Faculty & Staff

One of our department's biggest strengths is our faculty. The members of Lipscomb University's faculty are highly-qualified professors and working clinicians with a variety of professional and educational backgrounds. The core faculty consists of doctoral-level professors representing the areas of counseling, family therapy, clinical psychology, health psychology, neuroscience, child development and cognitive psychology. They have won a number of awards for teaching and advising: 6 Outstanding Teacher awards, 2 Baker Awards, and 2 Outstanding Advisor Awards.  The department supplements this group with several excellent part-time and visiting faculty members who are experts in their fields.

J. Dale Alden, III, Ph.D., HSP
Assistant Professor of Psychology and Counseling
Phone: 615-966-5823
Office: Ward 163
Dr. Alden is a longstanding faculty member in the department of Psychology and Counseling.  He teaches Introduction to Psychopathology, Psychological Assessment, and Biological Psychology for the graduate program. Dr. Alden is a Licensed Psychologist, HSP, who specializes in clinical neuropsychology and maintains a private practice in Columbia, TN. His education includes a M.S. in Counseling from Abilene Christian University, a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology/Neuropsychology from Virginia Tech, and a specialization in Neuropsychology/ Geropsychiatry at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.

Holly Allen, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Family Studies

Email: holly.allen@lipscomb.edu
Office: Ward 165

Dr. Holly Allen joined the faculty at Lipscomb University in 2014. She has more than 25 years’ experience in educational psychology, intergenerational Christian formation, and children’s and family studies. Allen is published widely and is a highly sought after speaker at academic conferences and in faith settings. Her current research focus is spiritual development in children and she frequently speaks to parents, educators and churches on spiritual development across the generations. Her publications and research are being used in courses in over a dozen universities and seminaries. She holds a doctorate from Talbot Theological School. She is a member of the board for the Society for Children’s Spirituality and Gen-On Ministries among other professional activities.

Justin BriggsJustin Briggs
Assistant Professor and Clinical Director
Email: jgbriggs@lipscomb.edu
Phone: 615-966-5301
Office: LFTC 203

Dr. Briggs joined the faculty at Lipscomb University in 2014. He completed his Ph.D. in Marriage and Family Therapy at Purdue University and earned his M.S. in Marital and Family Therapy at the Family Institute at Northwestern University. Dr. Briggs is a licensed marriage and family therapist, American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) Clinical Fellow, assistant professor, and director of the Lipscomb Family Therapy Center. His areas of research and special clinical interest include marriage and health, research informed clinical practice, couple conflict, divorce, sexual and physical trauma, sex therapy, parenting issues, mood disorders, anxiety, depression, and substance abuse. Dr. Briggs practices an empirically supported approach to therapy that includes cognitive-behavioral and emotionally focused interventions. In addition to his clinical work and research, Dr. Briggs is an AAMFT Approved Supervisor. This designation signifies that he has attained the educational, experiential and supervisory training required for the competent supervision of marriage and family therapists and trainees.
Chris Gonzalez, Ph.D., LMFT
Assistant Professor of Psychology and Counseling
Program Director, Marriage and Family Therapy
Phone: 615-966-6651
Office: Ward 165
Chris Gonzalez joined our faculty in Fall 2010 after completing his Ph.D. in Family Social Science from University of Minnesota.  He teaches several courses in the MFT program. His research explores family and spiritual influences on positive youth development. He is also a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist.

Andrea Mills, M.Ed., LPC/MHSP
Assistant Director of Lipscomb University Counseling Center
Phone: 615-966-5737
Office: Counseling (Elam B-208)

Dave Morgan, Ed.D., LMFT
Assistant Professor of Psychology and Counseling

Email: dave.morgan@lipscomb.edu
Phone: 615-966-5209
Office: Ward 161
Dave Morgan joined our faculty in Fall 2013 after a dozen years in the Lipscomb University Counseling Center where he served as a therapist and the Director of Testing Services.  Dave received his Doctor of Education degree from Vanderbilt University.  He is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and a Clinical Fellow with the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.  In addition, he holds the designation of Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Master Practitioner.  Dave's primary responsibilities are teaching and supervision in the MMFT program.  He has served as academic advisor, for which he has been recognized with an "Outstanding Academic Advising Award."  Dave's clinical interests include relationship, dating, premarital, and marital issues.  Dave's research interests include the application of personality type theory to a variety of issues.

Melanie Morris, Ph.D., Licensed Psychologist, HSP
Assistant Professor of Psychology and Counseling
Clinical Director, Graduate Studies in Counseling
Phone: 615-966-5658
Office: McFarland 107

Dr. Morris coordinates the Practicum and Internship process for the M.S. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program and supervises practicum/internship students.  Dr. Morris received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from University of Mississippi and is a Licensed Psychologist, HSP. She came to Lipscomb after eight years of teaching at Freed-Hardeman University. 


 Jake Morris, Ph.D., LPC-MHSP
Program Director, Graduate Studies in Counseling

Email: jake.morris@lipscomb.edu
Phone: 615-966-6652
Office: Ward 113

Dr. Morris joined our faculty in July 2009, after 10 years of teaching in the Psychology and Counseling Programs at Freed-Hardeman University. His received his doctorate in Educational Psychology (with an emphasis in Counselor Education) from University of Mississippi in 2000. Dr. Morris has taught many graduate counseling classes over the years, but his passion lies in Theories of Counseling and Psychotherapy.  Currently, he teaches the Introduction to Clinical Mental Health Counseling and Capstone courses.  Dr. Morris has presented at the local, state, and national levels on topics including Ethics, Supervision, Multicultural Issues in Counseling, Parenting, and Sexuality. Dr. Morris is currently licensed in the state of Tennessee as an LPC-MHSP, with prior licensure in Mississippi as an LPC.

