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OUR STAFF

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Ben
Brooks

Chief Executive Officer

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Cherie
Van Kuiken

Senior Program Manager

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Kari
Thompson

Hope Program Manager

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Genny
Slater

Chief Financial Officer

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Lauren
Campbell

Bridge Program Administrator

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Lisa
Figueroa

Recovery Coach

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Jerry W.
Moore

Chief Marketing Officer

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Chris

Perry

Men's Dorm Manager

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Bunny
Robinson

Direct Care Staff

Lauren Campbell 
Bridge Program Manager

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When I think of my life and where I could have ended up due to my poor choices, I am in awe of where I sit today.  

 

My story is pretty much one of a good girl from a good home, gone wild. I started acting out in my teens after my parents divorced. I just wanted somewhere to belong and never quite found what I was looking for in the circles I was running in. 

 

Drugs and alcohol took hold of me in my early twenties, and it really stunted my development into adulthood. I had no direction or purpose in my life for a long time, I struggled to hold down a job and couldn’t be responsible for myself. 

 

I was in and out of treatment centers for the better part of a decade. As soon as I was released, I would go right back to using drugs. During all these troubles, I became a mother to two beautiful children that I was not able to take care of. They were both placed with family, and I wasn’t allowed to see them for a very long time.  

In 2019 I was finally able to admit that I had a real problem.  I came to San Antonio and entered my last treatment center. I knew that things had to change, or I was going to die. My family was finally done enabling me and I had nothing but a few items of clothing in a suitcase. 

 

I graduated treatment successfully but once again I found myself drinking…thankfully, it didn’t take long before swift consequences caught up with me. I got a DWI and wrecked a car I’d only had for 3 weeks. This was the first time in all my life I faced legal consequences for my actions, and it scared me. It was the wake-up call that I needed. The day I got out of jail, I moved into Oxford House. My life took an incredible turn! For the first time in my life, I was responsible, accountable, and motivated to do whatever it took to stay sober! I joined the rooms of AA and learned a better way to live.  

Through service work in Oxford House, I met Genny Slater… I still tell people: you never know where your “YES” will lead to in life… Genny recommended I come talk to our then CEO of Pay It Forward, Hamilton Barton for a position at PIF. I know that becoming part of this team has been a huge part of my transformation in life. I have learned so much about myself in these 2 years since I was hired. My coworkers are people of passion and integrity – they have become family. Every day we get to be a part of changing lives, but the truth is – our lives are changed as well. 

Today I am dependable, responsible, and reliable… I have healthy relationships with my family and my children! Recovery has given me a new life, a real life – I have purpose and I am growing and evolving into someone I am proud of. I met the most amazing man & we will be married in November! Along with the restored relationships with my children, I have gained a bonus child – my stepson. In a couple of months, my daughter will be coming to live with me full time and I will have regained full custody of her.  

 

When I think of all these things… I know that this journey of Recovery, is nothing short of a miracle. The Grace of God is not something I can ever explain, but it’s something that has changed me forever. 

BEN BROOKS


BELIEF, POSITIVITY, INPUT,

CONNECTEDNESS, RESPONSIBILITY

 

Ben faithfully serves as the CEO of Pay It Forward SA.

As a former participant of the on-campus sober living program, Ben understands what is necessary to be successful in the program as well as in recovery from substance use disorder. Having overcome his own experiences of homelessness and substance-use disorder, he continues to promote “being the change”, as a way to help others find healing and resources that lead to personal success. 

 

When Ben is not working, he is pursuing a degree at Texas A&M University - San Antonio. He is an alumnus of San Antonio College with a Human Services degree in Addiction Counseling. Ben is also an active member of the local recovery community and volunteers on the board of several nonprofit organizations.  Ben enjoys spending time doing outreach through the consulting of a nonprofit he volunteers with, and he loves spending time with his family and his dog. 

Ben is proud to be be flourishing in long-term recovery since June 4, 2016.

JERRY W. MOORE

LEARNER, ACHIEVER, STRATEGIC,

INTELLECTION, DELIBERATIVE

Jerry learned the value and satisfaction of nonprofit work at an early age from his mother, who was a passionate volunteer and child advocate. Although he spent the first part of his professional career lost in the corporate jungle, he eventually found his way back to his nonprofit passion.

 

Jerry holds multiple degrees and certifications from the University of Utah, Grand Canyon University and UCLA.

Jerry owns his own design business which focuses on creating and integrating visual assets to help clients realize more effective results from their branding, marketing, PR and development efforts.

Jerry's wife, Celeste, also works in the nonprofit sector. Their 3 dogs do not.

LAUREN CAMPBELL

EMPATHY, ADAPTABILITY, HARMONY,

DEVELOPER, POSITIVITY

Lauren moved to San Antonio in 2019 to pursue a new life in recovery. After completing treatment, she moved into sober living. The structure and accountability proved to be exactly what she needed. Lauren came to work for Pay It Forward in 2020. “I believe in the success of sober living because I know what it’s done for my life and my recovery. I am passionate about serving those who are transitioning out of the cycle of substance use.”   Lauren  enjoys working closely with those who are in the sober living community. 

