Meet Our Staff


Michael Anthony


Michael joined GratitudeAmerica in June 2016 to serve as Executive Director.  Prior to joining the team he worked at Publix Supermarkets where he oversaw all corporate education for Publix’s managers.  After 20 years of service to Publix, Michael wanted to serve his fellow combat veterans.

Michael’s background is in education, he holds degrees in education and advanced degrees in training and performance improvement.

After the 9/11 terrorist attacks Michael joined the U.S. Army Reserve in order to serve our nation.  He held various enlisted positions before taking a commission as an Army officer in 2004.  As an officer in the Reserve, Michael has commanded large units, lead troops in battle overseas, and most recently created a regional medical strategy in Southeast Asia.  He is currently assigned as a Health Services Officer at USINDOPACOM, Camp Smith, HI.  His awards include the combat action badge, meritorious service medal, and bronze star medal.

Michael may be reached at


Chris Brower

Program Director - Warrior PATHH

As a youngster, Chris was fascinated with tribal warrior culture. The army seemed like a perfect choice after his dad told him, ‘Straighten up and find a job because you are not college material.’ For over 10 years, 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment became his extended family. When he was selected as an Operational Advisor for the Asymmetric Warfare Group (AWG), he developed his talent in teaching strategies for overcoming obstacles.
His skills were put to the test when his son was diagnosed with leukemia and eventually succumbed to the disease in 2006. Alcohol, food, and excessive work masked his growing depression and anxiety. In 2020, Chris reluctantly attended Warrior PATHH after months of pressure from a friend. Now, Chris has found his passion and purpose as the Program Director. He is a more dedicated husband, a more involved father to 3 children, and has found peace in his heart.

Chris may be reached at

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Chris Gill

Director of Operations

Chris joined the Marine Corps after high school and served primarily as a helicopter crew chief. He deployed aboard ship twice prior to 9-11 serving in the Balkans and Africa. He also served as a Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape (SERE) Instructor, where he gained a love for teaching and the outdoors. After his instructor tour, Chris returned to a helicopter unit whose primary mission was casualty evacuation. Shortly after his final deployment to Iraq in 2005, Chris left the Marine Corps after 11 years. He worked in military contracting as a SERE Instructor and Aviation Maintenance Supervisor. During this period, Chris experienced a very difficult transition to civilian life, experiencing unstable living conditions, including a few weeks of living in his car.

Chris’s recovery began when elders from his church—all military veterans—helped him grow in his relationship with Christ and figure out who he was in life after the military. In 2015, Chris began working as a missionary to veterans in Birmingham, Alabama, focusing on PTSD and Moral Injury. During this time, Chris began to reflect more deeply on the issues veterans were facing. This led him to graduate school, where he studied educational psychology through the lens of military-to-civilian transition and identity. Chris recently completed a Master's degree and is currently a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Alabama.

Chris joined GratitudeAmerica in May 2023 as the Director of Operations. He has dedicated his life to improving the transition process through a growth mindset and the concept of post-traumatic growth to achieve greater overall well-being. Chris and his wife, Katie, have five beautiful girls and an elderly golden retriever.

Chris may be reached at


Ashley Semerenko

Veteran Engagement Director

Ashley has worked with GratitudeAmerica since 2017 as a facilitator for their military support retreats program and became a PATHH Guide for the Warrior PATHH program in 2019.  Prior to working with GratitudeAmerica, Ashley graduated with an MSW from Loyola University Chicago in 2012 and since then has provided individual and group therapies to teens, couples, adults, and elders.  Ashley also has worked for the past 5 years with military veterans and their families in recreational and educational programs and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.

Ashley believes that there is an overwhelming (and often overlooked) value and power of people simply connecting to one another – whether it’s connecting over experiences beliefs, feelings, etc.-  that connection can be a binding and helpful force for people.

Ashley’s professional training and experience, coupled with her personal and family experience, allows her to provide different perspectives as well as a unique ability to better relate and understand others’ experiences.  Ashley collaborates with retreat participants and PATHH students to identify and highlight their strengths, identify and challenge problematic thinking/perspectives, and introduce new coping and communication skills to consider.

Ashley may be reached at

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Michelle Therrien

Warrior PATHH Guide - Volunteer Coordinator

Michelle had always dreamed of becoming a police officer. Growing impatient she joined the Air Force at age 17. The Security Forces would offer the training and experience she needed until she was old enough to become a police officer. In 1999, after 5.5 years active duty, she joined the Air National Guard in Detroit, MI. Her dream became a reality when she graduated from the Detroit Police Academy in March 2001. Only a few months on the job she was activated by her Air National Guard unit after 9-11 and served 2 more years in support of the War on Terror. After her time in the Air National Guard Michelle continued her duty for 4 more years as a LEO and EMT.

In 2012, Michelle started to become aware that something had changed in her. She was struggling with depression, anxiety, anger, and nightmares. She searched for help in numerous treatments, inpatient programs, medications, counseling, and retreats. Nothing seemed to work until finding Warrior PATHH. In spring 2021 she attended Warrior PATHH and learned her worth. She found peace with her past and learned to turn her struggles into her strengths.

Michelle lives in Kings Mountain, NC with her wife and 4 adorable wiener dogs. She has become a more patient and understanding spouse to her wife and a more loving and caring mom to her two children.

Michelle may be reached at