Staff at Therapeutic Alliance

Alkesh Patel, Founder and Chief Executive Officer

Alkesh Patel is Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Therapeutic Alliance LLC. He leads a mental health in-home agency based in Virginia whose primary purpose is to counsel children and teens that may be at risk for out-of-home placement. After spending over a decade working at a community level with under-served and underprivileged adults, youths and families, Alkesh knows what truly drives change. His desire is to serve grounded; in open communication, a culture of sharing, and most importantly, trust in the therapeutic relationship.

Alkesh was born on July 4th and has always believed that date to be symbolic to him achieving the “American Dream”. He embodies the ideal of success and prosperity through hard work, determination and initiative. He held a variety of increasingly responsible positions as a clinician, supervisor and director in the Northern Virginia area. His passion and devotion shines through his employees and the clients Therapeutic Alliance serves.

Alkesh is a member of the American Counseling Association and is a Virginia Board Certified Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Substance Abuse Counselor (CSAC). He holds a Master of Education in Multicultural Counseling and Advocacy from George Mason University.

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Robbie Smith, Chief Operating Officer

For almost 45 years, I have held a record of successful strategic healthcare leadership positions spanning acute care, physician practice management, business development and expansion, senior living, assisted living, short term nursing and rehab, memory support, skilled home health, government healthcare contract projects, project management, business startup, strategic planning, sales and marketing, and now mental and behavioral health in a community-based setting.

Helping lead such a diverse and talented professional team that delivers such important mental health services to the children and families of our communities is a gift to me. I absolutely love seeing the progress that is made with the clients and knowing the difference we make in the quality of the lives we serve.

My personal passions are my four children, my granddaughter, and my dogs. I enjoy traveling with my children or my two sisters and cooking fantastic meals for anyone who will let me feed them!

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Emalee Zingher, MS, LPC, Community Based Program Manager

I am a Licensed Professional Counselor and I believe that no one in life was given a book about how to be a human upon birth or how to perfectly raise a child upon conception. If so, I am sure they would’ve been the world’s bestselling novels and life would be colorless. I strongly believe we are beings who were meant to each have a unique human experience. With those experiences comes with challenging times and our mental health can be compromised. With our clients coming to seek our services, we are to be there during such difficult times and assist with guiding down that path. I believe in tailoring our services to our clients’ needs that are unique as their experiences. My passion in life is to normalize mental health, to increase awareness, and provide clinically research-based interventions to our families. I also have a mission to create effective systems of education and training to those who are serving our families to ensure we bring the highest quality of care to our most deserving families. I believe it is our duty to empower our clients to recognize and utilize their potential.

I’ve earned my Masters of Science in Counselor Education from East Carolina University in 2018. I also earned two post-graduate certifications in Military and Trauma Counseling and Substance Abuse Counseling from East Carolina University in 2020.

Outside of being an advocate for mental health, I also enjoy going on hikes, visiting local farmer’s markets, and spending time with my friends, family, and my two cats at home. During my free time, you will find me trying to always fill my cup with self-care to achieve the balancing between work and life.

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Eilish Vazquez, BA, Human Resources Assistant

Working with people has always been my passion. My previous positions in customer service and leadership positions have allowed me to work with both adults and children alike. Therapeutic Alliance has provided me the opportunity to mesh all of my previous professional and educational experiences as the Human Resources Assistant for the agency. As a recent resident of Virginia, my goal was to find a company that excelled in community services, employee relations, and company culture. With our 4 C’s module, Therapeutic Alliance resonated that for me professionally and personally.

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Becci Hunt, ABA Program Manager

I am a compassionate and focused Board Certified Behavior Analyst. As far back as I can remember it has been my goal to make a difference for individuals with special needs. Even as a teenager, I chose to involve myself in experiences with special populations. I always told myself (and anyone else that would listen) that I believed everyone could be a productive, contributing member of society in their own manner and fashion.  To me that means that everyone can try to leave behind a world better than the one they came into. My dream is still to make sure individuals with special needs are able to do just that. That dream led to a career as a special education teacher and then a BCBA.

In all of my professional life, I have been passionate about providing extraordinary service to my customers or clients. Over the years, I have come to realize that to provide that level of service, I must be diligent and purposeful about surrounding myself with remarkable, like-minded team members. As a leader, I guide others as they set goals, create and implement plans to meet those goals, and set their personal bar high so each individual may reach the exceptionality they are capable of. Ask anyone who has worked with me how I am about organization and planning; it’s a little bit over the top to be honest!

I received my Master of Education in Special Education from George Mason University in 2008, just 2 months before my 3rd child was born! I went back to George Mason in 2012 and received my graduate certificate in ABA and then moved on to become certified in behavior analysis.

In addition to doing my best to be an authentic and transparent leader, I also try to remember to find a good work-life balance.  During my free time, I love being with my husband or enjoying family time. Our family likes to be outdoors, and we have an even stronger love for snow! We have always had a house full with 3 growing girls (now 19, 14, and 12) and fur babies galore!

