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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Department of Health and Human Services
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration

Last Updated: 6/6/2013

SAMHSA’s Resource Center to Promote Acceptance,
Dignity and Social Inclusion Associated with
Mental Health (ADS Center)


SAMHSA ADS Center Steering Committee


The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) ADS Center recognizes that for people with mental health challenges, substance use disorders, and those who have experienced trauma to recover and rebuild their lives, they need access not only to services and supports for their conditions, but most importantly to those social, economic, educational, recreational, and cultural opportunities, and physical health services, that most citizens take for granted. As we assembled our new Steering Committee, we were committed to recruiting members whose work and vision support advancing social inclusion for people in recovery from mental health challenges, substance use disorders, and trauma.

The SAMHSA ADS Center Steering Committee includes people with lived experience; representatives from the behavioral health provider, employer, legal, healthcare policy, and faith communities; trauma-informed care and systems transformation leaders; and housing and community development leaders.

The Steering Committee section of the SAMHSA ADS Center Web site includes an Archived Feature Columns section written by former Steering Committee members to highlight the social inclusion-related work of their organizations.


Lena Caballero-Phillips, CPS, CRE
Founder and Chief Executive Officer
The Hope Concept Wellness Center, LLC

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Lena Caballero-Phillips

Magdalena (Lena) Caballero-Phillips is in the business of saving lives.

Lena was a Rape Crisis Counselor for 3 years at the Women's Center and an ARC Professional Trainer for the Parenting Center in Fort Worth, TX. She serves on numerous local, State, and national mental health committees and boards of directors. Her ability to fluently speak, read, and write in Spanish allows her to deliver her message to a broad audience in need of support and community services.

Lena served as the Peer Support Coordinator at the Mental Health Association of Tarrant County (MHATC) for 8½ years and as the Information and Referral Specialist and provided oversight to several programs: Hispanic Outreach Services, Peer Support Activities, Volunteer/Community Services, Warm Line, Court Diversion, and the Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP). As an Advanced Level WRAP Facilitator, Lena has graduated hundreds of individuals in hope and recovery.

In 2011, as the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of The Hope Concept Wellness Center based in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, Lena opened the first 100% peer-based, consumer-led trauma-informed wellness center in the State of Texas. Social inclusion is so important at The Hope Concept Wellness Center that everyone who works there has a lived experience with mental illness, trauma, and/or substance use, and they are trained to use their experiences to help others through such hard times as they have gone through.

Donita Diamata
Project Coordinator
Mental Health America of Oregon/Peerlink National Technical Assistance Center

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Donita Diamata

With more than 20 years of involvement in the consumer/survivor movement, Donita Diamata is guided by values that have been influenced over the years through personal experiences as a mental healthcare recipient and through her experiences working in the mental health system. From these experiences that have spanned negative to positive, traumatic to uplifting, Donita has adopted an intuitive approach to how she offers support and how she develops programs.

Donita's work experience includes providing direct peer support, startup and management of peer-run programs, individual advocacy, and advocacy for change in the mental health system. After working officially in both peer-run programs and organizations and in traditional mental health clinics and residential facilities, she continues to advocate for change that gives recipients options that work best for them. She also strongly advocates for evolution in the system that eliminates traumatic experiences sometimes found in mental health services. Rather, her vision is one of services that are holistic and life enriching.

Donita currently works as a Project Coordinator for Mental Health America of Oregon/Peerlink National Technical Assistance Center. This work allows her to continue her passion for advocacy and support for peer-delivered services.

Letty Elenes
Transition Age Youth Manager
Peers Envisioning and Engaging in Recovery Services

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Letty Elenes

Letty Elenes is a pioneer in the Alameda County consumer movement and received the prestigious 2010 Consumer of the Year Award for her dedication to advancing the voice of youth consumers. In 2012 she received the first Jay Mahler Leadership Award for her devoted passion in the consumer movement and amazing leadership skills. She is a founding member of the Pool of Consumer Champions-Transition Age Youth Committee and the Transition Age Youth Advisory Board. As a result of her innovative teamwork, Alameda County now has a wide-reaching, sustainable transition age youth initiative.

