Chief Executive Officer for the Vera French Community Mental Health Center, Annie Armknecht, provides planning, direction and administration to the Center’s 160 staff and the center’s many pro- grams. Anne earned her MBA in Health Care from St. Ambrose University right here in Davenport and her BA in Psychology from the University of Northern Iowa. Anne came to Vera French CMHC in 2009 from The Richmond Center, a community mental health center located in Central Iowa where she was the Executive Director. Anne has over 25 years experience working in the field of mental health. She is dedicated to working closely with staff, funders and community stakeholders to provide the highest quality mental health services to all in need.
Chief Operating Officer for Vera French Community Mental Health Center, Sarah Seifert, has been with the Vera French Organization since 2006 and was made COO in September 2010. Sarah previously was the Administrator of Pine Knoll Residential Care Facility in Davenport, IA. Sarah is a Master's prepared Social Worker licensed in the State of IA. Ms. Seifert has worked in the mental health and disabilities field for 15 years in variety of service settings.
Dr. John Stecker
Medical Director of Vera French Community Mental Health Center, Dr. John Stecker. He is an Adult, Adolescent and Child Psychiatrist as well as a Colonel in the US Army Reserves Medical. Dr. Stecker earned his MD at Eastern Virginia Medical School. He completed his General Psychiatry Residency and his Fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Dr. Stecker has been with Vera French CMHC since 1995.
Dr. Ghada Hamdan-Allen
Dr. Ghada Hamdan-Allen, earned her MD from the American University of Beirut. She finished her adult psychiatry residency and child and adolescent psychiatry fellowship at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. She performs psychiatric evaluation and treatment to children and adolescents at Vera French Community Mental Health Center. She is a member of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology and the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Prior to joining Vera French CMHC, Dr. Hamdan-Allen was an assistant professor at the University of Iowa at which time she did research in the areas of developmental disabilities and disruptive behavior disorders. She was also employed by Lovelace Health Systems in Albuquerque, New Mexico before joining Vera French CMHC in 1998.
Dr. Thomas Garside
Adult Psychiatrist, Dr. Thomas Garside, earned his MD at St. Louis University of Medicine, where he also completed his Straight Internal Medicine Internship. He completed his Psychiatric Residency at Northwestern University Medical Schools and Clinics. Dr Garside earned his Bachelor Degree from the University of Notre Dame. He is a member of the American Psychiatric Association, the Iowa Psychiatric Association, and the Scott County Medical Society. Dr. Garside was previously in private practice in the Quad Cities and was also the Chief of Psychiatry at the US Air Force Hospital on Robins Air Force Base located in Georgia. He joined Vera French CMHC in 1969.
Dr. William Nissen
Adult Psychiatrist, Dr. William Nissen, is an Adult Psychiatrist that is responsible for evaluating patients for the presence of psychiatric disorders and medication management. He also provides hospital care to patients who require it. Dr. Nissen completed his MD, Master of Science in Anatomy, and Bachelor of Science Degrees at the University of Iowa. Prior to joining the Vera French Community Mental Health Center in 1980, he was employed by the Gundersen Clinic in LaCrosse, Wisconsin.
Dr. Prabhaker Pisipati
Adult Psychiatrist, Dr. Prabhakar Pisipati, earned his MBBS from Patliputra Medical College located in Dhandad, India. He completed his Psychiatric Residency and Public/Geriatric Psychiatric Fellowship at the Long Island Jewish Medical Center. Dr. Pisipati is a member of the American Psychiatric Association and the American Geriatric Psychiatry Association. Dr. Pisipati has had many experiences, such as running his private practice and serving as the Medical Director of Mercy Medical Center Psychiatric Unit, before joining Vera French CMHC in 2011.
Dr. Eric Bruster
Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Eric Bruster, is a Clinical Psychologist that provides psychotherapy to individuals, couples, and groups. He also conducts psychological evaluations. Dr. Bruster received his Psy.D. from the Illinois School of Professional Psychology in Chicago. He completed his Pre-Doctoral Internship at the VA Medical Center in Danville, Illinois. Dr. Bruster has also earned a Masters of Divinity from Garrett ETS in Evanston, Illinois. His Bachelor of Arts Degree was awarded fromAugustana College in Rock Island, Illinois. Dr. Bruster is listed with the National Association of Health Service Providers in Psychology and is a member of the American Psychological Association. Before joining Vera French CMHC in 1994, Dr. Bruster was employed with Psychology Associates and Augustata College, both located in the Quad Cities. He was also employed with Lutheran Social Services and Proctor Hospital in Peoria, Illinois.
