For a free confidential assessment, call (855)537-2262

Leadership Team and Medical Staff



 Irving Sawyers

Chief Executive Officer


Irving Sawyers, CEO, joined Strategic Behavioral Center-Garner in June 2017. Irving B. Sawyers, Jr., Member ACHE, brings over 30 years of healthcare experience to North Carolina including 4 years in LTAC hospitals, over 10 years in general acute care hospitals, over 10 years in acute psychiatric and chemical dependency hospitals, 5 years in a residential treatment facility for the treatment of male juvenile sex offenders and 4 years in leadership of hospital operating companies, including a multi-hospital system in Saudi Arabia.

As well as successfully operating a number of facilities Mr. Sawyers has successfully opened and operated a general acute care hospital, a general acute psychiatric and chemical dependency hospital, a long term acute care hospital and a residential facility. Additionally, Mr. Sawyers has turned around a general acute care hospital, 4 psychiatric hospitals, 2 long term acute care hospitals and participated in the turnaround of University Medical Center in Las Vegas, NV.

Mr. Sawyers earned his M.H.A. from Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana, served a one year residency at the University of Minnesota Hospitals, Minneapolis, MN and one year Humana administrative management specialist program at Sunrise Hospital, Las Vegas, NV. He is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives.






Maria Lewis BS,MHR

Executive Assistant to CEO


Maria Lewis, EA to the CEO, joined Strategic Behavioral Center-March 2014.   Maria started at SBH as HR Coordinator and have served as Business Office Coordinator as well. Some of her previous roles include Victim Witness Advocate in Fayetteville, NC and Cambridge, MA, Legal Technician in Wiesbaden, Germany, Community Service/Teen Court Restitution
Program Coordinator in Raleigh, NC, Cognitive Rehabilitation Specialist for Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) consumers, Owner/CEO of The Right Trax, Inc. (a Level 3 PRTF for teen girls) and Program Director for Restoration Family Services. She received my BS degree in Criminal Justice from Fayetteville State University and Masters of Human Relations from University of Oklahoma, Norman. Maria was born in Welch, WV.







Dr. Ijaz Rasul, MD








Dr. Robbie Adams, MD























Andy Williams, LPC

Clinical Director

















Dr. Carol Franklin, Ph.D

Chief Nursing Officer


Carol Franklin, Chief Nursing Officer, joined Strategic Behavioral Health Center-Garner in May 2017. Carol has her PhD in Public Health with a concentration in Community Health and Education. She obtained both her PhD and Master in Nursing Education from Walden University located in Minneapolis, MN. Carol obtained her undergraduate degree from NC Central University in Durham NC. She has worked in the NC State Government as a staff nurse at Dorothea Dix Hospital on a Geropsychiatric unit and Forensic Nurse Consultant. She has also worked at Central Regional Hospital as a Forensic Nurse
Consultant. Carol is an adjunct faculty member at Winston-Salem State University and facilitates online learning for the RN-BSN program. She is a member of the North Carolina Minority Prostate Cancer Awareness Action Team. Carol was a volunteer for the Triangle Flight of Honor that honored NC WWII Veteran’s. 





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 Cynthia Darby, LPC

Director of Admissions-SBC Garner


Cynthia Darby, Director of Admissions-SBC Garner joined Strategic Behavioral Center-Garner in November 2017. Cynthia Darby is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), and a Board Certified Counselor, who specializes in psychosocial assessment and diagnosis, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and administrative process management in healthcare settings. Cynthia has led the UM/UR team of the largest Community Mental Health System in Georgia for 7 years, and served as a Director of Admissions in a behavioral health hospital in Florida for 2 years.  Cynthia received her Master’s Degree in Mental Health Counseling and Specialist’s Degree in Counselor Education from the University of Florida.  Cynthia is a collaborating investigator in the development of the DSM 5 and a volunteer facilitator for NAMI.





















