Our Team

Jim Lopker


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.

Claudia Rodrigues, LMHC, CCTP Level II

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. As a Certified Complex Trauma Professional Level II, Claudia focuses on some of the
difficulties of trauma, the importance of individualizing cases, and providing the tools to help clients suffering from the effects of trauma.

Patrick Santosuosso

Chief Operating Officer

Patrick Santosuosso grew up in Massachusetts, moving to Florida in 2015 to start his own journey of

After finding strength in recovery and sobriety, Patrick worked hard to chase his goals and dreams of helping other struggling with addiction. Patrick is not only a man of ambition but has a passion for helping others. When it comes to the clients at The Palms Reocvery, he lets nothing stand in the way of helping someone achieve their own sobriety; wether it be staying up all night helping someone in need, or encouraging others to heal and change. As The Chief Operating Officer of The Palms Recovery, Patrick has gone to any length to find the best team of professionals who work together in a way to make our facility a place where clients can attain their full potential and find success in recovery.

Mark Santosuosso

Director of Operations

Mark has been with The Palms Recovery since it’s opening year, starting out with a maintenance and transportation position began working his way up from a Behavioral Health Technician to the Operations Supervisor, Mark is now our Director of Operations….

Through the years of working for The Palms Recovery Mark has been able to find happiness and satisfaction in helping others. Mark is able to lead by example, using his own journey in recovery to help others. Mark’s compassion, patience, and dedication to our facility, client’s, and staff makes him a great asset to The Palms Recovery.

Jeffery M. Bishop

Medical Director

Dr. Jeffrey M. Bishop is a Board-Certified Family Medicine Physician and eamed his degree from Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine in 1985.

Prior to Medical School, he spent 10
years in the United States Navy and eamed his undergraduate degree in medicine from the University of Nebraska, He was one of the youngest Physician Assistants (PA) in the USN and achieved the rank of Chief Warrant Officer, which acted as a major steppingstone for his entry into Medical School. Dr. Bishop has been a resident of South Florida for over 60 years and has, been in the Wellington/Royal Palm Beach area servicing patients and the community for the past 30 years

William Agocs, PA-C

Physician Assistant

William Agocs received his undergraduate degree from Madonna University prior to completing his Physician Assistant Degree at the University of Detroit Mercy…

He is experienced in emergency medical care and addiction medicine. He attributes a team-based approach essential for successful medicine.

Kenneth Decina, LMHC

Primary Therapist

A Florida native, Kenny is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and has worked in the field of substance abuse treatment for over 10 years.

Kenny takes a compassionate approach to treatment, educating clients on the disease-oriented model of addiction while empowering them through a collaborative process to build a support network and adaptive coping strategies to maintain long-term sobriety. He also addresses underlying factors in clients’ maladaptive patterns as well as co-occurring mental health related issues to take a holistic approach to success.

Althea Walters, MSC

Primary Therapist

Althea received her Master’s in Addiction Counseling from Grand Canyon University.

Althea enjoys working with individuals suffering from addiction, poor coping skills, codependency, low self-esteem, anxiety, grief and loss, and depression. Althea utilizes an interactive or hands-on approach in which clients begin to explore healthy coping skills to manage stressors, triggers, and cravings. In addition, Althea works to explore improving relationships through teaching individuals how to establish boundaries and empower independence. Additionally, Althea utilizes traditional talk therapy approaches through a person-centered model to address addictions and related issues.

Michael Meagher, BSW, CAP

Primary 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 thetreatment 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.

Ian Shaw

Director of Business Development

Ian Shaw, originally from Alexandria, VA. Uses his personal experience in recovery to help show other men how sobriety has changed his life and gave him opportunities he never dreamed he would have…

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

Ryan George

Director of Admissions/Case Management

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 Director of Admissions, 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 gift 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.

Lee Spade

National Outreach Director

Lee Spade Pittsburgh native started his own journey with recovery in 2013. Once he was beaten down enough after several attempts, he was given the opportunity to come to South Florida, and his life has been changed since…

He started to gain some responsibility and work on
himself. At two years sober he began to work in the treatment field Leading other men down the path of recovery. This passion has led him to the The Palms Recovery which has been the perfect fit. Working alongside others with the same passion creates an amazing energy in the facility. The men’s program, the fellowship, and brotherhood that are created at The Palms to promote recovery and watch other addicts and alcoholics recover is the highlight of his job.

Leroy Bess

BHT Supervisor

Coming from Baltimore Maryland, Leroy Bess moved to South Florida in 2014.

With his personal experience from family struggling with addiction he saw them turn their lives around, Leroy strives to help the clients of The Palms Recovery see there is always a way to grow and change in a positive way. Leroy is currently achieving his own goals of becoming a Master Barber at the Salon Professional Academy.

Joshua Ries

Housing Coordinator

Originally from North Carolina, Josh began his personal journey in recovery in 2018, moving to South Florida to change his own life.

Josh found that with his personal experience of recovery he is able to bring values and structure to the
clients of The Palms Recovery. Josh strives to ensure any client at our facility feels at home and that their personal needs will be met.

Ryan Yonkers

BHT Supervisor

Ryan Yonkers originally from Chicago Illinois, started his personal journey in recovery in 2017. Shortly after coming to South Florida Ryan was the manager of a sober living house.

Ryan brings his experience, strength, and hope with him to help the clients of The Palms Recovery to achieve sobriety and build goals for other men to succeed. Ryan is currently attending college at Palm Beach State University working to achieve his own personals goals to be able to continue his passion of helping others.