Our Physicians

Nelson M. Handal, M.D.

Nelson M. Handal, M.D., FAPA is the Founder, Chairman, and Medical Director for Dothan Behavioral Medicine Clinic & Harmonex. As a practicing board certified child, adolescent and adult psychiatrist, Dr. Handal has dedicated much of his career to developing and implementing technologies that elevate the quality of patient care. His vision was born after many years of tireless work focused on perfecting a clinical model that uses technology, while implementing sensible, practical, and modern clinical practices.

In addition to having established DBMC and serving as Medical Director at a large inpatient psychiatric hospital, Dr. Handal participates in extensive clinical research and is a national consultant and speaker on his specific areas of expertise relating to child and adolescent psychiatry. He has been featured in Business Week as well as other national publications and is recognized as a key opinion leader in the area of child and adolescent psychiatry. In May of 2009, Dr. Handal was invited to testify before the Unites States House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs regarding Innovative technologies and treatments that are currently helping veterans. In the late 1980s, Dr. Handal was president of one of the first telemedicine referral services in the world.

Awards include the 2009 Heroes in the Fight Award given by Mental Health America and The Excellence in Public Mental Health Award for 2008 given by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). In addition, Dr. Handal has also been recognized as one of America’s Top Psychiatrists for 2008 and 2007 given by the Consumers’ Research Council of America. His private practice, Dothan Behavioral Medicine Clinic, has received the 2008 Best of Dothan Award in the Physicians category by the U.S. Local Business Association (USLBA). Dr. Handal has also received the 2008 Patient’s Choice Award and the 2007 Mental Health Professional of the Year Award for Alabama. In 1996 Dr. Handal was presented with the Clinical Scholar Award conferred by the University of Miami School of Medicine. Dr. Handal is also recognized as a Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and Diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.

Dr. Handal completed residency training in general psychiatry at the State University of New York Health Science Center at Syracuse in Syracuse, New York. After that, he completed his fellowship in child and adolescent psychiatry at the University of Miami School of Medicine in Miami. Dr. Handal is a member in good standing of the American Psychiatric Association and the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists.


Jerlyn C. McCleod, M.D., FAPA

Jerlyn C. McCleod, M.D., FAPA is a board certified child and adolescent psychiatrist that has been in practice with the team at Dothan Behavioral Medicine Clinic since 2003 and is a co-investigator in many of the Harmonex clinical research studies. She is the current Medical Director of Southeast Alabama Youth Services’ Diversion Center as well as the Boys and Girls Attention Group Homes. She is the current Medical Director of Laurel Oaks Behavioral Health Center, an in-patient hospital for children and adolescents in Dothan, AL. She is the current Medical Director of Bradford Health Clinic, an out-patient center for treatment of adults and adolescents with substance dependence in Dothan, AL. She is owner and founder of J.C. McCleod, MD Psychiatric, PLLC.

She is a native of Chicago, IL and completed her Bachelor of Science Degree at Howard University in Washington, DC. She received her Medical Degree from the University of Illinois, College of Medicine. She completed her residency in General Psychiatry, and fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry both at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. Dr. McCleod is Board Certified in General Psychiatry as well as Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. She is licensed to practice medicine in the states of Alabama and Georgia.

Dr. McCleod is a Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, and a member in good standing of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists, the American Medical Association and the National Medical Association. She is a life member of the Global Directory of Who’s Who in American Professionals. She received the Mental Health Professional of the Year Award given by the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI), Wiregrass in 2009.

She is the chapter President of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, Kappa Pi Omega Chapter and was voted as the chapter‘s 2010 “Soror of the Year”. She actively volunteers in many community service projects. She’s a member of Greater Beulah Baptist Church. She is married to Don McCleod, CPA and has two children, Don Robert (11 y/o) and Michelle (8 y/o).


Jonathan Pfiefer

Jonathan C. Pfeifer, M.D., M.S. is a board-eligible adult, child and adolescent psychiatrist and joined the team of mental health professionals at Dothan Behavioral Medicine Clinic in 2011. He is also a co-investigator in several clinical research studies being carried out at the clinic in conjunction with Harmonex. In addition, he is one of several attending physicians at Laurel Oaks Behavioral Health Center, which provides acute and residential inpatient psychiatric care for children and adolescents.

Dr. Pfeifer completed his Bachelor of Science Degree at Hillsdale College in Hillsdale, Michigan. Shortly after, he received his Master of Science Degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of Toledo. Dr. Pfeifer then went on to obtain his Medical Degree from the University of Cincinnati. He stayed in Cincinnati to complete his training in General Psychiatry and Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at The University Hospital and Cincinnati Children’s Medical Hospital Center, respectively.

Dr. Pfeifer is a member in good standing of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists. He has authored several articles in peer-reviewed medical journals regarding the pharmacology and neuroimaging of pediatric mood disorders, including Expert Opinion on Pharmacotherapy and the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. He was also first author of a chapter in the book Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: From Genes to Patients. Dr. Pfeifer has received several awards, including the Weinshilboum Prize in Psychiatric Pharmacogenomics through the Mayo Clinic, as well as the Gold Foundation Humanism and Excellence in Teaching Award.