Shanna D. Ray, Ph.D.Chair,
Department of Psychology, Counseling & Family Science

Professor of Psychology and Counseling
Program Director, Graduate Studies in Psychology

Phone: 615-966-5833
Office: Ward 156
Dr. Ray has been chair of the department since August 2014 and coordinator for the M.S. in Psychology program since 2012.  She also teaches Lifespan Development for the graduate program. Dr. Ray has an M.A. in Experimental Psychology from M.T.S.U. and a Ph.D./M.S. in Developmental Psychology from Vanderbilt University.  Dr. Ray's research explores how people's reasoning about God and Satan varies across the lifespan and among people from diverse religious backgrounds.

Douglas Ribeiro, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Psychology and Counseling

Email: douglas.ribeiro@lipscomb.edu
Phone: 615-966-7142
Office: McFarland 105
Dr. Ribeiro joined our faculty in Fall 2012 after completing his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Georgia State University. He teaches Introduction to Psychopathology and Adaptive Behavior, Multicultural Issues in Counseling, and supervises students completing their practicum/internship experience in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. His therapeutic approach is grounded in humanistic and multicultural theories. His research interests include culturally responsive counseling interventions, resilience among immigrant groups, and mixed (Quantitative & Qualitative) methodology in research design.

Frank Scott, Ph.D., LPC-MHSP
Director, University Counseling Center
Assistant Professor of Psychology and Counseling

Email: frank.scott@lipscomb.edu
Phone: 615-966-1781
Office: Basement of Elam
Dr.Scott has been an adjunct professor since 1998 and is now serving as the University's Counseling Center Director.  He teaches classes in Group Therapy, Human Sexuality, and Suffering: Psychological Insights. He has taught at colleges in Texas and at four middle Tennessee universities . He has been in private practice, worked in psychiatric hospitals, and directed counseling centers. Dr. Scott's interests include parenting education and the impact of spiritual beliefs on emotional health.

Denis' Thomas, Ph.D., NCC
Assistant Professor of Psychology and Counseling

Email: denis.thomas@lipscomb.edu
Phone: 615-966-5599
Office: McFarland 103
Dr. Denis' Thomas joined the faculty in 2012 after several years on faculty at Lindsey Wilson College. She earned a degree in journalism from Abilene Christian University and a master's degree in school counseling from Middle Tennessee State University before earning a Ph.D. in Counselor Education from the University of Tennessee. She has worked as a school counselor, play therapy counselor and grief counselor, and she especially enjoys counseling children and adolescents. She is a National Certified Counselor.  Dr. Thomas teaches Theories of Counseling and Personality, Intro to Counseling Skills, Advanced Play Therapy and Expressive Arts and Intro to Play Therapy.

Paul E. Turner, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology and Counseling
Email: paul.turner@lipscomb.edu
Phone: 615-966-5832
Office: Ward 164

Dr. Turner is a longstanding professor at Lipscomb University and has been awarded three "Outstanding Teacher" awards and one "Outstanding Advisor" award.  Dr. Turner teaches Research Methods & Statistics and Integration of Psychology and Christianity Seminar.  He teaches Drugs and Behavior and History and Systems of Psychology at the undergraduate level.  His education includes the M.A. and Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Southern Mississippi with an emphasis in Experimental Psychology, and a M.S. in Public Health from Western Kentucky University. Dr. Turner's research interests are in health psychology, perfectionism, and spirituality.


DeAndrea Witherspoon Nash, Ph.D., LPC/MHSP, NCC
Assistant Professor of Psychology and Counseling

Email: DeAndrea.Nash@lipscomb.edu
Phone: 615-966-5903
Office: Ward 115

Dr. DeAndrea Witherspoon Nash is a native of Madison, Tennessee. Dr. Witherspoon Nash earned her M.S. in Counseling Psychology from Tennessee State University and her Ph.D. in Clinical Counseling from Trevecca Nazarene University. She is licensed as a professional counselor-mental health service provider in the state of Tennessee and is also a nationally certified counselor. Dr. Witherspoon Nash was the former clinical director of two Bradford Health Services locations and served as the Program Coordinator of Child and Youth Outpatient Treatment at Centerstone-Luton. Additionally, she has served as an adjunct faculty member at Trevecca Nazarene University for five years and currently facilitates the monthly First Time Drug Offender parent education class sponsored by Metro Nashville Public Schools. She has received formal academic training in teaching and clinical supervision of master and doctoral level students during the course of their practicum and internship training. Dr. Witherspoon Nash has specialty experience in the areas of alcohol and drug treatment as well as child and adolescent therapy. She enjoys traveling, family time, values the importance of self-care, and often reflects on Proverbs 3: 5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.”

Urszula Collier
Admissions Coordinator 
Graduate Studies in Marriage and Family Therapy

Email: urzula.collier@lipscomb.edu
Phone: 615-966-5213
Office: Ward 154

Urszula joined the department in 2012 to work with the Masters of Marriage and Family Therapy Program.  Urszula received her BA in English from Harding University.  She is also a professional translator and ESL teacher.

Kathi Johnson
Director, Graduate Studies

Email: kathi.johnson@lipscomb.edu
Phone: 615-966-5237
Office: Ward 162

A Lipscomb Alum, Kathi joined the department in 2012 and works primarily with the Graduate Studies program as the Outreach and Enrollment coordinator. Kathi's career has been in the nonprofit industry for the past 13 years with a focus in fundraising and volunteer management.


Jenna Vance
Administrative Assistant

Email: jlvance@lipscomb.edu
Phone: 615-966-5906
Office: Ward 153