About Us

Community Wellness Partners of NC Professionals

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Marie Franklin M.A., LCMHC-A, NCC

Marie Franklin M.A., LCMHC-A, NCC

Marie Franklin is a Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor Associate. She completed her undergraduate studies at Appalachian State University and obtained her Masters of Arts in Mental Health Counseling from Gardner-Webb University. Marie is also a National Certified Counselor. Marie has worked with individuals dealing with depression, anxiety, psychosis, substance use, anger management, grief and has worked in couples therapy. Marie has worked with a range of ages from children to adults and various ethnicities and sexual orientations. Marie’s theoretical approach to counseling is focused mainly around Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), which focuses on thought patterns and behaviors linked to those thoughts. Some techniques that Marie uses most often are: Negative thought blocking, Re-framing irrational thoughts, focus on self-awareness, and mindfulness. When asked why she wanted to become a counselor Marie stated, “It wasn’t a matter of want, it was a calling. I felt called to help individuals by providing them with empathy, genuineness, and unconditional positive regard, which is the cornerstone of counseling.”

Jessica Barnes

Jessica Barnes, LCSW  

Jessica Capers is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW). She received her Master of Social Work from The University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She works with children, young adults, individuals, and families using an eclectic approach tailored to the unique needs of each new client. She has over 7 years of experience in various settings and with diverse clients, including crisis intervention, structured outpatient programs, inpatient psychiatric facilities, large non-profits, and private practice. She also operates a non-profit that assists girls between the ages of 11-19 who are pregnant and/or have a child throughout the Gaston and Cleveland communities. 

Jessica’s approach emphasizes the mutual development of goals for therapy and ongoing evaluation of the therapeutic approach. Services can include individual, couples, family, and group therapy. She has extensive training in treating childhood trauma and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), which includes trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT), an evidence-based treatment model. She utilizes various techniques and skills drawn from recognized therapeutic modalities, including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Solution-Focused, DBT, Psychoeducation, Play Therapy, behavior modification, and mindfulness and relaxation. Jessica is invested in emphasizing a more integrative, dynamic, and holistic approach to mental health. She is particularly concerned with the impact of loss and trauma and improving interventions to support trauma recovery for better emotional, physical, and relationship health.

Fran Waters Fran Waters, LCMHCA

Fran Waters is a Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor Associate who works with individuals and families.  As counselor, Fran has a special interest in helping adults and adolescents with depression, anxiety, personal growth, and family issues. She has also worked with couples experiencing marital difficulties. Her general counseling approach is integrated, utilizing Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy and Motivational Interviewing. She uses inventories, scaling, and decision balance exercises.  Fran believes that therapy should target the whole person; psychological, physical, social and spiritual. She holds a Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Liberty University. 

When Fran is not working, she enjoys spending time with her family and miniature schnauzer.  She is mother to four grown daughters and was blessed with a bonus adult son in her recent marriage.  She is dedicated to her family, husband and their fur baby, Paisley.  Fran enjoys binge watching documentaries, crafting, cooking and painting.

Kimber Nanna

A student at Lenoir-Rhyne University’s Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program, Kim has a special interest in helping adults with anxiety and depression as well as career issues and navigating life changes. She enjoys integrating creative, artistic approaches into counseling and often incorporates elements of Narrative Therapy, CBT, and Mindfulness. She believes that the stories we tell ourselves are our primary drivers for the decisions we make and how we interact with others, and she views counseling as a means of shaping these stories into something meaningful. Before pursuing a career in counseling, Kim spent many years in the corporate world focused primarily on health content, and she has a passion for helping individuals better understand how their physical well-being affects mental health and vice-versa. She will receive her Master’s degree in the summer of 2024.  

Kim enjoys spending time on the water with her husband; spoiling their two cats, Princesses Macy Grey’s Anatomy and Soks Fifth Avenue; and playing and listening to music.

Michele Blackmon  Michele Blackman, MA LMFT

I am a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and an AAMFT Approved Supervisor. I’m the Business Director at Community Wellness Partner of NC PLLC. I graduated in 2010 from Pfeiffer University and have been in private practice since that time. I use the Gottman Method for couples counseling because it is a proven method with over 40 years of research, and IT WORKS. When working with individuals I use a customized integrated solution, I recognize that clients need a personalized solution not a “cookie cutter” approach, one size does not fit all. I provide counseling services in my Shelby office, present educational workshops for local businesses and conduct marriage workshops at retreats and at local organizations. In addition to private practice I adjunct at several local colleges and universities.

In 2015 I opened the Shelby Wellness & Therapy Center and due to community need.
As a service to the community my center provides free educational & support groups to the community & low cost counseling for those without insurance.

I'm active in my community currently or having participated in Rotary, County Leadership Program, Chamber of Commerce, and others.

I'm mom to 3 boys and a girl, business owner, community leader, and most of all I'm me. I keep grounded through taking care of me and recharging through self reflection, eating healthy, and fostering personal relationships.

Elie Challita

Eli is a graduate student at Liberty University, majoring in marriage and family therapy. He is
presently slated to graduate in the fall of 2024. Eli is a proponent of diversity, multiculturism,
and social justice/advocacy. Theoretically, he employs an integrative approach to counseling that
varyingly incorporates a wide range of evidenced-based practices. Some of the modalities he
utilizes include cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), cognitive-behavioral family therapy
(CBFT), systemic-strategic family therapy, and solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT). Prior to
pursuing a career in clinical/mental health counseling, Eli served as a public servant in a variety
of distinctive settings. Recreationally, he enjoys spending time with his family and engaging in
sports-related activities.

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