Denise Paone, EdD, Senior Director of Research and Surveillance, New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
Dr. Denise Paone is the Senior Director of Research and Surveillance in the Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Use Prevention Care and Treatment at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Dr. Paone received her Masters and Doctoral degrees from Columbia University. She has worked in the field of public health, harm reduction, and substance use research for more twenty years. Dr. Paone is conducting drug related morbidity and mortality studies, with a special emphasis on unintentional drug poisoning deaths and opioid analgesic use. She is directing a new real-time drug surveillance project, RxStat, which is an innovative collaboration between Public Health and Public Safety. Dr. Paone recently served as the chair of the overdose sub-committee for the National Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE).
Chauncey Parker serves as the Director of the New York/New Jersey HIDTA (High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Area), a federally funded program that invests in public safety and public health partnerships designed to reduce drug abuse and its consequences. Mr. Parker also serves as Executive Assistant District Attorney for Crime Strategies in the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office. A veteran of more than 27 years in criminal justice, Mr. Parker began his career in the District Attorney’s Office in 1986, where he served for five years. Mr. Parker next served for 10 years as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York. In 2002, Governor George Pataki appointed Mr. Parker to serve as the Director of Criminal Justice for New York State, where for five years he oversaw all state criminal justice agencies.
Stephen Patrick, MD, MPH, MS, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Health Policy, Division of Neonatology, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine
Stephen W. Patrick, MD, MPH, MS, is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Health Policy at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and an attending neonatologist at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. He is a graduate of the University of Florida, Florida State University College of Medicine and Harvard School of Public Health. Dr. Patrick completed his training in pediatrics, neonatology and health services research as a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar at the University of Michigan.
Dr. Patrick joined the faculty of Vanderbilt University in 2013. His National Institute on Drug Abuse-funded research focuses on improving outcomes for opioid-exposed infants and women with substance-use disorder and evaluating state and federal drug control policies. He previously served as Senior Science Policy Advisor to the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy and has testified before Congress on the rising numbers of newborns being diagnosed with opioid withdrawal after birth. He served as an expert consultant for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s development of a Guide to the Management of Opioid-Dependent Pregnant and Parenting Women and Their Children, as a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Substance Use and Prevention and as a board member on the US Office of Personnel Management’s Multi-State Plan Program Advisory Board. Dr. Patrick’s awards include the American Medical Association Foundation Excellence in Medicine Leadership Award, the Academic Pediatric Association Fellow Research Award and Tennessee Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics Early
Career Physician of the Year. His research has been published in leading scientific journals including the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA, Pediatrics and Health Affairs.
Karen H. Perry, Co-Founder & Executive Director, NOPE Task Force
Following the loss of her oldest son, Richard, to a drug overdose, Karen H. Perry co-founded Narcotics Overdose Prevention and Education (NOPE) Task Force. She has served in a voluntary capacity as Executive Director since its inception in 2004. Mrs. Perry’s major initiatives include the co-development and implementation of the NOPE Substance Abuse Prevention Programs, as well as the Program Training Curriculum. Other initiatives created and led by Mrs. Perry include the NOPE’s Annual National Candle Light Vigil, NOPE Treatment Fund and the NOPE Support Group. In addition to her commitments to NOPE, Mrs. Perry serves on numerous organizational boards and councils. She has been recognized for her achievements in the substance abuse field on the local and national levels. Additionally, she has been a leading advocate for numerous legislative initiatives on the State and Federal levels in the area of substance abuse. Mrs. Perry holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Rosemont College.
Karen Pershing, MPH, CPS II, serves as the Executive Director of the Metro Drug Coalition in Knoxville, Tennessee. She received her Bachelor of Science in Human Development and Family Studies at the University of Tennessee. After working for many years in public health, Karen received her Master’s Degree from UTK in Public Health. Ms. Pershing has provided numerous trainings throughout her career on health-related topics. Other credentials include: Women’s Addiction Services Leadership Institute Class of 2013 (A National program through SAMHSA), Leadership Knoxville Class of 2013, Tennessee Department of Health recognition for work in prescription drug abuse prevention, member of the Tennessee Public Health Association, Executive Women’s Association, and UT Chancellor’s Associates program. She is a Certified Prevention Specialist II and a 2014 graduate of the UT Consortium for Social Enterprise Effectiveness. Karen was the 2016 recipient of the Partners and Leadership Award from the Tennessee Public Health Association.
