My Health, My Choice, My Life
Adults living with serious mental illness die on average 25 years earlier than other Americans largely due to treatable medical conditions (follow this link to read the research). The My Health, My Choice, My Life Initiative was created, in part, to dramatically change this statistic for the better in Tennessee and to make a positive difference in the lives of those living with mental health and substance use conditions.
My Health My Choice My Life’s Peer Wellness Coaches (PWC’s) promote healthier behaviors for Tennesseeans with Mental Health and/or Substance Use Disorder conditions by facilitating holistic, evidence-based curriculums such as Chronic Disease, Diabetes, and Chronic Pain Self-Management Workshops, WHAM, NEW-R, and Tobacco Free Workshops, and one-on-one Peer Wellness Coaching to help participants achieve their wellness goals.
The PWC’s provide their services within their respective agencies and Peer Support Centers, as well as in facilitator trainings across the state.
Peer Wellness Coaches in Action
Meet the Peer Wellness Coaches
Dina, a Johnson City, TN native, earned a BS in Psychology and an MA in Storytelling from ETSU. She has worked as a case manager for victims of domestic violence and began working at Frontier Health as a Peer Wellness Coach for the TDMHSAS Wellness Initiative My Health My Choice My Life in 2015.
She received several honors in this position, including keynote status for the 2017 Art for Awareness event in Nashville and the “Advocate of the Year” award at the 2018 Certified Peer Recovery Specialist Conference in Manchester, TN.
Dina began serving as the Statewide Peer Wellness Coach & Trainer in November, 2018, and she is committed to serving peers receiving services in the state of Tennessee and also to her team of Peer Wellness Coaches. Dina is personally committed to wellness, enjoys acting and theatre arts, Bellydance, and being active in the great outdoors.
A peer wellness coach for Frontier Health in Johnson City, Julie Fann is a former newspaper reporter and adjunct professor who developed a passion for mental health issues due to her father’s serious mental illness as well as her own struggles. This led to a position as a grant writer for the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law in Washington, D.C., the non-profit which was at the fore of the de-institutionalization movement in the 1970’s. She had the honor of meeting Patrick Kennedy who has been an advocate for mental health throughout his career, as well as Reese Butler, founder of 1-800-SUICIDE. With a bachelor’s degree in English from Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois, and a master’s from East Tennessee State University, she considers it a privilege now to help those who are living with mental health, addiction, and co-occurring disorders in a four-county region in Upper East Tennessee where she was born and raised. She lives with her cat, Abby, and several house plants.
Deven is a newer Peer Wellness Coach in the Upper East TN area with Frontier Health. She was trained as a Pastor and has spent most of her years working with all ages in Christian education and pulpit ministry. As a Chaplain Resident at her local VA hospital, Deven discovered a passion for working with people with mental health and/or substance abuse. Deven has also struggled with depression and anxiety throughout the years, with the most severe as post-partum depression and then depression accompanying her autoimmune illness and subsequent pain. When the pain became too much, she made a decision to live and fight for her health. She has found recovery in her mental health struggles, but also a balance in treating her autoimmune illness-Sjogrens. Deven loves to hike, camp, and spend time with her kids and partner.
Patrick Dickens was born in Springfield, Missouri and moved to Tennessee in 2014 for college. He graduated from Carson-Newman University in July of 2019 and received a Bachelor’s degree in Food and Nutrition. With the help of his wife, he became interested in mental health and wanted to explore what it has to offer. He became a Peer Wellness Coach with Helen Ross McNabb at the Friendship House in September of 2019. He has a passion for helping others live a healthy lifestyle using health and nutrition. He also loves to work with people and connect in a personal level to help them reach their goals. He has just started working for Helen Ross McNabb, but it is excited to learn and grow within the community. He hopes to use his past mental health struggles to help others learn from his past experiences. His hobbies consist enjoying the good old outdoors, baseball, football, exercising, and spending time with his family.
