Leah M. Briick, PhD
(she, her(s), Dr.)
"We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face… we must do that which we think we cannot.”
- Eleanor Roosevelt
Leah M. Briick brings a thorough understanding of addiction treatment and operations management to her role as Executive Director for SASH. She began in the field as a certified therapist for Cottonwood de Tucson in 1986. Her years of experience represent a full range of knowledge and skills from admissions to marketing and operations management. In her career, Ms. Briick has worked for numerous treatment facilities offering her the opportunity to gain invaluable experience. She has a Bachelor of Science, a Master in Business Administration with a specialty in marketing and a PhD in Healthcare Administration.
Matthew Hedelius, PsyD, LCSW, CSAT-S
Dr. Matthew Hedelius has been providing treatment for individuals who suffer from trauma and sexual compulsivity for over 20 years and has completed over 40,000 therapy sessions in that time frame. He has experience in outpatient, residential and inpatient treatment settings. He provides bio and neurofeedback as a means of helping patients resolve their addictions and trauma issues. In addition, he has been trained in and provides EMDR to help patients resolve their traumatic histories. He enjoys running half marathons and marathons and loves working with people. He also provides supervision for therapists who are training to be sex addiction therapists.
Allan E. O'Bryant
"If you come to a fork in the road, take it."
- Yogi Berra
Allan O’Bryant is the Cofounder and Executive Director of Outer Circle Enterprises which provides structured treatment and transitional living facilities for those struggling with process and snd substance addictions. He is also Executive Managing Partner of Yunzei Partners, a family office focused on early stage investments in a variety of sectors including, healthcare, addiction treatment, energy, digital technology, and others. Allan recently retired from Reinsurance Group of America (RGA) where he was Executive Vice President, Chief Corporate Officer and a member of RGA’s Executive Council. During his storied career, Allan served in several “C” level positions in companies including AFLAC, Lehman Brothers, Yunzei Capital, LLC, and KPMG. Allan Emeritus Chair of the Board of Directors and Board of Trustee of the American School in Japan, He currently serves on several corporate and leadership boards including Novinium Inc., Harvard Law School, Brigham Young University. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Since retirement, Allan has dedicated his philanthropic and professional efforts to help people in recovery heal from the ravages of addiction. Using his unique skill set, Allan brings a wealth of knowledge and leadership to Outer Circle Recovery and is positioned to help the recovery community in Nashville and beyond.
Terry has worked in the addiction field for 14 years. Terry was previously the lead counselor at the Pride Institute, an LGBT specific treatment center, and managed their sexual health program. In addition to being a licensed alcohol and drug counselor, Terry is currently a mental health therapist working in a private practice specializing in co-occurring disorders, trauma, problematic sexual behavior, intimacy issues, and a host of mental disorders. Terry works with both adults and adolescents and some couples. Terry is trained in EMDR and DBT and incorporates attachment theory into his practice. Terry is a member of the LGBT community and understands the unique challenges many in this group face. Aside from working with the LGBT community, Terry seeks to share his knowledge and experience of this group with other professionals worldwide to increase their competency in serving this community. Terry is a sex-positive, kink-friendly clinician eager to help individuals and couples explore their sexuality, overcome sexual challenges, and discover the benefits and satisfaction of sex, intimacy, and connection offer everyone.
Richard Blankenship, LPC, NCC, CCH, CPCS, CBTS, CSRRS
Vice President, Governance/Compliance
"An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.”
