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Heartland Staff


Candice R. Greenwade M.Ed. 

Head of School 

Candice Greenwade is a visionary leader in the field of education who is committed to the needs of youth and families. She serves as Executive Director and Head of School for Heartland High School.


She was previously the Director of Youth and Family Services at the Columbus Urban League, where she was responsible for overseeing economic opportunities and community change for public system reform. Under her leadership, she pioneered a summer-work program for inner-city youth and developed strategies and systems to ensure economically challenged youth were provided stability and opportunities. 


Candice’s previous work in behavioral health allows her to have a unique perspective when meeting with Heartland’s students and families. At Pomegranate Health Systems Acute Hospital and Center for Psychiatry, she lead the Community Psychiatric Supportive Treatment team. Prior to her tenure at Pomegranate, she served as a Treatment Manager at Pastoral Counseling Service of Summit County. Candice also served as the Educational Director at Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens, and as an Academic Advisor for the Strive for Excellence Program at her alma mater, the University of Akron.

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Jennifer Belemu, PRS
Recovery Coach

With 11 years of experience working with teenagers in recovery at MaryHaven Drug and Alcohol Treatment Center, Jennifer Belému brings a unique and vital perspective to Heartland High School as the school's Recovery Coach. 

Most importantly, however, she is a living example of thriving in recovery. Jen's passion for healthy, productive and meaningful personal growth is evidenced in everything she has done over the last 20 years in sobriety. Jen is committed to supporting students' recovery process through diverse avenues such as nutrition education, therapeutic community development, and positive social activities.

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Kimberly Sanders Pathway & APG Program Director

Kimberly has committed her career to helping adolescents and youth understand the importance of obtaining a high-school diploma. Through her work at The University of Akron, she created various curriculums and plans for local middle and high school students to succeed in their educational careers. She has spearheaded many successful summer camps for at-risk youth and understands the important role mentoring plays in a child’s life. 
As Heartland’s Pathway & APG Program Director, Kimberly has both a keen understanding and respect for each student’s unique path to recovery. She works with Heartland High Schools students as a mentor, advocate and motivator. Her ability to meet adolescents where they are enables her to prepare students for a long-term recovery.


Alicia Berkemer
Director of Enrollment & Office Administrator

Alicia Berkemer is a sought after professional in the field of mental and behavioral health administration. 

Alicia came to Heartland High School in early 2020 after working 3+ years at a local organization who supported families and children with developmental disabilities. At the organization she managed multiple departments to ensure it mission was being met. Prior to that Alicia, spent 5+ years overseeing the billing and quality control functions at Pomegranate Health Solutions.

Alicia prides herself on building and mentoring strong teams, while always going above and beyond to ensure mission fulfillment is top of mind in all of her daily activities and interactions with faculty, students and parents. 

Alicia is a proud life-long resident of Central Ohio, and lives with her husband and their two daughters in Grandview. 

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