SHERRY KITCHENS, ED.S., LMFT
Sherry Kitchens became the President/CEO of the Child Advocacy Center in June of 2005. She received her B.A. in Psychology from Emory University in 1992 and her M.Ed./Ed.S from the University of Florida in Marriage and Family Therapy in 1996. She became a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in 1999. Sherry began her work in the child abuse prevention and intervention field in Atlanta while working with the Georgia Council on Child Abuse in the Home Visitor Program, a precursor to Healthy Start and Healthy Families. From 1996 until 2005, Sherry worked with the Corner Drug Store, Inc. in the Family Action Program and the Drug Free Communities Support Program first as a Counselor/Case Manager and then as a Regional Coordinator. With a positive attitude, history of successful community relationships, and passion for helping children, at the Child Advocacy Center she hopes to continue her efforts of bringing partners together to create the safety and community support children need to grow and flourish in our community.
Margot Wilder came on board as Development Coordinator for the Child Advocacy Center in March 2009. She earned a BS in Recreation, Parks & Tourism specializing in Recreation and Event Management from the University of Florida. Prior to the CAC, Margot interned extensively with the Boys & Girls Club of Alachua County and worked as a conference coordinator for the UF/IFAS Office of Conferences & Institutes. Margot has a deep passion for children’s issues and non-profit fundraising. She is currently pursuing an MBA at the University of Florida. Her goal as Development Coordinator is to increase community awareness of the CAC’s mission and help generate the funding our programs need to allow us to serve all abused and neglected children in our community.
Kim Bryant joined the staff of the Child Advocacy Center in August of 2011. She earned a BA in Christian Education in 1978 and a BA in Theology in 1998 and served as the Administrative Assistant and Office Manager for an international ministry for more than 10 years prior to moving to Gainesville to work at the Child Advocacy Center. Married and the mother of three grown children, Kim has extensive small business experience in the hospitality industry and is currently the owner/operator of an online bookstore.
Beth’s first experience with the Child Advocacy Center was through an internship with the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office working on sex crimes, crimes against children, and human trafficking cases. After completing her Bachelor’s of Political Science at the University of North Carolina, Asheville, she returned to Gainesville and began working for the CAC in May of 2011. Beth has previously worked practicums in Restorative Justice, as well as Homicide Investigation. Her experience with children and teens includes establishing a Peer Mentoring program, volunteering with Big Brothers, Big Sisters of WNC, working at a summer camp for children on the Autism spectrum and fundraising for the national organization Autism Speaks. Beth is currently pursuing a Master’s of Criminology and Social Work from Florida State University.
Jessica Williams began working with the Child Advocacy Center in August 2012. She earned her B.S. in Family, Youth and Community Science with minors in Religion and Organizational Leadership for Nonprofits from the University of Florida in May 2012. She began her involvement with the CAC as a case management intern in January 2012. Prior to working at the Child Advocacy Center, Jessica worked in Tampa at a residential group home focused on providing placement for sibling groups and also in India tutoring women and children in sexual slavery.
Patty Bent began working with the Child Advocacy Center as a Victim Advocate in September 2012. She graduated with a dual degree in History and Sociology from Flagler College in 2006. After graduation she accepted a position working in a treatment facility for JV sex offenders. In late 2007 Patty was accepted into Class 14 of Americorps NCCC Sacramento where she discovered her love for non-profit organizations while volunteering across the US. Patty recently relocated to Gainesville from Ohio and is VERY excited to have the opportunity to be a part of the team at the CAC!
LISA LITZ, Ed.S, LMHC
Lisa began working at the Child Advocacy Center in May 2009. She received her B.S. in Elementary Education from the University of Missouri - St. Louis in 1991 and her M.Ed./Ed.S. in Marriage & Family Therapy and Mental Health Counseling from the University of Florida in 2009. Lisa came to know the CAC family during her clinical therapy internship in 2008-2009 and has worked at the Child Advocacy Center since 2009 as a Case Manager and now as a Therapist and Victim Services Coordinator.
SARANEAL JOHNSTON, LCSW
SaraNeal Johnston joined the Child Advocacy Center in June of 2010. She received her Bachelor of Music Therapy from East Carolina University in Greenville, N.C. and her Master of Social Work from Florida State University. She became a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in 1999. She has worked for many years with children of all ages providing school based and in-home counseling services. SaraNeal is proud to be a Child Advocacy Center team member.
KRISTINA SOCARRAS, Ed.S, IMH
Kristina began working at the Child Advocacy Center in April 2012. She graduated with a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Florida in 2008 and an M.A.E/Ed.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy and Mental Health Counseling from the University of Florida in 2011. Prior to working at the Child Advocacy Center, Kristina completed her practicum and internship experiences at Kimberly’s Cottage in Ocala, FL and at the Child Advocacy Center. She has experience in play therapy and in working with children and families that have experienced trauma or abuse. Kristina is excited to continue serving the Gainesville community through working at the CAC.
ANGELA CALDERON, Ed.S, IMH
Angela joined the Child Advocacy Center in September 2012. She graduated with a B.S. in Psychology (2007) and an M.A.E/Ed.S in Mental Health Counseling from the University of Florida in 2011. She is currently a Registered Mental Health Counseling Intern with the state of Florida. She has involvement working with children and families who have experienced trauma both locally in Gainesville and abroad. Prior to working at the Child Advocacy Center, Angela volunteered for many years with an international non-profit organization, Children Beyond Our Borders, leading service groups abroad. She also worked for Children’s Home Society as an in-home counselor. With much energy and enthusiasm, Angela is excited to be part of the CAC team and to continue advocating for children in the Gainesville community.
CARLA TURRENTINE, MSW
Carla began working at the Child Advocacy Center in September 2009. She earned a dual B.S. in Psychology and Social Work from Tennessee State University in 2005, and her M.S. in Social Work from the University of Tennessee in 2008. Carla began her work with children and adolescents working at summer camps, and volunteering at after school programs in Nashville, TN. Between 2004-2008 Carla worked as a Program Counselor at a psychiatric residential treatment facility that housed children who were placed in foster care. This facility worked specifically with children who had sexual identity issues, and who had experienced sexual trauma as a child. In 2008, Carla was promoted to Residential Program Manager and Care Coordinator, providing supervision to direct care staff, and therapy to residents in the facility. Carla also interned with Youth Villages Inc. from 2006-2007, she provided in-home counseling to adolescents and families while utilizing the Multi-Systemic Therapy model. Carla is very excited about joining the Child Advocacy Center family as a Forensic Interviewer, and working with the Multi-Disciplinary Team.