Today, Letty is the youngest national Advanced Level Facilitator in the Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) and the first WRAP facilitator to run youth-to-youth groups in the Nation. In 2011, she started working with Mary Ellen Copeland, Ph.D., WRAP Founder, to create a youth edition of the WRAP workbook and help with expanding WRAP to youth in Canada.

Letty is an inspiring public speaker and has delivered keynote addresses at international conferences. She also facilitates local and international workshops and trainings. Letty graduated from California State University, East Bay, earning a degree in psychology, and she is currently an M.S.W. grad student. She is currently employed at Peers Envisioning and Engaging in Recovery Services (PEERS) as the Transition Age Youth Manager.

Jacqueline Feldman, M.D.
Vice Chair for Clinical Affairs
University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Psychiatry

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Jacqueline Feldman

Jacqueline Feldman, the Patrick H. Linton Professor in the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Department of Psychiatry, was recently appointed as the Vice Chair for Clinical Affairs. Prior to her appointment, Jacqueline served for a number of years as the Director of the UAB Division of Public Psychiatry, which serves as the umbrella for both the UAB Mental Health Center and Beacon Parkway Substance Abuse programs. Jacqueline has distinguished herself as a tireless and passionate advocate for all of the patients the Department serves, especially the most vulnerable with severe mental illness. She is particularly well connected and respected in the community, which will serve the Department well as it takes the next steps in partnership with UAB Medicine and State and local government and other partners to move even closer to a true system of care for patients throughout the State and community.

Beth Filson, M.F.A., CPS
Trauma-Informed Peer Support Consultant
National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors and the National Center for Trauma-Informed Care

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Beth Filson

Beth Filson served as Project Manager for the Georgia Certified Peer Specialist program for a number of years before turning her attention to training and curriculum development in trauma-informed peer support. She coauthored Engaging Women in Trauma-Informed Peer Support: A Guide for the National Center for Trauma-Informed Care (NCTIC) under contract with the Center for Mental Health Services of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Beth co-facilitates Intentional Peer Support with Shery Mead and Chris Hansen and is working with the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health to develop and pilot guidelines for engaging people who use self-injury in community and inpatient settings. She serves as a consultant for the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors and NCTIC. Beth's work is founded upon the belief that social inclusion occurs when those who have been marginalized become teachers of their experience. Beth is a self-taught artist. She currently resides in Western Massachusetts.

Lloyd J. Hale II, CPSS
Client Affairs Coordinator/Certified Peer Support Specialist
Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center of the South Carolina Department of Mental Health

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Lloyd J. Hale II

Lloyd J. Hale II is a Certified Peer Support Specialist (CPSS) and the Client Affairs Coordinator at the Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center of the South Carolina Department of Mental Health. Lloyd received his CPSS certification in 2004. As a Peer Specialist, Lloyd works with clients, providing an array of services to promote recovery and help them learn to direct their own treatment process. He has also partnered with SC SHARE (the only client-run mental health advocacy organization in South Carolina) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to present the Ready for Life Project and The Dream Team, in which he uses his personal experience with mental illness and recovery to promote public awareness and community opportunity, provide the hope of recovery, address the obstacles of culture, decrease the stigma associated with mental illness, and provide information on treatment and recovery options.

Elizabeth Hudson, LCSW
Trauma-Informed Care Consultant
Wisconsin Department of Health Services and the University of Wisconsin-Madison's School of Medicine and Public Health

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Elizabeth Hudson

Elizabeth Hudson is employed by the University of Wisconsin-Madison's School of Medicine and Public Health and partners with Wisconsin's Department of Health Services to coordinate trauma-informed care (TIC) efforts across Wisconsin. In addition to statewide oversight, Elizabeth provides TIC training and consultation to various systems and settings interested in TIC integration. These include mental health and substance use recovery services, child welfare, schools, homelessness services, and juvenile and adult correctional settings. Elizabeth has worked in the field of trauma prevention and treatment for 20 years as an advocate, clinician, supervisor, and administrator. She received the National Association of Social Workers' Award for Distinguished Service while working as a child and family therapist specializing in trauma work with children under the age of 8. In 2009, Elizabeth and Marie Danforth accepted the Wisconsin Association of Family & Children's Agencies' John R. Grace Outstanding Leadership Award for the Wisconsin Department of Health Services' work in promoting TIC and the reduction of seclusion and restraint. In 2011, Elizabeth received the "Kindling the Spirit of Recovery" award from Wisconsin's United We Stand, the statewide mental health consumer advocacy group. Issues of social justice and social inclusion have been a touchstone for all of Elizabeth's work; her early years as a domestic violence and sexual assault advocate serve as the backdrop for a continued dedication to reducing stigma and silence while promoting empowerment and engagement.

