Nicole Prescott, LPC, LCPC

Clinical Director

Nicole Prescott, LPC, LCPC, is the Clinical Director at New...

Lauren Lingenfelter, BA

Field Director

Lauren grew up in Hudson, Wisconsin where she spent time...

David Puhl, BS

Program Director

David is a Wisconsin native, born and raised in Oshkosh,...

Ben Koch, MSc

Operations Director

Ben’s interest in working and teaching outdoors began while studying...

Dr. Ryan Paterson MD, DIMM, DTM&H

Medical Director

Ryan Paterson attended the University of Vermont School of Medicine...

Kaci Sapinski

Executive Director - NVW Northwoods

After graduating from University Kaci worked in health care for...

Steve Sawyer, LCSW CSAC

Senior Clinical Consultant and Co-Founder

Steve Sawyer is a licensed psychotherapist filled with passion and...

Kim Kraschnewski, BS

Office Manager

Kim is a Wisconsin native that grew up in the...

Nicole Prescott, LPC, LCPC

Position: Clinical Director

Nicole Prescott, LPC, LCPC, is the Clinical Director at New Vision Wilderness Therapy.  She has worked with children and adolescents in a variety of settings including wilderness therapy programs, residential treatment centers, community mental health agencies, and private practice. After her years as a Lead Therapist for NVW, she naturally grew to the role of Clinical Director, now support all the therapists within the program.

Nicole earned a master’s degree in Counseling Psychology specializing in Child and Adolescent Therapy from University in IL.  She holds certifications in Equine Assisted Therapy, Brainspotting, and Grief Recovery from the Grief Recovery Institute.  She is also training in EMDR.

Nicole has always been passionate about incorporating nature into her work.  She especially appreciates both the elements of challenge and solace that the outdoors provide.  When away from her work, Nicole can be found reading books, taking hikes, or enjoying the company of good friends.

Lauren Lingenfelter, BA

Position: Field Director

Lauren grew up in Hudson, Wisconsin where she spent time exploring the many forests and rivers in the area with family and friends. Lauren initially attended College for Biology and quickly realized she was more passionate about understanding and working with people leading her to switch her focus to Psychology. Lauren graduated with a Bachelors of Arts degree in Psychology and a minor in Hispanic Studies. During her time in college, Lauren spent a semester studying abroad in Chile where she spent a majority of her free time hiking and camping in the diverse landscapes while also working with underserved youth in the area. After graduation, Lauren searched for a career that would allow her to continue to share her passion for the outdoors with others which led her to Northwoods Wilderness Therapy. When Lauren is not in the woods, you can find her playing ultimate frisbee, spending time on the water, and hanging out with family and friends

David Puhl, BS

Position: Program Director

David is a Wisconsin native, born and raised in Oshkosh, WI. Nature and the outdoors have always been a part of David’s life and have helped shape him as a person. David initially went to college for Biology but quickly realized that his passion was in the outdoors and facilitating growth for individuals. David then graduated with a degree in Wildlife Ecology and German from University.  After graduating David spent two years in West Africa with Peace Corps Senegal where he worked as an Environmental Education volunteer spending much of his time working with local teachers on techniques to adjust their lesson plans to make subjects more applicable to the students’ lives and was an integral support in the annual regional youth leadership camp. David is grateful to continue be able to support exploration and the creation of positive outdoor experiences for the students served by New Vision Wilderness Therapy. Outside of work, David can be found exploring new places with his dogs Kéba, and spending time with friends. 

Ben Koch, MSc

Position: Operations Director

Ben’s interest in working and teaching outdoors began while studying at University. During his undergraduate years, he became involved with the Hoofers Outing club and spent his summers in the outdoors, first working with young kids at local summer camps and then leading international trips for high schoolers in Fiji, Switzerland and Tanzania. After graduating with a BS in Civil and Environmental Engineering, he decided to follow his passion for working with kids in the outdoors full-time, working as an outdoor education instructor for school programs and then returning to school to get a MSc in Outdoor Education, as well as getting certified as a Wilderness First Responder. Ben uses his knowledge and experiences to help others reconnect to nature and better understand our dependence on the world around us. In his free time, Ben is an avid backpacker who has hiked the entire west coast of Scotland, the Haute route in Switzerland, and Mt. Kilimanjaro. He also enjoys other outdoor pursuits, including skiing, kayaking and climbing, as well as cooking, play board games with friends, and reading a good book by a fire.

