» Subscribe Today!
More of what you want to know.
The Daily News

Forgot your password?
Skip Navigation LinksHome >
VOL. 131 | NO. 209 | Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Hawes Takes on New Role At ACE Awareness Foundation

By Kate Simone

Print | Front Page | Email this story | Email reporter | Comments ()

Kiersten Hawes has been promoted to task force liaison and education coordinator at the Memphis-based ACE Awareness Foundation, which works to inform the community about the negative impact of adverse childhood experiences, or ACEs. Hawes will also continue to serve as a therapist at Universal Parenting Place’s Knowledge Quest location.
As the task force liaison, Hawes will engage the foundation board and task force in ongoing dialogue to build awareness around ACEs. Operating in a dual role as a therapist and education coordinator, she says, allows her the opportunity to speak to the impact that toxic stress and intergenerational ACEs have on a family system if not mitigated.


Hometown: Memphis

Experience: I received a B.A. from Spelman College and a M.S.in counseling from the University of Memphis. I have conducted individual and family therapy in therapeutic settings such as the University of Memphis Counseling Center, University of Memphis Career Services, Parkwood Behavioral Health Inpatient, and Youth Villages Intensive Residential Treatment Facility. In addition to my current role as a therapist at Universal Parenting Place at Knowledge Quest, I facilitate the ACE Aware Workshop that aims to inform the community about the impact of toxic stress and exposure to adverse childhood experiences throughout the lifespan.

Favorite quote: “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” – James 4:8 

Activities you enjoy outside of work: I am a Bikram yoga and hot pilates enthusiast! I also enjoy my first passion, singing.

What talent do you wish you had? I wish I could play the acoustic guitar.

Who has had the greatest influence on you and why? My mother, Felicia Hawes, is the most influential person in my life because she exemplifies courage, faith, love, wisdom and compassion – all qualities she instilled in me from a young age that I operate from today.  

What attracted you to the ACE Awareness Foundation? I was attracted to the ACE Awareness Foundation because of the passion behind creating nontraditional, innovative models that aim to transform the greater Memphis community. The start of this social movement was an opportunity that brought me back to my hometown.

What are your goals in your new position? It is my goal to cultivate a common language around adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) with community leaders and engage in ongoing dialogue to make Memphis more “ACE aware.”

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? My greatest accomplishment would be attending Spelman College – a historically black liberal arts college for women in Atlanta. My Spelman experience served as the catalyst to my passion and purpose. 

What do you most enjoy about your work? I most enjoy building relationships and bringing awareness to a subject that often goes unrecognized or overlooked – trauma and adverse childhood experiences. I am able to make a direct impact in the lives of area children, and help to brighten the prospects of future generations.

If you could give one piece of advice to young people, what would it be? My greatest piece of advice to young people is to start your journey by chasing after your passion first, with all of your heart – everything else will fall into place. 


Ebony K. Bailey, LPC MHSP, has been hired as clinical coordinator at the ACE Awareness Foundation. In this role, Bailey will oversee the work of family therapists practicing at the Universal Parenting Place sites as well as future sites. She most recently served as psychotherapist/owner of Life Balance Therapy LLC, a company she started in 2011. 

Alisa R. Haushalter, director of the Shelby County Health Department, has agreed to join the ACE Awareness Task Force and Policy Committee. Haushalter is a registered nurse and doctor of nursing practice.

Dannine Austin has joined HealthChoice’s care management team as care manager for patients in the organization’s Care Transition Support Program. A certified case manager, Austin previously worked as a utilization review manager for Methodist Extended Care Hospital. Cassondra Gibson has joined HealthChoice’s care management team as care manager for patients in the organization’s Complex Care Management Program. Gibson previously was a patient care coordinator for Methodist Le Bonheur Germantown.


John Ryder, a member of the Harris Shelton Hanover Walsh PLLC law firm, has been named the Republican National Lawyers Association’s 2016 Republican Lawyer of the Year. The annual award recognizes one lawyer nationwide for outstanding professional accomplishments and years of service to the Republican Party. Ryder has served the party in a variety of ways, including being general counsel of the RNC since 2013 and the RNC’s Redistricting Committee chair this year.

Kemmons Wilson Insurance Group has added Sandra Hannon as director of agency operations, and Elaine Presley and Daron Koch as commercial account executives. Hannon has more than 30 years’ experience in commercial property and casualty insurance and will be responsible for accounting, IT, purchasing and compliance as well as overseeing the client services team. Presley brings more than 15 years of experience in commercial property-casualty insurance consulting. Koch spent the past 16 years working in sales and account management roles for three financial services software firms.

Sign-Up For Our Free Email Edition
Get the news first with our daily email

Blog News, Training & Events
PROPERTY SALES 52 374 8,123
MORTGAGES 52 433 9,632
BUILDING PERMITS 218 906 17,513
BANKRUPTCIES 45 252 5,658

Weekly Edition

Issues | About

The Memphis News: Business, politics, and the public interest.