Dori S. Hutchinson, Sc.D.
Director of the Services Division
Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, Boston University

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Dori S. Hutchinson, Sc.D.

Dori S. Hutchinson has worked at the Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation at Boston University since 1984. She currently serves as the Director of the Services Division that assists people who live with mental health challenges in assuming their rightful roles as students, employees, residents, and members of their communities. In addition, she is an Associate Clinical Professor at Sargent College of Health and Rehabilitation Services at Boston University. Dori was the 2000 recipient of the International Association of Psychosocial Rehabilitation Services' Early Career Research Award, and in 2010 she received the Armin Loeb Award from the United States Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association for her work in promoting the health of people with mental illness. She provides training nationally to organizations and providers who wish to deliver recovery-oriented services and conduct relevant program evaluations. Over the last 25 years she has also developed health service initiatives in community rehabilitation settings, inpatient settings, and educational settings that provide health promotion knowledge and skills to empower people in recovery to change their lifestyles and recover their functional health, which may have worsened as a result of living with a serious psychiatric illness. Dori is deeply committed to supported education, suicide prevention, and the development of empathy and resiliency as wellness tools.

D. J. Ida, Ph.D.
Executive Director
National Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health Association

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D. J. Ida, Ph.D.

D. J. Ida is Executive Director of the National Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health Association. She has more than 30 years' experience working with Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. She received her doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Colorado and has been a strong advocate for eliminating disparities in quality care for diverse populations. D. J. is often asked to speak on Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) mental health and the need to improve the quality of care to be more culturally and linguistically appropriate. She sits on numerous national boards and councils. She served as a peer reviewer for Mental Health: Culture, Race, and Ethnicity; A Supplement to Mental Health: A Report of the Surgeon General (2001) and was a contributing author for the President's New Freedom Commission on Mental Health's subcommittee chapter on reducing disparities, as well as serving as the primary author for the Office of Minority Health's Integrated Care for Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Communities: A Blueprint for Action. She helped develop several training curricula, including one for providers working with Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders; providers working with AANHPI children, youth, and families; and mental health consumers and community members to become wellness coaches trained on a whole health approach to improving health and mental health of AANHPIs. D. J. firmly believes in the importance of social inclusion to ensure community involvement in developing programs, policies, and research efforts impacting AANHPIs.

John (Jody) Kretzmann, Ph.D.
Co-Founder and Co-Director
Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) Institute of the School of Education and Social Policy at Northwestern University

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John Kretzmann, Ph.D.

Jody Kretzmann is Co-Founder and Co-Director of the Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) Institute of the School of Education and Social Policy at Northwestern University. The ABCD Institute works with community building leaders across North America as well as on five other continents to conduct research, produce materials, and otherwise support community-based efforts to rediscover local capacities and to mobilize citizens' resources to solve problems. The Institute continues to build on the stories and strategies for successful community building reported in his popular book Building Communities from the Inside Out: A Path Toward Finding and Mobilizing a Community's Assets, written with longtime colleague John McKnight. Jody is also a Research Associate Professor of Human Development and Social Policy and a Research Associate Professor of Learning Sciences with Northwestern's School of Education and Social Policy.

A much-traveled speaker and trainer, Jody brings more than four decades of community-based work and study to his current position. Before founding the ABCD Institute, he worked as a community organizer and community development leader in Chicago neighborhoods, and as a consultant to a wide range of neighborhood groups. He has worked to develop community-friendly policies in the city, and at the regional, State, national, and international levels. In addition to his work at Northwestern, he has taught about community development and public policy with the Associated Colleges of the Midwest Urban Studies Program (which he co-founded), Valparaiso University, the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, and McCormack Seminary. He serves on a wide range of civic, community, and foundation boards. His B.A. is from Princeton University (magna cum laude), his master's degree is from the University of Virginia, and his Ph.D. (in sociology and urban affairs) is from Northwestern University.

