Frank Greenagel, LCSW, LCADC, ACSW, CJC
Recovery Counselor and Adjunct Professor, Rutgers University
Frank Greenagel oversees recovery housing and coordinates student as well as alumni activities at both the Rutgers University New Brunswick and Newark campuses. Rutgers Alcohol and Drug Assistance Program and Recovery Housing won the 2011 NAADAC Organization of the Year Award and was featured in the New York Times. Greenagel is an adjunct professor at the Rutgers School of Social Work and the School of Communication. He is also on the board of trustees of the New Day Charter High School in Newark, the first recovery high school in the Greater New York City area. Greenagel was appointed to the Governor's Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse in 2011. Before coming to Rutgers, he taught high school English in Elizabeth for three years. He is a US Army veteran and maintains a private practice in New Brunswick.
President and Founder, Arauz Inspirational Enterprises
Eric Arauz is a national behavioral healthcare consultant that lectures, trains and keynotes conferences throughout the Unites States for his New Jersey based consulting firm, AIE, www.mylifemylimits.com. He has earned a medical school faculty appointment for his work on the Recovery of Co-Occurring disorders and the traumas associated with diagnosis, treatment and the long-term non-linear recovery trajectory of serious mental illness combined with addiction. Arauz was awarded a 2009 ‘Voice' award from SAMHSA/US Department of Health and Human Services, is a member of the Governor's Council of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, lectures at Yale University and has been a NY Times contributor. Mr. Arauz is currently a curriculum writer on SAMHSA's Recovery to Practice grant and hosts Grand Rounds in NYC hospitals on his concepts pertaining to "Duality of Experience of Recovery Involved in Co-Occurring Disorders." Arauz is also a Disabled American Veteran that served in Operation Desert Storm in the United States Navy.
Director of the Bridgeton Municipal Alliance - Youth to Youth Program
Karen Barnett is grounded in 30 years of experience working in the field of social services, 20 years of which are specific to prevention. Barnett is a staunch advocate for holistic prevention, early intervention, rehabilitation and recovery zones for individual and communal reintegration - reunification. Individual, familial and community empowerment are the driving force for Barnett's advocacy. Her civic resume reflects local, state, national and international affiliations and collaborations where she has demonstrated the ability to utilize her relationships with the community of Bridgeton, faith-based and social service agencies and stakeholders for positive changes in the community.
Louis Baxter, M.D.
President and Executive Medical Director, Professional Assistance Program of New Jersey
Dr. Louis Baxter's expertise is in addiction medicine. He recently ended his term as President of the American Society Medicine during which ASAM was involved in development of public policy related to addiction care afforded by federal health care reform and enactment of federal mental health and addiction parity. Baxter's PAP program provides education, identification, evaluation, treatment planning, and advocacy services for licensed healthcare and other professionals in recovery fromimpairing medical conditions and illnesses. Baxter also services as Medical Director of the Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services and as an Assistant Clinical Professor Medicine, University Medicine & Dentistry of New Jersey.
Counselor, John Brooks Recovery Center
Susan Buonomo currently works as a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor at the John Brooks Recovery Center in Atlantic City. There she facilitates the intensive outpatient program for Division of Youth and Family Services-involved women and the outpatient program for probationers, parolees, and other addicted clients. Buonomo is a co-founder of Parent-to-Parent; a South Jersey based organization which assists parents with addicted children statewide. The inspiration for her involvement in this issue was the overdose death of her son Bryan from heroin and cocaine in 1997. Buonomo resolved to have some good come of this tragedy and has been an advocate for expanding addiction treatment capacity in New Jersey ever since. She has regularly testified before the New Jersey Legislature to increase funding for addiction treatment to prevent other parents from losing their children to addiction and was instrumental in having an adolescent treatment facility, Daytop Village South, open in South Jersey. Buonomo has also made it her mission to have New Jersey enact addiction parity legislation after addiction treatment was removed from what became New Jersey's partial parity law in 1999 which only covers serious biologically-based illnesses. She also has worked in child protective services as well as a life skills counselor for youth.
