Meet Our Team At The Palms Recovery

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Jim Lopker

CEO

Jim founded the Palms Recovery and currently serves as the CEO. Formerly, his career began at Deloitte & Touché in Atlanta after graduating from The University of Florida with a Master’s degree in Accounting. From there he transitioned his career to commercial insurance where he currently serves as the Vice President of one of the largest privately held agencies in the country. Like he has successfully done in his career previously, Jim founded this treatment center with a client/patient first mentality. His vision for the Palms is to provide a treatment center of excellence and employer of choice.

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Dr. Nelson Cordero

Medical Director

Dr. Nelson Cordero-Torres is a psychiatrist helping those struggling with addiction. He graduated from medical school with his medical degree in 2008. He is affiliated with numerous hospitals, including North Broward Hospital District and more. He received his medical degree from Universidad Central del Caribe School of Medicine and has been in practice between 6-10 years. He also speaks multiple languages, including Spanish.

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Claudia Rodrigues, LMHC

Clinical Director

Claudia is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor who received her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and Master’s Degree in Mental Health Counseling from Florida Atlantic University. As a clinician and leader in her field, Claudia takes up the challenge of thinking in ground-breaking ways about the difficult situations clients face and of accepting responsibility for the direction of their own lives. Claudia is an interactive, solution-focused therapist. Her therapeutic approach is to provide support and practical feedback to help clients effectively address personal life challenges. She integrates complementary methodologies and techniques to offer a highly personalized approach tailored to each client. With compassion and understanding, she works with each individual to help them build on their strengths and attain the personal growth they are committed to accomplishing here at The Palms Recovery.

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Patrick Santosuosso

Chief Operating Officer

Patrick Santosuosso, grew up in Massachusetts and has suffered from the disease of addiction since a young age. Leaving his family and past behind him, he decided to come down to South Florida to find a new way of life. He is now a man recovering from active addiction. He worked hard to chase his goals and dreams of helping people. Today he works for The Palms Recovery as Chief Operating Officer. Patrick loves helping people and watching them learn to succeed in life, it helps him as much as helps them.

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Andrew Harley

Director of Operations

Andrew Harley grew up in Philadelphia as one of nine children with addiction surfacing in his family as far back as he can remember. Andrew struggled for many years to find recovery and it finally happened after a last-ditch attempt and trip to Florida and is now in long term recovery. Andrew has found his passion working in the field of addiction and is an advocate for our clients. Andrews goal in life, is not only to help those still suffering, but also help the families and loved ones affected by the epidemic.

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Michael Meagher, CAC

Therapist

Michael’s career in addictions treatment began with his personal recovery. Michael started out as a resident manager for a local recovery residence then worked various positions throughout the treatment process. When Michael discovered his passion for helping those in early recovery and enrolled in higher education to further his professional development. Michael has studied at the University of Phoenix and Liberty University. Michael is now certified through the Florida Certification Board as an Addictions Counselor.

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Jennifer Hamilton, LMHC

Therapist

Jennifer is a Licensed Mental Health Therapist and alumni from Palm Beach Atlantic University. She is also a Registered Yoga Instructor and can incorporate yoga and meditation into any session to aid in anxiety release and mindfulness. Helping others is her passion. Jennifer is committed to being authentic with her clients. She believes in providing a nonjudgmental space for open communication and to help with a diverse variety of emotional suffering such as substance abuse, self-harm, depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder. Jennifer utilizes her learned therapeutic approaches to ease clients into the world of recovery and the benefits of a sober and free life. Jennifer became certified this March to practice EMDR therapy for trauma and PTSD.

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Jennifer Zdarko, EdM

Case Manager

Jennifer is a double Bachelor’s and Master’s level professional who has been working the social services field since she was eighteen.  Jennifer received her Master’s Degree at Florida Atlantic University in Multicultural Education and has found meaningful rewards from working in the substance abuse field the past four years.  Jennifer knew early in her life that she would be a teacher, but found that teaching in non-traditional classroom setting is her true purpose.  Jennifer became a Certified Recovery Specialist in the state of Pennsylvania, then relocated to Florida shortly after to begin her own journey in recovery.

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Wesguer Vilce

ARNP

Wesguer Vilce is a psychiatric ARNP helping those struggling with mental health and substance abuse disorder. He graduated with his master degree In Nursing at Florida International University School of Nursing in 2015. He is affiliated with numerous hospitals and treatment centers including Broward General Hospital, Imperial Point, Banyan Boca Detox, Recovery First PHP Fort Lauderdale. Prior to his ARNP Career in the US, He graduated with his medical degree in 2004 from the State University in Haiti where he practiced for 4 years as a general practitioner. He speaks several languages Creole, French, and English.

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Dr. Mark A. Shader, DC, ACACD

Chiropractor

Dr. Mark A. Shader completed his degree at Life Chiropractic University in 1987. He is a licensed chiropractor and a Florida board certified diplomate of addiction and compulsive disorders. His focus is on holistic addiction therapy including motivation, nutritional counseling Psych-K facilitating and the treatment of chronic pain conditions affecting the neck, back and extremities.

Dr. Shader is well versed in neurotransmitter replacement therapy designed specifically for individuals in recovery. These nutritional formulations have shown to be effective in helping to manage mood disorders, ADHD, depression, anxiety, insomnia and other conditions. He is also certified in auriculotherapy and LENS neurofeedback which help decrease anxiety and depression and help increase sleep, focus and concentration.

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Ryan George

Admissions representative

Ryan George grew up in Cape Cod Massachusetts and moved to South Florida in 2014 to overcome his struggles with addiction. Throughout the years of battling his demons, he has found a new purpose and happiness stemming from his recovery. As Admissions Representative, Ryan strives to create a welcoming and supportive environment for every client. He ensures that once a client is part of The Palms they will always be welcomed with open arms. As a fellow Palms alumni himself, Ryan has found a passion for helping others. With his newfound freedom from addiction, giving back to the community, and showing others the gifts of sobriety is his main priority. One thing that has always helped him in recovery is remembering past struggles and never forgetting where he came from. Watching others grow and succeed makes any obstacle worthwhile.

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Bret Imboden

Director of Business Development

My name is Bret Imboden and I am The Director of Business Development at The Palms Recovery. I have been working in the field of addiction for six years now. I am also a National Certified Interventions Professional. I am originally from Erie, Pennsylvania; I have a son named River who just turned two. I came down to FL to escape addiction and find a new way of life. I have a passion for helping others seek the help that they desperately need.  Being in long term recovery and living a life I only ever dreamed of living, pushes me to help others seek that same way of life.

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Ian Ian

Community Outreach Coordinator

Ian Shaw, hailing from Alexandria, VA. He says, “being able to see someone come in completely broken physically and mentally and slowly watching them transform into who they want to be is the best part of my job.”

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Mark Santosuosso

Operation Supervisor

Mark has been with The Palms Recovery since it’s opening year and has climbed the “ladder of success” quickly. Mark started out in 2017 with a maintenance and transportation position and is now the Operations Supervisor. Mark is one of the most compassionate and patient men among our staff, going above and beyond for the care of our clients. Mark is able to lead by example, using his own journey in recovery to help others. Mark’s humble attitude and dedication to our client’s makes him a great asset to The Palms Recovery staff.