Addiction Treatment Team

Susan E. Cowen, MSW, LCSW

Executive Director

With 25 years of experience in the non-profit sector, Susan Cowen returns to California via Chicago to lead Beacon House and Gateway Foundation’s northern California operations. Most recently, Susan served as the President and Chief Executive Officer for Kenneth Young Center, a large behavioral health organization serving mental health, substance use disorder and older adults’ needs in 24 communities in the Northwest suburbs of Chicago.

Susan’s professional experience also includes holding the position of Executive Director for Family Service of Glencoe, Chief Executive Officer for Youth Network Council, and Chief Executive Officer for the Illinois Collaboration on Youth. Susan completed her Ph.D. coursework in organizational design, nonprofit management, and social policy at the University of Illinois, holds a Master’s Degree from San Diego State University in Social Work Administration, and earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Indiana University in Law and Public Administration. Now residing on the Monterey Peninsula, Susan is a licensed clinical social worker, mother of two, and enjoys tennis, walking and meditation in the incredible natural environment all around her!

Lara Clayton, MPA, LMFT

Clinical Director

With a background in mental health and co-occurring disorders, Lara Clayton has been a part of the local non-profit sector for over 15 years, working with children, families, adults, and seniors in both outpatient and residential settings. She has extensive experience and training in trauma-informed services, attachment therapy, CBT, group work, grief and loss, and depth psychology. Utilizing a Social Rehabilitation Philosophy, she is dedicated to cultivating empowerment, personal safety, and healing in a community setting.  Prior to joining Beacon House, Lara spent the past 7 years leading teams as Program Director of Permanent Supported and Transitional Housing programs, as well as the Short-term Crisis Residential programs at Interim, Inc. She has experience working with diverse populations, including survivors of domestic violence, couples, families, and trauma survivors.

Lara received her Bachelor’s Degree in Collaborative Humans Services at CSU Monterey Bay, Executive Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Golden Gate University, and Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute and is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist.

Lee Goldman, MD

Medical Director/ Addictionologist

Dr. Lee Goldman has been with Beacon House since 2012 and has over 30 years of expertise in family practice, addiction treatment, and emergency medicine. He is Board-Certified in both family-practice and addiction medicine, and has been actively involved in the local addiction community since 1980, when he accepted the position of Medical Director for the Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula (CHOMP) Recovery Center. There, he developed and implemented an alcohol withdrawal scale tool still utilized at CHOMP, as well as at numerous forensic facilities. In addition to his work at Beacon House, Dr. Goldman continues to work for the CHOMP ER Department, where he received the Physician of the Year award in 2009.

Dr. Goldman completed his medical training at University of Southern California, moving to the Monterey Peninsula after finishing his residency in Pennsylvania in 1978. In his free time, Dr. Goldman enjoys bike riding along the beautiful coastal trails, spending time with family and grandchildren, gardening, and ballroom dancing.

Dr. Cynthia B. Hunt, MD

Consulting Psychiatrist

Dr. Cynthia Hunt is a graduate of Loyola Stritch School of Medicine. Her professional experience includes board certification and practice in internal medicine, pediatrics and psychiatry. She currently maintains an active practice at the Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula, where she is the Chief of the Department of Psychiatry and works closely with Dr. Goldman. She also serves as a Board Member of the Catholic Medical Association, where she is a Regional Director for Region XI (West Coast). After seeing the impact of the current opioid epidemic, Dr. Hunt has become an outspoken advocate for addiction treatment services, and serves as chair of the national CMA Opioid Task Force. She regularly meets with the Department of Health and Human Services in Washington DC regarding shared goals in the biological, psychological, social and spiritual treatment of addiction. She also joined colleagues in representing North America at a recent international meeting on addiction at the Vatican. In May 2019, she was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award from the CMA for her work on the opioid crisis.

Dr. Hunt is sought out as a speaker for national and local organizations on several topics, including that of the opioid crisis. She is also an adjunct faculty member of St. Patrick’s Archdiocesan Seminary in Menlo Park, CA. An accomplished pianist and Lay Carmelite, she has been blessed with her husband of 27 years and their three children.

Dr. Allen Berger, PhD

Consulting Psychologist

Dr. Allen Berger is an internationally recognized expert in the science of recovery and the clinical director of The Institute for Optimal Recovery and Emotional Sobriety and the California Institute of Gestalt Experiential Therapy. He wrote Hazelden’s popular recovery mainstay 12 Stupid Things that Mess Up Recovery (2008) as well as 12 Smart Things to do When the Booze and Drugs are Gone (2010), 12 Hidden Rewards of Making Amends (2013) and 12 More Stupid Things that Mess Up Recovery (2016). His first book, Love Secrets-Revealed (2006), was dedicated to Dr. Walter Kempler, his dear friend and mentor.

Dr. Berger is widely known for his work on several areas of recovery, including the integration of modern psychotherapy with the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, understanding the psychological forces operating in the 12 Steps, and Emotional Sobriety. He is also an expert at helping new patients understand the benefits of group therapy and how to get the most out of it and helping families adjust to the challenges of recovery. Dr. Berger has been working with Beacon House since June of 2014.

Ed Storti, CADC-II

Addiction Educator

Ed Storti pioneered the concept of Motivational Intervention starting in 1973. He published his bestselling book, Crisis Intervention:  Acting Against Addiction, in 1988, a chronicle of his early work in creating a positive moment in the life of addicts and their families. The Storti Model of Intervention personifies the motivational, inspirational, and spiritual method of working with an addictive person. Ed devotes much of his time to education on the disease of addiction, the process of intervening, and exceeding customer expectations.

