The Center of
Excellence for Children
in State Custody

Who We Are


The University of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine, Department of Family Medicine and Cherokee Health Systems have collaborated to create a program to serve children who are at-risk for or in state custody. The State of Tennessee has designated our program a Center of Excellence for Children in State Custody and our services extend to 16 East Tennessee counties.

Who We Serve

The University of Tennessee & Cherokee Health Systems Center of Excellence serves the following TN counties: Anderson, Blount, Campbell, Claiborne, Cocke, Grainger, Hamblen, Jefferson, Knox, Loudon, Monroe, Morgan, Roan, Scott, Sevier, and Union.


What We Do


The COE provides consultation for children with complex medical, behavioral, psychological, and psychiatric problems. Services include: case triage (brief phone consult), monthly case review (on-site, brief records review with recommendations), comprehensive consultation (full records review, meeting with key players in the case, report and recommendations), psychological or psychiatric evaluations, limited medication management, and medication gap filling.




Learning Cafe Monthly Seminars

The Center of Excellence is committed to promoting Best Practices and provides free monthly educational seminars open to all community providers.


OCT 13, 2016

ODD versus Conduct Disorder: What’s the Difference? Presented by Dustin Lamport, PhD Clinical Psychologist Cherokee Health Systems

NOV 10, 2016

Trauma-Informed Parenting Presented by Kara Johansen, PsyD Clinical Psychologist and Behavioral Health Consultant Cherokee Health Systems

The sessions will be held at the Cherokee Health Systems Center City office, located at 2018 Western Avenue, Knoxville, TN 37921, in the first floor community conference room from 12:30 to 1:30pm EST.



UT Graduate School of Medicine & Cherokee Health Systems



Vanderbilt University


University of Tennessee Health Science Center


East Tennessee State University
Johnson City



Learning Cafe on YouTube

Our Staff

Edwin Rogers, PhD, Co-Director

Clinical Psychologist and Professor

UT Graduate School of Medicine


Michael Hughes, MD, Co-Director

Child Psychiatrist

Cherokee Health Systems


Kristin Dean, PhD, Project Manager

Clinical Psychologist

Cherokee Health Systems

Caleb Corwin, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Cherokee Health Systems


Dustin Lamport, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Cherokee Health Systems


Carolyn Dockery

Administrative Coordinator

Cherokee Health Systems

Debra Swisshelm, MS

Clinical Case Manager

Cherokee Health Systems


Kara Johansen, PsyD, Consultant

Clinical Psychologist

Cherokee Health Systems


Andrew Burkley, PsyD, Consultant

Clinical Psychologist

Cherokee Health Systems

Case Referral

The following information is needed for all COE referrals:


  • Social history or non-custodial assessment
  • All previous psychological/all psychiatric intakes and progress notes/intake summaries
  • Last three progress notes from current therapist and treating psychiatrist
  • Hospitalizations: intake summaries and discharge summaries
  • Specialized Evaluations: psychosexual/neurological screenings and reports
  • All previous medical assessments: EPSD&T and all medical records
  • Permanency plan/current notice of staffing/IPP
  • Insurance card and release of information
  • Placement history with dates (include all foster home placements)
  • School records/academic testing and IQ testing/behavior records




Contact Us

Cherokee Health Systems

2018 Western Avenue

Knoxville, TN 37921


Phone: 865-934-6751

Fax: 865-934-6806

Toll Free: 866-440-9182

This project is funded under an agreement with the state of Tennessee.

© 2016 The Center of Excellence for Children in State Custody