Steppingstones is about giving people the tools they need to overcome addiction and put their life back on an upward trajectory.
Steppingstones To Recovery believes that alcohol and drug problems begin innocently with social and experimental use, and progress to abusive use, then to dependence - which is accelerated if certain genetic factors are present. While Steppingstones was originally established to help people with addictions, over the years it has expanded services to include treatment of depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder and other mental health conditions in the absence of alcohol or drug use.
Steppingstones is not a hospital-based "inpatient" treatment facility offering medical and detoxification services, but refers out to a number of facilities for this purpose in an effort to match the proper level of care with financial resources. Steppingstones does, however, contract with a men’s recovery residence in town in order to provide sober living, support and oversight which is especially important for men who are new in their recovery from alcohol and/or drug.
Ken Wilson - Executive Director | MDiv, CAC II, MAC
I founded Steppingstones to Recovery in 1997, buying an old rundown house on my credit card and totally remodeling it! I had served as Program Manager for the Alcohol and Drug Help Unit at University Hospital, working in that program for 10 years.
Prior to that I was a church pastor for 14 years and became a Certified Fellow in the College of Chaplains after completing a year’s internship in Clinical Pastoral Education at University Hospital in 1987. This history has proven to be invaluable in my ability to relieve the suffering alcoholic and addict which I have done full time since 1987, 30 years and counting!
Steppingstones moved to its current strategic location off Washington Road/I-20 in 2005, a custom builtfacility that I drew out on a scratch piece of paper initially, to be consistent with the needs of our clients. It emulates a warm, friendly, and inviting atmosphere with a central coffee station, endless supply of bagels and cream cheese, and 2 gazebos to promote relaxed conversation.
I have 3 grown daughters, one of which is the Clinical Director at Steppingstones, and 6 grandchildren. For my leisure interests, I love building and re-purposing furniture, home improvement projects, seeing a good true story movie, and bicycling 10-20 miles per ride.
Jessica Worsham - Clinical Director | LCSW, CADC
After earning a Master’s in Social Work from the University of South Carolina in 2003, I began working at Steppingstones as a group therapist. What I love most about working at Steppingstones is that recovery is not seen as a “one size fits all” model and every effort is made to attend to individual needs. While I am not recovering from a substance use disorder myself, I have an extensive understanding of the progression of addiction, the process of recovery, and family dynamics of addiction. I give all the credit for my knowledge of addiction and recovery to the clients and family members I have worked with and whom have been my best teachers. In addition to addiction treatment experience, I find fulfillment working with the various issues faced by emergency responders, including law enforcement officers, paramedics and fire fighters, as well as people seeking help for mental health concerns.
In my free time, I enjoy a good green smoothie, running, yoga, spending time with loved ones and trying to keep up with my 2 boys who are very active in sports.
Marcel Payne - Counselor | LCSW
I have been with Steppingstones since 2007 and find innate fulfillment as a counselor who focuses on working directly with clients and families in all stages of treatment and aftercare. I am a big believer in the power of choice, and support those who are learning to identify and use their own strengths to achieve their goals in sobriety. I am a licensed social worker and hold the Master Social Worker degree from the University of South Carolina in 2011. I hold dual citizenship in Germany and the USA and travel to Germany annually to see my family. In my time off I enjoy disc golf, running, traveling, and reading historical novels.
Marcel is no stranger to helping others learn about addiction and recovery, having spent ten years helping others get sober and twelve years maintaining his own continuous sobriety. Prior to Steppingstones, Marcel worked as a general contractor for the Department of Housing and Urban Development and served five years in the US Navy onboard a submarine. His many years of experience in addiction treatment and personal experience in recovery is invaluable in helping clients achieve an improved quality of life.
Emily Jones - RN | BSN
I received my Bachelor's of Science in Nursing from Augusta State University in 2011. I perform nursing assessments and provide education to clients on medications used to treat behavioral health conditions. Addiction and recovery touch my life both professionally and personally as I am currently in long-term recovery from drugs and alcohol. I am a wife, mother, sister, daughter and reliable employee - responsibilities and qualities I wasn't capable of carrying out in active addiction. Recovery is my passion. I want you to know there is no judgment in seeking help for yourself and that addiction is a disease. I heavily promote the CSRA recovery community because that is where I find relief from my disease. My door is always open to you.
Jessica Pealer - Office Manager
I was born and raised here in Augusta, and attended the University of Georgia where I earned a Bachelor’s degree in theatre and vocal performance. I am married to Greg Pealer, and together we have an amazing daughter, Anna-Marie. When I am not at Steppingstones to Recovery, you can find me on the stage with the Augusta Players, Aiken Community Playhouse, or Fort Gordon Dinner Theatre.
LaDetria King - Counselor | LPC
I hold a Master of Arts degree in Psychology with emphasis in counseling and am a Licensed Professional Counselor with the national credential of Certified Rehabilitation Counseling. My work experience includes case manager in Child Protective Services, Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor and Manager, Employee Assistance Program Counselor and private practice Therapist. I enjoy working with children, women, couples, families and emotional issues. For leisure interests I enjoy gardening, exercising, traveling, and collecting varieties of shoes!
Linda Stafford - Counselor
I began my career in substance abuse counseling by working as a Nurse Aide at a treatment facility in Statesboro, GA. That vocation awakened my desire to help those affected by chemicals to improve the quality of their life, which required me to obtain my Master of Social Work degree in 2016 from Savannah State University. Initially I worked with adolescents and am now loving my work with adults at Steppingstones, here in my hometown, as a Licensed Master Social Worker. In my spare time I socialize with my family and have a love for animals, basketball, playing Cranium and enjoy frequent adventures with close friends. Please reach out to us if you or someone close to you has a substance abuse problem and needs support in their quest for sobriety.
Steppingstones to Recovery Intensive Outpatient Treatment Program
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