FIRST CONTACT would not exist without our staff & volunteer team of dedicated professionals. Thank you to all our volunteers, who sacrifice their time and efforts to help us make a positive change in our community, and accomplish our mission. The following individuals currently serve on the FIRST CONTACT team:
Craig received his Bachelors of Arts Degree in Religious Education from Gardner Webb University and his Masters of Arts degree in Religious Education from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He has been certified by SBIRT (clinical skills training) and is an NAADAC Certified Recovery Coach. He has served as Pastor, Minister of Evangelism, Education, and Youth in over 20 years of ministry. He is a board member of the Blue Ridge Prison and Jail Ministry. Craig has experienced firsthand the struggle and devastation of addiction.He has a passion for those suffering from Substance Abuse Disorder as well as family members who have had their lives dramatically affected by its consequences. He founded First Contact to help those struggling with addictions to formulate a path to recovery, and a plan to return to a life of normalcy. He serves to inform and educate families and provide comfort and support.
Ellen received her Bachelors of Science Degree in Business Administration from Western Carolina University. She has been the Executive Secretary for the NC Tomato Growers Association for over 18 years and is a native of Henderson County. Ellen recently retired from the State of North Carolina with 30 years of service in administrative office work. She has an extensive background in managing and organizing casework, budgets, and data for the N.C. Family Court and Dept. of Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Prevention systems. Ellen loves her family and enjoys singing in the church choir and playing the piano. She has experienced the loss of a loved one due to addiction. As a volunteer with First Contact since December of 2014, she has a heart for working with families dealing with loved ones in addiction and helping support them through their struggles. She wants to help others understand and deal with the pain caused by addiction.
VP of Operations
Brooks is a Hendersonville native, and graduate of West Henderson high school. He spent many years working various jobs in the food and beverage industry, but finds his most relevant experience for helping others in his role at First Contact is his own fifteen year struggle with addiction. Brooks first came to First Contact for assistance at the very beginning of his recovery journey when he started attending recovery meetings. He quickly “learned the ropes” at the resale store, and moved up the ranks to First Contact staff.
Over the past three years of sobriety, Brooks has graduated all four levels of First Contact’s discipleship program, and completed the first of a two year program at Fruitland Baptist Bible College, toward earning his associate’s degree in ministry. He successfully completed a 26 week certification class for jail ministry. He now serves as a teacher of FCM’s third level discipleship class, and periodically leads at the combined support group on Thursday nights.
As new placement coordinator, Brooks is most passionate about leading others to Christ, and onto the path of sobriety. He uses his experiences to encourage men seeking help with addiction. He enjoys sharing his message of hope with others, and assisting them in finding and entering available programs best suited for their situation.
In his free time, Brooks loves to cycle on and off road. He’s an avid photographer, enjoys spending time with his loved ones, as well as his “brothers” at Bible college, while learning about God. Upon graduation at Fruitland Baptist Bible College, he plans to attend Southeastern Theological Seminary. Brooks shares he has often found comfort in the Serenity Prayer: “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”
Kevin grew up in Western Kentucky. He came to First Contact for assistance when he met one of our coaches at a local Celebrate Recovery meeting. He has a professional background in retail management and property development.
Kevin has successfully earned certification as a NC Peer Support Specialist (CPSS). After several years in active addiction, he looks forward to using his training to help other struggling individuals. Kevin completed a yearlong discipleship program at Renewed Hope ministries in Murphy, NC. After graduation, he stayed in the program an additional eight months to learn how to disciple and counsel other men.
While in the program, Kevin began a renewed relationship with God. It was not long before he began hearing God’s calling to utilize his own experiences to serve at First Contact in addiction ministry.
In his role as placement coordinator, Kevin is passionate about the opportunity to relay hope to those lost in addiction. He gets a lot of satisfaction from knowing his work makes a difference in the lives of the individuals and families he works with every day.
In his free time, he enjoys spending time outdoors hiking, camping and fishing. He considers himself a boss on the grill and the smoker.
Placement Coordinator (SC)
Josh grew up in Weaverville, NC and graduated from North Buncombe High School. From there, he continued his education at East Carolina University, where he received a Bachelor of Science in Communications. After graduating, he decided to stay in Greenville, NC as an Employment Specialist for Eastern Carolina Vocational Center. It was there, he first found his passion for helping others. As an Employment Specialist, Josh worked with the disabled, forming relationships with the individuals as well as within the community. Among his responsibilities there were: assessments, placement, training and continued follow up through the different phases of integration into the workforce and on a path to self-sufficiency. Josh feels the Lord provided this experience as preparation for his current position with First Contact Addiction Ministries.
Upon, returning home to his mountain roots, Josh worked and lived in: Henderson, Buncombe, and Haywood County. For the last 7 years, Josh has lived in Spartanburg.
After losing everything to a nearly 15-year long drug addiction, he found himself humbled and at the foot of the cross. It was there he found grace, restoration and true freedom. Now, after 9 years of sobriety, Josh feels called to his true passion of serving the Lord and helping those in need. He feels that in his role as a Placement Coordinator with First Contact, he has been given an opportunity to do just that.
In his free time, Josh enjoys spending time with his: family, friends, loved ones and fellowshipping with his fellow brothers and sisters in Christ. He also has a love for animals, the outdoors and all of God’s creatures great and small. His hobbies and interests also include: cooking, bluegrass music and rooting on his Atlanta Braves, Clemson Tigers, Carolina Panthers and ECU Pirates.
Bonnie has navigated the rolls of accounting clerk and office manager for the last forty years within the medical field and the business community. She and her husband Steve retired here in Hendersonville to be closer to their children and grandchildren. They attend Mud Creek Baptist Church where they volunteer regularly. Bonnie has known, loved and walked with the Lord for forty-three years.
Bonnie brings a level of expertise and professionalism that fits perfectly within the First Contact Addiction Ministry family. She loves this ministry and constantly goes above and beyond what is expected in order to ensure that the logistics of the ministry are well attended to.
Denise brings over 26 years of experience in the Health Care Industry in Accounts Receivable Billing and Collection Management. With this type of experience, she is well qualified to serve First Contact Addiction Ministry. Two of those years were with HCA Westlake Hospital and 5 years was with the University of Behavioral Center in Orlando, Fl, both being Inpatient and Outpatient facilities with treatment programs for alcohol and drug addiction. She retired after 14 years from an independently owned Compounding Pharmacy which specialized in pain management.
Denise feels that the years of experience, knowledge, and understanding in these areas of health care was simply God’s way of preparing her to be led in July of 2017 to serve the Lord at First Contact Addiction Ministries.