William Harris, CPA

Chief Financial Officer

William Harris, CPA – CFO joined Strategic Behavioral Center in Garner in March 2017 after working at Strategic Behavioral Center in Charlotte, NC. William brings over 20 years of healthcare financial experience including psychiatric hospitals, medical / surgical hospitals, physician office management, rehabilitation services provided to nursing homes & SNF’s, outpatient psychiatric clinics and a foster care agency.

Mr. Harris earned his MBA from Centenary College in Shreveport, LA. and his BBA-Accounting from Georgia Southern University in Statesboro, GA. He is a Certified Public Accountant.






Taylor Holloway, M.A.

Director of Utilization Review


Taylor Holloway, Director of Utilization Review, joined Strategic Behavioral Health in September 2013 as an assessor and transitioned into her current position as Director of Acute Admissions and UR in 2014. She has 10+ years of experience in mental health working a variety of clinical and research positions. She specializes in assessment, diagnosis, and treatment planning for children and adolescents with developmental disabilities. Prior to SBH, Taylor worked at the Carolina Institute for Developmental Disabilities (CIDD) preforming psychological evaluations and executing research assessment protocols. Taylor received her Masters of Arts in Clinical Psychology in 2011 from North Carolina Central University.









Carolyn King

Director of Education


Carolyn King, Director of Education, joined Strategic Behavioral Health in 2012. She was promoted to Director of Education in April 2016. Carolyn has many years of experience in working to educate children and youth who are experiencing mental health concerns.

Prior to beginning employment at Strategic, Carolyn worked as a School Principal at Spring Hill School and Dorothea Dix Hospital, where she retired in 2009. She also worked as a counselor and a teacher at Dorothea Dix Hospital. Most of her work history has been with clients and children with mental health concerns. Finally, she worked for 10 years with Vocational Rehabilitation. Carolyn truly believes in rehabilitation, a therapeutic learning environment, and that all children have the potential to learn.






 LaWanda Henry-Progrm Coordinator

 LaWanda Henry

Program Coordinator


LaWanda Henry , Program Coordinator, joined the Strategic Behavioral team in January 2012 as a Residential Advisor. Over the course of the years, LaWanda has been promoted to numerous milieu supervisory positions, and has served in her current role as Program Coordinator since May 2016. She received her Bachelor’s degree from North Carolina State University. In this role, LaWanda manages all milieu staff that works directly with our patients on both residential and acute programs. LaWanda is very passionate about motivating her team to provide the best care to our patients and works closely with the Clinical and Nursing Directors to ensure that we provide a safe and therapeutic environment for our patients and families. 






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Lillian M. Davis

Director of Business Development

SBC Garner & Charlotte


Lillian M. Davis, Director of Business Development, joined Strategic Behavior Center in May 2014. In 2015, she was promoted the role of Community Liaison Supervisor and recently into the Director of Business Development for SBC Raleigh and Charlotte. She has 12 years of experience in mental health working a variety of clinical, educational, and business development positions. Prior to working at Strategic Behavioral Center, Lillian worked at NC Mentor as an Intake Coordinator and an Exceptional Children’s Teacher in Johnston County Public Schools. Lillian received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University.

 As Director of Business Development, Lillian leads a team of Community Liaisons who strives to meet the mental health needs of the community by linking them to the clinical services provided at SBC Garner and Charlotte. 






Qadriyyah Joyner, MSA

Director of Quality Improvement, Compliance & Risk Management









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Lisa Killion

Director of Human Resources







Zoe Gjertson

Director of Environmental Services


Zoe joined Strategic Behavioral Health with a background in Management & spent the last 10+ years in Healthcare Administration. Her experience includes leadership of healthcare staff for one of the largest healthcare systems in SE Wisconsin, the largest trauma center in South Carolina, and a leading healthcare system in North Carolina.

Her leadership background helps promote inclusion across service lines to improve engagement & interaction between clinical & non-clinical staff, patients and their loved ones.

Zoe welcomes the opportunity to build a strong relationship with employees, patients and providers on solid communication & mutual respect.











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