Mark Pew, Senior Vice President of PRIUM, has more than 35 years of experience in the P&C, healthcare and technology industries. He developed most of PRIUM’s workers’ compensation services, including its award-winning Chronic Pain Intervention Program and TaperRx, before turning his focus to education. Mr. Pew is frequently interviewed for stories related to the intersection of chronic pain and appropriate treatment including topics on drugs, tapering and functional restoration. From 2012 through 2016 he spoke more than 380 times on those subjects to over 25,000 people in 40 states. He also publishes thought-provoking posts on LinkedIn and @RxProfessor and articles for magazines. Mr. Pew serves on IAIABC’s Medical Issues Committee, SIIA Workers’ Compensation Committee, and is chairman of the CompSense Pharmacy Group in California. He is also a technical advisor to multiple jurisdictions on drug formularies, treatment guidelines and medical cannabis.
Scott Proescholdbell, MPH is the State Injury Epidemiologist at the NC Division of Public Health. He has worked in the field of injury and violence prevention for 5 years and in public health surveillance more broadly for 19 years. He has worked at multiple levels of government (local, state, federal) as well as at university prevention and non-profit research centers. His Injury and Surveillance Unit is currently building internal capacity to provide the state and partners with injury and violence data. Mr. Proescholdbell is the Principal Investigator of the NC Violent Death Reporting System, a CDC funded surveillance program linking vital records, medical examiner, and law enforcement data to fully understand homicide, suicide, and other violent deaths. He is Principal Investigator on a CDC cooperative agreement seeking to improve injury surveillance quality. As the State Injury Epidemiologist, he works with several injury and violence prevention groups and task forces including: State Advisory Council (SAC) Overdose Team, CSRS Advisory Committee, CCNC Advisory Board, Safe Kids NC Advisory Committee, and NC-VDRS Advisory Board. He has a strong working relationship with CDC around overdose topics and is currently collaborating on publications related to this area. He has fostered a long collaborative relationship with UNC IPRC on a wide range of projects. In addition, he continues to work with a wide array of state and local agencies and organizations to understand and prevent poisoning and overdose deaths.
Sudha Raman, PhD, is an epidemiologist whose research agenda focuses on the intersection of the use and effects of medications in populations (pharmacoepidemiology) and injury prevention epidemiology, with careful consideration of a medicine's benefits as well as harms. She received her PhD in injury epidemiology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Raman is currently completing a fellowship at the Center for Pragmatic Health Services Research at Duke University, where her research is exploring the methodological challenges of using electronic medical records and administrative data for the study of chronic conditions.
Ralph Reach, MD, ABAM, ABFP, AAFP, DFASAM, Director and Officer of the Tennessee Society of Addiction Medicine (TnSAM), President and Founder of Watauga Recovery Center and the President of the Watauga Foundation, Watauga Recovery Center
Dr. Reach is a 1986 graduate of the University Of South Carolina School Of Medicine. He completed his internship in 1987 at Roanoke Memorial Hospital, Roanoke, Virginia. He spent the first two decades of his practice specializing in Emergency Medicine, in which he is board certified. In September 2005, Dr. Reach entered the Family Practice residency program at ETSU in Johnson City, Tennessee. He became Board Certified in Family Medicine in September, 2007. From 2007 to present, Dr. Reach has worked as an Emergency Room and Family Practice provider is several facilities in the East Tennessee area. In partnership with one other physician, Dr. Reach and his wife opened Watauga Family Practice in Johnson City, Tennessee in 2010. Over the next several years, this endeavor would grow into Watauga Recovery Centers, Inc. Today, Watauga Recovery Centers Inc. has several locations that offer a message of hope coupled with compassionate and non-judgmental treatment to those who suffer under the weight of active addiction. Currently, Dr. Reach is President-elect of the Tennessee Society of Addiction Medicine, and was awarded the Humanitarian Alumni Award from his alma mater in March of 2015 for his efforts in helping individuals recover from substance abuse. Dr. Reach resides in Jonesborough, Tennessee with his wife and daughter.
