Dr. Butts is a fellow of the American Board of Addiction Medicine and is a diplomate of the American Osteopathic Board of Family Physicians (double board certified addictionologist). He earned his undergraduate degree from The University of Texas in Austin and medical degree from Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine in Fort Worth.
Dr. Butts began practicing medicine as a family physician where he ran a solo family practice for 15 years. In 1999, he embraced an emerging trend in medical practice known as “concierge medicine” and began offering personalized treatment packages. In 2003, Dr. Butts founded a concierge practice called Celebrity Care making ‘house calls’ for the music and film industry.
Dr. Butts was not immune to life challenges that included a personal struggle with drugs and alcohol. These challenges led to a specialty change in 2004. He sold his solo practice and followed a path into addiction medicine. He worked from 2006 till 2011 in an addiction practice, mentored by one of the early advocates of medication-assisted treatment for the opioid addicted patient (David Jones M.D.).
Dr. Butts and Mrs. Jennifer Butts moved to Boerne, Texas in 2011 and opened Celebrity Care Medical Clinic, an outpatient addiction practice. The ‘celebrities’ Dr. Butts treats now are individuals in recovery from a substance use disorder. Celebrity Care offers personalized and confidential treatment of unhealthy lifestyles in an affordable program under the care of Suboxone licensed physician for stabilizing opioid dependency. Medications prescribed for alcohol use disorder include Vivitrol, Campral, and Antabuse. Co-occurring mood disorders and pain in individuals prone to addiction are also addressed.
Dr. Butts served as the medical director for Covenant Hills, a residential treatment center for women from 2011 till 2016. This experience motivated him to establish Addiction Medicine Consultants of Texas (AMCOT), PLLC in 2013. AMCOT provides addiction medicine consults, medical directorships, in-patient treatment, and aftercare to the broader treatment community. He is the Medical Director for Ripple Recovery Ranch and has held the position as interim Medical Director during start-up and transition periods for SOBA Recovery Center, Cedar Creek Recovery, and Warriors Heart.
AMCOT is gearing up to meet a new challenge for 2018 - to expand availability and provision of evidence based addiction treatment (medication-assisted therapy) in underserved markets through the use of telemedicine technology. Dr. Butts is teaming up with other addiction professionals including psychiatrists, mid-level providers, and counselors to provide addiction consults 24/7.
Dr. Butts’ Altruistic projects have included past medical mission trips to Guyana, Mexico, Venezuela, and serving as a founding board member for the Tribal Outreach Medical Assistance Foundation.
“I feel privileged and blessed to be a part of the clients' healing process here at Ripple. I seek to use change modalities that work best for each individual client and Ripple is a unique setting that aligns perfectly with my beliefs in achieving healing and recovery. I am proud to be affiliated with a company that truly provides individualized, clinically focused, evidenced based, holistic treatment.”
Laura Kotlowski is originally from Chicago, Illinois and moved to San Antonio, Texas in 2006. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Clinical Psychology with a minor in Sociology from Purdue University, and her Master of Arts in Community Counseling from University of Texas at San Antonio. Laura is a Licensed Professional Counselor, Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor and National Certified Counselor. She has a specialization in addiction and trauma work and is a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional.
Laura began working in the mental health field in 1998 and has served a variety of populations in diverse settings. Some of the populations Laura served prior to moving to Texas include: children diagnosed with Autism, Asperger's and other developmental disabilities; adult and adolescent patients suffering from a myriad of mental health concerns; and women and their children who were seeking safe haven from domestic violence. Laura then moved to Texas and worked for Covenant Hills Women's Center, serving adult women who suffered from chemical dependency, PTSD, relational problems, depression, anxiety, bipolar, borderline personality disorder and other mental health concerns. She worked at Covenant Hills from 2006-2017 and throughout her time there, worked as a direct care staff, case manager, therapist, program director and executive director. She is overjoyed to join the team and mission at Ripple Ranch Recovery, as the Clinical Director, beginning January 2018.
Laura feels both privileged and blessed to be a part of her clients healing process. She has a holistic view on client care and seeks to use the change modalities that work best for each individual client. She is trained and proficient in Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy, Person Centered Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, Reality Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Strength Base, Positive Psychology and Trauma Informed Care.
Laura strives to create a safe, comfortable, judgment free environment for her clients. She feels honored to be a part of the healing and road to recovery, peace, and joy that each and every person deserves. Her goal is to join her clients in the journey to processing their past and present experiences and understanding what they can do to reach a happy, healthy, fulfilled life.
