Rise Inspire Academy Celebrates its First Graduate, Colin Gerard!

Tanya Jopling, honored for Outstanding Advocacy for Youth in Recovery

Colin Gerard, Rise Inspire Academy, Class of 2021
Bea Blackmon, RIA Administrator, Tanya Jopling, and Jessie Hinojosa, RIA Admissions Coordinator

Congratulations to Rise Inspire Academy graduate, Colin Gerard, and a huge thank you to the staff and community who made this momentous occasion possible! Colin was celebrated at RIA’s first annual Winter Formal on December 11, 2021.

Rise Inspire Academy is San Antonio’s first and only recovery high school; this dream was realized due to the diligent work of members of Rise Recovery’s Board of Trustees and recovery community leaders who had a vision for providing a better continuum of care for San Antonio youth in recovery. Over several years, these individuals would meet to discuss their vision for what a recovery high school would look like and how they could bring it to fruition for students struggling with substance use. Eventually, they were successful in fostering the partnership between Rise Recovery and Inspire Academies. RIA was opened and the Rise Inspire Academy Advisory Council was formed, which continues to work behind the scenes to ensure high school students, like Colin, are receiving the quality care and support they need to help foster their recovery journey. We are thankful to the chair of the advisory council, Hamilton Barton, CEO of Pay It Forward, which provides sober living for the San Antonio homeless population.

At RIA’s Winter Formal, Tanya Jopling, the original task force leader and current member of the advisory council was awarded the first-ever Outstanding Advocacy for Adolescents in Recovery. Tanya’s impact has been so powerful and long-lasting that the advisory council chose to name this annual award the “Tanya Jopling Award for Outstanding Advocacy for Adolescents in Recovery” so that in future years, when choosing a community member to recognize, her legacy will always be acknowledged. Tanya has worked tirelessly to provide the services San Antonio-area students need to continue towards a solid recovery path. Tanya has specifically worked for the Bexar County Juvenile Probation Department for over 24 years and currently serves as their Coordinator for Behavioral Health Services and Resource Development.

Congratulations to both Colin and Tanya!!!