Birmingham, Alabama | Alsana®

Birmingham, Alabama

When an individual receives early, adaptive, and developmentally appropriate care, their recovery from disordered eating is not only possible, it’s probable!

Welcome to our Birmingham location

Clients benefit from a community of compassionate, expert providers with vast experience and specialized training in eating disorder treatment.

Ronda Cannon, Regional Executive Director–and the clinical team guided by Nicole Siegfried and led by Amber Parris–are dedicated to helping clients of all genders and sexual orientations heal and recover from their eating disorders. ...



Located in the rolling hills of Birmingham, Alabama, this Alsana location offers residential treatment, an intensive day treatment program with off-campus recovery-oriented apartments, an adolescent day-treatment program for teens ages 13-17, and an integrated intensive outpatient program.

Clients receive the highest quality of care and support with the most current evidence-based therapies for eating disorders and co-occurring conditions.

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Treatment programs

A continuum of care for your healing journey. We want you to succeed and we know the ...

first step is often the hardest. At Alsana in Birmingham, we currently offer three levels of care for adults: residential, day treatment, and intensive outpatient. We also offer Virtual Treatment Options for IOP.

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Our Birmingham staff

Our most valuable asset as a company is our people. Compassionate and collaborative ...

professionals, our Alsana staff work together to serve and help you on your path to recovery.

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Ronda Cannon, BS

Regional Executive Director – Alabama

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Ronda Cannon, BS

Ronda believes that one of Alsana’s most important guiding principles is “clients first,” and that the team will be there every step of the way. As the Regional Executive Director at the Alabama location, Ronda loves her job because she feels that everyone shares the same vision and is dedicated to the mission in an environment where everybody is there for each other.

Ronda currently oversees all day to day operations and administration for Alsana’s programs in Alabama and she enjoys being able to witness the journey of our clients from beginning to end, and to watch as the road of recovery unfolds.

Prior to Alsana, Ronda spent several years as the program coordinator for Eating Disorders Awareness and Prevention in the state of Washington, developing eating disorder prevention programs and creating several presentations and publications on the subject. Ronda also has a strong research and analytical background having worked as a program manager for the Department of Medicine and Anesthesiology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Ronda graduated magna cum laude from Washington State University with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology.

Outside of work, Ronda enjoys spending time with her friends and family, sitting in nature and feeling the sunshine on her face, taking long walks on the beach and feeling the sand between her toes, traveling to distant places, listening to music, going to the theater, and losing herself in a good book. Ronda is proud to share that all her pets since 1977 have been named after Star Wars characters, the greatest movie franchise in existence.

Caroline Nichols, LICSW, CEDS

Regional Director of Compliance and Director of Family Programs

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Caroline Nichols, LICSW, CEDS

As the Regional Director of Compliance and Director of Family Programs, Caroline was inspired to join Alsana because of our adaptive and personalized approach to the treatment of each individual client. She also loves working with amazing, dedicated professionals and bearing witness to the small “aha” moments that clients experience during the course of their recovery.

Caroline has previous experience working with individuals with eating disorders at the residential and partial hospitalization levels of care. She also has extensive experience working with issues related to PTSD, addiction, co-dependency, chronic pain management, self-harm, suicide, family dynamics and personality disorders. She has specialized training in dialectal behavior therapy, cognitive processing therapy, prolonged exposure therapy and is a level II trained EMDR therapist.

Caroline currently serves as the hospitality co-chair for the Alabama Chapter of International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals (IAEDP). She employs a wide variety of therapeutic modalities to treat the whole person and is committed to empowering clients to develop a “life worth living.”

Caroline received her Master of Social Work degree with a concentration in mental health from the University of Alabama and is a licensed independent clinical social worker in the State of Alabama.

