Our Clinical Staff

Our Clinical Staff
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Thomas W. McCormack, M.D.


Medical Director and founder of Athens Behavioral Medicine, Dr. McCormack is a native Georgian and graduate of Emory University School of Medicine. He held an appointment as Clinical Professor in the Dept. of Psychiatry at Emory from 2003-2010, and he currently holds the same position at the new medical school in Athens, the Georgia Regents University/ UGA Health Partnership. Over his six-year tenure at Duke University School of Medicine, he completed residency in General Psychiatry and then sought subspecialty training, completing fellowships in both Forensic Psychiatry and Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, where he served as Chief Resident. He earned his undergraduate degree Magna Cum Laude from Wake Forest University.

Dr. McCormack is one of only five physicians in the state to be awarded board certifications in General Adult Psychiatry, Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, and Forensic Psychiatry.  He specializes in ADHD, Neuropsychiatry, Forensic psychiatry, Child and Adolescent bipolar/ depression/ anxiety/ OCD/ tic disorders/ eating disorders, behavioral disorders of childhood, and general adult psychiatric practice. Dr. McCormack strongly believes in utilizing the most conservative medical treatments, depending upon the nature and the gravity of the patient’s presenting symptoms.

Dr. McCormack lives in Athens with his wife and three children. He is an active member of Beech Haven Baptist Church, where he serves as a Deacon, 3rd Grade Sunday School Teacher, Personnel Committee member, and Usher.  Dr. Mack's hobbies include his children, religion/ philosophy, fossil shark tooth collecting, astronomy, coaching youth baseball and basketball, Atlanta Braves baseball, UGA football, & Wake Forest basketball.

Kayln T. Lane, M.D.


Kayln Lane, M.D. joined ABM in February 2010 and is Board Certified in Child/Adolescent Psychiatry, Adult Psychiatry, & Forensic Psychiatry.  Dr. Lane is a native Georgian and a magna cum laude graduate of the University of Georgia Honors Program with a major in Cellular Biology. She is also a graduate of the Medical College of Georgia, and she completed a residency in General Psychiatry and additional subspecialty training in Child & Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of Kentucky School of Medicine, where she served as Chief Resident in her final year. At UK she received the H. Otto Kaak Award for the Outstanding Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Resident, the Suzanna Park, M.D. Award for Excellence in Psychotherapy, and the 110% Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Residency Training Program two consecutive years. Dr. Lane then sought additional subspecialty training, completing a one-year fellowship in Forensic Psychiatry at the Emory University School of Medicine. 
Dr. Lane currently holds a position as Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the Georgia Regents University/ UGA Health Partnership, and she is one of only five physicians in the state to be awarded board certifications in General Adult Psychiatry, Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, and Forensic Psychiatry.

Dr. Lane lives in Athens with her husband.

Edward J. Fisher, M.D.


Dr. Fisher brings over 30 years of clinical and administrative practice experience to Athens Behavioral Medicine. Dr. Fisher graduated from Indiana University School of Medicine, and he completed an internship in pediatrics, residency training in general psychiatry, and subspecialty training in child and adolescent psychiatry at its affiliated hospital program. He is board certified by the American Academy of Psychiatry and Neurology. Prior to beginning his private practice in Athens in 2000, Dr. Fisher worked as the medical director for Charter Winds Psychiatric hospital. Dr. Fisher sees children, adolescents, adults, and geriatric patients for medication management in his practice. He lives in Athens with his wife.

Andrew Heidesch, MS, LMFT

Andrew Heidesch is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist originally from Iowa, who received his B.A. in Psychology from Benedictine College and his M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy from Kansas State University.  Andrew has worked in a variety of settings, including Mercy Hospital (Manhattan, Kansas) where he led groups on anger management and performed individual therapy.  While in Kansas, he worked within Job Corp assisting adolescents with anger and oppositional problems.  When Andrew moved to Athens, he began working at Advantage Behavioral Health Systems, where he provided family therapy and worked within the Innerlight Program providing drug and alcohol addictions counseling for adolescents.  He has also worked within their Right Track Program providing group and individual therapy for teenagers charged with sexual offenses.  Andrew specializes in child and adolescent psychotherapy, drug and alcohol addictions, family therapy, and couples therapy. Andrew lives in Athens with his wife.

Ellen F. Bargeron, LPC, NCC


A native Georgian and long-time Athens resident, Ellen Bargeron is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Nationally Certified Counselor.  She earned her BFA in Photographic Design and MED in Guidance and  Counseling from the University of Georgia and is currently working toward certification in Thanatology through the Association for Death  Education and Counseling.

While working at Advantage Behavioral Health Systems as a  Parent Educator for families with severely emotionally disturbed  children, Bargeron taught active parenting and included the whole family in treatment.  As a clinician, she utilized individual and  group therapy for those children, adolescents, and their families as well as individual therapy for adults.  Her therapeutic skills transferred well to her multi-faceted duties in the Emergency Department at Athens Regional Medical Center.  She assisted with crisis intervention, fostered complex problem solving, and offered bereavement counseling to a diverse population.

