The Ranch at Clear Springs

The Leadership Team

Our Team

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John Lacy

In his thirty years in the field, John has helped to build and operate some of the nation’s most successful treatment programs. He began as a counselor intern early in his own recovery, and rose to become Executive Director of a prominent Texas facility before leaving to become regional director of a fast-growing chain of addiction programs. Later he served as CEO of a psychiatric hospital and Executive Director of four Maryland programs. In 1999 he returned to Texas to lead the remarkable turnaround of a facility there, expanding capacity from 40 to 104 beds. As the parent company grew, John was promoted to a regional VP position, responsible for seven residential facilities in Texas and the Southwest.



Daniel Newby

Dan has had a profound influence on the treatment field during the past two decades, as co-founder of a tremendously successful substance abuse treatment provider, and now as co-principal in this latest venture, The Ranch at Clear Springs. Asked what he considers the key to excellence in the treatment field, Dan gets right to the point: “The quality of the staff who deliver the treatment. Treatment is really an investment in people, and success comes from the commitment of the people who do this work. Without that commitment, the program can’t build the trust and confidence that recovery demands.

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Brenda Mason

Brenda joined The Ranch as principal administrator after 25 years with Aetna Insurance. Her skill and background in human relations and project management helps to keep the program running at full efficiency, and her professional style is to reinforce effective communication and the importance of mentoring staff.

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Edith Kauffman
Director of Nursing


Mary Casanova
Clinical Director


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Melvin Bennett
Director of Business Development

Over 36 years in the field, Melvin has become one of the best known figures in Texas treatment circles. Beginning as Director of Activities Therapy at a Fort Worth psychiatric facility, Melvin moved into community relations with the Charter Hospital chain in the metro Dallas area and later joined John Lacy in 2000 as Director of Business Development at another large program in south Texas. He comes to The Ranch after 12 years at that facility, ready for a new adventure.

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Cathy Oliver
Chief Financial Officer

Cathy comes to The Ranch with a background in project management, accounting, and information technology. She has an MBA from Virginia Commonwealth University and extensive experience in the construction and food service industries. Cathy’s job is to manage the organization’s financial resources and ensure compliance with applicable regulations.

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‘Boston’ John Cottle
Director of Admissions

Nicknamed because of his strong Massachusetts accent, Boston got his start in the treatment field in 2007 working directly with adolescents and young adults in a residential facility. He enjoys his recent move to admissions because of the chance to help potential clients and families make the often difficult decision to seek professional help.

Belinda McElyea
Food Services Director

Belinda is a native of Tennessee who received her degree in Culinary Arts from Texas State Technical College and helped open a popular local restaurant before agreeing to become Head Chef at The Ranch. She and her kitchen staff are known for an innovative blend of Texas, Nashville, and Mexican cuisine that includes daily specials, heart-healthy entrees, some truly spectacular desserts, and, in the words of one devotee of good eatin’ – ‘the best barbecued beef and beans you have ever tasted.’

“The thing I like best about The Ranch” Belinda says, ‘is the hospitality. Everyone wants you to feel welcome. We like the time we spend with our clients, making sure they’re well-fed and nourished as well as comfortable. You don’t get that in a restaurant, and we like that feeling.”

Terry Parvin
DO Medical Director

A former Navy flight officer and family practice physician who was first certified in addictions medicine in the 1980’s, Dr. Parvin estimates he has overseen the successful detoxification of more than 5,000 substance abuse patients. He’s no stranger to mental health issues, either, having served as a medical consultant to a busy psychiatric crisis center in Kerrville, TX. Dr. Parvin personally sees every patient at The Ranch and provides a valuable medical perspective on recovery.

Shannon Clay
Executive Director






Chris Lacy
Information Technology Director

Chris holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Information Systems from Bellevue University in Omaha, Nebraska. He joined The Ranch at Clear Springs at its inception as the Director of IT Services.He has a total experience of 15 years in the IT field and has worked in various positions of technical support and customer service for a wide range of industries. In his last position, as Executive support liaison at Texas Instruments in Dallas, which he held for 5 years, he was responsible for all technological requirements for the corporate leadership team there. This included meeting support , aircraft data connectivity, and remote technical support.
In his free time, Chris likes to fish and read. His daughters keep him too busy for much else.