Paul Weaver, LCMHCS, LCAS, CCS
With a Master’s in Professional Counseling from Georgia State University, Paul has worked extensively with Emerging Adults in both hospital and outpatient settings, largely focusing on the client with co-occurring substance use and psychiatric disorders. Being deeply influenced by the work of Carl Rogers, Viktor Frankl, and Carl Jung, Paul tends to focus on themes of autonomy and power, identity formation, and meaning and purpose in his work with clients. Paul brings to Red Oak Recovery® experience and interest in clinical rehabilitation program development and training.
Paul and his wife’s passion for the outdoors and for sustainability drew them to the Asheville area. Working at Red Oak Recovery® enables Paul to continue to focus on his work with Emerging Adults and explore his interests in Eco and Adventure Therapy. When not working, Paul, his wife, and their two young children spend much of their time camping, hiking, and enjoying the serenity of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Liz Gundlach, MSW, LCSW, LCAS-A
Associate Clinical Director
Liz is a transplant from Upstate New York where she grew up in the foothills of the Catskill Mountains and spent summers canoe camping in the Adirondack State Park. Liz is excited about living in the Blue Ridge Mountains, with their prominent outdoor culture and abundance of space.
Liz received her Master’s degree in Social Work through SUNY Albany, and worked actively in various clinical settings to earn her License in Clinical Social Work. Liz brings a diverse range of experience working with clients with substance abuse issues, as well as dual diagnoses. She has a background in treating mental health disorders, specializing in the prevention of sexual abuse, anger management, trauma, and grief and loss. Liz has had the honor of working in hospice and palliative care, as well as the opportunity of working with parolees, probationers, and inmates. She is committed to integrating treatment due to the prevalence of substance abuse in varying populations across the board. Liz has a deep understanding of the impact of addiction on the family, and is passionate about assisting individuals and families in bridging this gap.
In her free time, Liz spends time circuit training, learning the methodical pursuit of climbing, listening to the blues, and exploring the never-ending mysteries these mountains continue to offer.
Derek Rutter, LCMHC, LCAS
Associate Clinical Director
Deeply influenced by person-centered and existential approaches to therapy, Derek is passionate about co-creating experiences of self-examination, discovery, and acceptance, so as to embrace and motivate the whole person. While strongly rooted in Motivational Interviewing, Derek draws on a variety of approaches based on the needs of the individual. He has worked with adolescents and adults on a range of developmental, mental health, and addictions-related concerns in community-based, outpatient, and inpatient settings.
Specific areas of clinical experience include substance-related and addictive disorders, depressive and anxiety disorders, trauma, concerns of adult children of dysfunctional families, gender and sexuality issues, and adjustment challenges. Derek holds a Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Wake Forest University and is pursuing licensure as a Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor and Licensed Clinical Addiction Specialist.
In addition to counseling, Derek is passionate about hiking, yoga, trail running, making things with his hands, playing and recording music, and spending time with his wife, family, and friends.
Ben Lancaster, MA, LCMHCS
Ben has been licensed as a professional counselor for almost 20 years and has been practicing as a therapist and involved with addiction recovery since 1989. He has worked in a wide variety of treatment settings including hospitals, residential, intensive outpatient, independent living, alternative school and public school, agency and private practice. Ben has enjoyed working with dual diagnosis, mental health and addiction recovery clients of all ages, and believes strongly that any person can make meaningful changes necessary to experience a purposeful and fulfilling life with the necessary support.
A native of North Carolina, Ben has appreciated the natural therapy of his homeland from coast to mountains throughout most of his life. Growing up farming tobacco, playing sports and working in the woods of eastern North Carolina gave an early experience of the importance of embracing nature and needing support. Graduating from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1986, an interest in psychology and religious studies was fueled, and he continued to evolve with a Master’s of Theological Studies degree in 1991 from Vanderbilt University with a focus in human development counseling. Experiences of spirituality and community related to mental health and addiction recovery offered a natural fit for continued passion and learning for a lifetime.
Ben is a NC Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor Supervisor. He has committed multiple years of advanced education to two major post graduate training programs – The Southeast Institute for Group & Family Therapy in Chapel Hill and the Appalachian Gestalt Therapy Institute (AGTI) in Asheville. He continues to be currently involved with AGTI. As a primary therapist at Red Oak Recovery®, Ben brings an interest in co-creating experiences of connection, wholeness, and support for individuals and families who decide to make life-affirming changes toward long-term, sustainable recovery.
Ben is an avid UNC TarHeel fan and enjoys hiking and most outdoor activities. He also loves sitting by the fire in his mountain home with his Golden Retriever, Jackson, and his wife, Peggy, of 25 years.
Paula Ulrich, LCMHC, LCAS, ATR-BC
Paula is a nature lover, lifelong learner, and artist. She grew up in the Twin Cities in Minnesota, but spent her late teens and early adulthood in the Front Range of Colorado. She moved to Western North Carolina to connect more deeply to a life aligned with her values and is creating a home with her family in the mountains just outside the city of Asheville.
Paula is passionate about helping people who have disconnected through substance abuse, reconnect with themselves, others, and the world. In her work with clients and families, Paula holds a strength-based perspective while utilizing her training in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Art Therapy, and Gestalt. Most recently, Paula comes to Red Oak Recovery® with a clinical background working with clients struggling with eating disorders and other co-occurring illnesses, including addiction. She holds a master’s degree in Transpersonal Counseling Psychology with a concentration in Art Therapy from Naropa University and is a Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor (LCMHC), Board Certified Art Therapist (ATR-BC), and Licensed Clinical Addiction Specialist Associate (LCAS-A).
