. In December 1995, a University of Illinois at Chicago psychologist hired by the state's Department of Children and Family Services issued a damning report on High Plains, and the agency later began removing its youth from the juvenile prison. "Unit staffing practices appear to be a numbers game where management attempts to balance the competing pressures of safety and profit," wrote Dr. Ronald Davidson, a faculty member in the university's psychiatry department. The facility also had a "consistent and disturbing pattern of violence, sexual abuse, clinical malpractice and administrative incompetence at every level of the program." A Human Rights Watch report later found that High Plains "fell short of reasonable, even minimal, performance." Colorado officials closed High Plains in 1998 after a 13-year-old inmate from Utah committed suicide and a state investigation found widespread problems with physical and sexual abuse. State officials also had uncovered problems at other Rebound facilities in Colorado. Rebound's nonprofit Adventures in Change program did not meet requirements to be licensed for drug and alcohol treatment nor meet "acceptable standards for habitation," according to a 1996 state audit. Auditors said the services, such as education, family counseling, vocational training and employment, "are not routinely provided." In his resignation letter as the facility's clinical coordinator, Paul Schmitz wrote: "This is no longer a professional treatment environment ... and is not supported by the company as such." In 1997, Florida officials severed the state's contract with Rebound to operate the Cypress Creek juvenile detention facility after repeated problems, including reports of disturbances that led to the arrests of several inmates for inciting a riot. Rebound also had operated in Maryland, where it ran the Charles H. Hickey Jr. School briefly in the early 1990s. Mr. Newman was the deputy secretary of Maryland's Department of Juvenile Services from 1992 to 1994, according to the state. He joined Rebound in 1995. The Hickey contract ended in 1993 after dozens of escapes, cases of alleged abuse and other policy violations. Dr. Davidson, the Illinois psychologist, said the past performance of Cornerstone and Rebound should raise concerns. "Anyone who had bothered to check the record of this corporation in Colorado and Florida and Maryland ..... would have easily discovered a troubling history of incompetence and fecklessness," he said.

April 22, 2002 The Denver company that operates the Swan Valley Youth Academy wants to be able to draw clients from any state to stay on solid financial footing.  Cornerstone Programs Corp. was  originally authorized to recruit youths just from Montana.  But just over a year ago, the company's lease with the Department of Natural Resources and Conservation was amended to allow recruitment of troubled youths from a five-state area around Montana.  Now, declining enrollment at the campus-like facility north of Condon has Cornerstone requesting the ability to recruit youths from any state.  (Billings Gazette)


Washington Department of Health May 29, 2009  Spokesman-Review A social worker and two counselors in the Puget Sound area have been accused of buying fake degrees from a Spokane diploma mill. State health officials said Michael Strub, a licensed social worker, bought a doctor of philosophy in psychology diploma and transcript in March 2004. The materials came from “Hamilton University,” an online diploma mill. Strub worked at Cornerstone Counseling Services in Puyallup, where Washington state Health Department investigators say he used his fake diploma to misrepresent his education and training to clients and insurance companies. David Larson, a registered counselor and chemical dependency professional, is accused of buying a doctor of psychology degree in October 2002 from “St. Regis University.” Larson worked at Crossroads Treatment Centers in Tacoma and Parkland, and then went to Civigenics in Tacoma before retiring in October 2006. Agency and staff had referred to him as “Dr. Larson.” Taylor Danard, a registered counselor, bought a bogus doctor of philosophy in psychology degree from St. Regis in January 2003. She referred to herself as a Ph.D. in her practice at Madison Park Counseling Center in Seattle. Investigators also accuse her of providing health department investigators with false information. The three have 20 days to respond to charges. They are listed on a database published online by The Spokesman-Review last year of people who bought bogus degrees from a Spokane-based operation that netted millions of dollars by selling more than 10,000 college degrees and high school diplomas around the world. The diploma mill was engineered by Dixie Ellen Randock, who has been sentenced to three years in federal prison.    Source: http://www.privateci.org/rap_cornerstone.html
August 5th Edit: There are two separate entities operating as Cornerstone in Centennial, CO.  We initially included staff from both Cornerstone programs on this site.  On August 5th, 2014, we received an e-mail from thecornerstoneprogram.com providing evidence that it is not the same program as the one identified and examined on this page which is also called Cornerstone and is headquartered in Centennial, CO.  Upon further examination, we found each Cornerstone to have different staff and a different location in Centennial, CO.  And, we apologize to thecornerstoneprogram.com for our error in this matter.
THE TRUTH:

All segregated congregate care providers, including those on our watch-list, are welcome to contact us to correct any information or provide additional data that may assist with delivering the whole truth to the public.  We've found in many cases where this offer has been abused or resulted in revealing additional basis for our concerns. For some examples see: http://www.heal-online.org/tcfl.htm http://www.heal-online.org/bolthouse.htm and http://www.heal-online.org/abundant2.htm.  Now, we are willing to look at the facts and may have questions or require documentation backing up any claims.  We do verify licensing, academic backgrounds, and other qualifications when investigating and researching programs on our watch-list to assist consumers seeking additional information on such programs or victims requiring assistance with getting corroborating evidence of their claims.  We do that in order to make sure the information we provide is accurate and verified and cite our sources.  In the event any information we've posted is in error, we're happy to make a correction.  And, for information on how such requests are handled and have been resolved historically, see: http://www.heal-online.org/requests.htm