Dr. Rhonda Callison
Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Rhonda Callison, serves as a Clinical Psychologist in the adult outpatient department. She received her Psy.D. and her MA from the Adler School of Professional Psychology in Chicago, along with a Certificate in Cognitive Therapy. Her Bachelor of Science in Psychology was earned at St. Ambrose University. Dr. Callison began her career at Vera French CMHC in December of 2000 while completing her Practica Externship. Before this time, she completed her internship at Dreiker’s Psychology Services Center in Chicago, Illinois. She also completed a Practica Externship at Robert Young Center for Community Mental Health. As a member of the American Psychological Association and the National Register of Health Service Providers, Dr. Callison is a great asset to Vera French Community Mental Health Center.
Dr. Richard Quarton
Richard Quarton, and provides evaluations and therapy to patients from age 3 to 75. Dr. Quarton received his Ph.D. and Master of Science Degree from Penn State University in Pennsylvania. He received his Bachelor of Science Degree from the University of Iowa and he is a member of the American Orthopsychiatric Association. Before coming to Vera French CMHC in 2002, Dr. Quarton was employed with Bridgeway Community Mental Health Center and was a professor at the Behrend College of Penn State University.
Chris McCormick Pries
Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner, Chris McCormick Pries, is a Board Certified Advanced Registered Nurse
Practitioner and the Clinical Director of the Vera French Community Mental
Health Center. She works closely with
the Medical Director to plan and oversee mental health services delivered
through outpatient and various Vera French CMHC programs. Her responsibilities also include assessment,
psychotherapy and medication management to a wide array of patients in the Quad
City area. Chris completed her Post
Graduate Study in Mental Health Administration at the University of
Minnesota. She earned her MA from the
University of Iowa and her Advanced Psychiatric Nursing Degree at the William
Alanson White Institute of Psychoanalysis in New York. Her Bachelor of Science in Nursing was earned
at the University of Maryland in Baltimore.
She is a member of the ANA, INA, Sigma Theta Tau, and APNA. Before joining Vera French in May 1975, Chris
was an instructor at Black Hawk College, Marycrest College, and a clinical
instructor at St. Ambrose University.
Adult Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, Anabel Flaherty, provides psychiatric services such as evaluation,
assessment, and medication management to adult outpatients as an Adult
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner. Anabel has earned a Certificate in Spiritual Direction from Saint Ambrose University. She also attended the University of Dubuque where she earned Master of Science in Nursing degree. She earned her Master of Science in Education degree from Western Illinois University specializing in Councselor Education. Anabel is a graduate of St. Ambrose School of Nursing and also received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. Before joining Vera French CMHC, Anabel taught at St. Ambrose University and Black Hawk College. She also provided services at Family Counseling and Psychology in Bettendorf prior to joining Vera French CMHC in 1975.
Adult Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, Genevieve Nelson, provides psychiatric services such as evaluation,
assessment, and medication management to adult outpatients as an Adult
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner.
Genevieve joined Vera French Community Health Center in October 2009
with a Master of Science Degree from Ohio State University. She has earned a Bachelor of Science in
Psychology from the University of Iowa and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing
from Grandview College. Genevieve has
previously been employed with the Abbe Center for the Community Mental Health
located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
Psychiatric Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner,
Michelle Schnack, provides psychiatric evaluations, medication management and individual therapy. Michelle joined Vera French CMHC in 2011 after earning her Master of Science in Nursing degree from the University of Iowa. She also earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree and a minor in Psychology from the University of Iowa. She is a member of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association, the American Nurses Association, and Sigma Theta Tau. Before joining Vera French CMHC, Michelle was employed with Mid-Eastern Council on Chemical Abuse and Family Empowerment Services.
Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner, Connie Stecker, provides counseling in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and is a clinical nurse specialist in child and adolescent psychiatry and mental health. Before joining Vera French CMHC in 2006, Connie Worked as a Psychiatric Nurse Consultant with Genesis Hospital as well as a Psychiatric Nurse at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Connie earned a Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Pittsburgh.
Certified Psychiatric and Mental Health Nurse,
Carol Dietsch, is a member of the American Nurses Association.
Carol earned her MA from the University Of
Iowa College of Nursing where she also completed her Post Graduate Study on
She earned her Bachelor of
Science in Nursing from Marycrest
College here in Davenport.
She became a Registered Nurse through Mercy
Hospital School of Nursing in Iowa
previously worked as a staff nurse in pediatrics at Mercy Hospital
in Iowa City
and as the Pediatric Nurse Instructor at St. Francis School of Nursing in La Crosse, Wisconsin.
She also worked as the Surgical Supervisor at
Hospital in La Crosse.
She then moved to the position of a staff nurse in the ER and ICU and later
became the Clinical Coordinator at Mercy
Hospital in Davenport.
Carol joined Vera French CMHC in 1972.
earned her RN from Williamsport Hospital
School of Nursing in Williamsport,
Elaine has worked in all aspects of Mental
Health nursing including inpatient care, residential care, home health care,
community support and outpatient.
joining Vera French CMHC in 1990, Elaine worked as a Mental Health Specialist
at Visiting Nurses and also at Pine Knoll when it was run by the county.