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Michael Mahoney, Assistant Site Director

My name is Michael Mahoney and I am the Assistant Site Director for our Manassas and Fredericksburg locations. My favorite thing about working with Therapeutic Alliance is the fact that every staff member truly cares about the wellbeing of our clients and is always looking to help improve their lives in any way we can. The level of commitment our staff has to their clients is something I have not seen before during my time in the mental health field. In my free time, I enjoy hiking in the Shenandoah Mountains with my wife and our dog. I also enjoy anything fitness related such as running or working out and watching movies in my free time. If you are considering any of our mental health programs and live in the Manassas/Fredericksburg area I am available to talk anytime!

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Sara Sirak, Assistant Site Director

My passion in life is being able to help empower others and make a meaningful difference in people’s lives. I am grateful that I have been able to find a company like Therapeutic Alliance that shares the same vision. I received my Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2018. During my undergrad, I had a partime job working as a teacher in a classroom of children and a few students with special needs. This experience taught me that all children, including those with special needs, are capable of becoming more independent with the right type of support and I was excited to continue seeking out a career that further aided this population.

At Therapeutic Alliance, I have the pleasure of working with a team of amazing and dedicated professionals who are passionate about serving our clients in the community. I truly believe that real change begins in the home. I have been directly involved in the therapeutic process and there’s nothing like seeing your client make progress in therapy, it is an incredibly rewarding experience. As Assistant Site Director, I am driven to lead my team to success and ensure that support is being provided every step of the way.

I enjoy spending quality time with my friends and family. Some of my favorite pastimes include getting out and enjoying nature, trying out new recipes, catching up on my favorite tv shows and immersing myself in a good book!

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Natalie Franco, Roanoke Assistant Site Director (ASD)

Miriam Moore, Hampton Roads ASD

Victoria Owens, Fredericksburg ASD

My name is Victoria Owens and I am the Assistant Site Director of our Fredericksburg location. I am constantly striving for greater mental healthcare awareness and accessibility. I have always had a passion for helping others, especially those who have been overlooked, ignored, or otherwise would not have a voice. I believe that there is so much more to the individuals in the populations that we serve- they are multifaceted with many layers that simply need to be pulled back. Pulling back those layers and treating our clients like the humans that they are is what gives me the greatest joy in my work. Empowering our clients is the name of the game!

I graduated from the University of Mary Washington with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and began my career with Therapeutic Alliance in June 2020 as a behavioral technician/QMHP hybrid. With my effective communication skills and dedication to our clients, I was swiftly promoted to the Field Assistant position which allowed me to not only offer additional support to our technicians, but also to work with even more clients and their families. During my time as a Field Assistant, I got to experience a team that had a desire to learn and grow with their clients. I quickly realized that the level of commitment to our clients from the therapeutic staff here is unmatched. As an Assistant Site Director, I am looking forward to growing our location both with clients that need our help and with passionate staff that have a desire to answer the call.

In my free time, I enjoy pour-painting, singing karaoke, and anything crafty. I have also been known to whip up a mean cheesecake!

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Tomeca Paige, BS, Assistant Site Director

Beginning as a small child, I had a passion for helping others. I knew I wanted to help others, to empower voices that weren’t always heard. I became a teacher so that no child with whom I came into contact would be silenced. In this position, I saw increasing mental health and behavioral health needs and I yearned to help them, but I knew they needed more attention than they could get in a classroom. After twelve years of teaching, I decided I needed to be in the mental and behavioral health field. I worked with clients directly for six years, honing my skills and learning to help others in the field. I knew then that I wanted to help adults change the world, one client at a time. Therapeutic Alliance has given me this opportunity.

I pride myself on being a leader in the truest sense of the word. I surround myself with others who also have a passion for empowering others. When we have power, we must share it with others to help them be successful, this is how we better the world. I do my best to be kind, supportive, and understanding, not just to our clients but to our technicians who are changing lives every day. In our ever-changing world it is important to continue to learn and grow ourselves so that we can help each new generation learn and grow. I find the more I teach those I lead, the more I learn from them as well, and it is a privilege to watch them develop and strengthen skills that will better the world, one person at a time.

Outside of work I enjoy spending time with my family, whether at a sporting event, dance competition or watching a movie!

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Stephanie Johnson, Compliance Officer

For most people, Compliance doesn’t sound very interesting, but for me, it’s a passion I have been chasing for over 15 years. Most recently as the Compliance Officer at Therapeutic Alliance, where I’m focused on all areas of behavioral health compliance, as well as program development and project management. The world of Compliance is ever evolving and this feeds the evolutionary learner inside me. Over the course of my professional career, I have worked in both the not for profit and for profit business models, leading administrative teams, systems conversions, building data models, and developing other leaders. It takes leaders to grow leaders and I am very passionate about helping others see their potential. At Therapeutic Alliance, I get to be a part of the amazing work that our staff perform everyday and provide the structure and data support they need to do the work that is so important in our communities.

I received my Bachelors of Science in Business Management, Healthcare Management from Liberty University. Throughout my career I have also been involved in many community partner programs, serving on boards with local Fire and Rescue organizations, as well as Leadership Lynchburg Alumni.

When not working, you will find me enjoying being a mother to a wonderful daughter, and our family of furbabies.