Amber Parris, LICSW, CEDS

Senior Director of Clinical Programming and Training, RTC, PHP, IOP

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Amber Parris, LICSW, CEDS

As the Senior Director of Clinical Programming and Training, PHP/IOP Treatment Program at Alsana’s Alabama location, Amber enjoys being part of a program that provides quality, holistic treatment for eating disorders. She appreciates working with a mutually respectful, cohesive team that she considers friends more than colleagues. Amber believes that treatment is designed to reflect a sense of honor and respect to someone’s story so that we achieve not only symptom remission, but also a deeper, long-lasting sense of healing.

Previously, Amber worked as a primary therapist at a residential treatment center before joining Alsana in 2013 to start up the Birmingham PHP and IOP levels of care. In her current role, she provides oversite to therapists, participates in programmatic structure/development, and leads multidisciplinary team meetings.

Amber received specific training in treating persons with eating disorders with modalities including eye movement desensitization reprocessing, dialectical behavioral therapy, and prolonged exposure. She has a special interest in exploring the intersection between eating disorders and intimacy/sexuality and did work with a colleague to develop a curriculum that addresses body image issues for people with severe eating disorders.

Amber received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Work from Auburn University and her Master of Social Work degree from the University of Alabama. She is also a licensed independent clinical social worker, a certified eating disorder specialist and a certified sexual addiction therapist candidate.

In her spare time, Amber enjoys music, food, being outside in nature, painting, traveling, and all things artistic. Once an extra in a movie, she is inspired by fashion and the spaces she lives in, always aware of how things look and feel around her.

Lynn Eastman, RN, BSN

Charge Nurse

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Lynn Eastman, RN, BSN

As a lead nurse with Alsana, Lynn enjoys working with her amazing team to outline the best treatment for the clients we serve and educating clients in the treatment and recovery process. Her past experience working with eating disorders opened the door to the opportunity to join Alsana in 2012.

She previously worked part-time in a psychiatric private practice, a residential and PHP eating disorder treatment facility, an emergency room and intensive care unit, and the cardiac care center of a hospital as a heart transplant nurse.

Lynn graduated from the University of South Alabama with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and her RN degree.

Lynn enjoys participating in outdoor activities including fishing, water and snow skiing, hunting and camping with her husband, two sons and one granddaughter. She also loves traveling, gardening, building things, making crafts, transforming properties and furniture, volunteering at her church and helping people in need. She secretly desires to play a musical instrument and has started taking guitar lessons. Lynn has also taken up dance lessons with her husband

Tate Roberts, RN, BSN

Charge Nurse

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Tate Roberts, RN, BSN

Tate originally joined the Alsana team because she knew most of the employees and wanted to be part of a strong team. As a staff nurse, she enjoys being able to combine her technical nursing skills in a field she is very passionate about, as well as being directly involved with clients and their treatment plans.

She has experience in the hospital setting as well as public health. Prior to Alsana, her past nursing experience was in mental health, oncology, cardiology, and school nursing. Most recently, Tate served as a staff nurse and nurse manager for a national residential program and coordinator for a partial hospitalization program for eating disorders. Tate received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Troy University.

She is a member of NAMI and in the process of starting up new support groups in her area. Tate originally entered the field of nursing because she enjoyed being around older people, a thought that makes her laugh, but appreciative for the amazing journey of her nursing career.

Tate has been married to her husband for over 30 years and has four grown children. She is passionate about mental health awareness and educating families with loved ones living with mental illness.

Jim Palmer, MPH

Facility Manager/Safety Officer

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Jim Palmer, MPH

As the facility manager and safety officer for Alsana, Jim was inspired to join the company in 2013 because of the management team and his love for the people he works with.

Previously, Jim was the executive director of an eating disorder and co-occurring disorder treatment center for adult women and the executive director of a veteran’s affairs nonprofit research corporation. He was the assistant director for a VA blind rehabilitation center for 32 years.

Jim graduated from San Diego State University with a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Arts and from the University of Alabama at Birmingham with a Master of Public Health in Health Care Organization and Policy.