Clare Miller
Partnership for Workplace Mental Health
American Psychiatric Foundation

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Clare Miller

Clare Miller has served as Director of the Partnership for Workplace Mental Health of the American Psychiatric Foundation since 2003. The Partnership collaborates with employers to advance effective approaches to mental health. It promotes the business case for investing in quality mental health care, including early recognition, access to care, and effective treatment, which allows people to live healthy and productive lives. As Director, Clare is responsible for the strategy and execution of the program. Under her leadership, the Partnership has grown to a network of more than 5,000 employers and related health purchasing stakeholders; the program now responds to more than 100 employer inquiries per month.

Before joining the Partnership, Clare was Manager of the Center for Prevention and Health Services at the National Business Group on Health. At the Business Group, she focused on a variety of employer health issues, including mental health and substance use disorders, terrorism and public health emergency preparedness, and public policy and marketplace issues. Prior to that, Clare was the Director of Public Policy for Mental Health America. She managed the association's national advocacy center, providing technical assistance to more than 340 affiliate organizations and local and State advocacy partners.

Clare serves on the Council of Advisors for the Center for Health Value Innovation. She previously served on the Board of Directors for ACMHA: The College for Behavioral Health Leadership and the National Business Group on Health's Advisory Council on Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health.

Douglas M. Ronsheim, D.Min.
Executive Director
American Association of Pastoral Counselors

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Douglas M. Ronsheim, D.Min.

Rev. Douglas Ronsheim is the Executive Director of the American Association of Pastoral Counselors (AAPC). AAPC is a national certification and membership organization whose mission is to provide training, education, and clinical/collaborative community-based services to enhance the well-being of individuals, families, and communities. AAPC's mission is to provide care that is integrative and inclusive of the resources of one's spiritual/religious life.

Prior to this, Douglas served, for 17 years, as the Executive Director of Pittsburgh Pastoral Institute, licensed as a community-based outpatient psychiatric clinic by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

He is a Presbyterian minister, a licensed marriage and family therapist, a fellow of AAPC, and a clinical member and approved supervisor of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. Douglas held faculty appointments in the Schools of Social Work and Public Health of the University of Pittsburgh; the Department of Psychiatry of the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, part of the University of Pittsburgh Medical School; and the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.

Kim Savage
Law Office of Kim Savage

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Kim Savage

Kim Savage provides legal representation, consulting, and training in the areas of land use and zoning and civil rights for nonprofit housing developers and program providers. She has represented State licensed facilities, transitional and permanent supportive housing providers, mental health treatment programs, and shelter operators, assisting them in developing and siting their housing and addressing community opposition.

Ms. Savage has authored technical assistance documents addressing fair housing and land use and zoning, including an impediments study for the City of Los Angeles, and she has assisted California cities in amending their codes to comply with fair housing laws. Ms. Savage has been the Project Director of several U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Fair Housing Initiatives Program projects, and she authored the California Land Use and Zoning Campaign that analyzed that HUD project's audit of local jurisdictions throughout the State. Her work was the impetus for State legislation that strengthened jurisdictions' obligations under housing element law to now require specific analysis of the land use and zoning constraints to housing for people with disabilities and adoption of reasonable accommodation procedures.

Prior to starting her private practice, Ms. Savage had more than 20 years as a public interest attorney representing low-income individuals and families with a particular emphasis on disability and housing. Ms. Savage graduated from Hastings College of the Law (University of California). Ms. Savage's work is devoted to challenging discriminatory practices in housing and increasing access to housing of choice.

Sarah M. Steverman, M.S.W.
Doctoral Candidate and Adjunct Faculty
Catholic University of America, National Catholic School of Social Service

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Sarah M. Steverman, M.S.W.