Kennith Hawkins became a Peer Wellness Coach with Cherokee Health Systems in May of 2019. He received his Bachelor’s degree in English Literature from the University of Tennessee in 2012, and his Master’s degree in Literature, Criticism, and Textual Studies from the University of Tennessee in 2018. His interest in helping others is not new; as a teaching assistant in graduate school, Kennith found his most fulfilling experiences to be one-on-one interactions with students. Living with lifelong generalized anxiety disorder, he hopes to pull from both his personal and professional experiences to help people achieve their health goals by overcoming various hurdles through highly personalized coaching and support. Kennith enjoys reading, cycling, and gardening.
Carrie recently became a Peer Wellness Coach for Cherokee Health Systems in Knoxville, TN in January, 2019. She graduated from The University of Tennessee with a Bachelor’s of Science in Education and completed her national exam for certification in therapeutic recreation in 2013. She went on to work as a Recreational Therapist in a residential psychiatric facility for several years. She has spent time also working as a case manager for Sevierville’s indigent population, and was the activities director at an assisted living facility, before welcoming her first baby girl in September of last year. Her role as a Peer Wellness Coach is humbling and meaningful, as she has lived with OCD and ADHD and has been in recovery for most of her adult life. She finds nothing but passion in empowering and educating those on their own journey of recovery and wellness to live their healthiest and most positive life. Her favorite things to do include kayaking, gardening, spending time with her new family, traveling and Tennessee Football-Go Vols!
Leanne joined the My Health, My Choice, My Life team in September 2013 as a Peer Wellness Coach at Cherokee Health Systems in Morristown, Tennessee. Leanne graduated from Tusculum College in 1995 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology. In 2007, Leanne earned her Master of Arts degree in Organizational Management from Tusculum College. After college she devoted several years to working with children and families. Ten of those years were spent employed by the State of Tennessee as a Supervisor in Child Protective Services. Before beginning her journey as a Peer Wellness Coach, Leanne taught Psychology for two terms at National College of Business and Technology. During her time as a Peer Wellness Coach, Leanne has not only become a Certified Peer Recovery Specialist, but also became a trained facilitator of that curriculum. Having struggled with panic disorder since she was a teenager then later in life overcoming an addiction to opioids, Leanne feels blessed to be able to help others realize that recovery is real. She enjoys reading, dancing, discovering new music, and watching/listening to her son play guitar.
Richard Moseley was born and raised in Clinton, Tennessee and got his Master’s in Counseling with a concentration in Vocational Rehabilitation at the University of Tennessee Knoxville. He interned for Tennessee Vocational Rehabilitation in Knoxville, TN and then went to work for Ridgeview Behavioral Health Services. He worked as a Psychiatric Technician and then as a Program Assistant in psychosocial rehabilitation for Ridgeview. Richard came from a family with a history of medical and mental health issues. Seeing the problems from his own family, he wanted to help others in the best capacity that he can and so decided to work as a Peer Wellness Coach. As a coach, he has more opportunities to be in a position where he can help more people with the same problems that he has experienced. He wants to be able to show others there is hope for a positive change.
|Peer Wellness Coach||City||Agency||Phone|
|Julie Fann||Johnson City||Frontier Healthemail@example.com|
|Deven Johnson||Johnson City||Frontier Healthfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Noelle Gould||Knoxville||Helen Ross McNabb Center||865-544-3841 ext. 4103||Noelle.email@example.com|
|Kennith Hawkins||Knoxville||Cherokee Health Systems||865-522-6097||Kennith.firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Carrie Trawinski||Knoxville||Cherokee Health Systemsemail@example.com|
|Leanne Crawford||Morristown||Cherokee Health Systems||423-586-5032 ext. firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Richard Moseley||Oak Ridge||Ridgeview Behavioral Healthemail@example.com|
Johnson City – March 18th (Will be Rescheduled)
Memphis – April 22nd (Will be Rescheduled)
Knoxville – May 13th (Postponed)
Nashville – June 30th (Postponed)
Nashville – May 18th – 22nd (Postponed)