HEAL does not support segregated congregate care for many reasons which include that many such facilities are abusive, exploitative, fraudulent, and lack effective oversight often as a result of fraudulent misrepresentation coupled with the ignorance of those seeking to enroll loved ones in such facilities, programs, schools, or centers without a valid court order and involuntarily.  In the United States such involuntary placements done without a court order are apparently illegal as they either violate the Americans with Disabilities Act community integration requirement or due process rights of those involuntarily placed.  Now, in regards to parents, in the United States parents have the right to waive their own rights, but, not the rights of their minor children.  See http://www.heal-online.org/legalarguments.htm for more information.  Now, most facilities on our watch list include waivers, indemnity clauses, and sworn statements parents must sign assuring the program that the parents have the right to make the placement involuntarily and without due process in a segregated congregate care environment, however, California and federal prosecutors as well as settled law appears to suggest that is not the case.  In fact, in the David Taylor case found at http://www.heal-online.org/provocases.htm, Taylor sued Provo Canyon School and his mother as co-defendants.  His mother was found liable for 75% of the damages awarded to Taylor as a result of multiple complaints including false imprisonment, while the program was found only 25% liable because the mother owed a duty of due diligence to investigate anyone to which she would entrust care of her child and she failed to do so. 

Now, HEAL opposes segregated congregate care and we find most placements are happening illegally in the USA which if the youth understood their rights would result in unfortunate outcomes for the parents, particularly when they don't exercise good judgment and support the fraud and abuse rather than their own children when they need remedy and justice.  And, HEAL supports all victims of fraud and abuse in seeking remedies at law for any crimes or torts committed against them.  And, that's true whether or not the program or victims are in the USA. 

HEAL has a 5 point argument against segregated congregate care we'd like you to consider:

a.  Segregated care is unconstitutional and a civil rights violation.  It is only permissible if a person is unable to survive independent of an institutional environment.  For more on this, watch the HEAL Report at  https://youtu.be/C4NzhZc4P0A.  Or, see:   http://www.ada.gov/olmstead/  which includes in part:    "United States v. Florida – 1:12-cv-60460 – (S.D. Fla.) – On April 7, 2016, the United States filed an Opposition to the State of Florida’s Motion for Partial Summary Judgment.  In the Motion, the State had asked the Court to rule, on a variety of grounds, that the United States could not recover damages for unnecessarily institutionalized children to whom the State had been deliberately indifferent."

b.  Institutionalization is always dehumanizing and coercive.  Institutionalization always harms the institutionalized and deprives them of protected civil rights.  Dr. David Straker, Psychiatry Professor at Columbia University's School of Medicine (Ivy League) explains this in detail at http://changingminds.org/disciplines/sociology/articles/institutionalization.htm.  "Many institutions, from prisons to monasteries to asylums, deliberately want to control and manage their inmates such that they conform and do not cause problems. Even in less harsh environments, many of the institutionalization methods may be found, albeit in more moderated form (although the psychological effect can be equally devastating)."  (See website linked in this paragraph for more info.)

c.  Institutionalization is not in the best interest of children.  Institutions are not ever better for a child than living with a loving family.  Source:   http://www.unicef.org/cambodia/12681_23295.html       

d.  Reform schools, residential treatment programs, and other segregated congregate care settings have been shown to be ineffective and harmful.  Best source on this currently is:     https://www.acgov.org/probation/documents/EndoftheReformSchoolbyVinny.doc

e. Boarding Schools, even the "good ones", result in a form of social death, isolation, and cause both anxiety and depression.  Therefore, it is clearly not in the best interest of the youth subjected to those environments.  Sources: http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/jun/08/boarding-school-syndrome-joy-schaverien-review and http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/secondaryeducation/11662001/The-truth-about-boarding-school-syndrome.html

Beyond the above arguments against segregated congregate care, we have reports from the NIH, Surgeon General, Yale University Studies, and much more showing the methodologies of behavior modification are damaging, harmful, and ineffective.  You can request these documents via e-mail.  In addition, for such programs offering academic services or claiming to offer diplomas, certifications, or the like, it is important to check to see if it is a diploma mill with no accredited academic services.  Please see article: "Avoiding Scams: What You Need To Know"  for important information on how to avoid education/training scams.

If you'd like to see what HEAL suggests rather than segregated congregate care (i.e. committing a crime or tort against your child if done against their will without a court order), please see articles: "Fix Your Family, Help Your Teen" and "How Would You Handle My Out of Control Teen?".

If you have a complaint against any facility, please file a complaint with the appropriate law enforcement agency or your home state's attorney general.  For reporting resources see: http://www.heal-online.org/report.htm.  (Reporting guide is for USA only at this time.)
11/11/20: CONVERSION PROGRAM PROGRESS REPORT: Cornerstone Programs

 

 Last Updated: November 11th, 2020

Return to http://www.heal-online.org/thelist.htm or top of page