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.

Program Assistant/Volunteer Coordinator

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. 

Victim Services Coordinator/Forensic Interviewer

Lisa joined the Child Advocacy Center in December 2014. Lisa graduated from Saint Leo University with a B.A. in Criminal Justice with a minor in Psychology and an M. S. in Criminal Justice/Forensic Psychology. Lisa has worked with the Marion County Human Trafficking Task Force helping to educate the community about who the victims of trafficking are and ways the community members  can work together to impact this growing epidemic. Lisa has been trained by the International Association of Human Trafficking Investigators (IAHTI), Human Trafficking Summit at the University of South Florida, and trainings held by the Marion County Sherriff’s Office and Saint Leo University. Lisa is very excited about being part of the Child Advocacy Center team and looks forward to working with others who have made it their business to protect abused children.  


Advocate/Case Manager

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!

Advocate/Case Manager

Devon began working at the Child Advocacy Center in August 2013. She graduated with a degree in Criminology and Law from the University of Florida with a minor in Leadership Development in 2013. Devon began her journey with the CAC during her internship in 2012-2013 and she has been with the Child Advocacy Center ever since.  Devon is excited to be working with the CAC team to further pursue her passion of helping children in need. 

Advocate/Case Manager

Tyler joined the Child Advocacy Center in October, 2014. Tyler graduated from the University of Florida with degrees in English and Psychology.  Both degrees fueled his desire to work in a field where he could actively help other people.  Tyler volunteered at the Alachua County Crisis Center for two years which afforded him some of the most challenging but rewarding experiences of his life.  He is eager and thrilled to be working at the CAC and with its team.  

Lead Therapist & Clinical Supervisor

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.


In 2010, Melissa received her Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Saint Leo University and graduated in May, 2014 from the University of Florida in Marriage and Family Therapy. After completing a clinical internship at the CAC, she realized she had a passion for play therapy and helping children and families in a community setting.  Melissa is excited about her career at the Child Advocacy Center and having an impact on families in the area and being impactful to the community as a whole. 


Jamie received her B.A. in Forensic Psychology from Florida Tech in 2007 and her M.A. in Mental Health Counseling from Asbury Theological Seminary in 2014.  Jamie began as a clinical intern with the CAC in 2014.  She began her work with children as a preschool teacher for special needs children as well as through IMPACT; a mentoring and tutoring program that focuses on serving children and families in East Gainesville.  She is very passionate about working with survivors of childhood trauma as well as with children who have experience in the juvenile justice system.  Jamie is excited to be part of the CAC team and to work together with the Gainesville community in order to serve our most vulnerable population.