The DHS Recovery Unit

Leadership fueled by lived experience and hope

Our team members have lived experience with substance use disorders and have traveled diverse roads to recovery. We know that strengthening and expanding the peer support system will help save lives and restore hope to thousands of Arkansas residents. Our offices are located in Little Rock, but we visit and collaborate with organizations and individuals throughout the state. 

Casey Copeland

Casey Copeland
Director of Peer Services

Casey is the Director of Peer Services at the Arkansas Department of Human Services, a dedicated leader with a strong background in mental health and recovery. After spending nearly a decade in the insurance business and experiencing the loss of his father, he was diagnosed as having clinical depression and was prescribed medication that he began abusing. Following his encounter with active addiction, he began as a Peer Support Specialist, demonstrating exceptional empathy and connection with individuals facing substance use and mental health challenges. His career journey reflects unwavering advocacy for peer support services, emphasizing the transformative power of lived experience. 

Casey is a person in long term recovery since 2018 and spent his first year in recovery volunteering at multiple organizations in Central Arkansas. Once abstinent from drugs and alcohol, he met and married his beautiful wife, Megan. Their daughter Adilynn was born in 2020. Casey continues to put God first in everything he does and gives God all the glory. He continually strives to stay focused on his recovery by working a program. When he is not working, he enjoys spending time with family and friends. He loves exercising and spending time outdoors. A founding member of One Life Community Church of Little Rock, both Casey and his wife serve as ministry leaders for the Celebrate Recovery program. Casey also serves as a deacon in their church. 

Having served on multiple boards and committees, including Director of Arkansas Peers Achieving Recovery Together (APART), Director of Rock of Hope transitional houses, a regional member of the Arkansas Peer Advisory Committee (APAC), and most recently the Director of Peer Services for the State of Arkansas,  Casey continues to play an intricate role in the development and implementation of multiple programs across the state. Casey’s work has made a substantial impact on substance use and mental health services in the state, promoting inclusivity and empowering individuals on their path to recovery.

Cheyenne Delaney
Program Coordinator

Cheyenne Delaney is a woman in long-term recovery from substance use and mental health disorders. She has been an advocate for Peer Support services since 2021. She is a Peer in Training for the state of Arkansas. She is the Secretary of the Arkansas Peer Advisory Committee (APAC). Cheyenne Delaney has been working in the recovery field since 2021 helping individuals with co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders receiving treatment, and is an active member of her recovery community.

amanda vardaman
Amanda Vardaman
Program Coordinator

Amanda Vardaman is a person in long term recovery from substance abuse disorder, beginning on October 4, 2014 at the age of 19. She is heavily involved in a twelve-step program, including sponsorship, actively applying steps, and service work on the group and area levels. She has a background in several types of industry including management, accounting, communications, and graphic design. She plans to use her knowledge and skills for the betterment of the Office of Recovery at Arkansas Department of Human Services, where she was hired as a Program Coordinator in March of 2023.

shawn mccown
Shawn McCown
DPSQA, Peer Recovery Certification Manager

Shawn is a person in long term recovery from an Opiate addiction and depression. He is currently the Peer Recovery Certification Manager for the State of Arkansas and works for the Department of Provider Services and Quality Assurance at DHS. He is also a Peer Recovery Supervisor. He strives to be an example to others that recovery is possible. Shawn is married with 5 beautiful daughters, a grandson, and a granddaughter. He serves on many Board of Directors and looks forward to continuing to be a positive voice in the recovery community.

Misty EvansMisty Evans
Peer Recovery Peer Supervisor; Trainer of Trainers

Misty Evans is a woman in long-term recovery. She has worked in the recovery workforce and has been advocating for peer support services since 2017. She is a member of the SAMHSA Region 6 ATT/MHTTC peer support committee and vice chair of the Arkansas Peer Advisory Committee. She has assisted many individuals with co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders. Misty remains an active member of her recovery community. 

Peer Specialist in Training

Kathleen Stancliff is a Peer Specialist in Training who has three decades of recovery experience.  She has a passion for helping individuals find a better way to live through advocating, mentoring, and sharing her lived recovery experience to ignite hope. Kathleen graduated with a bachelor’s degree in social work from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. She loves God, her children, animals, and gardening. She is active in her recovery and enjoys visiting friends over a cup of coffee.