Referral Directory

Amir Alakaam, PhD, MS, RDN, LDN, MBChB

Current Position: Associate Professor with Health and Human Performance at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Past Experience: Assistant Professor at the University of North Dakota, Primary care physician

What is my philosophy about nutrition?

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Conducting research on breastfeeding, eating habits, and obesity management, Directing and managing community-based nutrition education programs

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Helen Caldwell, MS, RDN, LDN, CFCS

Current Position: Clinical Dietitian at Moccasin Bend Mental Health Institute helping people with mental and physical health

Past Experience: Representative of Thai People’s Welfare Foundation, Worked and lived in Thailand for many years and was involved in public health initiatives, mobile medical clinics, tele-nutrition, and individual nutrition counseling

What is my philosophy about nutrition?

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Speak/Read/Write Thai language fluently and speak a second dialect similar to Lao language, Can offer guidance to RDs helping those with southeast Asian backgrounds (especially Thai and Laos)

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Jaimee Cooper, MS, RD, LD

Current Position: Sports Performance Dietitian with Cooper Nutrition Solutions, LLC

Past Experience: RD at Bradley Wellness Center, WIC Nutrition Manager at Walker County Health Department, WIC Nutritionist at Catoosa County Health Department

What is my philosophy about nutrition: I believe all foods fit and that Health At Every Size (HAES) is achievable.

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Individual and group counseling, Sports nutrition

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brittany emery, ms, rd, ldn

Current Position: Outpatient dietitian at Memorial Diabetes and Nutrition Center, Assists in Memorial Hospital’s inpatient diabetes education setting

Past Experience: Inpatient clinical dietitian at Erlanger hospital and experience in Erlanger’s outpatient renal transplant program. Speaker at CADAS on general healthy eating

What is my philosophy about nutrition? Nutrition therapy requires both education and counseling. I believe nutrition can help patients to eat well to be well and have the best quality of life.

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Diabetes, pre-diabetes, celiac disease

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Janis Franks, NDTR

Current Position: Consulting Nutrition and Dietetic Technician, Registered with Dynamic Dietetics, Inc. providing nutrition services to multiple area Head Start’s and education via Serv Safe classes

Past Experience: Nutritional Services Director at Rhea Medical Center

What is my philosophy about nutrition?

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Leading adult education classes on heart health and diabetes, Working individually with children

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Dee harwell, ms, rd, ld

Current Position: President of Dynamic Dietetics, Inc.

Past Experience: diabetes, bariatric weight loss/research,  corporate  wellness, senior nutrition, and consultant for business organizations

What is your philosophy about nutrition? Being present and really listening to what a person is asking and is interested in is very important. I believe in empowering a person with the skills and knowledge to make sustainable lifestyle changes for the long term.

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: In business since 2001, established Nutritionist Provider with most major insurance companies for nutrition counseling. Specific answers regarding your individual needs and insurance coverage as applicable. 20 years of experience with menu planning, nutrient analysis, and foodservice management.

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Rachel Howard, RDN, LDN

Current Position: Registered Dietitian/Nutrition Therapist at Horizon Nutrition Counseling

Past Experience: PRN Dietitian for Focus Treatment Center, Clinical Dietitian at Erlanger East Hospital

What is my philosophy about nutrition? I believe in food and body liberation for people of all ages, sizes, genders, and backgrounds. I help my clients establish a healthy relationship with food to promote lifelong recovery.

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Eating disorders/disordered eating, individual and group counseling, motivational interviewing, telehealth

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Pamela Kelle, RDN, CEDRD-S

Current Position: Nutrition Therapist Dietitian with Your Own Food Coach to provide counseling on dysfunctional eating, disordered eating, and the full spectrum of eating disorders. I counsel children, teens, and adults of all ages and genders either in-office or virtually

Past Experience: Clinical Dietitian with Siskin Hospital for Physical Rehabilitation, Outpatient Dietitian, and former Certified Diabetes Educator with Parkridge Diabetes Care Center

What is my philosophy about nutrition? I am passionate about and carry a strong skillset in the knowledge of foods and nutrition in the human body. I believe it takes a lifetime to learn, grow, and share what I can with my clients. I think of myself as a guide or companion to help individuals and families tap into their own wisdom along their journey to heal relationships with food. Practicing intuitive and mindful eating and a non-diet format are very important skills to develop when recovering from disordered eating.

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Having 25 years of experience working with eating disorders, Podcasting

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amanda kirkpatrick ms, rd, ldn, clc

Current position: Clinical Dietitian at Parkridge Valley Child and Adolescents.

Past Experience: Clinical Dietitian at Erlanger Medical Center, Nutrition Director for Hamilton County WIC.

What is my philosophy about nutrition? DIET is a four-letter word I could do without. Life is all about balance. Why shouldn’t your nutrition be as well?

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Behavioral health, Breastfeeding education, Infant and Maternal Nutrition, Child and Adolescent, and Individual & group counseling

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john lopez, RDN, LDN

Current Position: Renal Dietitian at Somatus, Co-Owner of Scenic City Dietetics

Past Experience: WIC (in Georgia and Washington), LTAC, SNF, Mental Health, and Assisted Living

What is my philosophy about nutrition? Diet is defined as the types of foods that a person habitually eats. No matter what diet or “meal plan” you’re following, consistency is the key to success. I enjoy helping people redefine their habits and teach them how to be accountable in choosing and following their diet to help them reach their nutrition goals.

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: I have experience working in a variety of settings helping people with various needs. I’m very passionate about diabetes education and teaching people how to follow a low carbohydrate diet. I also enjoy supporting and empowering other dietitians to help them succeed in their career paths.

