Evan Cason is a native of Los Angeles who moved to Bakersfield in 2013. He previously worked as a wildland firefighter for the U.S. Forest Service until an injury created an opportunity for a career change. Having struggled with addiction himself, Evan has always had a passion for helping others in recovery. To this end, he completed an associate’s degree in social and behavioral sciences at El Camino College before attending Cal State Bakersfield’s Drug and Alcohol Studies program and currently is a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor Level II (CADC-II) and International Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor (ICADC) under California Consortium of Addiction Programs and Professionals (CCAPP) Evan also holds the Substance Use Disorder Certified Counselor Level II credential (SUDCC-II) with the California Association of DUI Treatment Programs (CADTP) in addition to a specialty credential of Certified Anger Management Professional (CAMP) with Century Anger Management. Evan has worked with diverse populations in individual and group settings at both a residential and intensive outpatient treatment center before joining the Aspire team. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his family, which includes several pets, and watching sports.
Since completing his four years of training at the renowned LAC-USC Medical Center, Dr. Raul Mendoza has been serving the local community for the past 25 years in private practice in general psychiatry with an emphasis in chemical dependency. He has served the community in numerous ways; most notably, Dr. Mendoza has provided consultation and liaison services at various local general hospitals and served as the medical director for the Charter Hospital Chemical Dependency Program and the Memorial Center Behavioral Health Chemical Dependency Program. Most recently, he served as the medical director for the Crestwood Psychiatric Health Facility/Mental Health Rehabilitation Center/Bridge Program from 2008-2013. Additionally, he continues to maintain active medical staff membership at Good Samaritan Hospital, a local psychiatric hospital.
Ben Page is Kern County native who was born and raised in Bakersfield. Ben is an Aspire Counseling Services® alumnus who decided he wanted to give back by becoming a counselor and helping those still battling the disease of addiction. Ben completed Cal State Bakersfield’s Drug and Alcohol Studies program in 2017 and immediately began working as a counselor for another organization before coming “home” to Aspire where he had found his recovery. Ben also holds an AA degree in Business Administration from Bakersfield College. In his free time, he enjoys paddle boarding, hiking, yoga, and working out in general.
Lauren Kirk Murry moved to Bakersfield at age 10 and has enjoyed living in the Bakersfield community ever since. Lauren graduated with her Bachelor’s degree from California State University, Bakersfield and is currently working on her Master’s degree in Clinical Counseling from California School of Professional Psychology. She is a Register Yoga Teacher (RYT-200) and utilizes this training, as well as meditation and essential oils, in her holistic work in substance abuse healing. Lauren has worked with children and adolescents in traditional social skills groups and utilizes yoga for social and emotional skills groups. She currently holds a Registered Alcohol and Drug Technician (RADT) credential. Lauren enjoys reading a good book, practicing yoga in the sunshine, spending time with her family at the beach, and doing her part to make the community more connected.
Jerome Piper is a Bakersfield native who has been in the alcohol and drug counseling field for 11 months. Having struggled with substance dependence himself, Jerome has always had a passion for helping others in recovery. To this end, he completed the Drug and Alcohol Studies program at Cal State University Bakersfield and currently holds the title of Registered Alcohol and Drug Technician (RADT I). Jerome also holds an Associates of Arts degree from College of the Sequoias (2001) with a emphasis on physical education. He will also receive his bachelors degree in liberal studies from CSUB Spring of 2020. Jerome did his internship at Clinica Sierra Vista Ebony counseling center, working with diverse populations in individual and group settings in a intensive outpatient treatment center before joining the Aspire team. In his free time, he enjoys Spending time with his two daughters and son.
Krysten Fielder is a Pismo Beach native who moved to Bakersfield in 2017. Krysten is an Aspire Counseling Services® alumnus who decided she wanted to give back by becoming a counselor and helping those still battling the disease of addiction. Krysten attends Cal State Bakersfield’s Drug and Alcohol Studies program. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, and hanging out by the pool with her children.
Monique L. Cleveland is a Bakersfield native who has been in the alcohol and drug counseling field for 4 ½ years. Having dealt with her husband struggling with substance abuse and him unfortunately passing away from his addiction, Monique has always had a passion for helping others in recovery and wanted to save others from losing loved ones to addiction. Monique completed her Bachelor of Science Degree from University of Phoenix in 2009 and completed her Master of Psychology from Walden University in 2013. She currently holds a Substance Abuse Disorder Registered Counselor credential (SUDRC); currently in process of obtaining the Substance Abuse Disorder Certified Counselor level Four credential (SUDCC-IV). Monique has worked with diverse populations since 2006 and has worked in individual and group settings at an intensive outpatient treatment center before joining the Aspire team. In her free time, she enjoys sleeping, watching reality TV, spending time with her family and friends, listening to all types of music and traveling.
Gage Horn is a native to Bakersfield CA. Gage is an Aspire Counseling Services alumnus who decided he wanted to give back by becoming a counselor to help those still battling addiction. Gage attends CSUB Drug and Alcohol Studies program. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his wife and 3 children, listening to music, and playing games.