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Richard Blankenship, LPC, NCC, CPCS, CBTS, CSRRS is the clinical and administrative director for the Capstone Center for Counseling, DBT & Relational Trauma and the Capstone Center for Sexual Recovery & Transformation; a program for male addicts, female addicts, spouses/partners of sex addicts, couples in recovery, and services for children & adolescents. Richard is one of the founders of the Association for Partners of Sex Addicts Trauma Specialists (APSATS) where he served for over 4 years. Richard is a frequent guest on Atlanta area radio & television programs dealing with sexual addiction, spouses/families of addicts, and domestic violence. He is the author of the LIFE Guide for Young Men, and a Journey Through Secrets. He is the co-author of Spouses of Sex Addicts: Hope for the Journey (book & workbook) and the LIFE Guide for Couples. Richard holds two master’s degrees; an M.Ed. from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and an M.A. From Harding University Graduate School. Richard is a licensed professional counselor (LPC) with the state of Georgia, a nationally certified counselor (NCC) with the National Board of Certified Counselors, a certified clinical hypnotherapist (CCH), a certified clinical sexual & relational recovery specialist (CSRRS), and a certified clinical betrayal trauma specialist (CBTS) through the Addo recovery network. Richard is also a certified professional counselor supervisor (CPCS) through the Licensed Professional Counselors Association of Georgia. He is married with two children and has worked with churches and counseling centers for over 25 years.
Shane Kraus, PhD
(he, his, him)
Journal Editor in Chief
"Be the change you wish to see in the world."
Shane W. Kraus, Ph.D., is a licensed clinical psychologist and Assistant Professor of Psychology at University of Nevada, Las Vegas. His clinical research focuses on study of psychopathology, sexual trauma, substance use disorders, gambling disorder, and compulsive sexual behavior disorder (CSBD). He is particularly interested in using behavioral, epidemiological, and neurobiological methods to assess factors that contribute to the development of addictive behaviors and other co-occurring psychiatric disorders among at-risk groups (e.g., U.S. military veterans, ethnic and sexual minorities, homeless). Dr. Kraus has published extensively on compulsive sexual behavior and was part of the World Health Organization working group who put forth the diagnostic criteria for CSBD for ICD-11. He received his Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Bowling Green State University in 2013. In 2016, he completed his post-doctoral psychology fellowship at the VISN 1 New England MIRECC/VA Connecticut Healthcare System and Yale School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry.
Michael Barta, PhD, LPC, CSAT-S, CCPS
“The attempt to escape from pain is what creates more pain.”
Dr. Barta is a leading expert in addressing and treating the source of sexually compulsive behaviors. He is a pioneer in the neurobiological treatment of addictions. His research-based, cutting-edge treatments have successfully treated hundreds of men, women, and couples facing the devastation caused by sexually compulsive behaviors and helped them return to living authentic lives.
Michael serves his clients by utilizing his 36 years of addiction recovery experience and 14 years specializing in the treatment of sex and porn addictions, compulsive sexual behaviors, intimacy disorders as well as partner betrayal.
He is now offering treatment at his new practice using his newest neurobiological model ENTUNE™ working directly with the brain and nervous system to enable the individual to reestablish authentic connections.
Dr. Barta is the author of the book TINSA®: A Neurological Approach to the Treatment of Sex Addiction, published in 2017; and the creator of the TINSA® model. In 2020, Dr. Barta sold his methodologies to the Integrative Life Network in Nashville, Tennessee.
James Chadwick, LICSW
(he, his, him)
"To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance. "
- Oscar Wilde
James Chadwick is a licensed independent clinical social worker through the state of Minnesota and holds a master’s degree from Augsburg University. In 2017 James began a private practice specializing in chemical, mental, and sexual health. Prior to entering private practice James worked as a group therapist at Lighthouse Psychological Services, Inc., a mental health case manager at Minnesota Mental Health Clinics specializing in clients with depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and borderline personality disorder, and currently works as a group and individual therapist specializing in sexual health at Cornerstone Therapy and Recovery Center. James has worked closely with the LGBTQ community as both a practitioner and an advocate and is an adjunct faculty member of Augsburg University’s Social Work department.
"Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom."
