Program Staff

Rebecca Boone, LCSW, Program Manager

Rebecca Boone holds a Master of Social Work (MSW) degree from Troy University. She is a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW), a Trust Based Relational Interventions (TBRI) Practitioner, and also a Board Certified Biblical Counselor through the American Association of Christian Counselors. She came to work for CGA in May of 2001. Born and raised in Fayetteville, North Carolina, Rebecca was an active member of her church from a young age. After gaining experience with several social service organizations and advocacy groups, Rebecca’s passion for ministry grew. That’s why she loves working at CGA, where she is able to do be a part of an organization that equips young people through a Christ-centered approach. Rebecca is happily married and lives with her husband and adopted son in the local area. Others describe her as hard-working, compassionate, and family-oriented. In her free time, she enjoys being with friends and family, walking her dogs, and taking up new projects such as making jams and gardening.

Anthony Alvarez, Admission Coordinator

Anthony was born and raised in the Chicagoland area.  He is an ordained minister and has served in Leadership with Teen Challenge for close to 10 years from centers in New York to Florida.  Anthony first heard the call to ministry while a student in the Teen Challenge Program.  Since graduating from the program, Anthony has trained with and worked for Teen Challenge in various capacities. Anthony has studied at two colleges; Elim Bible Institute and Christ for the Nations. Anthony’s desire is to see that every young person that walks through the doors encounters the love of God and be free from life-controlling issues through a relationship with Jesus Christ. Anthony enjoys spending his free time spent with family and friends, especially his beautiful wife and two children.

Sarah Gibson, Lead Counselor

Through close friendships in college, Sarah was learned about the ministry of Teen Challenge. In 2002 after college graduation, she relocated to devote her passions to the CGA family. Sarah holds a B.A. in Psychology and has earned multiple certifications for child development through ongoing training and classes. Sarah learned how to trust God through early childhood illness, and has served Him since youth. She wants others to experience the same joy and peace she has enjoyed through the blessing of serving Christ. Sarah most enjoys helping students relate their life experiences with God’s reality through group and individual counseling. She is known to be sociable and gentle, with an eagerness for truth and wisdom. These traits have served her well in her role at CGA as a counselor. Sarah most enjoys her free time spent with family and friends, especially her husband and sons.

Teresa Bowman, Counselor

Teresa earned a B.A. in Health and Physical Education from Albany State University, a M.A. in Organizational Leadership, from LaGrange College, and an M.S. in Psychology and Counseling from Troy University. Teresa is also a Licensed Minister and serves as the lead counselor at her local church.  She has worked with youth who face life challenges in the capacity of director of a Group Home for at-risk youth, as an educator in an Alternative High School Program, serving youth who were expelled from all traditional educational settings, as a Vocational Employment Specialist, and as a therapist for youth in the foster care system, as well as counseling in the private sector. Teresa’s goal is to assist youth with making changes by the renewing of the mind and healing of the soul from the effects of trauma. She believes it is with the extension of the love of Jesus that all people can be made whole.  Teresa is the mother of four amazing children and has two grandchildren.

Merandia Alvarez, Counselor

Merandia is a graduate of Auburn University with degrees in Psychology and Nutrition Dietetics with a minor focus in Classical Languages (Ancient Greek and Latin). She first joined Teen Challenge as a residential staff at Columbus Girls Academy. During this season the Lord guided her in how to lead the girls with grace and truth. Merandia is currently working on her Master’s in Family Counseling through the University of West Alabama and currently is fulfilling the role of a counselor at Columbus Girls Academy. It is her prayer that each family that walks through the door of Columbus Girls Academy experiences the love of God and comes to know what it is to be in His presence as the Prince of Peace. Merandia enjoys spending time with her husband and children as well as continuing to learn through reading books and listening to podcasts.
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” John 14:27

CeeJae Fowler, Equine Specialist

We are excited to introduce you to our new equine specialist CeeJae Fowler. CeeJae is an U.S. Army Veteran and Founder/Director of CherAmi Farms Horsemanship Program, a non-profit organization in Seale, Alabama that uses Equine Education and Peer-to-Peer interaction to uplift and encourage at-risk girls. She holds a Criminal Justice Bachelor’s (B.S.) degree with an emphasis in Juvenile Delinquency from Columbus State University and is currently working on her Master of Social Work (MSW) degree. CeeJae has a daughter who is currently enrolled in college. In her free time, CeeJae enjoys crafts and woodworking. We are so glad to be partnering with CeeJae and CherAmi Farms.

 

Monica Ford, School Principal

Monica Ford grew up here locally in a Christian home and was always active in church, school, and the community. Monica attended The University Of Alabama where she obtained a B.A. in psychology and a minor in Social Work. During her junior year in college, the Lord revealed to her that part of her calling would be to work with the youth. Monica worked as a counselor for 4 years and then went into teaching. She has been teaching for the past 14 years. Monica likes making learning fun for her students and tries to set an example of Christ to all by having a good attitude. Her favorite saying is “Keep a smile on your face and a song in your heart”. Monica likes spending time with her family, traveling, hiking, reading, and writing books.