Jennifer Reynolds, MPH, CHES, is a Health Communication Specialist and Project Manager at ORAU. She has over 10 years’ experience assisting federal and state government agencies and non-profit organizations to design effective health communication strategies. Reynolds uses her expertise in communications research and behavioral science to create content that can influence meaningful behavior change. She is a social media strategist, marketer, and trainer who loves to help clients build communities, expand their reach, and create significant engagements on Facebook. Reynolds has earned awards of excellence in digital marketing from the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) and National Health Information Awards.
Justin Luke Riley is 28 years old, and has been in long term recovery since 2007. He is YPR's President & CEO, and a founding member. Justin has done organizational development consulting for different industries. He was a Youth & Community Engagement Pastor as well as a private Life Coach. He graduated cum laude from the University Colorado at Denver in the University's Honors & Leadership Program in 2013, receiving a Bachelor of Arts in Communication, Mediation, and Public Relations. He is currently completing his Executive MBA from the University of Colorado. As a natural leader and gifted public speaker, Justin has been featured in many media outlets for his involvement in youth leadership and community engagement. Justin is a prolific leader in recovery, served on the Executive Board of multiple nonprofit enterprises. Justin also serves in many other service-oriented capacities.
A. Kenison Roy, III, MD is medical director of the Dual Diagnosis Unit at River Oaks Hospital in Harahan, LA and he is founder and medical director of Addiction Recovery Resources, Inc., a full spectrum addiction treatment system in the private sector, in Metairie, LA and is Chairman of the Division of Addiction Medicine at East Jefferson General Hospital. He has had a successful adult addiction and psychiatric private practice for over 20 years. Dr. Roy is Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Tulane and LSU Schools of Medicine, a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, a Distinguished Fellow of the American Society of Addiction Medicine and is certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology and the American Board of Addiction Medicine.
Silvia Sacalis, PharmD, provides clinical leadership as Vice President of Clinical Services at Healthesystems. Her experience and clinical expertise span the PBM, retail pharmacy and managed care environments. Leveraging her technology background, clinical skills and management expertise, she helps develop and operationalize strategic clinical initiatives to help workers' compensation insurance payers maximize the impact of a pharmacy benefit management program. Throughout her career, she has held various leadership roles in which she provided oversight of the development of clinical services programs, and integration of analytics technology with clinical consultative support. Dr. Sacalis received her Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and Doctorate of Pharmacy degrees from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Edwin A. Salsitz, MD, Beth Israel Medical Center, Division of Chemical Dependency, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Mount Sinai Beth Israel
Edwin A. Salsitz, MD has been an attending physician in the Beth Israel Medical Center, Division of Chemical Dependency, New York City, since 1983, and is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. He is the principal investigator of the Methadone Medical Maintenance (office-based methadone maintenance) research project. Dr. Salsitz is certified by the American Board of Addiction Medicine (ABAM), as well as by the Board of Internal Medicine and Pulmonary Disease. He has published and lectures frequently on addiction medicine topics. Dr. Salsitz is a course director for American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) sponsored buprenorphine trainings, and is a mentor in the PCSS-MAT mentoring program. He has co-chaired the ASAM Review Course, the ASAM Common Threads Course, the ASAM State of the Art Course and is a reviewer for the Journal of Addiction Medicine. Dr. Salsitz is the co-chair of the ASAM CME Committee and Chair of the New York Society of Addiction Medicine CME and Education Committee. Dr. Salsitz is a member of the medical advisory panel for the New York State Office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services. In 2014 he received the ASAM Annual Award.
Richard W. Sanders, MSJA, Commissioner, Kentucky State Police, and Member, Operation UNITE Board of Directors
Rick Sanders, who has more than 40 years of distinguished service in law enforcement, was appointed Commissioner of the Kentucky State Police on April 1, 2016. He previously served nine years as Chief of the Jeffersontown (KY) Police Department following his retirement as Assistant Administrator of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in Washington, D.C. While serving as Resident Agent in Charge of the Louisville Resident Office, Commissioner Sanders assisted in the development of Appalachia HIDTA (High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area), and currently serves on their board of directors. He has also served as Chairman of HIDTAs in Indiana and Chicago. Through his work with HIDTA, Commissioner Sanders established the “Top 21” anti-gang initiative that targeted the worst criminals in drug and violent offenses. In 2014, he was appointed President of the Kentucky Association of Chiefs of Police. Commissioner Sanders received his bachelor’s in police administration and a master’s in Justice Administration from the University of Louisville. He is an accomplished fixed-wing and rotary-wing pilot. He has served as a Board Member for Operation UNITE since September 2016.
