Kelli Ritter, Ph.D., LPC, NCC – Counseling Services Advisor 

The Founder and President of Effective Parenting, LLC in Atlanta, Kelli B. Ritter earned her Ph.D. in counseling from Georgia State University where she specialized in child and family counseling. Dr. Ritter is trained as a play therapist with many years of experience and research in child and family therapy. She possesses a unique approach to helping families by utilizing concepts and skills from both Play Therapy, Individual Psychology, and Positive Psychology.

Dr. Ritter inspires parents to make the most of play with their children. Through her classes, workshops and products, Dr. Ritter’s FEEL Method helps parents by engendering confidence in and control over their own parenting style. Dr. Ritter’s parenting book & DVD, Come Play with Me!, illustrates her true passion for working with parents, caregivers, and teachers to enhance relationships with children. Dr. Ritter is also an inspiring public speaker and presenter.

Nancia Leath, Ph.D., LPC, NCC, CPCS – Director of Counseling Services

Dr. Leath is a Licensed Professional Mental Health Counselor (LPC) in the State of Georgia. Dr. Nancia Leath is also a National Certified Counselor (NCC), a credential given by the National Board for Certified Counselors, and Certified Professional Counselor Supervisor (CPCS). Dr. Nancia is an Integrative Psychotherapist, which means that she utilizes a variety of orientations and therapies, according to the client’s individual needs. Dr. Nancia has provided leadership development for teens with special needs, diversity/inclusion, and team cohesion trainings to Fortune 500 companies’ directors and managers. She has been on national television and done many radio interviews as an expert for mental health to assist parents who have children with mental health diagnoses. Dr. Leath has inspired many by being keynote speakers for many different types of conferences in the United States and globally. She is a published author of many self-help books that you can find on amazon. Owner of private practice, Inward Core Healthcare, Inc. and non-profit organization called Teens Help Other People, Inc 501c3.

Dr. Nancia has four degrees: Ph.D., two MA(s), and BS. She was granted lifetime membership in Psi Chi, the International Honor Society in Psychology in recognition of outstanding scholastic achievement and excellence. Received Gold Volunteering Awards from two Presidents of the United States of America: President Obama (2015) and President Trump (2018) because she empowers others to become communities’ leaders. Dr. Nancia has over 25 years of counseling, industry, and private practice combined experience. Dr. Nancia combines her clinical counseling expertise with her business knowledge to offer clients a unique perspective of problem solving.

Nikkiya D. Brooks, Ed.D, LPC – Counselor

Nikkiya D. Brooks earned her Ed.D. in counselor education and supervision from Argosy University in Atlanta, Georgia where she specialized in trauma-informed care, and transpersonal counseling. Dr. Brooks is an advocate for youth and families, and has worked closely with the County Superior Courts in Georgia, and the Department of Family and Children Services in restoring family units. She utilizes a transpersonal approach to helping families, which requires individuals to tap in to their spirit and imagination. Dr. Brooks has presented her research on trauma-informed clinical counseling and transpersonal counseling nationally and internationally. She is a licensed professional counselor in Georgia, and in South Carolina, and is the founder of The Center for Advanced Rehabilitation Concepts, LLC.

Fun Fact: Dr. Brooks took a class, and became a certified babysitter when she was 12 years old! Working with children and families is a dream come true!

 Tracey Hawkins – Counselor & Executive Functioning Coach 

Tracey Hawkins graduated Phi Beta Kappa, summa cum laude from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in Art History and Humanities Classis and went on to earn a MA in Art History from Emory University. She taught Art History at the university level for nearly two  decades before joining Cumberland as a Counselor following extensive training at Argosy University and under the tutelage of Cumberland’s own Val Schwann.  Tracey has organized, led, and taught study-abroad programs throughout Europe for Emory U., The Art Institute of Atlanta, and Georgia Tech. She has also served as the Director of several Atlanta-area fine art galleries, provides art consultation and curatorial services to private clients, and serves as an artists’ representative and social-media manager.  Additionally, Tracey is a contributing writer and editor to The 30A Review and The GA Hollywood Review.

At Cumberland, Tracey provides Counseling and Executive Functions Coaching to the student population, tutoring as needed, and teaches Art History/Appreciation as well as the Future Prep course in conjunction with Dr. Spargo.   

Shawnice Parson –  Counselor

Shawnice Parson earned her M.A in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology and has a B.A. in Psychology from Kentucky State University. 

She taught Early Childhood Education for three years before joining Cumberland as a Counselor following internship at TCSPP. Shawnice strives to create a warm and welcoming environment for each student and promotes having a safe place for students to work through difficulties.