“As a therapist, I truly believe in providing person-centered care. I work with co-occurring disorders (substance use and mental health disorders) and utilize techniques to assist in the holistic healing of our clients. I help clients navigate through treatment by identifying negative thoughts, emotions, and coping strategies to help our clients to progress towards maintaining their sobriety. I believe that clients are the experts in their experiences and utilize interventions to help process and express them through the duration of their treatment.”
Rochelle was born in Bitburg, Germany and raised across the United States due to being a member of a military family. Rochelle graduated with honors from Wichita State University with her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a minor in Sociology. She attended St. Mary’s University for her Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy. She has worked for two years dealing mostly with severe mental illnesses (Schizophrenia, Bipolar, Major Depressive Disorder, Personality Disorders), substance use, and psychological trauma at the Center for Health Care Services with court mandated clients. Prior to that she worked at St. Mary’s University as a career counselor for about two years assisting college students in finding their path in the university and in life. She has received training in COPSD, SAMHSA, Trauma, PTSD, and Complicated Grief, and Understanding Addictions. She typically utilizes a systemic counseling approach with Solution Focused Therapy, Cognitive Behavior Therapy, or Emotion Focused Therapy. She is excited about joining the team in July 2018 at Ripple Ranch Recovery as the Primary Clinical Therapist. She strives to incorporate more mindfulness techniques into her therapy in order to offer a more holistic approach in treating the issues clients present.
"Each client will walk their own recovery road, and NO recovery road is ever the SAME, each individual has their story and personal struggles, Ripple Ranch specializes in creating a true individualized plan for each of our clients and working together with all our professional staff to develop a unique and specific plan for each individual to meet their specific goals of sobriety."
Jennifer Case was born and raised in the Hill Country of Blanco, Texas. Received her license as a vocational nurse in 2010. She worked in geriatric psych nursing while going back to school to become a registered nurse and is continuing her education to become a psychiatric Nurse practitioner.
Jennifer has worked in different fields of nursing throughout her career, with pediatric patients with disabilities to hospital setting emergency room and adult psych. Through her life she has helped friends and family members suffering through addiction and has developed strong passion for the field, in advocating for this specific population, her goal is to help eliminate the stigma throughout the medical and health care industry. Her strong passion for substance use disorder has led her to working in an inpatient detox and residential facilities for over 4 years.
Jennifer became the Nursing Director to a newly opening residential facility Ripple Ranch. She developed the medical foundation for our facility, with creating policy and procedures and has been with the company since their opening doors till present day. She has also helped several substance use facilities in opening their doors with training courses and the process of developing policies and procedures for the facility.
In her spare time Jennifer enjoys spending time with her husband and two boys traveling and fishing. Jennifer is very active in her community in volunteering, participating in community events, and the Parent Teacher organization (PTO).
“I am so blessed to be a part of the amazing team at Ripple Ranch. We have a strong clinical focus and believe that treatment is not a one size fits all. What works for one individual will not necessarily work for another.”
Sara is originally, born and raised in Fort Worth, Texas but moved to Austin in 2016. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Sociology from Grand Canyon University, and her Associates of Applied Science in Mental Health and Substance Abuse Counseling at Tarrant County College. She also received a Certificate of Completion for Mental Health Social Work at Tarrant County College. She is currently attending Grand Canyon University to gain her Master’s in Healthcare Administration.
Sara is an active member in the recovery community and in her church. She is devoted to helping people in recovery and on the road to recover. When Sara is not working, she enjoys working out, helping the youth at her church, and hanging out with her family.
"I feel so blessed to be part of a treatment team that focuses on meeting the unique needs of each, individual client. I love the holistic approach that Ripple takes in treating the mind, body, and spirit. My time at Ripple has been amazing and I am so happy to have the opportunity to work in a facility with diverse experience and complete commitment to client well-being and success."
Nicole Weaver is originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and has resided in Texas since 2012. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology with a minor in Psychology in 2005 and went on to earn Master of Science Degree in Counseling with a specialization in Addictions Counseling in 2009. Nicole decided to pursue a PhD in Human Development and Behavior in 2012 and is currently completing her dissertation for that degree. Her research is focused on Substance Abuse Treatment Outcomes. Nicole was a Certified Addictions Counselor in the state of Pennsylvania and has since pursued her Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor credentials here in Texas.