In her free time, you can find Paula creating art, writing, listening to music, engaging in mindfulness practices, playing outside, or reading one of her thousands of collected books – many of these activities with her dog by her side.
Hannah Baker, MA, LCMHCA, NCC
Hannah was born and raised in North Carolina and is grateful to have been an Asheville resident for over 10 years. She moved from the Piedmont to the beautiful mountains of NC to attend school at UNC-Asheville.
After completing her undergraduate education, Hannah sought experience in a number of different therapeutic settings including psychiatric residential treatment facility, local charter school counseling office, intensive in-home services, and as a guide at Red Oak Recovery®. Hannah received her Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Lenoir-Rhyne University and is a Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor Associate. She is delighted to return to Red Oak’s clinical team after completing 3 semesters of internship working closely with Red Oak’s primary and family therapists. Hannah’s approach is gently and warmly supporting individuals and their families as they learn to navigate various challenges with mental health and co-occurring diagnoses, process trauma and painful patterns, and heal attachment wounds. Her focus on the various relationships we have in our life, both with ourselves and with those around us, set the foundation for deeper exploration, connection, and change.
When Hannah is not at work, she enjoys spending time in any of the local coffee shops, watching documentaries, or canoeing down the French Broad River with her partner and friends.
Wilson Bell, MSW
Wilson grew up in Asheville and has a deep connection with the landscape and culture of Western North Carolina. He attended the University of Colorado in Boulder and received his undergraduate degree from Guilford College. He has lived in Greensboro, NC for the past five years where he was pursuing his MSW at Walden University and working at a treatment center. Wilson completed his clinical internship at another dual-diagnosis residential treatment center in WNC. This allowed him to move back to the area and closer to family.
Wilson’s passion and purpose is empowering clients to make positive changes in their lives. He found one of the most rewarding experiences to be working at the Guilford County Solution to the Opioid Problem (GCSTOP) where he provided post-overdose outreach, safer using practices, linkage to care, and unconditional positive regard. Using empathy and compassion to help empower clients to step into recovery is one of the primary tools he practices. Wilson looks forward to implementing a variety of therapeutic interventions he has been trained in, including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), experiential therapy, mindfulness, and 12 step implementations with clients at Red Oak Recovery®. Helping clients embrace vulnerability and authenticity is a goal throughout his work.
When Wilson is not working, he will likely be found kayaking the Green River, climbing in Linville Gorge, or hiking with his dog Parker. Exploring and playing in nature allows Wilson to deepen his spiritual connection, one of the many reasons why he is grateful to be back in the area.
David Wilder, CADC, CPSS, RPS
David was born and raised in South Carolina. He spent his formative years in Columbia, and attended the College of Charleston where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications. After years with struggles of his own he found himself in Asheville, which served as a safe place to recover in a 12 step program. In the surrounding mountains and forests, he discovered the therapeutic value of nature, which plays a huge role in his own recovery.
He has held numerous positions over the years, including 10 years with a large health insurance company, as a house manager for an aftercare program in Asheville, and most recently as a Recovery Guide here at Red Oak Recovery®.
David has been trained as a Relapse Prevention Specialist, and is also a Certified Peer Support Specialist. He is excited to share his passion for recovery, 12 step knowledge, gentle spirit, and love for the outdoors with the clients at Red Oak Recovery®. He stays active in the Asheville recovery community and also enjoys running, hiking, photography, music, and spending time with family and friends.
Jay Vaughan, CADC-I
Jay, an Atlanta, Georgia native, joined the Red Oak Recovery® team as a Clinical Technician in 2016 and moved quickly into the Case Manager role. He has struggled with addiction since he was fourteen years old and has been in and out of treatment since he was nineteen. In 2014, he finally surrendered and began his new life in recovery, which he is grateful for every day.
Jay brings hope and knowledge to clients on campus with all sides of drug addiction – using, relapsing, getting clean, and staying active in the program. As a Case Manager, Jay’s work supports clients and families as they continue along the journey through treatment. He has a great understanding of what the clients are going through and what they have been through up to this point.
Ellen Sizemore, MA, MDIV, LCMHC, LCAS
Family Support Specialist
Ellen joined The Willows at Red Oak Recovery®’s treatment team in 2017 after earning a Master of Divinity and a Master of Arts in Counseling from Wake Forest University in 2012, then working as a therapist and supervisor in community mental health and substance abuse services for several years. She currently serves as a Family Support Specialist at Red Oak Recovery® and appreciates getting to work directly with clients, families, and alongside the treatment team. She is fully licensed as a Professional Counselor in North Carolina as well as a Clinical Addictions Specialist. Ellen is passionate about recovery and supporting young adults in experiencing and claiming their own power and wholeness.
Ellen is from rural east Tennessee and is grateful for the mountains from which she came and the mountains she calls home today. Ellen lives in Asheville with her husband, Joe, and daughter, Heidi. She loves running, yard work, singing, and eating at all the eclectic restaurants in Asheville.
Clinical Trainer and Trauma Expert
Dr. Carlyn Daubs, PhD, LP
Carlyn joined Red Oak Recovery® after obtaining her MS and PhD in Counseling Psychology from the University of North Texas. Prior to joining the Red Oak Recovery team, Dr. Daubs treated children, adolescents, and families at many different therapeutic settings, including a community mental health clinic, university counseling centers, an adventure program, and a therapeutic boarding school. In addition to Dr. Daubs’ extensive clinical and assessment experience, she has also built and designed therapeutic programming for residential facilities for adolescents and their families.
Her research interests include family systems, parent-child attachment, internalizing and externalizing behavior problems, comorbid disorders, addiction processes, romantic attachment, and coping styles. In her spare time Dr. Daubs enjoys running, reading, and traveling.