Carla S. Saunders, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, East Tennessee Children’s Hospital
Carla Saunders has served as a Neonatal Nurse Practitioner since 1990. In 2010 she gathered a multidisciplinary team in response to the alarming rise of babies being admitted to the NICU with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS). They developed a standardized and holistic approach to the treatment of infants suffering from withdrawal created by maternal opiate exposure. The work done by her team is receiving local, state, national, and international attention. Ms. Saunders has received multiple awards for her leadership and advocacy, including: Advanced Practitioner of the Year for the Atlantic Region of Pediatrix Medical Group (2010), one of Great American Country’s Great American Heroes (2012), and the Margaret Steinbach Leadership Award for Pediatrix Medical Group (2013). She has testified before the Tennessee State Senate on behalf of Children’s Hospital Alliance of Tennessee in support of the Safe Harbor Act promoting prenatal care and substance abuse treatment in pregnant women. Ms. Saunders is an advisory board member for Tennessee Initiative for Perinatal Quality Care, Tennessee Alliance for Drug Endangered Children, TDOH Chronic Pain Guidelines task force and NAS Research Committee.
Dr Wesley. Sargent is a Health Scientist on the Opioid Overdose Health Systems Team in CDC’s Division of Unintentional Injury Prevention (DUIP). He first joined DUIP at CDC in 2014 as an evaluation fellow working on multiple prescription drug overdose projects, which included the CDC Opioid Prescribing Guidelines for Chronic Pain and the evaluation of SAMHSA’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program Electronic Health Records Integration and Interoperability Expansion Program. As a Health Scientist on the Opioid Overdose Health Systems Team, Dr. Sargent’s responsibilities include working with CDC funded states to enhance PDMPs, implement community or insurer/health system interventions identifying, evaluate policy/legislative initiatives provide scientific and technical assistance. He also assists with prescription drug overdose projects that are designed to address the opioid overdose epidemic at both the health systems and state level. Dr. Sargent obtained his Doctor of Education in Professional Counseling and Supervision with an emphasis in Program Evaluation at the University of West Georgia.
Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel was elected in November 2014. A career prosecutor, Gen. Schimel served 25 years in the Waukesha County District Attorney's office, eight of them as the elected district attorney. During his time as District Attorney, Gen. Schimel saw the oncoming heroin and prescription opioid abuse crisis early on and worked with county law enforcement and EMS to make sure his county conducted thorough, effective investigations that held people accountable for delivering drugs that kill. Under Gen. Schimel's leadership, Waukesha led the state in successful Len Bias drug homicide prosecutions.
During Gen. Schimel's prosecutorial career, he chaired the Waukesha County Drug Abuse Trends Committee, which created the county's successful Drug Treatment Court. Gen. Schimel also served on the state's Good Samaritan Law Task Force, which developed the recommendations that became part of the H.O.P.E. legislation that was signed into law in 2014 and began to address the opiate epidemic in Wisconsin. It was during this time, Gen. Schimel, working with one of the county’s largest medical providers, Pro Health Care, helped create a Community Health Needs Assessment that identified the county’s growing opiate addiction. Additional presentations were given by then District Attorney Schimel to the Board of Directors of the County Medical Society, Board of Directors for Pro Health Care, Pro Health Care Foundation Board, and Waukesha County EMS. Building these relationships over the past five years helped establish the trust and partnerships that jump started Gen. Schimel’s heroin and prescription narcotic painkiller abuse work as Attorney General.
