Mission

Equipping people of faith to serve with an informed, compassionate response to the risk and prevalence of addiction and related mental health (such as anxiety and depression) issues.

“Healing places for individuals and families touched by addiction are successful when congregations learn facts, avoid judgment, practice love and apply firm supports.”

Faith Partners Brochure (pdf)

TEAM

OUR TRAINERS

Drew Brooks

Drew Brooks – Executive Director

As Faith Partners Executive Director, Drew provides leadership, administration, and training for this congregational team ministry model. He has worked with Faith Partners since 1999 as the Project Manager, the Minnesota Area Coordinator (overseeing 40 congregational teams), and team facilitator twice at his home churches. He has been active in the church all his life providing leadership in music, youth, compassion, small group, and addiction ministries. The Faith Partners (FP) team approach is an evidence-based intervention used in nearly 1,000 congregations in 29 states from 23 different faith traditions.

Drew’s graduate studies were in psychological services. He has worked in the prevention, treatment, and public health, and faith settings for over thirty-six years. As an employee with Hazelden Foundation and Johnson Institute he provided training and technical assistance with faith communities, schools, and community organizations in over 40 states across the United States. He has also worked locally as a prevention specialist with key community groups focusing on different resiliency models and environmental prevention strategies for underage drinking and marijuana use. He has co-authored four curricula on stress management strategies, raising resilient children, group facilitation skills, and congregational addiction team ministry.
view Drew’s intro video

Pat Meyer – Distance Learning Team

First United Methodist Church – Weatherford, Oklahoma

Pat has been a Faith Partners trainer since 2015 and has facilitated a Faith Partners team for ten years at FUMC, providing addiction prevention through the lifespan & recovery support for addicts and their families. She has also served on the Addiction Ministries Board of the UMC Oklahoma Conference representing Faith Partners teams across the state. Pat practiced nursing in several states and taught in nursing programs throughout Oklahoma. After retirement from Southwestern Oklahoma State University, where she served as faculty and Associate Dean of the School of Nursing she has concentrated her service in the areas of addiction and child advocacy.
view Pat’s intro video

Jan Tipton – Distance Learning Team

First Baptist Church – Shawnee, Oklahoma

Jan has been a Faith Partners trainer since 2006 and serves on her own church’s Prevention and Recovery Ministry Team since 2001. She is a Certified Prevention Specialist doing  substance abuse prevention for Gateway to Prevention and Recovery since 1990. She has a BA in education from Oklahoma Baptist University and a MAT from Oklahoma City University. She has been a missionary teacher with Wycliffe Bible Translators in Peru, South America and in Kenya, East Africa. Jan is passionate about educating people about Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and how they affect children for the rest of their lives. 
view Jan’s intro video

Lisa Watson – Distance Learning Team

Sharon Baptist Church – Shawnee, Oklahoma

Lisa has been a Faith Partners trainer since 2013 and has experience in implementation of this program with a Native American Congregation. She has worked for Gateway to Prevention and Recovery since 2008 in the field of substance abuse prevention. Her current position is consultant with the “Healthy Living Program” funded by the Tobacco Settlement Endowment.
view Lisa’s intro video

Margaret White – Distance Learning Team

St. Paul’s United Methodist Church (UMC) – Tulsa, Oklahoma

Margaret has been a Faith Partners trainer since 2015, Healing Places (Faith Partners) team member since 2007,  served Addiction Ministries Board of the Oklahoma UMC Conference (OUMCC) for five years, and an OUMCC instructor in their Addiction Summer School for three years. Margaret has been involved in addiction concerns since 1978 when she served on the 50+1 Committee for the US National Institute of Health . Margaret is an emeritus professor from Oklahoma State University and currently teaches internationally. She has a Ph.D. in strategic management from Texas A&M University.
view Margaret’s intro video

OUR ASSOCIATE TRAINERS

Thirty-nine individuals have initiated the Training of Trainer process which includes both an educational and experiential component based on their level of capacity. This group of trainers is diverse in gender, race (African American, Caucasian, Native American) and faith tradition (Baptist, Buddhist, Catholic, Church of Christ, Episcopal, Jewish, Lutheran, Non-denominational, and United Methodist). We continue to recruit and expand this cadre of trainers.

Rev. Otto Schultz – Associate Trainer

Our Savior’s Lutheran Church – Lincoln, Nebraska

Otto B. Schultz is an ordained Lutheran Pastor who holds B. A. and Master of Divinity Degrees. A member of the Nebraska Synod, he has served Lutheran Churches in Kansas City, MO, Mentor, OH and Norton KS. He also has been a Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor (LADC) for over 40 years as a treatment Chaplain, educator, grant writer, and developed several programs in prevention and treatment. He recently retired as the Spiritual Counselor for Bryan Medical Center Independence Center, in Lincoln, NE. Although mostly retired, he is currently the coordinating Faith Partners Nebraska, a program to help faith congregations take a team approach to prevention and recovery. He also is a Faith Partners Associate Trainer who helps train clergy to effectively espond to addiction. He has two children, Matthew Stahl of Saginaw, Michigan and Lei Brabec of Lincoln. By God’s grace he has enjoyed over 45 years of recovery from alcohol dependency.