Nicole entered the substance abuse treatment field in 2007, when she began working as an outpatient addictions counselor at Twin Lakes Center, in Somerset Pennsylvania. She then took a position as Lead Residential Treatment Counselor at Pyramid Healthcare in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 2009, where she remained employed until making the move to Texas. Since residing in Texas, Nicole has worked in the social work field, serving children and families for the past six and a half years. Nicole has always had a passion for working in substance abuse treatment, and this passion drew her to return to the field. Nicole accepted a part time position as a clinical group leader at Ripple Ranch in July of 2018 and has enjoyed every minute of her time working at the facility.
Nicole feels extremely grateful to have the opportunity to share her experience and dedication with the clients at Ripple Ranch. She loves the fact that the facility provides a holistic healing approach to the clients that we serve.
"As a weekend clinician, it is my job to help clients to identify their biggest barriers to long-term sobriety. I find it helpful to ask: not why clients relapse, but instead how the relapse occurs. When we break down the precise thoughts, emotions, and behaviors that contribute to unhelpful life choices, we are bringing up to the light of consciousness processes that have been unconsciously running their lives for a long time. My perspective on healing is that awareness makes change. By helping clients to take an honest assessment of what their substance use does and does not do for them, as well as assisting them in taking responsibility for their part in their recovery, I do my part in restoring their power to make choices that support their mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual health."
Natalie Burtenshaw is a Licensed Master Social Worker and Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor who has worked professionally with chemically dependent clients since 2013. She addresses addiction from a holistic perspective and specializes in treating patients who suffer from symptoms of anxiety, depression, trauma and PTSD. She has been in recovery since 2012 and enjoys helping others to find themselves again in sobriety.
“I am grateful and honored to be a part of our clients’ recovery here at Ripple Ranch. I have an integrative theoretical approach and can utilize different approaches and treatment models based on the individuals’ needs and goals. I have found great value in group work and psychoeducation to assist individuals in their fight against addiction. I have witnessed professionally and personally the devastation and destruction addiction can bring to the lives of the person struggling as well as the lives of their loved ones. I believe in every person’s right to freedom from addiction.”
Kristen Lockhart is originally from San Antonio, Texas. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Applied Sociology from Texas State University, and her Master of Science in Social Work from University of Texas at Austin. She is a Licensed Master Social Worker and Licensed Clinical Social Work Intern. She is a mother of two children (ages 2 and 4) and her interests outside of career and family are fitness, being outdoors and watching hockey.
Kristen discovered her passion for helping others early on in life between going to work with her mother, volunteering, serving as a camp counselor, and church outreach groups. She began working in the mental health field in 2007. She has worked with a diverse group of populations in a variety of settings. These include adolescents in the juvenile legal system; adolescents with substance abuse disorders and co-occurring mental health disorders; adult and adolescent patients suffering from depression, anxiety, grief and loss issues, and adjustment disorders; veterans with PTSD, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, borderline personality disorder, and substance use disorders; and the elderly suffering from dementia, substance abuse and other mental health disorders. She has led PTSD support groups, psychoeducational mental illness groups, caregiver support groups, and grief and loss support groups for adults and children.
Kristen feels especially honored to join the team at Ripple Ranch. She has a heart for the recovery community and a desire to help people experience true freedom from addiction so that they can realize their potential and achieve their goals. Kristen’s theoretical approach is integrative of cognitive behavioral therapy, rational emotive behavior therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, motivational interviewing, solution focused therapy, family systems perspectives, and person-centered therapy. Kristen understands that each person is unique and believes in treating the person individually, but she finds great value in group work too. She is passionate about educating those that suffer from addiction so that they have the knowledge and tools to educate others and change the narrative. She believes that EVERYONE has a right to freedom from addiction.
“I am passionate about helping others heal from the disease of addiction, mental illness, or both. I believe in the power of individualized treatment tailored to each client. Ripple Ranch is unique in this aspect which is what led me to work with them.”
Michelle is originally from upstate NY and moved to Austin in 2010. She earned her registered nursing degree in 2003 and worked in a variety of settings where she found her passion for mental health and substance use treatment. Most recently, she has worked in dual diagnosis rehab facilities as well as the county jail. She earned her Master of Nursing Science from the University of South Alabama in 2017 and is board certified as a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner. She is a licensed Suboxone provider and is well versed in addiction medicine and dual diagnosis treatment.
“I love working with the clients at Ripple Ranch. I previously only worked at women's facilities. Male clients bring a new dynamic, and new creative challenges.”
It's also refreshing to move beyond 12 -step precepts and explore spirituality and recovery in art through other avenues.
Kathleen holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts/Drawing from Old Dominion University, and studied illustration at NY School of Visual Art. Her minors were Marketing, and K-12 Art Education.