Dr. Ryan Paterson MD, DIMM, DTM&H

Position: Medical Director

Ryan Paterson attended the University of Vermont School of Medicine and completed his Emergency Medicine Residency and Fellowship in Wilderness/Altitude/Expedition Medicine at Denver Health Medical Center/the University of Colorado. He also holds advanced certifications in Tropical Medicine from the London School of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (DTM&H) and in Mountain Medicine (DiMM). He is a practicing, board-certified Emergency Physician for Kaiser Permanente at St Joseph’s Hospital in Denver, Colorado, USA, and associate professor at the University of Colorado in the Department of Emergency Medicine section of Wilderness, Environmental and Expedition Medicine.

In leisure, Ryan loves to spend time outdoors with his spouse and two children. He is an avid traveler, climber, and a former distance athlete.

Dr. Paterson is the founder and director of Emergency Medical Providers (EMP) a leader in the provision of remote medical support and expedition medical direction. Ryan is co-founder and former director for the Wilderness Medical Society Diploma in Mountain Medicine (DiMM) course. Ryan also has significant experience in large-race/event medical management. He serves as medical director for GlobalLimits and has medically-directed multiple GlobalLimits events. He is the current United States delegate to the International Society of Mountain Medicine (ISMM). Ryan founded the FLuME foundation and serves as medical director for Kolkata City Mission (KCM) working through both organizations to establish sustainable development solutions in education, health, women’s empowerment, micro-enterprise, and public-health for informal communities in and around Kolkata, India. Combining all of his training and passion, Dr. Paterson has worked in Disaster Relief efforts in both post-earthquake Nepal and with the UN in Iraq. Additionally, Dr. Paterson is an altitude researcher, expedition physician, mountain emergency medicine educator, and guide.

Kaci Sapinski

Position: Executive Director - NVW Northwoods

After graduating from University Kaci worked in health care for 15 years in Emergency Medicine and Cardiology. As her two sons entered High School, she began looking for a deeper connection to the service industry. Honored to be part of the development of a new University collaborative program, Kaci continued her education in Community Health and Wellness. With her extensive knowledge of the medical environment and passion for the outdoors, wilderness therapy became the perfect fit. Finding New Vision Wilderness has allowed her to bring her outdoor adventures to work right here in the north woods.

Steve Sawyer, LCSW CSAC

Position: Senior Clinical Consultant and Co-Founder
Email: ssawyer@nvwild.com

Steve Sawyer is a licensed psychotherapist filled with passion and knowledge surrounding the intervention and change process. His experience comes from over a decade of intervention with tough-to-reach client populations in therapy settings ranging from residential, community-based, outpatient and wilderness therapy. Steve currently serves on the board of The National Association of Therapeutic Wilderness Camping (NATWC).

Steve is trained in several unique therapeutic models including somatic trigger release, multiple levels of brainspotting, traumatic memory reprocessing, and HeartMath. Through his experience he has authored two books, co-founded Wisconsins only wilderness therapy program, New Vision Wilderness, and works as a core therapeutic training development staff with the Institute of HeartMath. He was an author in the innovative and comprehensive HeartMath Interventions Establishing a New Baseline for Sustained Behavioral Change therapist training Module that revolutionizes modern therapy interventions through an emotional physiology approach.

Steves largest project has been the development of NVWs Trauma Informed Care model in the wilderness setting that has challenged the entire wilderness therapy industry on making healthier interventions with their clients. Steve’s trainings are recognized nationwide for cutting-edge therapeutic techniques and inspiration.

Kim Kraschnewski, BS

Position: Office Manager

Kim is a Wisconsin native that grew up in the southern part of the state before attending University, where she graduated with a degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders. Kim came to New Vision Wilderness Therapy with a wealth of administrative experience, having worked as an administrative assistant for her father’s company for more than ten years, as well working in a clerical role in an outpatient clinic within a hospital setting. Kim loves helping people in any way that she can, even if it just means brightening someone’s day by making them laugh. Kim is very family oriented and cares deeply for the sense of community and family created at New Vision Wilderness Therapy. She appreciates that New Vision works with the entire family system, repairing broken relationships and teaching students to create and maintain healthy connections with friends and family. Outside of work you can find Kim fostering her own community of family and friends with her husband, son, and dog. Kim also enjoys spending time out in the Northwoods; snowmobiling, side-by-side riding, watching her husband play baseball, swimming, waterskiing, and boating.