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Renee Lopez, RDN, LD

Current Position: Clinical Dietitian and owner of Scenic City Dietetics

Past Experience: WIC, Outpatient Nutrition Counseling, Psychiatric Nutrition

What is my philosophy about nutrition? Nutrition is the foundation of health yet is so individualized per person.  I love encouraging and empowering patients to take charge of their health and improve how they feel.  

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Breastfeeding education, Pregnant/post-partum nutrition, Diabetes education, Nutrition support

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Emily maddux, rdn

Current Position: Professor and Supervised Experiential Learning Coordinator at the University of Tennessee, Chattanooga, and Performance Dietitian at Top Nutrition & Performance, LLC

Past Experience: Wellness Director with CareHere, LLC., an Employee Wellness Company, creating incentive-based wellness programs for large and small employer groups, Health Coach/Registered Dietitian working with a variety of clients with diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, and overweight and obesity

What is my philosophy about nutrition? The closer to nature (the ground) we can eat, the better! Balance is the key to enjoying meals/foods, and all foods can, and should fit! 

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Leadership in the field of nutrition, through experience with and commitment to the professional dietetics organizations (CPSDA, AND, TAND, CAND), Nutrition-focused coaching in the area of sports performance and weight management for adolescents and adults of all ages

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Laurie McGuire, RD, LDN

Current Position: Consultant with Dynamic Dietetics, Inc. to provide outpatient nutrition counseling in areas such as diabetes, weight loss, cardiac health, GI health, and eating disorders

Past Experience: Wellness Outpatient Dietitian

What is my philosophy about nutrition? I meet people where they are with their diet. I help them bridge their way to a healthier way of eating based on their specific needs. I believe small, gradual changes result in large benefits. I believe in a non-diet approach to healthy weight loss. My motto is ‘Progress, not perfection.’

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Wellness, Weight loss, Diabetes, and Cardiac nutrition

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Courtney Phifer, MS, RD, LDN

Current Position: Eating Disorders Dietitian with Focus Treatment Center in Chattanooga, TN

Past Experience: Eating Disorders Dietitian with The Ranch Treatment Center in Nunnelly, TN

What is my philosophy about nutrition? I use a small-step, goal-oriented, client-driven approach that incorporates body-positive and mindful eating practices. My nutrition philosophy is one of balance and variety and where all foods fit and can be enjoyed.

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Having 12 years of experience working with eating disorders, Providing support and guidance to other RDs wishing to learn more about treating eating disorders, Helping clients build a positive relationship with their body and with food by ditching the diet mentality

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Betty Owens, RDN, LDN

Current Position: Oncology Dietitian with Cancer Support Systems at Erlanger Health System

Past Experience:

What is my philosophy about nutrition?

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics:

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Dorothea Sarli, MS, RDN, LDN

Current Position: Owner and Dietitian with Sarli Nutrition, Adjunct professor at Southern Adventist University teaching nutrition to health science students

Past Experience: Research Dietitian at Southern Adventist University, Director of Health Promotion at Andrews University, Adjunct Professor at Chattanooga State College

What is my philosophy about nutrition? The fuel you provide your body has a powerful influence to shape your health. With adequate education and support, many people can overcome some of their most troublesome health challenges through good nutrition.

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Counseling on diabetes, weight control, plant-based nutrition

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Char Schmidt, PhD, RDN, LDN

Current Position: Associate Tenured Faculty with Health and Human Performance at the University of Tennessee Chattanooga

Past Experience: Didactic Program Director at UT at Chattanooga, Associate Tenured Professor and Didactic Program Director at the University of Wisconsin at Stout, Department Director, and RDN to provide MNT at Kindred Corporation Health Care

What is my philosophy about nutrition? Nutrition is an integral part of overall well-being from head to toe and inside and out. RDNs and DTRs, along with other trained nutrition professionals, are the experts who provide sound nutrition information. Collaboration with multidisciplinary team members, to provide the best holistic for our guests, patients, and clients, is a must and is welcomed.

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Member of Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT) along with best practices in teaching and learning, Research area in nutritional intake of all populations

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Danielle Townsend, RDN, LD

Current Position: Consultant Dietitian with Dynamic Dietetics, Inc. at Primary Healthcare Centers to provide outpatient nutrition counseling for a multitude of chronic and acute conditions

Past experience: Clinical Dietitian, Clinical Nutrition Manager & Patient Services Manager, Home Health Consultant Dietitian

What is my philosophy about nutrition? I counsel a lot of people on diabetes, high cholesterol, hypertension, and healthy weight loss. I try to channel intuitive and mindful eating principles so that you can learn to love yourself and your body as is while you work on healthier eating habits. I believe in eating what you want, in moderation, because food can be really good for the soul.

Strengths in Nutrition and Dietetics: Producing marketing materials, Cooking & Food photography, Editing/Reviewing projects (eye for detail), Television interviews, Billing/Coding in outpatient counseling, Communicating with insurance companies

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CEDRD-S = Certified Eating Disorder Registered Dietitian and approved Supervisor with the International Association of Eating Disorders Professionals (IAEDP)

CFCS = Certified, Family and Consumer Science

CLC = Certified Lactation Counselor

LD/LDN = Licensed Dietitian/Nutritionist

LTAC = Long Term Acute Care

RD/RDN = Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist

PhD = Doctor of Philosophy

PRN = As Needed

MBChB = Bachelor of Medicine and General Surgery

MNT = Medical Nutrition Therapy

MS = Master of Science

SNF = Skilled Nursing Facility

WIC = Women, Infants, and Children