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Team Spotlight – Vanessa Brenner, LMHC, QS

Jun 10, 2020

Vanessa Brenner

LMHC,QS — Program Director, Center for Men’s Recovery


Vanessa has been working in the treatment industry since 2011 and says with certainty that this is the best team she has worked alongside. As a valuable part of the Hanley family since October 2016, she is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC) and a Qualified Supervisor (QS). Prior to her current role as Director for the Center for Men’s Recovery, Vanessa served three years as a Family Services Counselor where she was a huge advocate for family participation in the treatment process. In her current role, she implements gender-specific programming that creates the peer-based environment men need to participate in experiential and evidence-based therapies, psychological interventions, and group therapies where they learn to lean on other men for support and accountability. Vanessa earned her bachelor’s at Florida State University and her Master of Science in Psychology at Palm Beach Atlantic University.

What brought you to Hanley?  

When I was in graduate school, I had the opportunity to tour the Hanley Center as part of a class. Hanley has always had a reputation as a “top notch” addiction treatment center. When I was invited to interview, I jumped at the chance. Being appointed as the Program Director of the Men’s Unit is an honor that may never sink in completely.

If there was only one thing you could tell us about working within your specialty area, what would it be?

The Men’s Unit at Hanley is known as “F-Troop.” Traditionally, the men who reside on this unit form a special bond with each other that facilitates the support necessary for success in recovery. The 12-Step program incorporated into our treatment is a “we” not an “I” program. Our gender-specific approach to treatment provides an opportunity for the residents to begin receiving — and giving — the support necessary to move through the various obstacles of early recovery.

What have you learned through your experience working in treatment?

The most valuable thing I have learned over the years is the importance of including the family as part of the patient’s treatment process. Working with family members and loved ones who are part of the patient’s recovery environment can lead to positive, long-lasting change.

Do you hold any credentials or certifications? Do you participate in any professional activities outside of work? If so, please tell us a little bit about them. 

I am a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC) and a Qualified Supervisor (QS).

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? Do you spend time with family? Do you have any pets or engage in special hobbies? Feel free to tell us more about your life outside of work.

I enjoy spending time with my fiancé, Veris, and being bossed around by my 2 ½-year-old daughter Sydney. I also like working out with my fitness mentor, Christopher Joyce, whose tutelage has been invaluable to keeping me in shape to tackle to challenges of my profession.


Hanley Center is a well-known care provider offering a range of treatment programs targeting the recovery from substance use, mental health issues, and beyond. Our primary mission is to provide a clear path to a life of healing and restoration. We offer renowned clinical care and have the compassion and professional expertise to guide you toward lasting recovery.

For information on our programs, call us today: 561-841-1033.

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