Founder & Executive Director
Michael Tillem is a local business owner and the Founder and Executive Director of Journey House Foundation. Michael brings extensive experience in the hospitality field, marketing, restaurant management and sales. Journey House Foundation was created as a result of Michael’s personal passion and life experience in long-term recovery. He identified the need for a more hands-on, recovery community, that provides mentorship and a complete continuum of care for those seeking recovery. He has personal experience and first-hand knowledge of the trauma, challenges and barriers individuals and their families face when battling addiction and seeking a new way of life. Michael began his recovery Journey in April 2002 and married his wife, Kimberly in 2007. Michael’s wife, Kimberly, also works with him at JHF. They have 4 children, Jeremy, Kaeler, Nathan and Garrett, as well as 2 grandchildren, Jayden and Emma.
Director of Operations
Brandi has a passion for helping others in the recovery community, it’s “in her blood”. She grew up listening to stories of her grandfather’s time in the sober living community in the early 60’s and later watched her mother’s involvement with the local half-way house in her hometown of Danville, VA. She became active in the recovery community in 2002 and brings that knowledge to the table as the Director of Operations for Journey House Foundation. She uses her experience and training as a Certified Interventionist and Life Coach to help others create a thriving life and the connection they crave. She brings 15 years of experience in logistics, strategic development, budgeting, scheduling and management to ensure day-to-day operations run smoothly and match the needs of her clients. She is the mother of two grown children and has a granddaughter. In her spare time, she enjoys attending retreats with her djembe, singing or hanging out with loved ones at local events.
Director of Development and Education
Kimberly is a former Children’s Minister, enrichment teacher, on air radio show host and experienced Founder and Former Executive Director of The Sophie House, a local 501 (c)(3) based here in Richmond. Kimberly received her bachelor’s degree from Virginia Tech in 1993, in Family and Child Development, with an emphasis in Child Care Administration. She received her master’s degree from Liberty University in 2010, in Human Services, with an emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy. As Director of Development and Education, she brings to the team, her passion for children and family dynamics, along with extensive, marketing, fundraising, public relations and program and staff development. Kimberly enjoys working with the whole family dynamic, advocating for recovery and establishing meaningful partnerships with churches, businesses, non-profits, government and state agencies. Kimberly is married to the Founder/Executive Director, Michael Tillem. Together they have 4 children, Jeremy, Kaeler, Nathan and Garrett, as well as 2 grandchildren, Jayden and Emma.
Kelly Sue White
Kelly manages our participants daily care and schedule. She provides personal recovery support for each participant, making sure they are following a recovery path catered to each individual’s needs. Family members get weekly updates from her, providing a contact point for the families of our participants. When she is not at work, Kelly is busy as a fourth-year student at the University of Virginia. Her studies are focused on Human Services and Writing. Even though she has 13 years of administrative, scheduling, and writing experience already under her belt, she looks forward to completing her bachelors. Kelly is also a Navy Veteran and proud mom to two beautiful daughters, Virginia and Amelia. They enjoy taking their dogs for walks at Pony Pasture and paddle boarding down the James River and swimming any chance they get.
Jessica A. Whitton
Jessica received her associate’s degree from Mohawk Valley Community College of New York in 1998 in Criminal Justice, with an emphasis in Jurisprudence. She received her bachelor’s degree from Virginia Commonwealth University, in Criminal Justice, with an emphasis in Law in 2003. She also went on to receive her master’s degree from Kaplan University in 2012 in Criminal Justice with an emphasis in Constitutional Law. Jessica has held multiple executive administrative positions assisting vice presidents and presidents. She has worked as a Legal Assistant handling matters in several areas of criminal law and corporate law. Her focus has primarily been in corporate handling administrative law, employment law and mergers and acquisitions. She brings years of experience preparing all corporate due diligence matters for several companies. Along with her passion for recovery, community advocacy and helping the fellow addict, she brings extensive administrative experience to the team. Jessica enjoys promoting recovery through collaborative community efforts and fostering healthy and helpful relationships in recovery.
Mobile Treatment Advisor
represents Mount Regis Center
Yvonne grew up in the Baptist Children’s Home of North Carolina due to her parents’ substance use and mental health disorders. As a licensed alcohol and drug counselor, she has spent over thirty years in Healthcare, providing support and encouragement to those who struggle with addiction. She has served as Director of several Treatment Centers on the inpatient and outpatient levels of care. She is currently the mobile treatment advisor for the Richmond area and represents Mount Regis Center. Yvonne is married and is the mother of 2 extraordinary daughters, who gifted her with 3 grandchildren and a great grandchild.