Candace Williams, School Administrator

Candace Williams comes to CGA after 25 years as a missionary in Europe. Her profession before her missionary career was Math Education and she has taught High School math for 15 years. Candace is certified to teach math in four states and internationally. Her last teaching position was at Evangelical Christian Academy in Madrid Spain. Candace has been acquainted with Teen Challenge since 1965 when a group of Teen Challenge men shared their testimonies in her father’s church. Candace’s husband joined the Global Teen Challenge team in August 2011 and she joined our team here at CGA in October 2011. Candace enjoys teaching math at every level. She says, “Math seems to be challenging for most, yet with encouragement and skilled instruction, the girls complete their courses successfully.” If her students could use one word to describe Mrs. Williams, it would be “inspiring”. Candace likes to spend her free time enjoying family, church, photography, and gardening.

Charlie Williams, Teacher

Charlie Williams grew up overseas as a missionary kid in Europe, and learned in his high-school years that he had a knack for taking complicated concepts and breaking them down into simple, easy-to-understand bits and pieces. Taking this skill, Charlie went to university with the express purpose of becoming a teacher. Earning his bachelor’s in teaching, Charlie now strives to help students in any way he can. Using his eclectic knowledge of science, math, english, and history, he now helps the girls here improve themselves through their academics. His work helps students to learn about the fascinating parts of God’s world, as he always hoped he would.

Kaitlin Vied, Program Assistant

Kaitlin is a CGA Teen Challenge graduate and went through the program in 2010. After surrendering her life to the Lord, God gave her a passion for missions and discipleship ministry. After completing Teen Challenge, Kaitlin went to Emerging Leaders College where she earned her Associates Degree in Bible and Theology, and received hands on ministry training. While in college, she felt the call to come back to the Teen Challenge ministry. One of Kaitlin’s greatest passions is walking through the daily process of life transformation with people. She enjoys being outdoors, reading, and playing music with her friends. Her friends would describe her as fun-loving, energetic, and strong willed.

Alecia Farlow, Program Assistant

Alecia grew up in metro Atlanta and attended Teen Challenge. Since graduating the program Alecia has trained with and worked for Teen Challenge in various capacities. Alecia desires to guide and disciple teens in ways that weren’t available to her as a young person. Alecia is considerate, understanding, ambitious and passionate. Alecia enjoys reading, fishing, and playing board games. She loves spending time with her family and watching God restore relationships.

Diana Kalinoski

Diana was born in Russia and moved to the states at the age of 7 with her two biological brothers. She was a straight A student in high school and an active participant in soccer and volleyball but struggled with anxiety and depression. Diana started attending a great university but that’s where the real trouble began. She entered Teen Challenge and graduated in 2022 with a love for the Lord and a passion to help young people overcome their own struggles of turning to drugs, alcohol and other forms of escape to ease their pain. Friends and family describe her as caring, empathetic and compassionate. She enjoys being outside, listening to music, spending quality time with friends and loves dogs.

Alexandria Prell

Alexandria Prell was born and raised in Arizona and Florida. The oldest of three, Alexandria grew up in a Christian home and was surrounded by the love and care of her family. During high school, Alexandria volunteered with Covenant Hospice and helped organize activities with the nursing home patients as well as other events. After high school, Alexandria pursued her calling to missions and completed two years of Bible college at Teen Missions Bible Mission and Work Training Center. While she was there she received a certificate in Biblical studies. Alexandria completed a nine month internship in Honduras with Teen Missions, and at the beginning of 2022, she returned to overseas ministry for two months volunteering at a Christian orphanage located in Marcala, Honduras. Alexandria’s heart and passion is for others to know Jesus and experience His love in their lives. She takes joy in helping others and being a servant of the Lord wherever He leads her in ministry. In her free time Alexandria enjoys spending time with friends and family, listening to music, and creating art and music through piano, ukulele, crochet, and other spontaneous DIY projects.

Kelsey Lowenthal, Residential Staff

Melissa Carragher, Residential Staff

Born and raised in New York, Long Island Melissa grew up with great family values, and strived in academics and athletics. Melissa furthered her education, and from an early age wanted to work with youth. Her passion in life is to help the lost and the broken-hearted. She has previously worked in residential settings with young women and is happy to be working with teens now, a dream she has had since her youth.

Melanie Douglas, Classroom Assistant

Melanie is from Warner Robins GA and is a Graduate of Teen Challenge. While in the program she attended a mission trip to Santiago, Chile’. It was there God truly changed her heart and fanned a flame for a life of servanthood. Melanie has trained with and worked for Teen Challenge in several roles. Serving the girls at CGA and watching them grow in the Lord is truly an amazing experience for her. Melanie enjoys spending time with my family and grandchildren. The Lord has done great restoration within her family and desires to see God do the same for our students here at CGA.

Christina Hayes, Assistant Program Manager

Christina Hayes is a graduate of Georgia College and State University and earned a B.S. in Psychology. Throughout college Christina volunteered for Young Life, a ministry that mentors and disciples adolescents. During Christina’s time in Young life the Lord developed a passion in her to disciple teenage girls. Christina said, “I always knew the world was broken, anyone can see that but it wasn’t until The Lord brought healing to my life that I began to realize that I was able to help lead others to Christ so that they may find healing as well.” Christina interned at a behavior health center during college and discovered there her desire to be a counselor. After college Christina served as a youth director in southeast Georgia. Christina enjoys being outside, reading, hiking, playing the guitar and writing her own music. Her friends would describe her as someone who is intentional, caring and outdoorsy.

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