In his first year as attorney general, Gen. Schimel's office launched a statewide prescription painkiller abuse awareness campaign, "Dose of Reality," through collaborations with Wisconsin’s medical community and the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. The Attorney General is proud of his agency’s partnership with many of Wisconsin’s major medical organizations, such as the Wisconsin Hospital Association, the Wisconsin Dental Association, the Medical Society of Wisconsin, and the Pharmacy Society of Wisconsin, and the leadership each organization is taking to educate their members and prevent additional opiate abuse in Wisconsin. Gen. Schimel also has directed the Wisconsin Department of Justice to provide statewide training for law enforcement related to heroin-trafficking and worked to more widely deploy the life-saving drug, naloxone, which reverses the effects of an opiate overdose. The Wisconsin DOJ also conducts statewide prescription drug “take-back” days every six months. In 2015, Wisconsin DOJ collected more than 83,000 pounds of prescription drugs for safe disposal during two statewide take-back events. The April 30, 2016, “take-back” day resulted in a record yield of over 64,000 pounds of unused medications.
Gen. Schimel is a 2014 recipient of the National Council on Alcohol and Drug Dependence (NCADD) Bronze Key award for his career of work on substance abuse issues.
Dr. Schneiderhan is a Board Certified Psychiatric Pharmacist (BCPP) and Associate Professor in the department of Pharmacy Practice and Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Minnesota. He provides Comprehensive Medication Management (CMM) at the Human Development Center, Duluth, Minnesota, a community mental health facility serving NE Minnesota and NW Wisconsin regions. Dr. Schneiderhan has practiced in psychiatry and academia since 1994. His clinical duties include: diagnostic assessment of psychiatric and substance use disorders, medication prescribing under collaborative practice agreement, and consultative services to primary care providers. He provides education specializing in schizophrenia, childhood disorders, anxiety disorders, and substance use disorders for pharmacy students and residents. Dr. Schneiderhan is well versed in the pharmacology and pharmacokinetics of naloxone and has presented on this topic at other venues. One of his areas of research focus is on the application of education to prevent overdose deaths due to prescription opioids. Today, he will be presenting on the project entitled: Awareness of state legislation on naloxone accessibility associated with the likelihood of prescribing naloxone
Maggie Schroeder, MA, LCADC, Adult Substance Use and Recovery Services Branch Manager, Kentucky Department for Behavioral Health
Maggie Schroeder, MA, LCADC Maggie Schroeder is currently the Branch Manager for the Adult Substance Use Treatment and Recovery Services Branch at the Division of Behavioral Health, Developmental & Intellectual Disabilities for the State of Kentucky. Ms. Schroeder has Master's Degrees in Clinical Psychology and Political Science and is a Licensed Clinical Alcohol and Drug Counselor (LCADC). She has over 30 years of experience in providing behavioral health and substance abuse services to individuals and their families including case management and therapeutic interventions services as well as providing clinical and administrative supervision
Adam L. Seidner, MD, MPH is the Global Medical Director at Travelers Insurance Company in Hartford, Connecticut. Since 1997 he has been responsible for technology assessment, pharmacy and network development, quality improvement as well as establishing medical policies. He received his medical degree from the State University of New York at Syracuse. He completed residencies and is board certified in Occupational & Environmental Medicine and Family Medicine. He has also received a Master of Public Health degree from study at the University of Connecticut. Dr. Seidner has filed a number of U.S. Patents as well as earned numerous honors and awards throughout his career such as the Delta Omega National Honor Society, Secretary of State’s Public Service Award, ACOEM Research Award, AMA Physician Recognition Award, and the AAFP Family Practice Teaching Appreciation Certificate.
Marvin D. Seppala, MD, is chief medical officer at Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation, and an adjunct Assistant Professor at the Hazelden Graduate School of Addiction Studies. His responsibilities include overseeing all interdisciplinary clinical practices at Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation, maintaining and improving quality of care, and supporting growth strategies for Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation's residential and nonresidential addiction treatment programs. Seppala obtained his M.D. at Mayo Medical School in Rochester, Minnesota, and served his residency in psychiatry and a fellowship in addiction at University of Minnesota Hospitals in Minneapolis. Seppala is author of Clinician's Guide to the Twelve Step Principles, and a co-author of When Painkillers Become Dangerous, Pain-Free Living for Drug-Free People, and Prescription Painkillers, Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation Publishing.
