Our Team

Daniel Lee

Owner, Clinical Social Work, Therapist, LCSW

Annell and I started our practice over 20 years ago. In those days, it was just the two of us. I did the counseling and she did everything else. And by everything else, I do mean everything. Annell is often our client’s first point of contact for the practice (along with Rodnisha). She has also directed our insurance and business departments.

While both of us are still heavily involved in the practice, our roles have changed over time. As you can see, we have added an excellent staff to serve you. They have all been highly trained and educated, bringing a wealth of diversity and experience to the table.

In addition to more staff, we also have more locations. Our Georgetown office is growing and thriving and we are working hard to meet the needs of Scott county and neighboring areas. Our Lexington office is as vibrant as ever. We continue to add clinical and support staff as the need grows.

Annell and I have a simple marketing strategy: Treat every individual we encounter with care and respect, and work diligently to help them improve the quality of their lives. Our practice has grown the most through word of mouth. 

If you’re on this website, chances are you’re hurting in some way. Maybe it’s you, maybe it’s someone you know. Annell and I would like for you to give us a call. We believe we can help you. If it turns out we can’t, I bet we know who can. We’re not shy about referring clients to other clinicians in our community.

Thanks for visiting our website. We’re looking forward to meeting you soon!

Shericka Smith


Asking for help can be hard. Taking care of yourself must be a priority in order to efficiently care for others. I have a passion for mental health because I have been on both sides: seeking help and being the helper. Let me be your helper! I am a native of Lexington, Kentucky, and earned a BA in Spanish from Transylvania University, then pursued my Masters in Social Work at the University of Louisville. I am currently pursuing a Doctorate of Social Work degree at the University of Kentucky which allows me to bring a unique blend of education and training that I think will help you to define and meet your goals.


I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and have worked in various capacities of the mental health world for the past 12 years. I enjoy helping children and families navigate the stressors of life and address their mental health needs. From helping manage challenges such as depression, anxiety, and trauma, I’ll start with providing a safe place, and then together, we can begin working on whatever issues you bring. I truly believe that “nothing changes if nothing changes” and I am looking forward to helping things change for you!

Thaddeus Byrd


What are your obstacles? Maybe it’s depression, stress, anxiety, self- esteem, or anger? Probably these obstacles leave you feeling impaired as we take this journey through life. Life is full of peaks and valleys. How we deal with the valley can have a lasting impact well after the storm has passed. Maybe you are here to try to understand an obsession, process grief, unpack trauma, or sort through relational issues. No matter what brought you here. I’m glad you’re here. I’m looking forward to helping you sort through the pain.
I am blessed to have been able to share my passion of helping others in a number of settings. I am comfortable in the school system or in the therapy room. With individual or groups. One of my specialties is helping individuals navigate the court system. As a DV and DUI certified provider, I’m looking forward to assisting you through this tough time.
I provide children, adolescents, and young adults a safe and unbiased environment as they go through the process of better developing a healthier sense of self. Life can be difficult and you do not have to walk through your journey alone. I’d like for you to take some time out for yourself. You deserve it!

Johnathan Marcellas Carr


In life we are going to encounter struggles. Some of those are going to seem insurmountable, some are going to feel unjust. I believe we all deserve to have an opportunity to be the best version of ourselves, in spite of those events. My clients appreciate my ability to connect with them on a personal level. That’s the foundation of counseling; making a connection. In addition to that, I have the education, training, and experience to empower others as they work to conquer life’s challenges.

I provide a warm, non-judgmental environment where I am respectful of your own unique personal beliefs and values. This environment will allow us to work toward your development of new and healthy life skills to implement during the course of counseling and even after treatment ends.

Kelly Ruff


I am a native of Louisville, Kentucky and a proud graduate of J. Graham Brown High School. Following the pursuit of a Bachelor of Arts in Gender and Women’s Studies from the University of Kentucky I went on to earn a Master of Education in Counseling and Human Development from Lindsey Wilson College. I am a Licensed Clinical Counselor currently serving as a Psychosocial Counselor at Cardinal Hill Rehabilitative Hospital and a clinician here at Counseling Associates.

As an advocate, a Counselor, a teacher, a trainer, and lifelong student, my motto “A heart for people, a passion for restoration, and a spirit to serve.” illustrates my ever growing desire to support, revive, and rebuild those under-served and marginalized within our community. When I’m not working, I enjoy reading, singing, and creative expression through arts, crafts, and cooking. I’m looking forward to partnering with you to help you get the life you want. Your best life awaits!

Laura Wafer




Do you feel abandoned, lost, anxious, or afraid? Have you been hurt by those who you cared for most? Do you have feelings of emotional disconnection from your spouse or significant other? Regardless of what you have been through, you have the potential for greatness! Your relationships deserve to blossom! I desire to walk by your side as you let go of the emotional baggage that has been keeping you from reaching your potential and living your best life. Remember, life is not just about surviving but progressing and always being the best person we can be.

