CBHA’s Winter Conference & 50th Anniversary Celebration.

December 5th and December 6th

Time: Monday 9am CST – Tuesday 2:30 pm CST

CBHA Turns 50!

For the Community Behavioral Healthcare Association, the year 2022 marks an important milestone.

CBHA is celebrating a 50-year history of representing and fighting for the interests of community behavioral healthcare agencies and their clients in the state of Illinois.

CBHA’s 50th anniversary provides an opportunity not only to reminisce and celebrate our past and how far we have come as an association and industry, but also it encourages us to look forward – towards the future of the association and the Illinois behavioral health field.

Throughout the conference you will see images of lighthouses in honor of our past leader, Marvin Lindsey, who has been long guided by their symbolic message. “Lighthouses serve to warn mariners of dangerous shallows and perilous rocky coasts, and they help guide vessels safely into and out of harbors. They have become a symbol for the way forward,” he says.

Community behavioral health professionals focus on the way forward, too. They deliver a compassionate, competent, and caring presence to countless people working to overcome behavioral health challenges. They act as lighthouses to those lost in darkened waters searching for a light to safely guide them on their path forward into the future.

As we celebrate our 50-year history and work to chart our own course for the future, we are proud to stand with the thousands of professionals who work day in and day out to help children, adults, and families navigate their way forward to health and recovery.


Monday, December 5, 2022

Exhibitors Setup


Registration Opens



9:15am 10:15am

Session 1:


Keynote: Mark Sanders, LCSW, CADC - CEO - Onthemark Consulting

The Future of Behavioral Healthcare in America: The next 50 years

This keynote presentation celebrates CBHA's 50th Anniversary and highlights changes likely to impact behavioral healthcare in the future. These changes include the need for non-traditional sources of funding, recruiting, expanding, and retaining the behavioral health workforce, including strategies for addressing behavioral health leadership voids; greater emphasis on organizational health, increased telehealth services, and the need to provide services to individuals in their natural environment, among others.

Mark Sanders is an international speaker, trainer, and consultant in the behavioral health field whose work has reached thousands throughout the United States, Europe, Canada, the Caribbean, and British Islands.

Mark is the author of five books on behavioral health. Recent writings include Slipping through the Cracks: Intervention Strategies for Clients with Multiple Addictions and Disorders; and Relationship Detox: Helping Clients Develop Healthy Relationships in Recovery. He has had two stories published in the New York Times best-selling books series, Chicken Soup for the Soul.

Mark has been a certified addiction counselor for 34 years. He is co-founder of Serenity Academy of Chicago, the only recovery high school in Illinois. Mark has had a 30-year career as a university educator having taught at the University of Chicago, Illinois State University, Illinois School of Professional Psychology, and Loyola University of Chicago, School of Social Work.

10:15am 10:30am

Exhibitor Break

10:30am 11:30am

Session 2


Preparing for CCBHC: The New Model for Behavioral Health

Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC) are transforming access to mental health and substance use care in community-based settings. In June 2022, President Biden signed into law the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act which authorized the expansion of the CCBHC demonstration program in Medicaid nationally under a phased-in approach over a period of years.

In this session, you will learn about the opportunities the CCBHC model presents and how to assess your organization’s current level of performance against the certification criteria and core competencies needed to become this new provider type. You will also hear local providers’ journeys to becoming CCBHCs through SAMHSA-administered grants.


Rebecca Farley David, Senior Advisor, Public Policy and Special Initiatives, National Council for Mental Wellbeing

Lauren Conaboy, Vice President of National Policy at Centerstone

Eugene Humphrey, Executive Director, Human Resources Development Institute, Inc. (HRDI)

Session 3


Using Technology to Reduce Administrative Burden and Drive Better Clinical Results

In the midst of a national workforce crisis where every provider has unfilled staff positions, finding inventive ways to deal with this reality and retain staff is at a premium.

Join us to learn how technology can be leveraged to mitigate some of the stresses brought on by the workforce crisis.


Gilbert Lichstein, Chief Clinical Officer, Illinois Health Practice Alliance

Tim Sheehan, Founder, Richmond Street Consultants

Session 4


A Re-Envisioned Children’s Mental Health System in Illinois

In March 2022, Governor Pritzker announced a children’s behavioral health initiative to oversee coordination across state agencies with the aim of making specialized support and resources more easily available to children and families. Dr. Dana Weiner was appointed to direct this initiative to evaluate and redesign the system of children’s health in the state, from school social workers and counselors to outpatient treatments and residential care centers.

