Makana Leadership Academy (2020-present) Roosevelt, UT

Residential Treatment Center

History and Background Information

Makana Leadership Academy (also called Makana Leadership Outreach Academy) is a behavior-modification program that opened in February of 2020. It is marketed as a Residential Treatment Center for teenage boys and girls (14 – 17) who are struggling with academics, unhealthy behaviors, substance abuse, and relationship problems as a result of failing mental health.

The program was located at 4270 W 5625 N, Roosevelt, UT 84066. This property originally belonged to the founder of Cedar Ridge Academy, Robert Nielson, who continues to live on the property.

In 2020, Robert Nielson sold CRA to new owners, who immediately reopened the program under the name Makana Leadership Academy. Although Makana is now under new management, it appears that the “changes” they claim to have made to the program are merely cosmetic. The underlying structure of the program is identical to that of Cedar Ridge Academy. Makana Leadership Academy is confirmed to be the re-brand of Cedar Ridge Academy. Makana currently continues to operate in the same location with many of the same staff. Robert Nielson continues to live on Makana’s campus.

Founders and Notable Staff

Program Structure

Like other behavior-modification programs, Makana Leadership Academy uses a level-system. Survivors have reported that Makana’s level system is nearly identical to that used by the confirmedly abusive Cedar Ridge Academy. For additional information about the level system used by CRA, click here.

Abuse Allegations

Because Makana Leadership Academy is a recently-established program, there are no direct allegations of abuse against this specific program. However, Cedar Ridge Academy (the pre-cursor to Makana) had many allegations and confirmed instances of extreme abuse at the program. For additional information about the abuse that occurred at Cedar Ridge, click here.

Survivor/Parent Testimonials

No testimonies have yet been found. If you attended Makana Leadership Academy and would like to contribute a testimony of your experience, please contact

Makana Leadership Academy Website Homepage

Truth about Makana/Cedar Ridge (Website made by survivors)

Makana/Cedar Ridge Survivors – Instagram

Makana/Cedar Ridge Survivors – Facebook