Ruth Ann Shepherd, MD, FAAP, Former Director of Maternal and Child Health, Kentucky Department for Public Health
Dr. Ruth Ann Shepherd served as Division Director for Maternal and Child Health in the Kentucky Department for Public Health for more than a decade, and recently retired. Dr. Shepherd is a board-certified neonatologist and practiced for more than 20 years in both urban areas and rural Appalachia. She provided NICU care for Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome at the epicenter of the prescription opioid epidemic before coming to the KY Department for Public Health as the Director of Maternal and Child Health. A Kentucky native, Dr. Shepherd completed her undergraduate degree at Asbury University, medical training at the University of Louisville School of Medicine, her pediatric residency at Methodist Hospital, Indianapolis, Indiana, and her fellowship in Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine at the Medical University of South Carolina (Charleston). She is board certified in Pediatrics and in Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine. Dr. Shepherd has additional certifications in Non-Profit Management (Duke University), Certificate in Business Administration for Physicians (Auburn University) and Certified Professional in HealthCare Quality (National Association for Healthcare Quality). Nationally, she has served on the National Quality Forum Steering Committee on Perinatal Indicators; the federal Health and Human Services Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Infant Mortality; the leadership team for the Health Resources and Services Administration Collaborative Improvement and Innovation Network (COIIN); and the AMCHP Birth Outcomes Advisory Committee. In 2012 she received the inaugural award for Excellence in State MCH Leadership from the Association of Maternal and Child Health Programs (AMCHP), and the President’s Award for Meritorious Service from the Association of State and Territorial Health Officers (ASTHO). In 2016 she received the Distinguished Service Award from the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the federal Health and Human Services Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB). Prior to her retirement, she was the co-principal investigator on a SAMHSA Targeted Capacity Expansion: Medication Assisted Treatment- Prescription Drug and Opioid Addiction [MAT-PDOA], in which Kentucky’s project is targeted toward the population of pregnant and parenting women and reduction of NAS. She also serves on the workgroup for the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health (AIM) developing a bundle for obstetric care for pregnant and parenting women with opioid dependence.
Sarah J. Shoemaker, PhD, PharmD has served as PD/PI on several opioid, primary care, and implementation projects for AHRQ and CDC. Dr. Shoemaker has over 10 years of experience conducting mixed methods designs for research, implementation studies and evaluation, and is a registered pharmacist. She has led several opioid, implementation, and collaborative/learning network projects for AHRQ, CDC and other federal agencies. She is currently the Abt Project Director for the AHRQ EvidenceNow initiative to support 7 cooperatives, spanning 1750 primary care practices across the country to build capacity and improve cardiovascular outcomes. She is also the co-PI on the CDC-funded project to developed the technical package "Chronic Pain Care Involving Opioids: A Coordinated Care Plan for Safer Practice” and evaluating the package implemented in nine ambulatory practices to improve outcomes and manage opioid therapy more safely. Dr. Shoemaker has also led several projects related to training practitioners and changing practice, including assessing instruments to measure teamwork, examining primary care workforce models and financing, self-management support resources for clinicians, improving patient education using EHRs, health literacy projects, and quality improvement for QI for pharmacies. Additionally, she is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.
Lori A. Shook, MD, Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Neonatology at the University of Kentucky, Kentucky Children’s Hospital
Lori A. Shook, MD, is a professor of pediatrics in the Division of Neonatology at the University of Kentucky, Kentucky Children’s Hospital. She has been a staff neonatologist at KCH for 28 years. Her special interests include improving care of infants at risk for neonatal abstinence syndrome and incorporating integrative and complementary medicine into the care of at-risk infants and their families. She has served as the consulting neonatologist in the PATHways clinic since its inception.
Asheley Cockrell Skinner, PhD, is a health services researcher focused on addressing a variety of issues related to health policy. She trained at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she received her PhD in Health Policy and Administration in 2007. She is currently an Associate Professor at Duke University’s Duke Clinical Research Institute, where she leads and participates in many projects centered on appropriate uses of policies to improve behaviors, including obesity, adolescent health, and substance use.
L. Lerissa Smith, MPH, Research Associate, Southeast Addiction Technology Transfer Center, Morehouse School of Medicine
L. Lerissa Smith, who holds a BS in psychology and Master of Public Health, currently serves as a Research Associate with the Southeast Addiction Technology Transfer Center (SATTC) at Morehouse School of Medicine's National Center for Primary Care. Prior to joining SATTC, Lerissa served as the Health Policy Program Manager with the Satcher Health Leadership Institute of Morehouse School of Medicine. Lerissa has over a decade of public health program development, analysis, and evaluation experience across a variety of diseases and models. In her capacity with the Georgia Department of Public Health, in addition to other duties, Lerissa worked to develop a multi-year, comprehensive, statewide HIV prevention plan.. Ms. Smith has been an advocate for advancements in health and health equity through her employment with the American Psychological Association, Thompson Reuters Healthcare, and the Howard University DC Baltimore Research Center on Child Health Disparities.
