We are pleased to announce this year's keynote speakers!
As the Founder and Executive Director of The Campbell Center, Iden is a Certified Psychiatric Rehabilitation Practitioner/CPRP, and a Certified peer Specialist (in both DC and North Carolina). Iden serves on the Executive Board of Cornerstone Investments, the Center of Excellence (CoE) on Behavioral Health for Racial Ethnic/Minority National Advisory Board as well as serving in an advisory capacity to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and HRSA/Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program (RWHAP). In 2013, Iden was awarded the National LGBT Leadership Award at the Alternatives Conference. In 1999, Iden was awarded the "Direct Care Professional of the Year Award" by The Arc of Maryland and the "Direct Care Professional of the Year" by the Maryland Association of Community Services. According to Iden, “the transgender community is extremely resilient, we have lived through some horrific shared experiences. There is hope, we remain vigilant and strong, creating resources to serve our community.”
Vanessa Frias is the Communications and Training Specialist for Youth M.O.V.E Oregon. She is a part of the consultation, technical assistance and implementation team for the roll out of System of Care and Wraparound in Oregon. Vanessa also sits on many boards around the state advocating for youth voice at all levels and is currently involved with the redesign of the BRS system for Oregon and the 5 year Suicide intervention and Prevention plan for Oregon. She is a Native American and Portuguese young woman. Vanessa uses her lived experience with multi systems involvement such as Juvenile Justice, DHS, and Mental Health to do advocacy. She is currently finishing her degree at Oregon State University and in her free time you can find her spending time with her family in the outdoors or watching movies. She has been doing work in this field for about 6 years now and says her favorite part of being a young adult leader is giving hope back to those young people who are lost just as she once was.
Clarence Jordan, Vice President of Wellness and Recovery, received the 2014 Peer Specialist of the Year Award from the National Council for Behavioral Health. Jordan’s passion to help those struggling with the challenges of mental illness arose from his own experiences. As a man of color, a 15-year veteran of the U.S. Navy, and a person in recovery since 1998, Jordan has dealt with the obstacles these populations face in accessing appropriate treatment. Foremost are the dual challenges of ignorance and cultural stigma: “When I served in the Navy, my ‘image’ of a person with mental illness was certainly not me. I believe I share this experience with thousands of military service members who could benefit from VA services but may not be getting them. The same holds true for communities of color, where social isolation and discrimination are no strangers.” Clarence Jordan has served on the Board of Directors of NAMI, and now serves on the Executive Committee for SourceAmerica, the National Academies' Standing Committee on the Science of Changing Behavioral Health Social Norms, and the Select Committee of the IC&RC; the ABHW Thought Leaders Group for Peer Services.
Lyn Legere has served in many roles in and around the mental health field for the past 25 years and has been integrally involved in efforts to transform the traditional mental health field. Currently, she is providing professional development for peer and clinical staff within Promise Resource Network as well as training/supporting the Employment Peer Mentors in North Carolina. She also provides recovery training and consultation to agencies across the state. Prior to her work in North Carolina, Lyn coordinated the Massachusetts Certified Peer Specialist training and certification program, enhancing the curriculum, ensuring exam validity and training classes. She has also consulted nationally and internationally on best practices in peer support services, as well as recovery oriented mental health services and psychiatric rehabilitation. She serves on the BRSS TACS Steering Committee and has served on a variety of Bringing Recovery Supports to Scale Technical Assistance Center Strategy (BRSS TACS) expert panels. Lyn has an MS from Boston University, a law certificate from the University of Massachusetts, but, most important, the experience and insight that comes from lived experience of mental health and addiction recovery.
Craig Lewis lives in Salem, Massachusetts, the city of misfits, with his best friend, Max the Cat; a survivor of trauma himself, the official Maxcot of Recovery. Craig has authored the coping skills guide, Better Days – A Mental Health Recovery Workbook. Craig based the Better Days workbook on his personal life and recovery. Craig has lived a life of unconscionable trauma due to being victimized by Munchausen’s Syndrome by Proxy. Despite, or in spite of this, Craig fights every second of the day to create a better life for himself, no matter what obstacles he may face. He tours internationally, speaking about his lived experience, challenges and triumphs, and offering workshops, sharing his knowledge with others, in hopes of having an empowering impact on his community. For Craig, having the privilege and honor of being able to help others live more satisfying lives, provides him with a degree of meaning and purpose that he previously never believed possible. Craig is a life-long punk rocker, a staunch anti-authoritarian and is committed to fearlessly smashing the status-quo, anywhere, anytime.