His most recent book, Heart to Heart, has received numerous recognitions for his style of intervention and expectations of staff professionalism. Medical centers, chemical dependency facilities, universities and national conferences request Ed’s educational lectures and presentations, and many notable institutions in the healthcare industry have acquired his expertise on implementing symposiums on professional behavior for their staffs and management teams. Ed works with the Beacon House clinical and admissions teams to ensure a seamless transition of individuals into recovery.

Noah Shumpert

Addiction Specialist

Noah Shumpert has over 50 years of experience as an addiction counselor, consultant, and interventionist on the Monterey Peninsula. He is a skilled group facilitator, and brings to Beacon House a passion for working with people in recovery and their families.  Among his many distinctions, Noah was the 2013 recipient of the Daniel J. Murphy Award, which recognizes leaders in the drug and alcohol recovery community. At Beacon House, Noah facilitates the family program and facilitates groups at both the residential and outpatient programs. He has previously worked for the Community Hospital of Monterey Peninsula (CHOMP), Marin General Hospital, Fred Finch Youth Center, and as an Employee Assistance Program counselor. Noah has been working with the Beacon House team since April of 2010.

Admissions and Utilization Review Team

Dana M. Evans, LMFT

Regional Director of Admissions and Utilization Review

Dana Evans has been working in the addiction and mental health field for over 20 years. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Clinical Psychology from The Claremont Colleges and Master’s Degree from Bethany University, specializing in Marriage and Family Therapy. Dana also attended Alliant International University, where she received additional postgraduate training.

Dana has worked with a wide range of clients and families in hospital settings, residential care facilities and social service agencies. She has extensive experience in the primary treatment of addictive disorders, case management, individual and group therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, relapse prevention, and co-occurring disorders.

Dana has been an integral member of the Beacon House team for over a decade and has held many positions during her tenure, including: Director of Assessment & Referral, Community Relations and Utilization Review, Regional Director of Clinical Outreach, and Case Manager. In addition, Dana managed the implementation of the electronic health record system at Beacon House. Her dedication and love for Beacon House and her belief in the mission shines through in helping our clients find lasting recovery.

CONTACT ONE OF OUR ADMISSIONS COUNSELORS 24/7 AT 1-800-215-4733

Kate Englund, CADC, Admissions Counselor and Continuing Care Coordinator

Chris Graveline, Admissions Counselor

Melinda Harden, MS, Admissions Counselor

Business and Strategic Development Team

Kristi Boosman, MPA

Director of Business Development

Kristi Boosman is a communications and marketing professional with 25 years of experience creating public education and marketing campaigns that create measurable change. Her motto is “Impact through Outreach.” She started her career at PBS Station KCTS in Seattle where she created public education campaigns on such diverse issues as addiction and recovery, foster care, and the environment. Early in her career, Kristi had the privilege of working on a Bill Moyers’ documentary entitled, “Moyers on Addiction: Close to Home,” which gave her a first look at the science, treatment, prevention, and politics of addiction in America.

Kristi has a BA in International Studies from University of Washington, Seattle, and a Masters in Public Administration from Walden University. She has extensive business development skills which she is excited to put to use at Beacon House.

Kristi lives with her family in Pacific Grove where she enjoys biking, hiking, jogging, standup paddle-boarding, and any excuse to be outside.

Lauren Havens, MPH

Project Specialist

Lauren Havens graduated with her Master of Public Health degree from the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, where she received an Outstanding Achievement Award for her capstone project. Her graduate studies focused on creative approaches to program evaluation and community-based public health interventions. She has over 10 years of experience working in the nonprofit sector, most recently supporting multiple behavioral health organizations in developing evaluation frameworks and utilizing a public health model for program development. Across all her work, she has brought a passion for equity and improving lives.

At Beacon House, Lauren’s role includes supporting the organization’s strategic development, program evaluation, continuous quality improvement, and accreditation processes, including tracking and incorporating client satisfaction and outcomes data into program development.

In her free time, she enjoys ballet, hiking and backpacking with her husband, and naps with her two cats. She also has a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology from UC San Diego.

Jerry McDonald, BA, ACATA

Marketing

Jerry McDonald is a healthcare professional with over 40 years of experience in the field of addiction treatment.  He began his career as a counselor at the San Pedro Peninsula Hospital in San Pedro, CA where he worked with colleagues Dr. William Rader, Dr. Allen Berger, Dr. Judi Hollis, Ed Storti, and Father Leo Booth. This included his role in designing the country’s first inpatient, abstinent based, twelve-step driven eating disorder treatment program. He has also served as Executive VP for the Rader Institute’s development of a national healthcare corporation for the treatment of eating disorders, and assisted Len Baltzer at the Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula to develop the “Clint Eastwood Youth Program.” Jerry has also been on staff, in a variety of roles, at the Betty Ford Center in Rancho Mirage, CA. He has been consulting with Beacon House for over a decade.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Warren Harrington, Chair
Amalesh Sanku, Treasurer
France Pitera, Secretary

Mr. Warren Harrington
Mr. David Johnson
Ms. Arla Lach
Mr. David Onion

Ms. France Pitera
Mr. Amalesh Sanku
Mr. Andy Smith
Mr. Sean Spowart

Thomas Britton, President & CEO
Susan E. Cowen, Executive Director

Warren Harrington, Chair
Amalesh Sanku, Treasurer
France Pitera, Secretary

Mr. Warren Harrington
Mr. David Johnson
Ms. Arla Lach
Mr. David Onion

Ms. France Pitera
Mr. Amalesh Sanku
Mr. Andy Smith
Mr. Sean Spowart

Thomas Britton, President & CEO
Susan E. Cowen, Executive Director