Center Director


Thad Shunkwiler, LMFT, LPCC, ACS, CCMHC
Associate Professor
Department of Health Science
Phone: 507-389-1397

Thad Shunkwiler is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Science. In addition to his academic work, he is a licensed behavioral health provider with over a decade of experience in treating people with mental health and substance use disorders in rural Minnesota.

In 2021, he was named a Presidential Teaching Scholar and one of seventeen healthcare professionals in the country named a Rural Health Fellow of the National Rural Health Association. In 2022, he was selected for the "Emerging Rural Health Leader" award by the Minnesota Rural Health Association and received a Governor's appointment to the Board of Marriage and Family Therapy.

Assistant Director

MackieHeadShot.jpgPaul Force-Emery Mackie, PhD, LISW
Professor & Distinguished Faculty Scholar
Department of Social Work
Phone: 507-389-6336

Paul Mackie holds the rank of Professor in the Department of Social Work.  He has published several articles and books addressing rural policy and behavioral health concerns and is a Past President of the National Association for Rural Mental Health.

Throughout his academic career, he has placed rural issues and concepts at the forefront of his teaching, scholarship, and service and has had the honor to work on rural health care policy along with rural behavioral health labor shortage concerns at the State and Federal levels.

Outreach Coordinator

londgren.pngJennifer Londgren, EdD, LMFT, NCC
Associate Professor
Department of Health Science
Phone: 507-389-5937

Jennifer Londgren is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Science. She is the Program Coordinator and Internship Coordinator of the Alcohol and Drug Studies Program. Jennifer is a licensed marriage and family therapist, a nationally certified counselor, and a board certified telemental health provider. For the past decade, she has been working in a variety of clinical settings in the Mankato area, with a specialty in women's issues and addiction.

Jennifer leads a variety of trainings at the local, state, and national level, with a specialty in self-care, mental health resilience, habits and routines, happiness and mindset, and innovative teaching techniques. 

Integrated Healthcare Coordinator

Lynn.JPGLynn Kuechle

Within the coordinator role, Lynn will oversee the Center's Minnesota Department of Health grant aimed at increasing training opportunities for mental health professionals within integrated healthcare settings.

In addition to her role with the Center for Rural Behavioral Health, Lynn has been the coordinator for the Taylor Nursing Institute within the School of Nursing at Minnesota State University, Mankato. At the Taylor Nursing Institute, Lynn has been instrumental in managing funding from the endowment as well as helping to secure additional funding from both private and public grants. She has been involved in several healthcare projects from a community-based collaborative aimed at reducing sugary beverage consumption in Madelia, Minnesota, to international research related to nurses connecting with families in the ICU.

Center Fellowships

Center for Rural Behavioral Health Fellows coming in Fall 2023

Advisory Board

Affiliated Faculty