Join this session to hear directly from Dana Weiner who will present on the progress of the “transformation blueprint” for better support of children and youth and a re-envisioned children’s mental health system in Illinois.


Dr. Dana Weiner, Chapin Hall child welfare expert at the University of Chicago, and Director of the Children’s Behavioral Health Transformation Initiative

11:30am 11:45am

Exhibitor Break

11:45am 1:45pm

CBHA’s Golden Jubilee Celebration and Recognition Luncheon


2:00pm 3:00PM

Session 5

Strategies for Creating and Advancing Equity-Based Harm Reduction Models

Harm reduction seeks to minimize the negative impacts associated with substance use and is an essential strategy to save lives. In this session, you will hear from Sam Rivera, the Executive Director of OnPoint NYC, a harm reduction organization that runs two overdose prevention centers (OPCs) in the Washington Heights and East Harlem neighborhoods of Manhattan — the first to open in the nation.

Overdose prevention centers, also known as supervised injection sites, are safe, hygienic places where people can use drugs under the supervision of professionals who are trained to the level of a nurse in overdose response. The organization also provides access to medical care, sterile supplies, case management, holistic services, outreach and public safety support, as well as connections to addiction treatment and other social services.

Mr. Rivera will discuss the operation of two overdose prevention sites in New York, the sites’ success using the most recent data, their impact on the surrounding communities, and the organization’s innovative procedures as it pertains to overdose intervention.


Sam Rivera, Executive Director, OnPoint NYC

Session 6


The Promise of 988: What Will it Take to Transform Illinois’ Behavioral Health Safety Net?

In 2020, Congress recognized the importance of mental health and approved 988 as a nationwide number for behavioral health emergencies. With its launch in July 2022, Illinois has embarked on a journey to realize the promise of 988 – someone to call, someone to respond, and somewhere to go.

The ultimate goal of the 988 crisis response system is to reduce the over-reliance on 911 and law enforcement response to suicide, mental health, or substance use crises, so that every Illinoisan is ensured appropriate and supportive assistance from trained mental health professionals during their time of need. It also moves us away from criminalizing behavioral health disorders and treating them as health issues.

While the go-live date was the beginning of a monumental systemic change, much work is needed at federal, state, and local levels to fully implement the 988 vision of a robust crisis system. In this session, state officials and providers will discuss the planning and implementation of the three 988 pillars, and what it will take to ensure 988 can reach its full potential.


Lee Ann Reinert, LCSW, Deputy Director of Policy, Planning, & Innovation, Illinois Department of Human Services, Division of Mental Health

Diana Knaebe, MSW, President, Memorial Behavioral Health, and System Administrator, Behavioral Health

Moderator: Sam Johnson MBA LCPC RDDP, Director of Behavioral Health, Lake County Health Department & Community Health Center

Tameron Keefe, LCSW, Director of Crisis Services, Family Service Association of Greater Elgin

Session 7

Empowering Parent and Family Voices

With the implementation of Pathways to Success in Illinois, there has been a reaffirmation of the importance of a family-centered model of care in the children’s behavioral health system. Parent and family voice and leadership are crucial but to be truly empowered, they need to be at the table where decisions are made.

Join this session to hear from a panel who are embedding family voice and leadership within their systems.


Regina E. Crider, Founder & Executive Director, Youth & Family Alliance (the Alliance)

Sara Gonzalez, Bilingual Community Organizer, Community Organizing and Family Issues (COFI)

Liliana Olayo, Parent Leader, Community Organizing and Family Issues (COFI)

Amy Starin, LCSW, Independent Consultant

3:15PM 3:30PM

Exhibitor Break

3:30PM 4:45PM

General Session 8


Charting the Future: Transforming Behavioral Health Delivery and Access to Meet Current and Future Needs (State Panel)

As our state’s behavioral health industry confronts a landscape deeply and likely permanently altered by the COVID-19 pandemic, the public sector has demonstrated a willingness to promote change. We have seen encouraging movement towards the removal of regulatory barriers, advances in the adoption of digital health, the historic launch of 988, and support for innovative models like Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC) which show promise for improving efficient access to care.

In this session you will hear from State leaders about how they are supporting innovation and developing a cohesive framework or vision across departments and agencies that supports shared responsibility for a more equitable and accessible behavioral health system.