 

In her free time, Lauren enjoys cooking, movies, and spending time with the people she loves the most.

Lauren  is proud to be be flourishing in long-term recovery since October 6, 2020.

KARI THOMPSON

INCLUDER, POSITIVITY, ADAPTABILITY,

STRATEGIC, COMMUNICATION

Prior to Pay It Forward Kari worked as a recovery coach at San Antonio Recovery Center and CHCS's ITP Program. As someone who is themselves in long-term recovery, Kari has a unique ability to connect with the ladies in our Hope Treatment Program. Her favorite part of her job is getting to know each woman on a personal level to help them succeed in their treatment.

Outside of work Kari spends time with her daughter, Karli, and her new granddaughter Hope (yes, that's s total coincidence!)

 

A few of her favorite things are hoodies, tacos and especially flamingos.

Kari is proud to be flourishing in long-term recovery since February 19, 2016. 

BUNNY ROBINSON

After years of drinking, I knew that I had a problem and that there had to be a better way to live. So, I found my way over to Haven for Hope and checked myself into treatment. After four months of intensive treatment, I transitioned over to the Pay It Forward sober living program where I lived for eight months.

I remember walking around campus one day and someone stopped and asked me, “do you work here?”. I replied, “not yet”! Little did I know then that I would in fact come back and help others the way that I had been helped.

At just around 3 years sober, I went to work for the Center for HealthCare Services in their substance use treatment program – the same program that provided my treatment! After almost 5 years with CHCS I decided to make a change and join the Pay It Forward team. Being able to come back and work at Pay It Forward SA has been a blessing and I am truly grateful for the opportunity to be able to help others achieve long-term sobriety.

Bunny is proud to be flourishing in long-term recovery since March 15, 2016.

GENNY SLATER


INTELLECTION, HARMONY, INPUT,

CONSISTENCY, ANALYTICAL

Prior to joining the Pay It Forward team, Genny served as the San Antonio Outreach Coordinator for Oxford House Inc. where she worked closely with PIF on behalf of Oxford House residents. Genny is thrilled to now have the opportunity to continue advocating for those in early recovery through her role as Development Director. Genny is also a woman in long term recovery from substance use and deeply understands what a vital role supportive sober living plays in helping those struggling with substance use to achieve long term recovery.

 

In her role as Chief Financial Officer she focuses on bringing wider attention to Pay It Forward and developing a broad donor base, allowing Pay It Forward to continue to serve all who are in need of our services. A long-time resident of San Antonio, Genny is a graduate of UTSA and enjoys spending time with her 3 children.

 

Genny  is proud to be flourishing in long-term recovery since April 30, 2016. 

CHERIE VANKUIKEN

POSITIVITY, WOO, INCLUDER,

INPUT, ARRANGER

Cherie is thankful to be a part of the Pay It Forward team, serving as the Senior Program Manager. She is a former member of the PIF dorm and knows what it takes to continue on the positive path.  She is a graduate of the Adult Drug Court program and serves as a mentor for the current participants. She has also completed training for Mental Health Peer support specialist and is currently attending San Antonio College to get her Associates degree in Human Services.

 

Outside of work Cherie loves exercising and is a big proponent of using exercise as a therapeutic means to help treat people struggling with homelessness, substance abuse, and mental health issues. She loves spending time with friends and family.

 

Cherie is proud to be be flourishing in long-term recovery since May 25, 2018.

 

LISA FIGUEROA

ADAPTABILITY, POSITIVITY, ACTIVATOR,

INCLUDER, DEVELOPER

After suffering 36 years of addiction, Lisa went to treatment and found she had a passion for helping others in recovery.  Lisa worked in an Integrated Treatment Program for substance and mental health and studied to become certified as aRecovery Support Peer Specialist as well as aMental Peer Support Specialist.  

 

“I now work with Pay It Forward and happily serve with the HOPE treatment team and monitor the female members of the sober living dorm.” 

In her free time Lisa enjoy her family.  “We love amusement and water parks.”  She fellowships with the Cocaine’s Anonymous program where she continues to build strong friendships.

Lisa  is proud to be flourishing in long-term recovery since October 24, 2016. 

CHRIS PERRY

BELIEF, RESTORATIVE, CONTEXT,

DEVELOPER, CONNECTEDNESS

Chris is the newest member of the Pay It Forward SA family. Like our CEO, Ben, Chris is also a past resident. After spending years in and out of homelessness, Chris committed to his recovery and is enjoying everything his new life has to offer. His extensive experience makes him the perfect choice to guide the men in our program, helping them to navigate and succeed in their own individual recovery journeys.

Outside of work Chris enjoys walking in nature (which has been instrumental in his recovery), eating good meals and fellowshipping. His biggest joy is watching his son, Devin, becoming a successful and happy young man.

Chris is proud to be flourishing in long-term recovery since September 30, 2020.

“I just want to say, thank you to P.I.F. and their staff. Hamilton, Ben, and Cedric were all amazing and have aided me immensely in my recovery. I am forever grateful for this program, and what it’s done for my life.”

-Roberto

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