Roy L. Etheridge, Ph.D.
Dr. Etheridge is a Licensed Psychologist and certified Health Services Provider, holding a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Florida State University. He completed doctoral practica in neuropsychological, forensic, clinical, and career counseling settings. His doctoral internship was completed in the State of Illinois for the Department of Corrections at two prisons near Chicago including the infamous Joilet Prison (known as Stateville now). He completed his residency at Polk Correctional Institution in Butner, North Carolina.
Dr. Etheridge followed his residency at Polk Correctional with a promotion to a program manager's role in a neighboring prison. He served as the Director of Mental Health at Harnett Correctional Institution in Lillington, NC, which included oversight of one of the largest mental health programs in the North Carolina prison system and oversight of the only sex offender program in the NC prison system (SOAR).
Dr. Etheridge followed this work with employment as the Assistant Director of Research and Evaluation for the North Carolina Governor’s Institute on Substance Abuse and Mental Health. Shortly into this role, he was approached by a provider recruitment firm that seeks out doctors/physicians to help with the evaluation backlog at the VA. These veterans had waited years for an evaluation of their PTSD, depression, anxiety, and/or traumatic brain injury. A veteran himself, Dr. Etheridge could not turn down this great need. He began working a few hours a week seeing three or four veterans a week.
After two months, Dr. Etheridge was asked if he could see more veterans to help with the veteran backlog. He recalls asking about the size of the backlog and the agent responding, "there are thousands." He submitted his resignation to the Governor's Institute and joined his wife full time at Etheridge Psychology in 2012.
Dr. Etheridge is honored to have served over 1000 veterans in need of mental health examinations since joining Etheridge Psychology full time. Other key roles that he has occupied include working in a behavioral health examiner role performing pre-surgical evaluations and working with the federal government assessing criminal recidivism risk and overseeing the treatment of federal sex offenders on probation in North Carolina. He has also held the position of Clinical Services Director for North Carolina's federal probation program via a contracted company. Finally, Dr. Etheridge provides forensic assessment, consultation, and expert witness services in sex offense, violence, and homicide cases all over North Carolina.
Dr. Etheridge says the following about his personal history and life:
I was born and raised in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. As a child, I enjoyed sports, four wheeling, and surf fishing. My favorite memories from my childhood are the days I spent fishing with my father at Ocracoke and Hatteras islands. I remember the ferry ride to Ocracoke as being filled with excitement about what we were going to catch. Oddly enough, even when we caught no fish, the experience of being on that beach with my father always met my ferry induced expectations.
I followed my high school graduation by enlisting in the US Air Force. I served as an aeromedical combat medic from 1987 to 1991. After leaving the military, I held a variety of jobs that included EMT, car sales, political fundraiser, waiter, bartender, radio talk show co-host, and social services case worker. My military experience taught me that "we the people" are less informed than we like to think.
I spent my twenties exploring the country, my faith, and myself. I concluded that there are no clear answers to life's big questions, but I knew I wanted to help people search for the answers. Psychology was and is the perfect fit for this aspiration, so at 25, it was time to finish what I had started half a decade earlier: attain a degree in behavioral health. While pursuing my doctoral degree, I typically worked full time as a counselor, statistics instructor, and statistician for the State of Florida.
During these years, I met my wife who blessed me with her beautiful self and our two sons. Throughout the years, I have remained active playing adult sports and fishing and I have a new passion: raising my sons, although I have discovered that my children are raising me as much as I am raising them. When my first child was born, I remember thinking, this is definitely one of the answers to "why we are here." In closing, I'm still fishing and exploring.