Melissa Robinson Graves, LMFT, Director of Training
Melissa Robinson Graves is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and is Director of Training at CHRIS 180. Melissa has over seventeen years of experience serving children, adolescents, adults and families in community, school and private settings in Florida and Georgia. Melissa has worked extensively with individuals and families who have been involved in the juvenile justice, child welfare and mental health systems and specialized in working with teenagers and young adults as they struggled to navigate their transition into adulthood. She worked for the Georgia behavioral health authority, overseeing and implementing programming and best practices for the emerging adult population and enhancing statewide adoption of System of Care principles. In 2015, Melissa began her current position as Director of Training at CHRIS 180 and directs the planning, development and implementation of training programs for internal staff and helping professionals in the community. She leads the organization’s efforts to educate social service professionals and educators on understanding and implementing trauma informed care. Melissa is also a subject matter expert on the unique needs and challenges of emerging adults. Melissa earned her BA in Psychology from Georgia State University in Atlanta in 1998 and her MS in Marriage and Family Therapy from Nova Southeastern University in Ft. Lauderdale in 2000.
Erin Bednarczyk, Training Manager
Erin Bednarczyk has over 12 years experience working with at-risk youth, adolescents, and young adults in a range of capacities. She has worked in multiple capacities in the social service field including residential and community programs providing direct service, education and employment coordination, training, and creating and facilitating youth leadership teams. She has worked across the continuum of issues faced by youth, such as foster care placements, mental/behavioral health diagnoses and homelessness. In addition to developing and implementing innovative strategies to assist emerging adults in obtaining jobs, education and housing, she has disseminated these practices widely at state- and national-level conferences. She brings a wealth of experience in training related to key areas of support for young people including therapeutic crisis management, adolescent development, teaching life skills to teens in foster care, and engagement strategies for the emerging adult population. Erin has focused her attention on educating young adults, foster parents, direct care staff, case managers, therapists, educators, executive management, and state level officials. Erin is the Training Manager at CHRIS 180 in Atlanta, GA.
Scot Fincher, Training Coordinator
Scot Fincher is a native Georgian and attended Georgia Southern College. He spent 21 years in Corporate America in executive administrative positions. Scot has served on various Boards including International Rodeo Association, Jerusalem House, Church Administrative Councils, and was the Director of the Sock-it-to-me Mission for the homeless. Scot has been a member of the East Point Citizens Police Academy and the Main Street Association for East Point. In 2005, Scot left corporate America and took an administrative position with CHRIS 180. In the past ten years Scot has worked and supported many areas of CHRIS 180 and for the past 7 years as the Training Coordinator for the organization. Scot has trained thousands of individuals from a variety of organizations including child welfare, juvenile justice, local school systems, social service, healthcare and behavioral health organizations. He specializes in trauma informed care, working with LGBTQ youth, child sexual abuse prevention, MindSet (crisis de-escalation) and CPR/First Aid.
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