As a kid, VaShonda Eason loved Lifetime movies based on true stories. She always wondered how the characters healed, what changed in their lives and who helped them after the movie ended. She realized she wanted to be part of that process of healing, so she became a counselor.
A Maumelle native, Eason graduated from the University of Arkansas with degrees in psychology and social work in 2003 and 2005 and a master’s in social work in 2006.
A licensed clinical social worker, Eason joined Ozark Guidance, doing school-based therapy. In January 2010, she began as a clinical adviser for Dayspring Behavioral Health, eventually covering Van Buren, Fort Smith, Springdale and Bentonville schools. She became the Northwest Arkansas regional director in 2017.
In 2012, she started Eason Counseling on weekends, seeing patients on Fridays in Fayetteville. In 2018, Eason Counseling went full time, obtained contracts with Rogers, Bentonville and Springdale school districts and opened a second clinic in Rogers. The company grew to 600 clients within its first eight months of going full time. Since then, it has added 10 therapists, a Springdale clinic and pediatric clinic partnership, six support staff and a nurse practitioner.
The organization’s mission is to empower Northwest Arkansas one family at a time.
“If we can work with individuals and assist them in making changes in their lives, then eventually we’ll start changing families and then changing society as a whole,” Eason said.
Leaving a legacy drives Eason. Her future goals include promoting African American health, starting a residential home for children aging out of the foster system and making sure her children are cared for and strong.
Outside of work, Eason loves to cook and try new recipes and spend time with family.