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Commissioner's Transformation Teams

Please click here to see the four Transformation Teams' FINAL REPORT
Please click here for a listing of all of the recommendations from the four teams.

In October 2014, DBHDS convened a Transformation Team Initiative to address unprecedented challenges facing the Commonwealth of Virginia’s developmental disabilities, substance-use disorders, and mental health services system. Four teams were formed to examine the system and make recommendations for improvements over a two year period. The four teams included:

  • Developmental Services
  • Adult Behavioral Health Services
  • Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health Services
  • Justice-Involved Services

System Transformation Process

Starting in 2014 and concluding in 2016, each of the transformation teams analyzed their assigned area in the behavioral health and developmental disabilities services system and developed strategic proposals for services, delivery and infrastructure. The process began with a comprehensive review of the state behavioral health and developmental services system.  This effort focused on access, quality, stewardship of resources, and accountability.  It was grounded in the principles of recovery, resiliency, self-determination, and wellness. The goal is to become a model system that realizes the DBHDS’ vision of “A life of possibility for all Virginians.”

The teams met monthly and developed over 90 recommendations for system transformation. Twice during the process, Advisory Group meetings were held to provide input on team proposals and offer recommendations for improvement. Next, public comment periods lasting approximately eight weeks were provided to allow the public the opportunity to review the proposals developed by the teams and provide feedback.  

The transformation teams then submitted their recommendations to the Commissioner for consideration. After considering feedback from the stakeholder group and the public, the recommendations were finalized and the process of implementation began.  

Please click here to see the four Transformation Teams' FINAL REPORT
Please click here for a listing of all of the recommendations from the four teams.

Adult Behavioral Health Services
Mike O’Connor, DBHDS Consultant, Transformation Team Co-chair 
Becky Sterling, DBHDS, Transformation Team Co-chair 
Cheryl, DeHaven, Magellan Behavioral Health Services
Mira Signer, NAMI Virginia
Ingrid Barber, Alleghany Highlands CSB
Sandy O’Dell, PD1 Behavioral Health Services CSB
Karen Kimsey, Dept. of Medical Assistance Services
Joey Trapani, Poplar Springs Hospital
Betty Long, Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Assn.
Jan Brown, Substance Abuse & Addiction Recovery Alliance
Frank Gallagher, Sentara Behavioral Health Services
Kaye Fair, Fairfax CSB Emergency Services Director
Laura Totty, Henrico Area Mental Health & Developmental Services
Lynda Hyatt, Gateway Homes
Charlene Edwards, Richmond Behavioral Health Authority

DBHDS Staff:
Daniel Herr, Asst. Commissioner, Behavioral Health 
Steve Herrick, Director, Piedmont Geriatric Hospital 
Mellie Randall, Director, Office of Substance Abuse Services 
Priscilla Scherger, DBHDS, Office of the Inspector General 

Adult Developmental Services
Heather Norton, DBHDS, Transformation Team Co-chair
Katherine Olson, The Arc of Virginia, Transformation Team Co-chair 
Debbie Burcham, Chesterfield CSB
Lisa Moore, Mt. Rogers CSB
Phil Caldwell, Alexandria CSB
Tonya Fowler, The Arc of Southside
Bob Gettings, former NASDDS Director
Susan Rudolph, The Arc of Greater Prince William/INSIGHT
Tom Laidlaw, St. Mary’s Home
Maureen Hollowell, Endependence Center, Inc.
Ann Bevan, Dept. Medical Assistance Services
Matthew Shapiro, Self-advocate
Freddie Simons, Hampton- Newport News CSB

DBHDS Staff:
Connie Cochran, Asst. Commissioner Div. of Developmental Services 
Cindy Gwinn, Community Resources Manager 
Dee Keenan, Acting Assistant Commissioner, Quality Management and Development 
Eric Leabough, Housing Specialist 
Beverly Rollins, DOJ Settlement Consultant 
Dawn Traver, Community Resource Manager 