David T. Jones, Chief Behavioral Health Officer, Office of Illinois Governor JB Pritzker

David Albert, Ph.D., Director, Illinois Department of Human Services Division, Division of Mental Health (DMH)

Laura I. Garcia, MAAPS, LPC, NCC, CADC, Director, Illinois Department of Human Services, Division of Substance Use Prevention and Recovery (SUPR)

Kelly Cunningham, Medicaid Administrator, Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS)

4:45PM 5:45PM

Celebrating our Past Mixer / Marvin Lindsey Retirement Party


Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Exhibitors Setup


Registration Opens (French Foyer)


Annual Meeting

9:00AM 10:00AM

Plenary Session 9


Keynote: Dr. Gina Lasky, PhD, MAPL, Managing Director for Behavioral Health at Health Management Associates (HMA)

Behavioral Health at a Crossroads

Behavioral health is long overdue for “creative destruction” or reimagining. The transition has been coming for years but the speed of change has been fueled and accelerated by the pandemic and broader cultural changes in workforce, climate change and even geopolitics. These pressures are placing considerable strain on the safety net. There are new competitors and new opportunities and now is the time to embrace bold transformation in all realms. Addressing the workforce shortage and the great exit from the public sector is paramount and will require changes in regulation, payment, clinical model design and organizational operations. This may be the largest period of opportunity that behavioral health has ever had and the same drivers creating challenges can be drivers for growth, innovation, and genuine change.

10:00AM 10:30AM

Harbor Chat (20 min)

Aligning with Behavioral Health Trends in Illinois

Much like the rest of the nation, Illinois Behavioral Health providers are witnessing several growing trends post-COVID from diverse funding streams; staffing shortages; lack of coordination of care; and increased demand for telehealth, patient access, and healthcare integration. On the flip side, these shortfalls have opened the door for change in Illinois to help behavioral health organizations navigate through these times.

Evolving your behavioral health organization’s operational and technological infrastructure to align with these trends is key to achieving organizational sustainability.

Join Streamline Healthcare Solutions as they highlight the trends and discuss how Illinois behavioral health providers can align their business, financial, operational, and technological strategies together to enable truly integrated care management and organizational efficiency.


Sam Taurina, Regional Sales Director, Streamline Healthcare Solutions

10:30AM 11:30AM

Session 10

Advancing RESJ in Behavioral Health Agencies

Behavioral health organizations are keeping Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion issues top of mind. Efforts to conduct DE&I assessments, the development of DE&I committees, and the creation of administrative roles solely focused on DE&I initiatives are at an all-time high. As we move forward in our DE&I efforts, however, we continue to be faced with the largest behavioral health staff shortage of our time. To successfully prepare for the future, BH organizations will be charged with stabilizing their staffing in the present. Staff who feel safe, valued, accepted, and appreciated for not only the services they provide but also for who they are as human beings, are more likely to stay with the organization and help assist with its future growth.

Last year, we had the pleasure of hearing from three of our community behavioral health organizations and the ways that they were addressing social justice and DE&I within their agencies and communities. This year, we would like to continue our journey and invite you to participate in this conversation. One where you can listen, observe, and join in as we hear directly from one another about times we felt safe, valued, accepted, and appreciated; as well as times we didn’t. We will define inclusion and discuss how each one of us can play an active role in understanding what inclusion is, why it’s important, and how we can be active participants in ensuring inclusion for all those in our organizations.

In this session, you will join in the conversation, learn how inclusion promotes belonging, purpose, and well-being, explore ways inclusion can promote retention in the workplace, learn to create space for grace, and become a part of the DE&I solution for yourself and your organization.


Mansi Patel, Director of Development, Equity and HR, Family Service Association of Greater Elgin (FSA)

Emily Marion, Director of Behavioral Health, Association House of Chicago

Session 11


Models of Mobile Substance Use Disorder Services

Providers have always recognized the need to meet clients where they are to deliver services but regulations, particularly for SUD providers, have made this very difficult. However, in June of 2021 the DEA, in an effort to improve access to treatment, changed regulations to allow for a “mobile component” for narcotic treatment programs.

Come learn about the inventive models being developed by Illinois providers to make mobile substance use disorder services more accessible particularly in underserved communities.


Dr. Maria Bruni, Senior Vice President for Strategic Partnerships, Family Guidance Centers, Inc.

Ronald J. Vlasaty, Chief Operating Officer, Family Guidance Centers, Inc.

Ed Stellon, Executive Director, Heartland Alliance Health

Session 12

Maximizing Medicaid Billing


As a result of CBHA and coalition partner’s advocacy, Illinois providers received historic level rate increases this year. To capitalize on this investment, providers must ensure they are maximizing their billing opportunities which is the key to sustainability.

Join a roundtable discussion on ways providers have been successful in maximizing their billing potential.