Nick is a husband and father of four children with over 15 years of law enforcement experience with the West Allis Police Department. He was assigned to the Patrol Division for 10 years and the Training Division for one year. He has been a Detective for the past four years, serving in the Criminal Investigations Bureau and the Special Investigations Unit. He is a former Field Training Officer, SWAT Operator (Sniper and Entry Team) and a former SWAT Team Leader. During the course of his career, Nick has received numerous awards (Life Saving, Purple Heart, Superior Investigations, Volunteer of Year, etc.) and has been an active volunteer for Special Olympics, where he was selected to represent the State of Wisconsin in the USA Special Olympics in New Jersey in 2014. While in the Special Investigations Unit, Nick has focused on narcotics and firearm-related cases. He has successfully investigated numerous overdose death cases, resulting in state and federal homicide convictions. Nick routinely trains other officers on conducting these investigations throughout the State of Wisconsin.
Jackie L. Steele, Jr., JD, Commonwealth Attorney, Kentucky 27th Judicial Circuit, and Member, Operation UNITE Board of Directors
Jackie Steele earned his Juris Doctor degree from the Salmon P. Chase College of Law at Northern Kentucky University in 2001. He practiced civil law prior to accepting a full-time position as Assistant Commonwealth Attorney and, in 2008, was appointed Commonwealth Attorney for the 27th Judicial Circuit. He has handled hundreds of felony cases ranging from theft, embezzlement, rape, drug trafficking and murder. Mr. Steele was named “Outstanding Commonwealth’s Attorney” in 2011. In addition, Mr. Steele has been recognized by Drug Court staff for his exceptional support to the Drug Court program, the Kentucky Narcotic Officers’ Association for outstanding support and commitment to drug enforcement efforts in the state and for going above and beyond to support legislative efforts, and received the “Sword of Justice Award” from the Kentucky Commonwealth Attorneys’ Association for ceaseless dedication to the pursuit of justice. Mr. Steele is Past-President of the Kentucky Commonwealth Attorneys’ Association, a member of the Laurel County and Kentucky Bar Associations, the 27th Judicial Circuit Drug Court Team, and the Laurel and Knox County Child Abuse Response Teams. He has served as a Board Member for Operation UNITE since January 2012 and is currently Vice-Chairman.
Shelly Steiner, DFC Grant Coordinator for the Carter County Drug Free Coalition. She earned her Certified Prevention Specialist in 2012 and has been working in the prevention field for the past eight years. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Secondary Education majoring in Spanish and minoring in Speech and Communications from Morehead State University and is working towards her Masters in Counseling. She worked in the public school system for seventeen years, four as a Spanish Teacher, before coming into the prevention field.
Marie Sutton is the principal for Imagine Hope, Incorporated, a consulting firm that provides program management, training, and communication support to clients in the arena of behavioral health. Under Sutton’s leadership, Imagine Hope manages Georgia’s HIV Early Intervention Services for the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities / Office of Addictive Diseases. The firm provides technical assistance to a network of counselors based in 36 substance abuse treatment centers throughout Georgia. Most recently in partnership with Gilead’s FOCUS project she and her team launched a robust pilot Hepatitis C testing and linkage to care program targeting IDUs. Additionally, Imagine Hope has provided consultation and training for SAMHSA, Emory School of Medicine, JBS and MayaTech. Working in the field of human services for 30 years – primarily in areas of substance use and infectious disease – Marie directed a 52-bed addiction treatment center, founded a youth drop-in center in one of Atlanta’s underserved neighborhoods and led a series of focus groups that helped define prevention messages for pregnant women. She’s familiar with the challenges faced by diverse populations: substance users, disenfranchised women, minority youth, homeless populations and those infected with HCV/HIV. She brings a uniquely holistic perspective to her vision and leadership.