W. Leigh Atherton, PhD, LPCS, LCAS, CRC, CCS

W. Leigh Atherton

Assistant Professor
Director, MS in Clinical Counseling Program
Coordinator, Substance Abuse Counseling Certificate Program


William "Leigh" Atherton, PhD, LPCS, LCAS, CRC, CCS, Assistant Professor in the Department of Addictions and Rehabilitation Studies. His duties include: Coordinator of the Substance Abuse Counseling Certificate Program and teaching various addictions and rehabilitation related courses.

Dr. Atherton received a BA in Psychology from Clark University, a MA in Mental Health Counseling and Behavioral Medicine from Boston University School of Medicine, and a PhD in Rehabilitation Counseling and Administration from East Carolina University. Prior to joining ECU, Dr. Atherton served as Clinical Director of a Critical Access Behavioral Health Agency in Greenville, NC. Dr. Atherton has over 15 years of clinical experience in mental health and addictions counseling and supervision.

Dr. Atherton's research interests include complementary/alternative counseling approaches (e.g., Animal Assisted Therapy, Biofeedback), training and integration of evidenced-based practices, and clinical supervision. In his down time, Dr. Atherton seeks relaxation through nature walks with his wife, Tracie, and two dogs, as well as SCUBA diving and amateur underwater photography.