Roy Wooten, MS
Roy Wooten has over twenty-five years experience in social services serving primarily in senior leadership of youth and family service nonprofit ministries. He holds a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Abilene Christian University. Roy has held licenses with the Texas Department of Protective and Family Services and the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists. He has served in leadership posts in civic, church and professional organizations. Roy is the author of the best selling book “The Secret to Lifetime Love” and frequently a sought-after speaker and guest on relationship matters including marriage, parenting, fathering and family issues. He has presented at the National Association of Relationship and Marriage Educators, National Head Start Annual Conference, Texas Network of Youth Services, Texas Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, Christian Association for Psychological Studies, Texas Head Start Association, Texas Association of School Boards Leadership Institutes, Texas Parent Involvement Conferences, Oklahoma and Texas Parent Teachers Associations and many others. He has been interviewed in print and television media from Amarillo to Houston and consulted with the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, Harris County, City of Houston and churches, schools and nonprofits. He holds several memberships including the Christian Comedy Association.
Roy has been married to Devra since 1988 and has two adult children who are actively engaged at school, church and their community in the Northwest Houston area.
Melissa Rotholz, MS
Melissa holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing from Texas State University and a Master of Science in Organizational and Human Resource Development from Abilene Christian University. She has over twelve years of experience leading organizational and human resource development teams dedicated to supporting and elevating individual and organization performance. Melissa enjoys program creation and facilitation, process design and improvement, strategic planning, consulting, and marketing. She loves meeting new people and finding ways to build lasting and impactful partnerships. She feels incredibly passionate about serving people in our community through mentoring, board and committee participation, and volunteering at her church, children’s schools, and many area ministries.
Melissa has been married since 1994 and has two teenage children that keep her busy with activities. In her free time, Melissa enjoys spending time with friends, reading, and traveling.
Allie Scott, MA, LPC
Allie holds a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology from Bowling Green State University. She specializes in treatment of depression, anxiety, adjustment to trauma and difficult life situations, codependency, grief, parenting issues. Additionally, Allie has had experience and success working with adult victims of childhood sexual abuse. She has participated in many of Shield Bearer’s Marriage Intensives, and has extensive experience working with couples in distress. Allie is skilled at providing practical and applicable counseling to help her clients navigate the difficulties of life.
Allie has been married to her husband Elliott since 1992. They have five children. In her spare time she enjoys exercising, singing in her praise team, reading, doing cross-word puzzles, cooking, and camping with her family.
Cindy Brooks Therwhanger, LCSW – S
Cindy holds a Bachelor in Social Work from West Texas State University, now West Texas A&M. Cindy completed her Masters in Social Work from University of Maryland at Baltimore, in Baltimore, Maryland. She has been licensed as a clinical social worker in Texas since 1997. Prior to 1997, she worked as a therapist in New York, Maryland and Nebraska.
Cindy has been working in social services and as a therapist for over 25 years. She has provided therapy services for victims of domestic violence for the past 15 years. She also has experience working with children, couples, individuals and families around trauma, grief and loss issues and PTSD. Cindy has taught boundary and co-dependency classes and occasionally teaches a class on Domestic Violence.
Cindy is a board certified supervisor for the Texas State Board of Social Work Examiners and is also certified to supervise interns from University of Houston School of Social Work. She has supervised interns from U of H, Sam Houston State and University of Southern California.
Cindy has three grown children, a daughter and two sons and a 6 lb. Chihuahua named Bella. She enjoys reading and vacationing, spending time with her family and friends and vacationing in the mountains of New Mexico.
Pam Cosart, MA, LPC-S, CART
Board Certified Professional Christian Counselor
Pam holds a Business degree from Eastern Illinois University and a Master’s degree in Counseling from Liberty University. She is a veteran facilitator of women’s bible study groups and oversees the Soul Care Counseling Ministry at Cy-Fair Christian Church. Pam specializes in treatment of anxiety, depression, grief and loss; she provides individual, adolescent, children, couple and family counseling, including pre-marital and marriages in distress. She journeys with women who are navigating through transitions of life. Additionally, she is a certified anger resolution therapist. Her theoretical orientation includes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and existentialism from a biblical perspective. Pam is a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors, the Board of Christian Professional and Pastoral Counselors, and the American Counseling Association.
Pam married her husband Al in 1975. They have three adult children: Audra, Jordan and Alex. In her spare time, she likes to read and walk/jog for fitness. She enjoys traveling with her husband and spending time with their grandchildren.
Joyce Finch, Ed.D. MA, LPC, CSC
Joyce holds a Bachelor of Science in Education at the University of Houston, a Master of Education in Guidance and Counseling at Sam Houston State University, a Doctorate in Counselor Education at Texas Southern University. She was a school counselor for 23 years – 10 as an intermediate and 13 as a high school counselor. Joyce is an assistant professor at Texas Southern University and teaches school and agency counseling. She specializes in the treatment of grief and loss, depression, and anxiety and provides Christian, adolescent, and individual counseling. Joyce is a member of the Texas Counseling Association and Chi Sigma Iota (International Honor Society for Counseling Majors on the Graduate Level). She married her husband Robert (Bob) in 1969, and they have two adult daughters and six grandchildren. In her spare time she plays tennis, exercises at the gym, walks, and swims. Joyce enjoys traveling with her husband and spending time with their grandchildren.