She enjoyed a full, award-winning career in illustration and graphic design, but early onset of Macular Degeneration in 2008 forced her to rethink everything she knew about her art making process. Since returning to her home in the Hill Country, she has been busy with portrait commissions, custom painting wild western boots and re-creating clothing under the name Gypsy Bluebird Studio. She has been featured by local media several times.
Kathleen long had a dream of incorporating her dedication to recovery and its principles with her art, as a way to help newly sober women and men find self-discovery and spiritual growth. Projects are designed to be creatively challenging, yet easy for the non-artist to experience success. Using a variety of mediums and techniques, clients encounter concepts of self expression, letting go, non-perfectionism, lack of control, paradox of individuality within commonalities, childlike delight, accomplishment, fun and joy.
"Here at Ripple Ranch we have a caring and supportive staff that provides individualized programming. We offer an alternative to the 12-step approach to recovery. We help treat the underlying conditions that contribute to addiction with a clinically based approach while bringing mindfulness into practice. We genuinely love what we do and are ready help you reach your goals for healing the mind, body, and soul."
Amanda was born and raised in North Texas and has made South Texas her home. Amanda has the unique experience of working with clients in all stages of addiction, from birth to recovery, in a variety of professional settings. Amanda has a passion for helping individuals find balance and peace in their life through compassion, understanding and mindfulness. Amanda spends her free time focusing on family. Amanda loves the outdoors and working with her hands.
“Ripple is a rehab that fills the void when someone doesn’t want 12 Step or has done 12 Step before and wants something different. I believe we provide valuable tools to cope in the world after they leave. We offer so many therapies and the small client number ensures that everyone gets enough one-on-one time with the counselors. I hear the conversations at meals that confirm the clients’ satisfaction with our program. I have worked here 4 years and loved every minute of it. Watching the clients change and grow thru the process is very gratifying. I know that the meals are a small part of the program, but it is important to heal the whole body as much as possible while they are here. I believe our menu helps with that. We serve healthy meals with a balanced diet of mostly organic ingredients and lots of fruits and vegetables. We also incorporate many different types of meals to keep it interesting and to broaden clients’ horizons beyond fast food. I’ve attached a week’s menu to show the kind of meals we provide.”
“Being a part of a client's journey to recovery truly is the greatest calling anyone can ask for. Being able to see the clients come in either broken down, lost and even in pain, and have them leave with a sense of hope is the most rewarding aspect of working here. To make a difference in someone's life, you don't have to be brilliant, rich, beautiful, or perfect, you just have to care. Don't lose hope--you never know what tomorrow may bring.”
“I cook breakfast for the clients and get their morning started off with kindness and gratitude. We don’t know the personal struggles someone is going through, so I feel it is so important to treat people with respect and kindness. I am also a Recovery Technician and I facilitate making sure clients’ needs are met. I pick up their medication, take them for labs. mail packages and take them to outside appointments. I have been with Ripple for 4 years and love it, I feel if I can help someone on their journey to sobriety it should be in a kind and loving environment.”
“Part of my job is to help, care and support clients in any way I can to the best of my ability. When client takes a step forward big or small towards their goals, makes me feel that I have accomplished my job in helping others. The simple “Thank You for your help” I get from clients when they have graduated the program is very meaningful makes it all worth joining the Ripple Ranch Recovery Team.”
“I was invited to Ripple Ranch 8 months ago to help fill in for those that continuously provide meals to clients on a daily basis. Ripple Ranch is a unique environment that provides growth in all areas to include exposure to nutritious foods. I stand firmly on the principals of whole body wellness and believe well rounded meals have a large impact on the way clients make it through their day as balanced nutrition is vital to proper brain and body functioning. As a PRN Chef I have had the opportunity to plant seeds of encouragement at meal times as well as provide clients with meals that help them to try new foods. The meals at our facility have been raved about by numerous clients confirming that wholesome, tasty food does do a body good!”
“I am pleased to be a part of Ripple Ranch at Austin as we strive to provide a safe environment for our clients to heal. Everyone here has a role to fulfill in the journey of our client’s recovery. As a nurse, helping them stay medically healthy throughout this journey is one of my primary concerns. Recovery involves mind, body, and spirit and that is what Ripple offers.”
“Seeing clients work hard and accomplish their goals is truly the reward we gain working here. Seeing their smiles knowing it was possible and they did it. Being here has showed me that we never stop growing as a person and can continue to strive to be the best that we can be.”