Her practice is solution-focused with an emphasis on mind-body skills to address long and short-term challenges, mood and personality disorders, stress, and bereavement.

Elizabeth Estes, R.N.
Ms. Estes has distinguished career as a pychiatric nurse, serving in a number of different settings. She has worked as Charge Nurse of the Pediatric Psychiatry Unit at Charter Winds Hospital and as an outpatient Pediatric Psychiatry Nurse at Advantage Behavioral Health in the past and currently at ABM.  "Nurse Ede" assists Drs. McCormack and Lane in the care of their patients.

Rita Macari, MA, LPC
Rita is a Licensed Professional Counselor. She earned her BA in Studio Art from The State University of New York/Queens College and an MA in Psychology/Counseling from The State University of West Georgia. Rita trained in "Heartcentered Hypnotherapy" at the Wellness Institute in Seattle, Washington, additionally completing their 2 year intensive program focusing on humanistic, holistic, and existential modalities. Rita has been an advanced EMDR practitioner for over 8 years with extensive experience in PTSD and traumatic stress. She also trained under John Gray, the author of "Men Are From Mars, Women are from Venus" and worked as a facilitator for Dr. Gray's workshops for Gwinette Habitat for Humanity.
Her practice experience includes, but is not limited to, individual, couples and family therapy, Post-traumatic stress disorder, ADHD, OCD, depression, stress and panic attacks, grief issues, substance dependency, abuse and recovery. She especially enjoys working with seniors and is involved with Olli, an organization for ongoing learning for adults 50+. Rita is registered with "Care For Our Troops," offering trauma counseling for various members of our armed forces, and she considers it an honor to work with our Veterans.
Rita offers a variety of therapies for parents and caregivers.
"Our children live in the present, worry exists in the future. Stress free parents raise stress free children."
Rita was widowed in 2007 after 35 years of marriage. Although she is a native New Yorker, Rita has lived in the South since 1996 and considers herself "a bit Southernized." She credits her love for her 2 granddaughters for bringing her to Athens.  "These are the happiest days of my life."

Maureen Killeen, PhD, CNS
Dr. Killeen is a psychiatric clinical nurse specialist, board-certified in adult mental health psychiatric nursing.  Dr. Killeen graduated from D'Youville College School of nursing in Buffalo, New York, and earned a master's degree in psychiatric mental health nursing at Emory University.  Dr. Killeen earned a Ph.D. in Child and Family development from the University of Georgia and also received postdoctoral training in child and adolescent assessment and therapy from the clinical psychology and school psychology programs at the University of Georgia.  Additionally, she received further postdoctoral training in mental health research methods at the University of Georgia and Harvard University graduate school of education.
Dr. Killeen has over 35 years experience in psychiatric nursing education and practice.  She is Professor Emerita in the Medical College of Georgia School of Nursing and School of graduate studies, Adjunct Associate Professor of clinical psychology and a Fellow in the Institute for Behavioral Research at the University of Georgia.  Dr. Killeen has also been named the Angela Barron McBride visiting professor of psychiatric nursing at Indiana University school of nursing for 2008 -2009.
Dr. Killeen provides mental health evaluations of adults as well as medication management for adults under the supervision of Dr. Thomas McCormack. She lives in Athens with her husband.

Eric Thurmond, MS, LPC

Eric Thurmond is a Licensed Professional Counselor and native to the state of Georgia, who received his B.A. in Psychology from Piedmont College and his M.S. in Clinical Counseling Psychology from Brenau University.  Eric has worked in the field of behavioral health in various capacities since early 2002.  He has extensive experience with child, adolescent, and adult populations and provides individual, family, and group counseling services. 

Eric has a special passion for Christian counseling services, but he enjoys helping people from all beliefs and backgrounds.  Some of his specialties include working with defiant teens, family and social relationship problems, and anger management training.  Eric lives with his wife and 3 children and serves at his local church in the Jackson County area.

Blaine Everson, LMFT, PhD
Dr. Everson joined ABM after working with several other practices around Georgia. He has extensive experience in faith-based couseling throughout his 20 year career. After relocating from The Fraser Center on the Georgia coast, he worked as a family therapist with Samaritan Center of Counseling & Wellness, where he most recently served as Clinical Director. His specialty areas include traumatic stress, secondary stress reactions in families, child & adolescent behavior and mood disorders, couple therapy, and family therapy focused on emotional and physical conditions. Dr. Everson has been licensed as a marriage and family therapist in Georgia since 1995. Additionally, he has advanced training in Imago Couple Therapy and has been a Level II EMDR practitioner for over 10 years.

Dr. Everson has held numerous part-time and adjunct faculty positions, most recently in the Dept of Human Development and Family Sciences at the University of Georgia. He has also been involved in research and writing about stressors associated with military lifestyles and has published several journal articles and book chapters over the past few years. He recently edited and co-authored Families Under Fire: Systemic Therapy With Military Families.


He is married to Denise and they have one daughter, Eliza. Dr. Everson and his family are active members of St. Gregory the Great Episcopal Church, and he enjoys spending time with his wife and daughter, traveling, flying, and fishing.