Sarah Steverman is currently a Ph.D. candidate in social work at Catholic University, where she is focusing on mental health promotion and mental illness and substance abuse prevention policy. She also serves as adjunct faculty for Catholic University's M.S.W. program.

Until January 2013, Sarah served as the Director of State Policy at Mental Health America (MHA). She provided technical assistance to State and local mental health advocates, participated in national mental health coalitions, presented at regional and national meetings, and developed and disseminated policy information for the general public and MHA's 240 affiliates. She was MHA's lead on health reform, parity implementation, and State policy issues, and also worked on prevention and promotion.

Prior to joining MHA, Sarah was a Policy Specialist at the National Conference of State Legislatures, where she was the mental health lead and had primary responsibility for conducting research, managing a MacArthur Foundation-funded project, and representing the State legislative position on various coalitions. Sarah also testified before State legislatures and provided technical assistance to legislators, legislative staff, and the public on various mental health issues.

Sarah has worked with adults with mental illnesses at Green Door, a community mental health agency in Washington, DC, and she was an intern at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, where she primarily worked on criminal justice issues and the Transformation State Incentive Grant Program.

Sarah received her B.A. in religion from Gettysburg College and her M.S.W. with a concentration in macro social work practice from Catholic University.

Sam Tsemberis, Ph.D.
Founder and Chief Executive Officer
Pathways to Housing

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Sam Tsemberis, Ph.D.

Sam Tsemberis serves as the CEO of Pathways to Housing, an organization he founded in 1992 based on the belief that housing is a basic human right.

Pathways developed the Housing First program that provides immediate access to permanent housing for individuals who are homeless and who have psychiatric disabilities and multiple co-occurring conditions such as addiction and health problems. The program does not require participation in treatment or a period of sobriety as a precondition for entering housing. All support and treatment services are offered using a person-centered recovery-focused approach.

The Pathways Housing First program has been successfully replicated across the United States, Canada, Europe, and Australia. There is substantial research evidence base documenting its effectiveness, and the program is endorsed by the United States Interagency Council on the Homeless and listed in the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices. Additionally, the program has received recognition and numerous awards, including the American Psychiatric Association's Gold Award for excellence in community mental health.

Sam is a clinical-community psychologist and is on the faculty of the Department of Psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Center. He has received recognition and several awards for his commitment, innovation, and advocacy to end homelessness for people with mental illness and addiction. He currently serves as principal research investigator for several federally funded studies of homelessness and dual diagnosis and has published numerous articles and book chapters on these topics. In 2010, Hazelden Publishers published his book entitled Housing First: The Pathways Model to End Homelessness for People with Mental Illness and Addiction.

Thomas H. Warren, Sr., M.S.
President/Chief Executive Officer
Urban League of Nebraska

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Thomas H. Warren, Sr., M.S.

Thomas H. Warren is currently employed as President/Chief Executive Officer of the Urban League of Nebraska (ULN). The ULN administers programs in education/youth development, employment/career services, and violence prevention. It is also a traditional civil rights organization and advocates for social justice. The ULN motto is "Empowering Communities, Changing Lives," and Thomas and others there are spiritually engaged in improving social and economic conditions and breaking the cycle of poverty and hopelessness. Prior to his appointment at the ULN, Thomas served 24 years with the Omaha, NE Police Department, the last 4 as Chief of Police.

Thomas has a bachelor of science degree from Morningside College in Sioux City, IA with an interdisciplinary major in criminal justice, a second major in sociology, and a minor in psychology. He earned a master of science degree from the University of Nebraska at Omaha, with a major in criminal justice and an option in public administration. He is also a graduate of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's National Executive Institute Leadership Development Training, Class 30.

Thomas is a member of several professional organizations and has an extensive record of community involvement. He was selected as a fellow and inducted into the National Academy of Public Administration, and he serves as a commissioner on the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies. He also co-chairs Douglas County's Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative.


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This Web site was developed under contract with the Office of Consumer Affairs in SAMHSA’s Center for Mental Health Services. The views, opinions, and content provided on this Web site do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions, or policies of SAMHSA or HHS. The resources listed in this Web site are not all-inclusive and inclusion on this Web site does not constitute an endorsement by SAMHSA or HHS.