TIP of WNC consists of paid staff plus a large team of volunteers. We are a non-profit so we seek to run as fiscally efficient as possible which allows us to engage our volunteers while keeping the number of paid staff low. Paid staff is tasked with keeping the core of our operation running smoothly. When there are special events or other cases where more help is needed our volunteers are happy to help as their time and schedules allow. These team efforts really help build a sense of community among our volunteers on the TIP of WNC team.
Mandy AtkissionExecutive Director, TIP National
Mandy Atkission started her TIP career in 2003 as a TIP volunteer for the Trauma Intervention Program of San Diego County, Inc. In 2005, Mandy became a Crisis Team Manager and in 2007 was promoted to Executive Director of the San Diego TIP affiliate.
In 2011, Mandy and her family fulfilled a long-awaited dream of moving to Western North Carolina. “Leaving San Diego was difficult, but the mountains of North Carolina were calling our name” says Mandy. “Fortunately for me, I was able to stay with TIP as the Chief Development Officer for TIP National.” “Working with the local WNC emergency response community, along with city and county government, my first goal was to bring a TIP program to my new hometown.” That goal was realized in 2015 when TIP of WNC was launched.
Mandy is now TIP National’s Executive Director. In that role, Mandy oversees the National Organization, works directly with each of the 13 TIP affiliates, continues to work with cities and counties on expanding the TIP program and does TIP training across the county. She is still active on a daily basis in the TIP of WNC affiliate.
Denise GonzalezCrisis Team Manager, TIP of WNC
Denise Gonzalez joined TIP of WNC in June 2018 as the Crisis Team Manager and oversees the daily operations of the program. She enjoys working with both Emergency Responders and the compassionate citizens that make up our team of TIP volunteers.
In May of 2015 Denise and her husband moved to Hendersonville, NC from West Palm Beach, FL where she was trained in Nonprofit Management and holds a Bachelors Degree in Psychology from Florida Atlantic University. She has educated at-risk youth, trained therapeutic foster parents and managed treatment facilities for victims of severe abuse and human trafficking.
Denise knows that being there for survivors in the immediacy of a personal and traumatic event can make a significant difference in the way that the trauma affects the person's life. She has seen much of the effects that trauma can have when no one is there to support the survivor. She finds it rewarding to know that there are so many people in our area
who want to be there for their neighbors at some of the toughest moments of their lives.
Trauma Intervention Programs, Inc. was founded in 1985 by Wayne Fortin who was associated with San Diego Mental Health. Fortin saw the need for such a program due to the numerous patients treated by his facility, though the patients had not been a primary victim.
Fortin recruited citizen volunteers and trained them to meet the emotional and practical needs of those who were experiencing stress symptoms from a traumatic event. TIP's slogan, "Citizens helping citizens in crisis" aptly captures the spirit of the program as trained volunteers respond to emergency situations 7 days per week, 24 hours per day, and arrive at the scene of an incident within 20 minutes.
In 1991, TIP was the recipient of a $100,000 Harvard University and Ford Foundation grant for earning an "Innovation in State and Local Government Award". These funds were used to introduce the TIP program to other cities and jurisdictions. There are now 13 TIP affiliates serving 100 cities throughout the United States.
TIP Affiliates Nationwide
TIP National has affiliates across the US and that number is growing. TIP started in San Diego so we have a significant presence on the west coast. Over the years, as word has traveled of our program, we have brought this resource to communities expanding across the US and we are continuing to grow! If you'd like to learn more about bringing TIP to your community, connect with Mandy.
Connect With Mandy
Trauma Intervention Programs, Inc. is a non profit, tax exempt 501(c)(3) organization.
TIP Services are provided to survivors and their families free of charge and are made possible through grants from local governments, individuals, corporate donors, our partner agencies, and through our own fund raising efforts. TIP's partner agencies contribute an annual assessment fee based on population for 24 hour crisis intervention services for city residents.