Drug Treatment Court honors graduates

Graduates of the Forsyth County Drug Treatment Court take a picture holding their certificates of completion on Friday Aug. 14.

Drug Treatment Court honors graduates
August 19
13:39 2020

Last week the Forsyth County Adult Drug Treatment Court held a graduation ceremony to celebrate individuals who have recently completed the course. 

The Forsyth County Adult Drug Treatment Court is a supervised probationary program that provides a comprehensive treatment to address the needs of defendants interested in getting help for their addition. Participants are tested several times a week and progress is rewarded with incentives. The original program ended in 2011 but thanks to the collaborative efforts of Phoenix Rising, a local nonprofit, and the City of Winston-Salem, it returned in 2017. Phoenix Rising raised $35,000 to bring the program to the area and the city contributed an additional $35,000. 

During the graduation ceremony held on Friday, Aug.14, Ashley Vansutphen, Rhonda Kilby, and Samuel Mabe were recognized for completing the program. Each of the graduates was referred  to the program by a local defense attorney. Attorney Kerri Sigler, who is the founder of Phoenix Rising, referred Ashley Vansutphen to the program. Sigler applauded Vansutphen for overcoming many obstacles to complete the program. She said, “There is an old saying that just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, she became a butterfly. That’s what happened with Ashley. I am proud of her.”

Attorney Jones Byrd referred Samuel Mabe to the program. He said he was proud of Mabe. “I am very proud of Samuel. He is a very good person who was really struggling. I am thankful that the drug court program was made available to him and that he was able to take advantage of the opportunity.” 

Rhonda Kilby was referred by Attorney Erin Woodrum. Woodrum said it was amazing to see how far Kilby has come. “She went from a broken woman in my conference room to an entirely new, strong person and it was amazing to see,” Woodrum said. 

Along with helping finance the Drug Treatment Court, Phoenix Rising also facilitates treatment and raises awareness on addiction and drug abuse. For more information, visit

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Tevin Stinson

Tevin Stinson

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