Assistant Attorney General, Office of the Attorney General, State of New Jersey
Thomas R. Calcagni served as Director of the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs until March 2012 where he focused on combating designer and prescription drug abuse in New Jersey. While Director, he led numerous drug enforcement initiatives including ordering a statewide ban of both "bath salts" and "synthetic marijuana" designer drugs; and, developing and implementing a comprehensive initiative to address prescription drug diversion. Calcagni served for nine years as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey, where he prosecuted drug trafficking crimes and matters of fraud and public corruption. In 2004, Calcagni was selected by then U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft to serve as a Hearing Officer on the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund, where he presided over hearings in determining compensation for victims of the 9/11 attacks.
Special Agent / Public Information Officer, United States Drug Enforcement Agency - New Jersey Division Doug Collier develops channels of communication and implements public information programs to ensure that the media and the public are aware of DEA objectives, programs, goals and accomplishments. Recently, Collier was featured in several national television shows such as MSNBC, Heroin Inc. and Discovery Channel, Heroin Nation. Also, Collier was the DEA's New Jersey Division Producer, for the SPIKE TV show titled "DEA". Collier also serves as DEA's Demand Reduction Coordinator responsible for DEA's drug prevention and education efforts statewide. As a special agent, Collier conducted voluminous investigations targeting international heroin and cocaine networks, money launderers, and organizations involved in trafficking steroids and other dangerous drugs.
Senior Vice President / Executive Director, Daytop Village
James Curtin has worked at Daytop Village, Inc. for the past twenty-six years and has spent twenty of those years in various management positions. He has been a Senior Vice President since 2007 and was
promoted to Executive Director of Daytop New Jersey in 2009. A graduate of SUNY NY and an MBA with a license to provide substance abuse counseling in the State of New Jersey, Curtin specializes in adolescent services and has extensive experience working with families of teenagers suffering from drug addiction. He is a trainer of Strategic Family Therapy and is a CARF (Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities) Surveyor. Curtin has also worked internationally as a trainer for Daytop International and has provided extensive training in areas of treatment, leadership and management issues to foreign government and private sector professionals in over a dozen countries located in Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia and South America.
Executive Director, NJ State Commission of Investigation
Philip Degnan is responsible for the day-to-day operation of the SCI and the oversight of the investigations conducted by the SCI in the areas of organized crime, public corruption, public safety, and the administration of justice in the State of New Jersey. In June 2011 the SCI held a public hearing on the changing dynamic of criminal drug-trafficking in New Jersey, with particular focus on prescription pain killer abuse as the leading edge of a new heroin epidemic. Degnan was an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey prior to joining the SCI and served in Public Protection and the National Security Units where he successfully prosecuted cases involving narcotics trafficking as well as other federal crimes and handled matters involving national security and U.S. foreign policy, including the prosecution of numerous individuals for exporting military technology to other countries. Degnan was alsoa litigation associate with Gibbons, Del Deo, Dolan, Griffinger & Vecchione, now Gibbons P.C., working in the firm's civil litigation and criminal defense practice groups.
Raquel Mazon Jeffers
Deputy Director, Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services, NJ Department of Human Services
Raquel Mazon Jeffers is the Deputy Director of the Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) in the NJ Department of Human Services. DMHAS is charged with providing a fully integrated and comprehensive system of services and supports that are effective, innovative, cost-efficient and responsible to the needs of persons with serious mental illness or substance use disorders and their families. Mazon Jeffers is primarily responsible for New Jersey's publicly funded mental health and addiction services community based system of care, supervising daily operations and providing operational and policy direction. She has direct oversight of all programmatic aspects of DMHAS including: research, planning, evaluation, workforce development, care management, and mental health and addiction prevention, early intervention, treatment and recovery support services. Mazon Jeffers is also overseeing the transition of the system of care to a managed behavioral healthcare approach and leading the integration of care for clients with co-occurring mental illness and substance use disorders as well as the integration of addictions and mental health services within the primary healthcare setting. She also supervises the DMHAS Olmstead Initiative.
William Kane, J.D.