“My name is Elissa and I am a registered dietitian. I enjoy educating residents at Ripple Ranch on how to improve their diet, apply healthier habits at home, and to cut through the abundance of diet confusion out there. Proper nutrition is one of the most important factors in preventing relapse, and I am honored to be a part of the Ripple Ranch team to improve patient outcomes and quality of life.”
“When I retired in 2010 after 25 years with a Fortune 500 Company, I thought I was going to relax and take it easy for the rest of my life. Four months later I was going crazy. I started a small company called the Copper Dragonfly, LLC. Just to keep me busy. 4 years later I closed the store to take a job at a small drug and alcohol treatment center. It is here at Ripple Ranch that I am able to share the healing arts of Tai Chi Easy/Qigong and Shinrin-yoku with our clients.”
“I work as an advocate for clients that suffer from the disease of addiction. I aid on a daily basis to keep a positive focus on treatment. Here at Ripple, we go above and beyond many strictly twelve-step based facilities due to the increased demand for alternatives. SMART recovery is offered, and a focus on positive psychology is addressed, recognizing character strengths of the clients, and identifying what brings joy to a client’s life that is not based on chemicals or processes. Clients learn to focus on mindfulness and move towards a more meaningful life filled with purpose rather than “just” not using any more. Relapse prevention is always a goal, and relapse mitigation is also taught because setting standards based on perfection can be a recipe for negative situations. Exposing clients to supportive “like minded” groups outside of treatment enhances the possibility of success. Aftercare and support are stressed. Seeing positive reactions from the clients when presented with extra “tools” for recovery is why I choose to be a part of the Ripple team. Working here is more of a “calling” rather than simply a job.”
"I've been part of Ripple Ranch since October 2014. I believe that "If we change the way we look at things, the things that we look at change." By Wayne Dyer I was in IT for 8 years, with a big Fortune 500 Company based in San Antonio, TX, before I decided to find, because of a knee injury, and follow my own yoga experience. After a while, I was hooked and I enrolled in a two year yoga training program. I’ve been practicing yoga since 2004 and teaching since 2009. I believe that healing comes to us all in our own way and time. We are all FREE to experience, choose, and heal as we understand that we are the designers of our own lives. I thoroughly enjoy practicing yoga with the clients who want an extreme change from their present choices. In the words of Nikos Kazantzakis – “True teachers are those who use themselves as bridges over which they invite their students to cross; then having facilitated their crossing, joyfully collapse, encouraging them to create their own.”
“I have been affiliated with Ripple Ranch at Austin since its inception, and I was honored to be brought on board in 2014 as their Reiki practitioner. Reiki is a simple, natural and safe method of spiritual healing and self-improvement and it works in conjunction with other medical or therapeutic techniques to promote recovery. Reiki has proven itself to be an enjoyable and therapeutic treatment program for clients at Ripple Ranch at Austin. I consider myself blessed to be involved with such an exemplary facility staffed with amazing people!”
“I was brought onto the team here at Ripple Ranch late this year. Coming onto the team I wasn't sure what I was going to expect but I knew that being able to help people was my goal. As a Recovery Technician I help clients with the needs of their daily lives as they are in their treatment here. In my time here, I’ve seen so much care from every member of the team for each individual client. I’m proud to be a team member here because of this. Seeing each client grow from the beginning to the end of their treatment and being able to be a part of that has made me feel blessed. Being able to be a part of something that is bigger than myself is very rewarding.”
“The Navy instilled in me the core values of honor, courage, and commitment. These core values have become a part of my character and I feel these attributes are essential to be effective when working in the field of recovery. I am committed to the clients’ individually, to their recovery, and in helping them in any way I can on their journey. ‘No problem is insurmountable. With a little courage, teamwork and determination a person can overcome anything’. -Unknown.”
“As part of the medical staff, working here is very fulfilling. Seeing the medical progress client's make from intake to discharge is very rewarding.“
“Everyone here is truly invested in the client’s recovery. It’s amazing and humbling to be a part of their journey.”
“I have been working at Ripple since the initial opening almost 5 years ago. I’m grateful to work with a team and in an environment that strives for better care and needs of clients. I have experienced family who struggle with addiction and understand how hard it is. I love working for Ripple. The best part is knowing that we are here for clients who are fighting their addictions. The best feeling is seeing clients progress throughout their recovery and seeing a change in their lives and having them say “Thank you”. It is an awesome feeling. “
“Working here at Ripple Ranch is a new learning opportunity and different career path to experience. I get to be part of the clients’ journey to sobriety. It's rewarding to know I helped in one way or another for them to reach their goal.”