MaryLou Shackleton, MA, LPC-S, LMFT-S
Clinical Supervisor and Marriage and Family Therapist
MaryLou holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and a Master’s in Family Therapy from University of Houston-Clear Lake and has been practicing since 2002. She served in the preschool and counseling ministries at Sagemont Church in Houston since 1982. MaryLou helps clients, young and old, with depression, anxiety, grief and loss, and helps families work through premarital counseling, marriage issues, parenting challenges and blended family concerns at her private practice. She supervises students and licensed interns. MaryLou is married and blessed with grandchildren and she enjoys sewing, old movies, and finding treasures in resale shops!
Patsy Koenig, MA, LPC
Patsy holds a Master’s of Arts in Counseling from Houston Graduate School of Theology and is a member of the American Counseling Association. She has a Bachelor of Science in Speech Pathology and a Masters of Arts in Education from Southwest Texas State University. Patsy works with individuals and couples, and she facilitates Shield Bearer’s anger management classes. Patsy has a heart for restoring and strengthening relationships. She cares deeply that her clients find healing for their wounds and a path through the challenges of their life. Patsy has a gift for encouragement, and a goal of helping her clients recognize hope. When the client so chooses, she values integrating faith into the counseling experience. Patsy has been married to Randy since 1981. They have five children and recently gained a son-in-law. Patsy’s favorite pastime is spending time with family and friends.
Tammy Cover, MS, LPC-Intern
Tammy holds a Master of Science in Professional Counseling from Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona. She has a heart for women who have gone through or are going through divorce, as well as those in difficult marriages. Her passion is helping people recognize their own value as an Image Bearer of the Creator and their special purpose in His plan. Tammy works with children and adolescents, couples, and adult women. Tammy enjoys concerts, theater, and time with friends and family. She moved from Arizona to Texas in 2015 after her two adult sons moved here. She has one grandson and another grandchild on the way.
Roy Garcia, MDiv, MA, LPC-Intern
Roy is a caring counselor who has helped many individuals and couples, adults and adolescents, overcome communication issues, anxiety, depression, marriage and relationship problems. Roy earned a Master’s Degree in Counseling from the Houston Graduate School of Theology graduating Magna Cum Laude. Previously Roy earned a Master of Divinity from Concordia Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri and a Bachelor of Science degree from Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas.
Roy previously owned a successful construction company in Corpus Christi and pastored a church in Austin. Roy and his wife enjoy their son and daughter and their six grandchildren. Roy and his wife are members of Lakewood Church, where they are involved in various ministries. Roy is fluent in Spanish.
Carmen Dennistoun, MA, LPC
Carmen graduated from Sam Houston State University with a Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology. She provides individual, adolescent, couple and family counseling and has worked in various settings including Christian counseling center, private clinic, women and children’s homeless shelter, residential home for children, domestic violence center and psychiatric/substance abuse hospital. Her special interests are working with clients dealing with substance abuse, addiction, depression, bipolar, anxiety and stress, life transitions, marriage and family conflict and survivors of abuse. Carmen also facilitates Shield Bearer’s Depression and Bipolar Support group.
Carmen has been married since 1993 and has two teenage children. She enjoys spending time with family, extended family and close friends. Her hobbies are playing the piano, skiing the blues, jogging a little, great movies and watching anyone else cook as long as it isn’t her.
Jayna Haney, MS, LPC-Intern
Jayna holds a Master’s Degree in Counseling from UHCL and is certified as a Master Stepfamily Coach by the Stepfamily Foundation. Jayna provides counseling exclusively to stepfamilies, single parents, and their children/teens and guides them to find solutions, information, and peace of mind.
Jayna began her work with single parents and stepfamilies in 2002, fueled by her own experiences trying to find help and support as a single parent, and later in a stepfamily. As a passionate advocate, Jayna brings her energy, personal stories, and humor to speak to organizations and places of worship. She has authored and presents a number of programs including Powerful Single Parent Wisdom and Crucial Keys for Working Together as Parent and Stepparent.
Jayna has been married to her husband Mike since 2001, and they have four grown children. Jayna and Mike enjoy their family and friends, dancing, going to the movies, all things “Houston Rodeo”, walking their dog, visiting the beach, and being intentional about their life together.
Britney Maxwell Shirk, MA, LMFT-A
Britney holds a Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from the University of Akron. She received her Bachelors of Psychology from the University of Oklahoma. Britney has worked with families, children and teens in a counseling setting as well as in church and institutional settings. She provides individual, family, child and adolescent counseling. Britney loves to work with clients to develop a plan together that empowers the individual as well as support growth inter personally.
Britney had three young children, two daughters and one son. Her pets are also part of the family. She values connecting with people, but she also appreciates yoga, running, travel, reading, painting, drawing, and playing outdoors.
Graduate Student Interns
Shield-Bearer is proud to be an internship/practicum site for new professionals who desire to help us meet our mission of high quality services without regard to ability to pay. Very few applicants are selected to become a part of the Shield-Bearer family. Graduate students selected have typically been those who have life and field experience in addition to their formal education and who fit well with our values and mission. Being counseled by a graduate student provides the most current evidence-based approaches with weekly (sometimes daily) supervision by credentialed onsite and graduate school supervisors. We are proud to have been a part of facilitating the ongoing training of new counselors in conjunction with the following graduate programs:
• Baylor University, Graduate School of Social Work
• Houston Graduate School of Theology, Counseling Department
• Houston Baptist University, Christian Counseling Department
• Liberty University, Counseling Department
• Sam Houston State University, Education and Counseling Departments
• University of Houston, Psychology, Education and Social Work Departments
• Texas Women’s University, Family Therapy Doctoral Program
• Ashland Theological Seminary, Pastoral Counseling Department
• Dallas Theological Seminary, Christian Counseling Department