Director of the New Jersey Lawyers Assistance Program
William Kane leads the NJLAP which provides free and confidential assistance to attorneys, members of the judiciary, law students, and law graduates with alcohol, drug, gambling, emotional, behavioral, and other personal problems that affect well-being and professional performance. He is a member of the American Bar Association and a participant in the Commission on Lawyers Assistance Program (CoLAP) from inception. Since 1981 he has served on adjunct faculty for the Rutgers Center of Alcohol Studies teaching "Alcoholism and the Law" and "Counseling the Professional Client." Kane was among the nation's first Certified Employee Assistance Professionals and is a Certified Social Worker. He serves as federal confidentiality specialist in the public and private sector and as consultant to student assistance
programs. Kane also implemented the first employee assistance program for several national corporations and has clinical experience in diverse treatment modalities. He serves as a consultant on clinical and legal issues with a specialty in ethics, confidentiality laws and regulations.
Councilman, Township of Robbinsville
Richard Levesque formed the Robbinsville Municipal Alliance on Prevention of Drug and Alcohol Abuse in 2009 where he has been active in addressing alcoholism and drug abuse in this Mercer County community of nearly 14,000 residents. Levesque also served as a founding Board Member of City of Angels - New Jersey, based in Hamilton, which offers support for the addicted and their families through, supportive programming, interventions and referrals. Professionally, Levesque is the Director of Public Outreach and Political Affairs at Insight Consulting Services where he has developed an extensive background in grassroots advocacy and worked with many non-profit and other organizations on issues that range from alcoholism and drug abuse to technology initiatives and immigration reform.
Counselor, Hudson County Correctional Center / Integrity House Program
Former New Jersey Governor Jim McGreevey works with the women of the Integrity House Program at the Hudson County Correctional Center under the auspices of Director Oscar Aviles of HCCC and Integrity House. McGreevey presently guides and directs the Integrity House initiative's spiritual counseling , as well as works with the women upon discharge to secure mentoring; a continued commitment to principles of recovery; and, reintegration into the Hudson County community. Having pursued seminary education and training, he served his field education working with formerly incarcerated women and men at Exodus Transitional Ministry in Harlem, New York City.
McGreevey previously served in elected state and local government; as Regional Manager, Merck and Company (1988-1991); as Executive Director, New Jersey State Parole Board (1985-1987); with the Assembly Majority Office, New Jersey State Legislature (1983-1985); and as Assistant Prosecutor, Middlesex County Office of the Prosecutor (1982-1983). He also holds a B.A. (1978) from Columbia College, Columbia University in the City of New York; a J.D. (1981) from Georgetown University Law Center; a M.Ed. (1982) from Harvard University Graduate School; and, a M.Div. (2010) from General Theological Seminary.
Certified Public Accountant
Paul Ressler works in public accounting and received a Certified Public Accountant license in 1975 after which he started his own accounting practice which he continues to build to this day. His interest in adolescent drug treatment began in 2005 when his son Corey's life was impacted by the disease of addiction. Paul became dynamic in the world of recovery and interacted with the Hamilton Township (Mercer County) Board of Education to improve addiction services in the district's high schools and middle schools. Ressler is currently a board member at Daytop-New Jersey, an advocate with the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence - New Jersey, and currently serves as a public member on the Governor's Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse. Ressler has also served on the Hamilton Township Alliance Against Substance Abuse. His mission, according to Ressler, is simple and comes from an impassioned heart due to the death of his son Corey in July 2010; that mission is to save lives from the disease of addiction. Ressler is also a Vietnam Veteran and received a BA in Commerce from Rider University.
Debra Wentz, PhD
Chief Executive Officer, New Jersey Association of Mental Health and Addiction Agencies
Deborah Wentz represents the 170-member trade association, NJAMHAA. NJAMHAA's member agencies collectively treat more than 500,000 children and adults with emotional, behavioral and addiction disorders as well as mental illness and employ nearly 100,000 individuals. Wentz has domestic and international experience in the health care, financial services and housing finance fields. She also serves as the Executive Director of the New Jersey Mental Health Institute whose mission is to promote quality mental health services through policy development initiatives, training, technical assistance, research, data collection best practice development and anti-stigma / anti-discrimination campaigns.<-->