Pathfinders Children's Residential

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Pathfinders is a SAFE, SUPPORTIVE and CARING place for children to stay while they heal from emotional trauma and mental health crises. Pathfinders team members believe that children do well when they can. We believe that all children are interested in learning skills in order to be safe and happy. We are here to help children learn these new skills and to develop new habits to be SAFE, RESPECTFUL AND RESPONSIBLE.

Pathfinders will provide a safe and supportive place for healing. Pathfinders helps children learn new skills used to express feelings in safe and respectful ways. They will have many chances to practice new skills, to learn and to grow while being assisted by staff.

Information for referral sources
Information for parents

Stephen L. Brown, M.D. - Medical Director Stephen L. Brown, M.D. - Medical Director
Dr. Stephen Brown is board certified in General and Child/Adolescent Psychiatry. He directs the private practice in child and adolescent psychiatry in Casper. He also is the Medical Director of Wyoming Behavioral Institute. He received his Doctor of Medicine degree at the University of Southern California and trained at Washington University in St. Louis' Barnes and St. Louis Children's Hospital where he received the Award for Clinical Excellence.

Extensively involved in Wyoming medicine since 1990, Dr. Brown is presently serving on the executive committee of the Wyoming Medical Society and the Wyoming Association of Psychiatric Physician's, alternate delegate to the American Medical Society, and the Western States Deputy Representative to the American Psychiatric Association. He is also on the Assembly Executive Committee of the APA. Dr. Brown has been honored with the Distinguished Fellow of the APA designation. He also teaches psychiatry for the University of Washington and the University of Wyoming to WWAMI students and family practice residents. http://www.mentalhealthwyoming.com/

Matthew Bertagnole Matthew Bertagnole, Program Director
Matthew Bertagnole is a professional counselor who has a master's degree in counseling and a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Wyoming, as well as an associates degree in psychology from Casper College. His previous experience includes spending several years as a case manager supervisor at the Casper Re-Entry Center, where he counseled people facing addiction and mental illness and collaborated with local treatment provides to increase successful discharge rates.

Shannon Heaton, Children's Program Supervisor Shannon Heaton, Children's Program Supervisor
Shannon has been employed at Wyoming Behavioral Institute for more than ten years, working with children and adolescents in inpatient and outpatient settings. He is certified to train mental health workers and nurses in the Handle With Care method of crisis intervention and behavior management. He has provided oversight for the Children's Acute Unit at WBI for several years, worked on the Pathways residential unit and Adolescent and Adult acute units, and helped create the K-2 Foundations for Success children's program. He attended college in Texas and his previous experience includes working with adolescents in the Texas correctional system.

Emily Norris, PCSW Emily Norris, PCSW
Emily Norris earned a master's degree in social work and bachelor's degrees in psychology and social work at the University of Wyoming. Her past experience includes working as a counselor at a residential facility, and providing outpatient services. Emily has delivered care for people of all ages with mental health and substance abuse problems. Emily joined WBI in 2016, treating children and adolescents.

Judy Rooney Judy Rooney, LCSW, Therapist
Judy Rooney has worked for Wyoming Behavioral Institute for nearly a decade, primarily as a full-time inpatient therapist. She has an associate's degree in social science from Casper College, a bachelor's degree in social science from Wayne State College in Nebraska, and a master's in social work from the University of Kansas. She has been a Licensed Clinical Social Worker since 1995. She earned certification as a Crisis Intervention Counselor - Certified Specialist in February 2012. Before joining WBI, she invested 10 years in the treatment of mostly inner-city adults with serious mental illness and with children with emotional and behavioral disorders in the Kansas City area. She was appointed as adjunct faculty to the University of Wyoming Division of Social Work in 2008 based on her work with practicum students in the clinical setting.

 Brenda Ostendorf Brenda Ostendorf
Brenda Ostendorf is a triple-certified educator in Minnesota and Wyoming with teaching experience in settings ranging from elementary pre-school to college level. She obtained her Bachelor of Science from St. Cloud State University in Minnesota and has completed the equivalent of a Master's Degree. Brenda has worked with gifted and talented youth, alternative education, self-directed learners, as well as, acutely mentally ill and special populations. Brenda has also enjoyed the privilege of coaching national scholarship contenders in multiple states.