Without a hard working, dedicated operations team, how would anything get done at Red Oak Recovery? With qualified addiction recovery and program guides, facilities managers, life skills facilitators, and gardens and grounds keepers, they keep our facility up and running while maintaining its serene beauty.
Nathan Gazaway, CADC-I
Nathan is originally from the Atlanta, GA area and arrived in Western North Carolina seeking relief from a debilitating drug addiction. It was in these mountains where Nathan found new purpose and the desire to separate from all that had defined his life previously. Nathan brings his hard-won recovery to his position at Red Oak Recovery and knows he has been exactly where all Red Oak Recovery clients have been: in the same hopelessness and futility of trying to get clean on their own and failing. Nathan is thankful to be one of the lucky few to have the opportunity to get clean in a treatment facility, and this experience led him to serve in the field of recovery in roles as direct care, management at both transitionary and primary treatment facilities, and adventure programing. Nathan truly believes in the healing power of the natural world and brings an intense desire to respect and protect the mountains of Western North Carolina. This desire compelled him to achieve the title of Leave No Trace Master Educator as well as Certified Substance Abuse Counselor Intern.
Nathan’s mother is also active in her own recovery community, supporting those with addicted children and offering her experience to those in the destructive wake of the addict. In his spare time, Nathan loves to hike and explore the Great Smoky Mountains and the Pisgah National Forest with his therapy dog Ellie May. He enjoys woodworking, playing sports, and working on motorcycles. He also spends much of his time working with and mentoring other young men in recovery that may be seeking help from the 12-step community.
Facilities Maintenance Technician
Brett is a longtime resident of Western North Carolina. After graduating high school in Northern Virginia, he returned to the mountains where he earned his Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Western Carolina University.
He enjoys working with his hands and has many years of experience working in the facilities maintenance field. His time working for a nonprofit organization has taught him the importance of helping others.
He stays grounded by working in his daylily nursery and spending time with his wife Olga.
Client Financial Services Manager
Kirsten has lived in Western North Carolina (WNC) for the majority of her life. She grew up in Bryson City, NC and then moved to Asheville to pursue a management degree from UNC-Asheville. After graduating in 2017, she worked at an optometrist office where she learned about patient care and medical billing. She was interested in Red Oak Recovery because of the center’s ability to incorporate WNC’s beauty in their treatments. She enjoys hiking to waterfalls, yoga, canoeing, and finding good coffee shops.
Client Financial Services Coordinator
Chesnea grew up in Brevard, NC. Her most recent position was serving as a special event coordinator at Connestee Falls. Prior to moving into that position, Chesnea held an accounts payable position for 3 years at the same company and has worked with at risk youth at the alternative school in Transylvania county.
Not only does she bring experience in accounting, but also in client relations. She received a business degree from Mars Hill University while working and being a mother. In her free time, she loves spending time with her 2 boys and enjoys hiking and traveling to new places.
Julia grew up in Germany where she spent her youth snowboarding and biking before moving to the U.S. in 2011. After coming to America, she spent her early adulthood exploring and experiencing a different way of life. When she moved to Western North Carolina, Julia fell in love with Asheville’s captivating outdoors and beautiful weather. Being a life-long learner, she pursued a bachelor’s in psychology with a minor in neuroscience from the University of North Carolina at Asheville, graduating in 2017.
After joining the Red Oak Family in August 2017 and working at The Willows campus as a Clinical Technician, she joined the Compliance Team in the summer of 2018. She is grateful for the opportunity to support the company in her role as Compliance Officer. With her love and attention for details, she creates, provides, and maintains a positive healing environment for young adults in recovery.
In her free time, Julia can be found hiking on the Blue Ridge Parkway with her two dogs, doing yoga or enjoying the beautiful weather.
Mark Lemke, MSW, LCSW, LCAS
Clinical Compliance Specialist
Mark’s prior work includes facilitating a Substance Abuse Intensive Out Patient Program (SAIOP) in the community of Asheville, NC. He has been working in substance abuse treatment throughout his internships and in his career. It’s truly a passion of his to help people find their voice in recovery.
He grew up in Crown Point, IN near Chicago, but has spent his adult life in the great state of North Carolina. His experience in the Marine Corps, and working with veterans at the Sierra Club led to him to get his Master’s of Social Work to be able to help people who struggle with addiction.
He is truly passionate about teaching young adults the recovery process and takes a person centered approach to therapy. He enjoys helping people find their voice, find peace in their recovery from addiction, and helping them transcend into happy, healthy individuals from the ground up. He’s very passionate about helping young adults find their recovery-based values and how to apply them for long term recovery.
He enjoys spending time with his wife, family (including his dog, Hooch), reading science fiction, Blue Ridge Mountain Culture and all things nerdy.
Human Resources Manager
Justin Slack was born and raised in Florida and moved to North Carolina in 2010, drawn by the beauty of the mountains. After graduating from Florida State University, Justin served in various management roles prior to discovering his true passion for Human Resources. As a certified HR professional, Justin enjoys learning all about the many ways Human Resources can have a major impact on both the lives of the employees and those they serve. His desire is to continually provide and ensure a positive atmosphere and experience for the employees at Red Oak Recovery, so they can continue to provide the absolute best care for our clients.
Outside of work, Justin enjoys a number of volunteer activities, teaching and sharing the joy of music with both children and adults. Justin also enjoys traveling whenever possible to discover the beauty and uniqueness that other cultures and places have to share.