I offer over twenty years of experience in the mental health field in various capacities. I’ve worked in inpatient and outpatient settings. I have worked with individuals, families, and couples facing a wide range of challenges including mental health issues, Substance related concerns, and intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Having experienced many personal challenges with life’s transitions and continuing to strive for greatness, I know that each of us possess the potential to succeed. I hope you will allow me to be a part of your journey as you find exactly what you are looking for.

Jody Elbert


Nurse Practitioner


I am a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. I am board certified by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. I have experience working in the inpatient setting, outpatient setting, and other facilities. I am comfortable seeing clients age 5 to 105! I obtained my undergrad degrees from Midway College and my graduate degree from Eastern Kentucky University. It is my goal to form a partnership with my clients and teach them to lead their healthcare. It is also my goal for you to feel empowered, and part of that is educating you so you can make informed choices about your lifestyle, nutrition, and medication.

 The biggest compliment I can get is for a client to tell me “I feel like you listen to me.” We will explore options together so that you can make informed choices to be the best you that you can be! I want to help you get back to the quality of life you are accustomed to living. Beyond my formal education, I also bring a tremendous amount of life experience from which to draw upon. I’m looking forward to partnering with you to meet your goals!

Abbie Yadon




I understand that seeking out and beginning therapy can be very tough, so thank you for checking out my profile. I believe that creating a comfortable environment and building a good rapport is key for having a positive counseling experience. I am a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC) and I have a Masters of Education (M.Ed) in Counseling Psychology. I work with children, adolescents, young adults, families, and couples. I have felt privileged to work with so many different people in a variety of settings.

 I have experience in office settings, schools, residential facilities, in-home settings, and hospitals. I strongly believe that both laughter and movement are the best medicines, and I strive to provide a warm and natural therapy experience in which people can truly “come as they are.” Behavioral issues, anxiety, depression, marriage/relationship issues, and ADHD are some of the treatment areas in which I have the most experience.

Candice Henderson


I believe that everyone tries to get through life the best they can. Yet many of us find ourselves struggling to meet our goals, improve our relationships, or we just don’t feel happy. My approach to therapy is to work together in understanding what is preventing you from feeling your best, finding ways to help you feel better, and letting you know you are not alone in the process.

I have been working in the field of mental health for over 10 years in various settings with all ages. I completed my graduate degree in 2008 and have been independently licensed since 2010. I have experience working with children, adolescents, adults, and families. I have worked with those managing lifelong illnesses, anxiety, depression, ADHD, as well as various types of trauma. I have training in many evidence-based practices including CBT, Trauma Focused CBT, and EMDR. Whatever your concern may be, we can work together to see which of these approaches works best for you. I am open and accepting of all different lifestyles and backgrounds and do my best to make everyone I work with feel valued and respected. 

Donald Beal


I have been a helper most of my life. I received my training at Arizona State University and Texas Tech University. My life experience has formed a comprehensive world view that is framed in compassion. I am a Licensed Psychologist, licensed by the state of Kentucky to provide independent psychological services in our state. I spent nine years as a professor and coordinator for the Clinical Psychology program at Eastern Kentucky University. I am also fluent in Spanish. I’m looking forward to meeting you and working with you to achieve your goals! 


Rodnisha Smith

Lexington Office Manager

I work in the front office in Lexington, KY. My work involves scheduling clients and working with their insurance to maximize their benefits. I have a degree in Social Work from the University of Kentucky. I have worked as the Office Manager at Counseling Associates for 15 years. If you call the office I’m likely the person on the other end. I will work hard to connect you with the right counselor and I will guard your protected health information while doing so. My goal is to provide you with knowledgeable and accurate information as well as accommodating your needs.

Anitra Thompson

Georgetown Office Manager

I work in the Georgetown office and I’ll be the person you’ll likely reach on the phone. I am a lifelong Kentucky resident with a passion for helping people. I have worked a variety of jobs before this one, but one that was memorable was working for FEMA.  I got to travel to a variety of places and helped residents of natural disasters put their lives back together.

I’m looking forward to helping you!

Larry Vaughan

Chief Operating Officer. M.Ed .

I am a Lexington native with deep roots here in Kentucky. I have a Master’s degree in Counseling and Human Development and I have been in the helping field for most of my life. My role with Counseling Associates is to provide an enhanced experience for you to equip our helpers with tools that will help them excel in their clinical work. I am excited to be a part of Counseling Associates! Daniel and Annell have built a vibrant,diverse practice that puts the client first. I think you’ll find a warm, inclusive place to find the help you’re looking for. I’d love to hear about your time here. I am always looking for ways to improve your time with us, so if you have an idea you’d like to share let me know. 

Our clinical staff has been hand-picked for their excellent clinical skills and their proven ability to help you find solutions and answers. We have a staff with a variety of disciplines  and specialties. I’m confident we either have someone that can help or we know someone who can. We refer to other trusted clinicians in the community when we think you can be better served somewhere else. Let us know how we can help!