Jim is married and loves to travel, particularly by sailboat. He believes it is all about the journey and not the destination.

Amy-Claire Grisham McMurtrie, MS, RD, LD, CEDRD

Lead Dietitian

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Amy-Claire Grisham McMurtrie, MS, RD, LD, CEDRD

Amy-Claire is a non-diet, HAESⓇ informed dietitian and the Director of Clinical Services for Alabama’s Residential program. She holds CEDRD specialized certification for eating disorder expertise and has exclusively practiced in eating disorder and sports nutrition realms of dietetic practice for the past 7 years, working in outpatient and residential levels of care.

Also specializing in sports nutrition, Amy-Claire has provided body-inclusive nutrition counseling for various D1 and professional athletes. She is currently the USA Wheelchair Rugby Paralympic team dietitian and is preparing to attend the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.

Amy-Claire believes in full eating disorder recovery through a client-centered, non-diet, body-inclusive practice.

Mary Elizabeth Akinaka, LPC, NCC

Lead Therapist

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Mary Elizabeth Akinaka, LPC, NCC

Mary joined Alsana as a primary therapist because she was inspired by the team’s drive for serving clients with intentional, effective and individualized care. She enjoys walking through the treatment process with her clients and sees it as an honor to be part of their recovery journey and story.

Mary believes that therapy is an art created by two people: the therapist and the client. As a therapist, her role is to walk alongside her clients, allowing them to explore themselves in a safe and non-judgmental environment.

Prior to serving as a primary therapist, Mary was on staff as direct care and the family program coordinator. Previously, she was a special education teacher for 6 – 12 grade students and the director of children’s ministry for a non-denominational church.

Mary received her Bachelor’s degree in collaborative special education from Auburn University, her Master’s degree in clinical mental health from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and a Certificate of Marriage and Family Counseling, also from UAB.

Mary loves interacting with individuals from all walks of life and is a believer that a significant aspect of our growth as human beings is through interaction, specifically those whose stories look different from our own. She grew up living overseas and her favorite food is escargot.

In their own words

Let Alsana help you write your own story of hope and healing. We would like to be your eating recovery community.

  • The staff at Alsana proved to be extremely talented in the art and the skill of not colluding with my eating disorder while...

    also not treating me as if  I was an eating disorder. They treated me like the real, whole person that I had lost sight of. They have an ability to hold nuance gently and they aren’t afraid to wade into the hardest waters, which is so much more helpful than receiving treatment that is guided by a rigid manual. There is an unbelievable amount of safety at Alsana because of this and my gratitude is crazy high!
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    Sydney
    Sydney
  • As I began to apply the knowledge I gained from Alsana into my daily life, I found that my anxiety, guilt, shame ...

    and self-criticism steadily faded like a candle flickering on its last legs. I found authentic joy in things I used to reprimand myself for doing. I took, and continue to take pride in the progress I made and continue to make. Most importantly, I am now capable of self-acceptance and self-love whether I succeed, fail or anything in between.
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    Paul
    Paul
  • Before coming to Alsana, I had never had a treatment experience in which the "how" and "why" of the eating ...

    disorder were addressed. This has proven to be essential in my treatment at Alsana and also in my daily life as a member of society. Alsana providers led me through so much illuminating self-reflection about topics that I had never before considered relevant to my treatment, recovery, or self in general. Alsana staff appreciate and treat the individual, and I felt this in and outside of therapy sessions. They always humored my random geography facts and propensity to trail glitter wherever I went. 🙂 Ultimately, my treatment experience at Alsana taught me how to be a shamelessly authentic individual, and it gave me a sense of safety to explore what it means to be myself. With so much love,
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    Kate
    Kate

Our locations

Alsana is proud to serve clients across the the United States at Residential, PHP, and IOP levels of care. We also offer Virtual Treatment options.

We will support you in finding your balance, purpose and possibilities. Welcome to Alsana. We are so glad you found us.