Malvern Outpatient Team
Christopher Brander is a current primary therapist at RCA Malvern in their PHP program. Chris has a master’s in social work from Temple University and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Drexel University. Chris carries a current license in Social Work with the state of Pennsylvania. Chris has been in the field of human services since 1994 and specifically in Drug and Alcohol treatment since 2005 as a primary therapist. Chris master level internship was in both drug and alcohol and foster care. Chris’s wanting to be in service to others has a long history. Chris’s approach is person-centered with a social justice focus. When working with clients in group, Chris uses and eclectic approach of trauma informed counseling, DBT and ACT as well as a 12 step orientation. Chris focus is to help the client find their voice, while developing supports in the group and the wider community. Weekly Family contact is essential in helping our clients integrate back into there family and the community.
Chris’s interests includes spending time with family and friends, listening to music and going to shows, riding bicycles and skiing. Recently Chris has taken up lessons in Ballroom dancing.
Dakota is a primary therapist in the outpatient department at RCA Malvern. They earned their Master’s degree at West Chester University in Social Work, specializing in integrated care for medically vulnerable populations. They completed their Master’s level internships in children and youth crisis intervention, mental health counseling, and LGBTQ+ specific behavioral health services. Follow the completion of their graduate program, Dakota worked in community based mental health and medical social work. Dakota utilizes a trauma-informed, person-centered approach, and partners with clients to develop an improved understanding of self, as well as meaningful, long-lasting change. They are currently working towards licensure as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.
Damali Austin, LPC, is a primary therapist in the outpatient department at Recovery Centers of America. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Clinical Psychology and Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at St. John’s University. During his schooling, he completed his Master’s level internships in children’s counseling, mental health counseling, and substance abuse counseling. He also became a member of Chi Sigma Iota honor society, while completing his graduate degree. Damali’s post graduate experience in the field began at an outpatient facility, where he grew his experience in facilitating groups and individual sessions. Damali utilizes a person-centered, strengths-based approach and strives to provide the best evidence-based practices to all his clients. He has recently gained his licensure as a Professional Counselor and looks forward to continuing to grow his knowledge as a clinician.
Stephanie Smith brings great qualities to Malvern from a varied background in hospitality and customer service. She worked in the restaurant industry for over twenty years and has some prior work experience as a receptionist. Stephanie enjoys volunteering locally when she can and translates her active listening skills and patience to our site. Her passion for recovery truly brings excellent client care to Malvern and she is a genuine casual support for our clients and staff.
After 25 years in Construction Management, Jim was interested in seeking a second career where he might find a sense of self-fulfillment while helping others. An inclination to explore the underpinnings of addiction arose because of familial involvement. Enrolling in a Drug and Alcohol Program at Villanova University, which provided an overview of the attributes a D&A Counselor displayed, fostered a passion to embark on the career path Jim had envisioned. He enrolled in the Rosemont College School of Graduate and Professional Studies pursuing a Master of Arts Degree in Counseling Psychology with an Addictions Concentration.
Upon graduation, Jim began his career at an Inpatient facility where he continued to learn the complexities of the profession and the importance of a non-judgmental countenance. When the opportunity to work at an Outpatient facility presented, Jim believed the chance to strengthen his group facilitation skill set seemed optimal for both professional and personal growth. Now at RCA, Jim believes he has actualized the therapeutic niche for which he was destined. Although Jim’s use of the Matrix Model, which employs a combination of therapeutic techniques, could best describe his treatment approach; he too could be described as a practitioner who utilizes psychoeducational groups to suggest to members the possible origins of their afflictions and ways by which they might heal. At the end of the day, Jim believes the therapeutic relationship essential; affording the client an opportunity to not only be listened to but to be heard.
Devon Chakiris, LPC, Clinical Assessor comes to RCA with a varied background and 9 years of field experience. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Clinical Psychology from Marywood University in 2012 with a minor in Criminal Justice. While there, she participated in the Psy Chi Honors society, various volunteer projects and interned primarily with children. Devon started her career in a partial hospital for adults with severe and persistent mental illnesses and later worked in case management for a Pregnancy and Parenting Center and shelter. In 2017, Devon graduated with her Master’s Degree in Clinical Counseling with an Addictions minor from LaSalle University. Her internship in general outpatient became her place of employment for several years where she provided individual and group counseling to adults and children. Devon also brought services to the Bucks County Homeless shelter and in local schools during her time there. She began working part-time as a supervisor in a treatment center in 2019 and later became a supervisor for a walk-in assessment center for substance use disorders. Devon specializes in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy and working with the LGBTQ community.
Music Therapist and Primary Therapist
Caitlin Kish, MA, MT-BC is a Board-Certified Music Therapist and a Primary Therapist for Recovery Centers of America in the Intensive Outpatient Program. Cait has over 10 years of experience working with co-occurring and addiction populations in all levels of care, including inpatient and outpatient. Cait began her music therapy studies at the University of Georgia. She completed a six-month internship at the Palmetto Hospital System in South Carolina, and later, obtained a master’s degree in Music Therapy and Counseling from Drexel University. Cait utilizes a person-centered, strengths-based approach and strives to provide the best trauma-informed, evidence-based, and ethical care to all her clients. In session, she aids her clients in creating an individualized lifestyle of recovery that includes expanding recovery and sober supports, implementation of coping and relapse prevention skills, healthy communication skills, and boundary setting. When not working as a music therapist and counselor, Cait enjoys listening to and creating music, spending time outdoors, hiking, riding horses, and practicing yoga and meditation.
Britnee is a primary therapist in the outpatient department at recovery centers of America Devon. She earned her Master’s degree at Eastern University in Clinical Counseling Psychology with a concentration in Applied Behavior Analysis. During her schooling, she completed her Master’s level internships in children’s counseling, mental health counseling, and substance abuse counseling. Britnee’s experience at RCA Devon began as an intern, which allowed her to gain clinical experience in facilitating groups and supporting clients throughout their recovery journey. In addition, Britnee has experience working with children as an ABA therapist, implementing behavioral interventions. She is currently working towards licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor.
Dr. Caroline McWilliams
Dr. McWilliams is a graduate of Temple University School of Medicine. She trained in Internal Medicine at Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia. Dr. McWilliams is Board certified in Internal Medicine and Addiction Medicine, and has been practicing since 2007. She has served as an attending physician for the Department of Public Health at a community health center in Philadelphia and the Medical Director at Inglis House, a nursing home in Philadelphia, PA. Her interest includes addiction medicine and treating patients with co-occurring mental health and substance abuse disorders. She acted as the lead Physician at Malvern institute, a drug and alcohol rehab facility in Malvern, PA. She has served as the Medical Director at Recovery Center of America in Devon, PA a comprehensive drug and alcohol addiction treatment facility, since August 2017.