Our Staff

Photo of Brian Lusk

Brian Lusk, LPC, NCC, ACS, CSAC

Brian joined Radford University in March 2019. His primary role includes providing leadership, clinical oversight, and supervision for the Student Counseling Services (SCS) as well as working to establish and maintain collaborative relationships across campus and with community stakeholders. Prior to arriving at Radford, Brian worked for nearly 14 years providing mental health services at various community-based agencies. Brian is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), a National Certified Counselor (NCC), and Certified Substance Abuse Counselor (CSAC). He received his bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Bluefield University and his master’s in clinical Mental Health Counseling from Radford University. He is currently pursuing his doctorate in Counseling and Supervision. You can visit Brian on LinkedIn here.

Photo of Brian Lusk

Emily Fitzgerald, LPC
Assistant Director

Emily joined Radford University in April 2020, after working in community mental health since 2006, providing mental health counseling to children, teens, and families, as well as running community-based programs such as Intensive In-Home, Mental Health Skill Building, and Outpatient Counseling. Her primary role in SCS is running the Intern Training Program, as well as providing outreach across campus with faculty, staff, and students. Emily is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and is approved by the Virginia Board of Counseling to provide licensure supervision to Residents in Counseling. She received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Bluefield College and her master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from Radford University.

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John Betzel, LPC, LMFT
Counselor, Liaison to the Dean of Students Office

John joined the Radford University Student Counseling Services in 2003 as a counselor. John is licensed as a professional counselor and a marriage and family therapist. His current roles include completing initial consultations with students seeking services, serving as a liaison with the Dean of Students office for hospitalized students, proving both group and individual therapy to students, meeting with student-athletes as a collaboration with the office of sports medicine, as well as providing crisis/ consultation services for walk-in students.  John received his undergraduate degree in psychology from the University of Georgia and his master's degree in counseling from Georgia State University.

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Debra Byer, LCSW

Debbie joined Radford University in August 2019. Her primary role is providing traditional individual therapy to Radford University students. She has an array of experience but was employed primarily as an inpatient and outpatient therapist for (Carilion) St. Albans Psychiatric Hospital. Debbie is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW). She received her Bachelor of Social Work degree from Radford University and her Master of Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University. 

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Kimberly Price, LPC

Kimberly joined Radford University in January 2021 after providing community and school-based mental health services for ten years. She is especially passionate about providing support with anxiety disorders, obsessive compulsive disorder, depression, and trauma-related concerns. She earned a Master of Community Counseling and Human Development from Radford University.

Bryce Nester, Counselor. Resident in Counseling

Bryce Nester, Resident in Counseling

Bryce officially joined Radford University in August 2022. He is an alumnus of Radford University and served as an intern for Student Counseling Services before joining the team full-time. Bryce completed his Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Radford University and went on to complete his Master of Education in Counselor Education from Virginia Tech. Bryce meets students where they are and assists them with getting to where they want to be; clinical interests include anxiety/depression/relationships/family.

Mark Edwards, Counselor. Resident in Counseling

Mark Edwards, Resident in Counseling

Mark joined Radford University Student Counseling Services in August 2022. He received his master’s degree in clinical and mental health counseling from Radford University and is a Resident in Counseling. He has previously worked as a high school English teacher and as a group therapist for the drug court program at NRVCS. Mark provides a safe space for students to be honest and supported; clinical interests include family dynamics, trauma related concerns, substance use disorders, anxiety, and depression.

Photo of Shonna Turner

Kristy Hudson
Office Manager

Kristy joined Radford University in April 2021. She has a passion for building community and helping others and is committed to providing quality support to our students and staff.  She has worked the past 14 years in early childhood education but is excited to be working in higher education at Radford University. You can visit Kristy on LinkedIn here.

Photo of Shonna Turner

Samantha Trice
Administrative Assistant

Samantha joined Radford University in January 2021. Her passion is helping Highlanders! She assists in providing administrative and office support for both SAVES and Student Counseling Services. Samantha graduated from Radford University in 2020. You can visit Samantha on LinkedIn here.

Katie Blakelock, Masters Level Intern

Katie Blakelock
Masters Level Intern

Clinical Interests/Specialties: Depression, anxiety, grief and loss, trauma

Theoretical Approaches: Person-centered, CBT, solution-focused

Fun Fact/Hobbies: I enjoy reading, painting, traveling, and spending time with my friends and family!

Whitney Harrison, Masters Level Intern

Whitney Harrison
Masters Level Intern

Clinical Interests/Specialties: Grief/loss, students who are transitioning to college/adult life

Theoretical Approaches: Person-centered with some DBT and CBT skills

Fun Facts: I enjoy reading, being outside, painting, crafting, archery, and being with my friends and family!

Hayley Kassraie, Masters Level Intern

Hayley Kassraie
Masters Level Intern

Clinical interests/specialties: Grief and loss, relationships, anxiety, and depression

Theoretical Approaches: Person-centered and CBT 

Fun Fact/Hobbies: I enjoy crocheting, reading books, and hanging out with my friends, family, and my cat!

Taylor Mann, Masters Level Intern

Taylor Mann
Masters Level Intern

Clinical interest/specialties: Religious trauma, depression, anxiety, grief/loss, ADHD

Theoretical approaches: CBT, Person-Centered, Solution-Focused

Fun Fact/Hobbies: I enjoy reading fantasy novels, loving on my family & two golden retrievers, meditating, and admiring all things Halloween!

Liz Mazzello, Masters Level Intern

Liz Mazzello
Masters Level Intern

Clinical interest/specialties: depression, anxiety, and substance use

Theoretical approaches: CBT, person-centered, and solution focused

Fun fact/hobbies: I enjoy going on runs, hiking, spending time with friends and family, and binge watching my favorite TV shows!

Sydnie Wheeler, Masters Level Intern

Sydnie Wheeler
Masters Level Intern

Clinical interests/specialties: Depression, anxiety, ADHD, and students transitioning into college

Theoretical Approaches: Person-Centered, Solution-Focused, CBT

Fun Fact/Hobbies: I enjoy creative activities such as writing, reading, and painting. I also enjoy listening to music and singing whenever I can!