Case Management Supervisor, Angi Tracy, is responsible for overseeing the case management unit which
consists of six case managers and one transporter/outreach worker as the Case
Management Supervisor. Her main
responsibilities include training staff in the areas of Case Management and
comprehensive assessment, assigning and supervising case loads of service
monitors, and interacting with Vera French Community Mental Health Center
personnel and other community agencies on a regular basis. Angi joined Vera French CMHC in September
1996 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Criminal Justice with a minor in
Psychology from St. Ambrose University.
She belongs to the Iowa State Association of Counties and was previously
employed with the Wittenmyer Youth Center (Family Resources Inc.) at the Leslie
Licensed Mental Health Counselor, Michelle
Kelley, has 16 years
of experience in counseling with adults as well as children.
She specializes in a wide range of life issues including but not limited
to traumas, childhood behavioral issues, depression, anxiety, marital concerns,
conflict resolution, woman’s issues, and substance
abuse. She has been a Registered Play Therapist for two years
and is also trained in Parent-Child Interaction Training.
Licensed Mental Health Counselor, Jim Parcel, joined Vera French in 2009. He is a therapist that has 25 years in the mental health field that includes both residential and outpatient treatment. Here at Vera French CMHC, Jim works with individuals ranging from children to adults as well as families. He earned a Master of Counseling degree from Regent University.
Clinical Therapist, Amy Massie, provides several valuable services to Vera French Community
Mental Health Center. As an outpatient
Clinical Therapist, Amy specializes in Adolescent Sex Offender Treatment and
treatment in sexual abuse and childhood maltreatment. Amy also works as a School Based Therapist by
providing play therapy in a school setting in order to help children overcome
any issues and be successful in all areas of their lives. Amy earned both her Masters in Social Work
and her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Sociology at St. Ambrose
University. Amy is a member of the
National Association of Social Workers.
Before joining Vera French CMHC in 2010, Amy worked as an Adolescent Sex
Offender Therapist at Family Resources, Inc.
She was also a case manager in the foster care department at Bethany for
Children and Families.
Director of Program Development, Joyce Morrison. provides clinical supervision for outpatient and
school-based therapists as the Director of Program Development at Vera French
Community Mental Health Center. Joyce
researches and writes grants and helps develop programs to improve access and
quality of care at Vera French CMHC. She
earned her Masters in Social Work and her Bachelor Degree in Social Work at the
University of Iowa. Joyce has 26 years
of practice with children and families in Scott and Clinton Counties and joined
Vera French CMHC in 2007.
School-Based Therapist, Jennifer
Duncan, provides therapy services to children and families through the Vera
French Community Mental Health Center as a School-Based Therapist. Jennifer earned both her Masters in Social
Work and her Bachelor Degree in Psychology from Hunter College City University
of New York. Before joining Vera French
CMHC in August 2010, Jennifer served as a contract Social Worker with the US
Army through Valforce, Inc. She was also
employed by the Youth Service Bureau of Rock Island County and Robert Young
Center for Community Mental Health.
School-Based Therapist, Taryn Hancock, has been a School-Based Therapist with Vera French
Community Mental Health Center since 2005.
She provides clinical-level therapy to elementary school-aged children
and their families in a school setting and/or in the home. Taryn works collaboratively with the school,
AEA, and other agencies involved with the child and family. She also provides case management and resource
referrals as needed. Taryn earned her
Masters in Social Work from St. Ambrose University and her Bachelor Degree in
Psychology from Augustana College, both located here in the Quad Cities. Taryn was previously employed with Bridgeway,
Inc. and is a member of the National Association of Social Workers.
School-Based Therapist, Anne Oakes, joined Vera French Community Mental Health Center in 2003. She is a School-Based Therapist that provides
outpatient therapy in a school setting.
She is a registered Play Therapist and certified to provide Parent/Child
Interaction Therapy. Anne earned her MSW
at St. Ambrose University and her Bachelor Degree in Social Work from the
University of Northern Iowa. Anne is a
member of the Association for Play Therapy and a great asset to Vera French
received her Masters in Social Work
from the University
She earned her Bachelor of Arts Degree from
the University of
Rhonda has a history of working with children
and families in schools, therapeutic settings, and hospice.
Rhonda joined Vera French CMHC in 2011.
School-Based Therapist, Jennifer Troutwine, is a School-Based Therapist with Vera French
Community Mental Health Center. She
joined Vera French CMHC in 2008 and continues to provide therapy to children
and families throughout schools in the Quad City area. Jennifer received her Masters in Social Work
from the University of Iowa and her Bachelor Degree in Social Work from
Marycrest International University. She
has previously been a therapist with Lutheran Services of Iowa.
1441 W. Central Park Avenue Davenport, IA 52804 Phone (563) 383-1900 Fax (543) 328-5690