Meet Our Team

brian

Brian Anderson


Founder and CEO

Brian retired from the United States Army after 14 years of service as both a journalist and a Green Beret. Brian served 33 months in combat zones and earned 3 bronze stars, one with Valor, for his actions deployed as a Green Beret. As a citizen-Soldier, Brian started to identify the gaps in services for many of our Veterans returning home and as a BSW student at Saint Leo University, he helped form the Pasco County Stand Down. In 2014, Brian attended the inaugural Post 9/11 Stanford Ignite, at Stanford University through the Graduate School of Business and subsequently developed a plan with partner Janel Norton to open up The Veterans Alternative in November 2014. Brian serves on several boards including the Veterans Transition Task Force, a think-tank for updating military to civilian Transition through legislation and collaboration.

pat-photo

Pat Fried


Chief Operating Officer

Patty Fried is a nonprofit executive with over 30 years’ experience. Patty received her Juris Doctorate from Creighton University. After practicing law for a couple of years, she soon found her passion in helping others in nonprofit organizations.  Patty began her nonprofit career with Eckerd Youth Alternative (EYA). During her 21 years with EYA, Patty held a variety of positions from direct care with at-risk youth to senior leadership positions in the corporate headquarters. With the foundation of her education, experience in nonprofits, and years of training and development throughout her career, Patty launched her nonprofit consulting business in 2014.  As President of Fried Consulting Services, Patty has helped over a dozen nonprofit organizations grow, develop, and become sustainable. She has a passion for helping in general, and embraces the opportunity to serve the Veteran and Military populations, having many close friends and family members who have served to protect our country.

PhotoPlacement

Chris Sowell


Team House Manager

Chris retired from the United States Army with over 15 years of service as a Combat Veteran and Non-Commissioned Officer-in-Charge (NCOIC) of Intelligence Support and Operations with the Combined Special Forces Operations Command Central. He then went on to work for the FBI Terrorists Screening Center as an Intelligence Analyst, where he strategically mapped and lead geospatial analysis operations. After retiring as an Intelligence Analyst in 2015, Chris came on as the Team House Manager at Veterans Alternative. As Team House Manager, Chris manages all local operations of the Team House to ensure effectiveness, efficiency and safety in all program services and activities provided. Today, Chris is excited to bring his experiences to Veterans Alternative and help other Combat Veterans transition back into civilian life.

PhotoPlacement

Kelly Sisco


Lead Clinician, LCSW

As Lead Clinician at Veterans Alternative, Kelly is responsible for providing clinical oversight of programs and services. Kelly is a trained ART therapist with over 25 years of social work experience in outpatient, school and residential settings, with a focus on trauma treatment. She graduated from Florida State University in 1993 with a Masters in Social Work and has been a Licensed Clinical Social Worker since 1997.  She is also a Qualified Supervisor for Registered Clinical Social Worker Interns. Kelly is passionate about supporting Veterans and their family members to promote post traumatic growth.

PhotoPlacement

Molly Graham


Clinician, LMHC, ATR

Molly is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and Registered Art Therapist. Additionally, she is trained in Accelerated Resolution Therapy. As a full-time clinician at Veterans Alternative, Molly provides individual sessions of Accelerated Resolution Therapy and leads the Art Therapy components of the program. Molly received a Bachelors of Arts in Visual Arts from Florida State University in 2014 (Go Noles!) and a Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with a Specialization in Art Therapy from Lesley University in Cambridge, MA in 2016. In 2019, she decided to escape the Massachusetts winters and move back to Florida, where she discovered Veterans Alternative to be a place that combines her areas of interest and talent. She also has taken on graphic design projects for the organization. Molly enjoys the opportunity to help Veterans and their significant others (not to mention all the service dogs) and to be a part of the transformation that occurs during the five-day Accelerated Wellness Program.

PhotoPlacement

Ashleigh Goforth


Operations Coordinator

As the Operations Coordinator, Ashleigh is responsible for supporting all operational programs and providing direct assistance to the Chief Operating Officer in the daily operations of Veterans Alternative. Ashleigh received her Bachelor’s in Social Work from the University of South Florida in 2017 and went on to receive her Master’s in Social Work with a concentration in Social Change and Innovation from the University of Southern California in 2018.  Ashleigh is passionate about ensuring Veterans receive services that fit their unique and individual needs. She is honored and excited to work as an advocate for Combat Veterans through her work here at Veterans Alternative.

PhotoPlacement

Jesse Diaz


Outreach Coordinator

As our Outreach Coordinator, Jesse focuses on connecting Veterans Alternative with the local community and other veteran service organizations to promote our Retreat Program. Jesse received his Bachelor’s in Social Work and Minor in Psychology from Saint Leo University in 2016. He continued on to receive his Master’s in Social Work Advanced Clinical Practice in 2017. With a total of 34 self-employed years in the Ceramic Tile industry and 44 years as a musician, Jesse has melded his long belief in positive psychology along with his passion for music to design a unique music group experience offered at Veterans Alternative. Jesse’s other passions are his family and martial arts, having earned his 3rd degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do.

PhotoPlacement

Travis Holt


Program Coordinator, MSW Intern

Travis is a 3rd generation Marine Corps. Combat Veteran. His grandfather fought in WWII, his father in Vietnam and Travis served with the Marine Corps. infantry in Iraq during 2004-2005. He received a Navy Achievement Medal with a Combat V for his actions during operations in Haqlaniyah, Iraq. Travis has a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology with a minor in Social Work from Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts. He is currently attending the University of South Florida, working towards a Master’s degree in Social Work. Travis has over 15 years of experience in various social service settings to include Residential (adults and adolescents), Restorative Justice, Department of Corrections, Long Term Care and Truancy. After starting as an MSW intern, Travis was hired on as the Program Coordinator. “I know what it was like for me when I transitioned home from Iraq; the social and emotional struggles and that dark place combat veterans can end up in. To have the opportunity to work with veterans on post traumatic growth is nothing short of an honor and privilege. Veterans Alternative is a special place and I am humbled to be a member of the team”.

PhotoPlacement