Katrina J. Wyche – Associate Trainer

World of Deliverance Ministries – Cincinnati, Ohio

Katrina J. Wyche, has been in the substance abuse prevention field over 20 years on a volunteer and professional basis. Wyche is currently pursuing a Doctorate of Education Leadership (D.Ed.), with a focus on Cross-Cultural Leadership and Organizational Development & Design from Xavier University. She has served as a Faith Partners Associate Trainer for a number of years and a member and trainer for the Reviving the Human Spirit Planning Committee. She has helped facilitate the integration of 40 Developmental Assets and other Substance Abuse Prevention frameworks into the work of community coalitions, organizations, and congregations in Cincinnati, Kentucky, and Indiana. She served on the board of directors for the Alcohol and Drug Prevention Association of Ohio. Wyche also is the Co-developer of the Building Prevention with Faith: A Faith-Based Substance Abuse Prevention Toolkit.

Our BOARD

Paul Efron Paul Efron

Coconut Creek, FL
Paul Efron, who joined the Faith Partners Board in 2012, is an innovative and seasoned Consultant with a successful background in financial markets, crisis resolution, turnaround and start-up situations. Paul has more than 20 years of successful, progressive experience in all phases of Strategic Planning, Operations and Financial Management. Recognized as a hand-on, pro-active manager and troubleshooter who can rapidly identify business problems, formulate strategic plans, initiate change and implement new processes and programs in challenging and diverse environments. Paul is also a Motivational speaker with proven ability to lead individuals in their journey to maximize personal and professional potential.

Tom Griffin Thomas M. Griffin

Ph.D., M.S.W.
Minneapolis, MN
Tom Griffin is an independent consultant following his retirement as Associate Executive Director of the Minnesota Institute of Public Health. Tom has 50 years of experience in a variety of leadership roles in education and public health, including Supervisor of Drug Education for the Minnesota Department of Education and Manager of Community and Professional Education for the Hazelden Foundation. He has also taught courses for the Rutgers University Center of Alcohol Studies since 1984. Tom has directed program evaluations at the national, state, and community levels and has contributed to more than 75 publications. Much of his evaluation work emphasized multi-method participatory approaches that emphasized use of findings to improve programs, policies, and practices. He holds a Ph.D. in Educational Policy and Administration with a specialty in evaluation studies and a M.S.W. from the University of Minnesota.

Tracy Johnson Tracy Johnson

Chicago, IL
Tracy Johnson joined to Faith Partners board in 2020. In 2013, Mr. Johnson has been the Managing Partner with SheRay’s & Associates, LLC since 2013. Mr. Johnson also works with various federal, state and local agencies and corporations in developing comprehensive integrated prevention services to economically disadvantaged and African American children and families. He assists urban and inner cities communities with learning the strategic prevention framework and customizing it for their communities (e.g. Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Chicago, Columbus, and Los Angeles). He has received numerous certificates in training in prevention, as well recognized nationally for crime prevention efforts. He serves on statewide youth advocacy board developing policy on protecting our children.

Mark Z. Levbarg

Austin, TX

Kevin Spading Kevin Spading
LICSW LADC CPP

Minneapolis, MN
Kevin is an Associate Professor at Metropolitan State University where he is the chair of the Human Services Department teaching primarily in the undergraduate and graduate alcohol and drug counseling programs.  He has worked in prevention and treatment in the behavioral health field since 1988.  He has been the Director of numerous projects with 10 years leading the Minnesota Prevention Resource Center for the state of Minnesota.  He also was the Director of Chemical and Mental Health for CLUES (Comunidades Latinas Unidas En Servicios) from 1994 to 2004.

Margaret Headshot Margaret White

Ph.D. 

Margaret is an emeriti professor. She retired as The Fleming Companies Professor in Technology Management in the Spears School of Business at Oklahoma State University. She currently teaches internationally. She has a Ph.D. in strategic management from Texas A&M University. Her research interests are in the areas of strategic process, governance, corporate social responsibility, and management of technology. Margaret has been involved in addiction concerns since 1978 when she served on the 50+1 Committee for the US National Institute of Health. Since 2007, she has been involved with Faith Partners as a member of the Healing Places Ministry of St. Paul’s UMC in Tulsa, OK. For 5 years, she's served on the Board of the Addiction Ministries of the Oklahoma Conference of the UMC and was an instructor in their Summer School on Addiction for 3 years.

OUR CONSULTANTS

Kathleen Ambre – Videography/Graphics

With a degree in Photojournalism and Graphic Design from Creighton University, Kathleen uses a wide range of multimedia skills to tell a story in a visually compelling way. Kathleen has been instrumental in helping to create the Faith Partners distance learning model.

Kevin Greenblat – Graphic Designer

Kevin Greenblat has photographed throughout the world, but has focused his work on Texas, Louisiana, and Mexico. Some of his photographs are archived at the Wittliff Collections in San Marcos and is represented through the Davis Gallery in Austin, Texas. In the fall of 2017 he released his first book entitled PlantLife of Western Texas, a collaborative project with the author Philipp Meyer. He lives in Austin, Texas.

Melissa Knoll – Office Manager

Through supporting organization, Behavioral Institute for Children and Adolescents, Melissa has joined the Faith Partners team to help with office management, web site development and project consultation. Melissa has more than 25 years experience in communications and a master’s degree from University of St. Thomas and a bachelor’s degree from Syracuse University.

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