- Viktor E. Frankl
Steve Devlin, PhD, EdM, CRS began his career as a counselor in the early 1980s before pursuing a research career in higher education. During the early 1990s, he directed a gerontology center at the University of Pennsylvania and was a Fellow at the Institute on Aging. He has been a life coach since 2009, two years after entering recovery. The focus of his coaching is finding hope and meaning to life, and is heavily influenced by the work of Victor Frankl. His interests also include quality of life for disenfranchised people, especially those facing challenges due to middle- and older-aging, health crises, and incarceration. Steve has an undergraduate degree from Dickinson College (B.A., Psychology, 1980), a Master’s degree from Boston University (EdM, Counseling Psychology, 1981), and a Doctorate from Temple University (PhD, Educational Psychology, 1991). He earned his Certified Recovery Coach (CRS) certification in 2013 and has a practice in the southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey region. Steve is a consultant with the Center for Outcome Analysis (Havertown PA) and serves on a regional board advocating for those with sexual addictions.
"I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.”
- Nelson Mandela
Mark Drax is an independent Addiction Recovery Coach and spends his time coaching private clients and groups of men on both sides of the Atlantic. He holds a business degree and is an accredited coach with the International Coaching Federation (ICF). He is a strong advocate of the importance of ‘aftercare’ and has turned his own struggles with child abuse and sex addiction into a coaching practice specifically aimed at helping people apply recovery tools in a realistic and sustainable manner. Mark is very comfortable with and open about his past and he helps people from the perspective of having ‘been there and done it’. Prior to joining the addiction industry as a professional in 2013, Mark owned and managed an electronics installation company in London, England for 16 years. His commercial background coupled to his knowledge of and passion for strong addiction recovery allows him to coach people from diverse backgrounds across a broad spectrum of addiction and recovery modalities. And when he is not working, Mark loves the oceans and hiking and photographing the natural wonders of our beautiful planet.
(he, his, him)
Conference Committee Chair
"And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don't believe in magic will never find it.”
Daryl O’Bryant is a Project Management Professional (PMP) with more than 30 years professional experience in delivering large business / technology projects and solutions. In this environment, Daryl has been able to lead a significant number of organizations (big and small), as well as individuals, through revolutionary change. Daryl is a founding board member of Open Project Management Life Cycle, an open source project management knowledge base. Daryl also spent 10+ years working in the pastoral community counseling with families, couples, and youth where much of his focus was on recovery and sexual health. It was in this setting when he quietly began evangelizing the understated value of sexual health. Whether in the business or pastoral community, Daryl specializes in leading people through meaningful and continuous change.
"Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson
Dr. Melissa Pennington is the Medical Director of Santé Center for Healing in Argyle, TX. She is a board-certified psychiatrist, a board-certified addictionologist, and a Certified Eating Disorder Specialist. Since joining the team at Santé, she has also completed advanced training in the treatment of problematic sexual behavior. Prior to joining Santé, she served as Medical Director of the Eating Disorders Program at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas from 2010-2015. She is a fellow of the American Board of Addiction Medicine and has served 2 terms as the medical liaison for the Dallas-Fort Worth chapter of the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals. She attended medical school at the University of North Texas Health Science Center and completed her psychiatric residency at John Peter Smith Hospital, where she was awarded intern of the year and served as chief resident for two consecutive years.
Tanisha M. Ranger, PsyD, CSAT, CMAT
"You are not required to set yourself on fire in order to keep other people warm."
Dr. Tanisha M. Ranger is licensed psychologist practicing in the Las Vegas Valley area. She is owner and operator of Insight to Action LLC, a private practice providing both clinical and consultation services, including: psychotherapy, assessment, clinical supervision, public speaking and training. Dr. Ranger has specialty certification in the treatment of sexual addiction and financial disorders, and has also received specialty training in couples’ therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, motivational interviewing, dialectical behavioral therapy, and management of insomnia. She has over fifteen years’ experience doing clinical work and has dedicated herself to helping people overcome trauma, manage their relationships, improve their moods, and embrace themselves with a focus on self-care and self-compassion. Dr. Ranger is also a staff psychologist at the VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System where her work is heavily focused on treatment and support of veterans struggling to cope with the aftermath of time in the service, and concerns related to transitioning back into the civilian world.