Child & Adolescent Behavioral Health Services
Janet Lung, DBHDS, Transformation Team Co-chair
Stephany Melton Hardison, NAMI Virginia, Transformation Team Co-chair 
Margaret Nimmo Crowe, Voices for Virginia’s Children
Susan Clare, CSA Office of Comprehensive Services
Greg Peters, United Methodist Family Services
Allison Jackson, Ph.D., Family Preservation Services
Jim Thorton, Virginia Beach Dept. of Human Services
Sandy Bryant, Horizon Behavioral Health
Carl Ayers, Dept. of Social Services
Ralph Thomas, Dept. of Juvenile Justice
Maribel Saimre, Dept. of Education
Bela Sood, M.D., Virginia Treatment Center for Children
David Coe, Colonial Behavioral Health
Kathleen Barrett, St. Joseph’s Villa
Lori Gates-Addison, Cumberland Mountain CSB

DBHDS staff:
Jeff Aaron, Ph.D., Director of Commonwealth Center for Children & Adolescents 
Catherine Hancock, Part C Administrator 
Katharine Hunter, Child & Adolescent Family Program Manager 
Malcolm King, Child & Adolescent Family Program Specialist
Ben Skowysz, LCSW, CSOTP Juvenile Forensic Evaluator 

Justice-Involved Services
Michael Schaefer, Ph.D., DBHDS, Transformation Team Co-chair
David Rockwell, Henrico Area Mental Health & Developmental Services CIT, Transformation Team Co-chair 
& Developmental Services CIT
The Hon. Gabe Morgan, Sheriff, City of Newport News
Evan Nelson, Forensic Psychology Associates, P.C.
David Keenan, Ed. D, LCP Forensic Evaluator, private practice 
Varun Choudhary, M.D., Magellan Behavioral Health of VA
Kelly Walker, Blue Ridge CIT/Waynesboro Police Dept.
Gerald Wistein, Region Ten CSB
Kathy Tolton-Sendall, Family Member
Moriah Tolton, Self-Advocate
Angela Valentine, Dept. of Juvenile Justice
Hon. Charles E. Poston, Judge (Retired), Norfolk Circuit Court
Leslie Weisman, Arlington CSB Supervisor
Angela Torres, Region IV Jail Team Program
Louis Fox, Henrico Court Evaluation Unit

DBHDS Staff:
Jack Barber, M.D., Medical Director 
Gary Pelton, Psychology Manager, CCCA 
Kathleen Sadler, Forensic Mental Health Consultant 
Rebecca Vauter, Psy.D., Facility Director of Central State Hospital 


Transformation Stakeholder Group Members

Cheryl Al-Mateen, M.D., Virginia Treatment Center for Children
Janet Areson, Virginia Municipal League
Doug Bevelacqua, Private Citizen 
Vince Burgess, Veterans Services
Mark Camporini, Family Member 
Alyce Dantzler, EHS Support Services
Jennifer Fidura, Virginia Network of Private Providers
Jennifer Faison, Virginia Association of Community Service Boards
Karen Grizzard, Family Member 
Connie Holland, Self-Advocate/Peer
Terry Jenkins, Ph.D., Public Administration professor at ODU, former Director of Human Services for Virginia Beach
Pam Kestner, Office of the Secretary of Health and Human Resources
Heidi Lawyer, Virginia Board for People with Disabilities 
Jamie Liban, The Arc of Virginia
Bill Phipps, Magellan Behavioral Health of Virginia
Joel Silverman, M.D., Virginia Commonwealth University
Ted Stryker, Centra Mental Health
Rhonda Van Lowe, Family Member 


Additional Policy & Fiscal Support Provided by DBHDS Staff

Kathy Drumwright, Chief Deputy Commissioner

Don Darr, Assitant Commissioner for Finance and Administration 
Andrew Diefenthaler, Director, Budget Development and Analysis 
Ken Gunn, Director, Office of Budget and Financial Reporting 
Cherice Jackson, Financial Database Analyst
Nathan Miles, Budget & Financial Analyst

Meghan McGuire, Assistant Commissioner for Policy & Public Affairs
Will Frank, Director of Legislative Affairs
Holly Mortlock, Director of Policy 
Maria Reppas, Director of Communications 

If you have any questions about the Commissioner's Transformation Teams, please contact Holly Mortlock.