Dwayne Mayes, Program Director of the Mental Health Empowerment Project-South, has worked in the Mental Health Peer support field since 1998. Formerly the Director of Howie the Harp Advocacy Center, Dwayne Mayes has climbed from "the bottom of the totem pole" to achieve tremendous success both personally and professionally and is absolute proof that recovery is real. Dwayne has presented his ideas of Recovery based Integrated Treatment internationally, as a participant in the MeetTheXperts Symposiums in the Netherlands in 2013 and 2014; and is a recipient of the 2008 Robin Hood Foundation Heroes Award. Dwayne holds a degree in Sociology from CUNY’s Hunter College. He also holds certifications from Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations’ Program on Employment and Disability and from Cornell’s Employment and Disability Institute’s Work Incentive and Utilization Series. Dwayne’s certifications from the Boston University Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation are “Choosing, Getting and Keeping Employment” and “Evidence Based Supported Employment.” From the Workforce Professionals Training Institute, Dwayne earned the certificate “Working with Employers: Skills and Strategies for Job Developers.” He is also a Certified Community Work Incentives Coordinator within the Work Incentive Planning and Assistance (WIPA) of the Social Security Administration.
In 2007, Dan O’Brien-Mazza became the first director of peer support services with the VA’s Central Office in the Office of Mental Health Services Psychosocial Rehabilitation and Recovery Services. He holds a Master’s Degree from Syracuse University’s Rehabilitation Counseling Education Department. Before his current position, he was team leader of the Syracuse VA’s Psychosocial Rehabilitation & Recovery Programs. There, he supervised the Mental Health Intensive Case Management and vocational programs, while also directing Network 2’s supported employment project. From 1980 to 1988 he provided vocational counseling and substance abuse services to Veterans in Syracuse, before a formal substance abuse program was launched. He is a former recipient of the VA Secretary’s Heart and Hands Award. Dan was also one of the first responders on the VA’s Suicide Prevention Hotline (currently called the Veterans’ Crisis Line) when it opened in July 2007. Since coming to Central Office, Dan has overseen the hiring and training of over 950 Peer Specialists in VA facilities across the nation. His current focus is on ensuring that the newly hired Peer Specialists are integrating well into VA Behavioral Health services and expanding peer support to primary care settings as well as integrating community partners to develop larger peer support networks. He is a US Air Force Veteran, married, has three adult children, 3 grandchildren.
Robyn, the current Lead Project Coordinator for Peerlink National Technical Assistance Center, was the previous Executive Director of the Alaska Peer Support Consortium. She has been involved in the mental health field within the USA, Canada, New Zealand and Australia. She has worked both Government organizations and not for profit organizations as well as holding senior management positions in both types of organizations. She has completed, as part of an international team of consultants, a review of consumer/survivor initiatives (peer-run services) in Ontario Canada and a project for the Mental Health Commission of Canada looking at peer run initiatives “Making the Case for Peer Support”. Robyn is a sought after speaker and trainer and is renowned for infusing interaction during her presentations and utilizing humor and passion throughout her work.
Hayley Winterberg is a role model for youth and adults in coping with challenges using determination and fortitude. Having grown up surrounded by mental illness, substance abuse, domestic violence, and homelessness, she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at age 12, and lost most of her friends because she was considered “different.” Instead of giving up hope, Hayley decided to promote youth voice across the nation. In 2008, Hayley founded MY LIFE (Magellan Youth Leaders Inspiring Future Empowerment), a group that began with only 10 members and yet attracted more than 3,000 participants at its first event. Since then, she has traveled to other cities to speak, organize events, and inspire similar groups supporting behavioral health. Hayley has served on the boards of Youth M.O.V.E. National and the National Alliance on Mental Illness Arizona. She also advocated with the Arizona Department of Health Services’ Division of Behavioral Heath to create a protocol for professionals on promoting youth involvement and engagement in treatment. Now an independent contractor for the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Youth M.O.V.E. National, it is Hayley’s desire to transform the systems that serve youth, while providing them with the opportunity for growth and leadership themselves.
Funding for this conference was made possible in part by Grant No. SM059955 from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services
Administration. The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by peers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Human
Services; nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.