Karah Kohler, LCSW, Associate Executive Director of Coordinated Community Mental Health Care, Lutheran Social Services of Illinois

Linda Springer, MA, LCPC, Senior Clinical Director, Kenneth Young Centers

Moderator: Adam Woehlke, MA, LCPC, Director of Clinical Services, Hoyleton Youth & Family Services

12:00AM 1:30PM

Lunch Sponsor:

1:30PM 2:30PM

Closing Plenary Session 13


Charting the Future of Behavioral Health Policy, Innovation, and Practice

The pandemic, social and political unrest, and economic uncertainty have profoundly impacted the health and well-being of Illinoisians. These events have also amplified the urgency for overdue policy action, innovation, and investment in behavioral health. And, while we have seen historic investments in behavioral health both federally and at the state level, these recent investments represent just the beginning of an effort to improve a system that has been neglected for decades.

In this session, a panel of experts explore how the Illinois General Assembly has responded to these challenges and how its behavioral health-related decisions and appropriations will impact the delivery of mental health and substance services across the state. They will also discuss how the industry can seize the opportunity for reform to drive innovation and ensure the changes implemented over the last two years remain in place as well as the implications of the 2022 elections on the behavioral health system.


David Ormsby, President, David Ormsby, Inc.

Matt Werner, Werner Consulting

Heather O'Donnell, J.D., Senior Vice President of Public Policy and Advocacy, Thresholds

Chris Huff, Diversion and Reentry Policy Analyst, Access Living



Conference Planning Committee

Sherrie Crabb


Julie Kovacin

Lutheran Social Services of Illinois

Stacia Penrod

Egyptian Health Department

Sue Schroeder

Stepping Stones of Rockford

Anne Tyree


Bonnie Chandler

Association Central, Inc.

Blanca Campos


Anna Schneider


Michelle Churchey‐Mims


Brian Koester




Dr. Gina Lasky, PhD, MAPL

Managing Director for Behavioral Health at Health Management Associates (HMA)

Sam Rivera

Executive Director, OnPoint NYC, New York, New York

Emily Marion, LCSW

Director of Behavioral Health Association House

Mansi Patel

Director of Development, Equity, & HR, Family Service Association of Greater Elgin

Lee Ann Reinert

LCSW, Deputy Director of Policy, Planning, & Innovation, Illinois Department of Human Services, Division of Mental Health

Diana Knaebe

MSW, President, Memorial Behavioral Health, and System Administrator, Behavioral Health

Regina E. Crider

Founder & Executive Director, Youth & Family Alliance (the Alliance)

Heather O'Donnell

Senior Vice President, Public Policy & Advocacy, Thresholds

Chris Huff

Diversion and Reentry Policy Analyst, Access Living

David Ormsby

The Nolan Group & President of David Ormsby, Inc.

David Albert, Ph.D.

Director of the Division of Mental Health, Illinois Department of Human Services

Laura I. Garcia

MAAPS, LPC, NCC, CADC, Director, Illinois Division of Substance Use Prevention and Recovery (SUPR)

Ed Stellon, M.S., M.A.

Executive Director for Heartland Alliance Health (HAH)

Tim Sheehan

Founder, Richmond Street Consultants

Gilbert Lichstein

Chief Clinical Officer, Illinois Health Practice Alliance

Maria Bruni, Ph.D

Senior Vice President for Strategic Partnerships, Family Guidance Centers, Inc.

Ronald J. Vlasaty

Chief Operating Officer, Family Guidance Centers, Inc.

Dr. Dana Weiner

Chapin Hall child welfare expert at the University of Chicago, and Director of the Children’s Behavioral Health Transformation Initiative


Chief Behavioral Health Officer for the State of Illinois, Office of Governor JB Pritzker

Linda Springer

MA, LCPC, Senior Clinical Director, Kenneth Young Centers

Liliana Olayo

Parent Leader, Kane County System of Care

Sam Johnson

Director of Behavioral Health

Tameron Keeffe

Director of Crisis Services at Family Service Association of Greater Elgin


CBHA’s Winter Conference & 50th Anniversary Celebration will take place at The Drake Hotel

Book your room at our discounted rate: Rate per night $139.00

Cutoff date for Room Block: November 11, 2022

Group Code: CBH

Reserve Your Room Now at Welcome to CBHA 50th Anniversary Meeting

Frequently Asked Questions

CBHA considers the safety of all those participating in our 50th Anniversary Celebration & Winter Conference our top priority, including all our attendees, exhibitors, sponsors, and staff. In an effort to host a safe and productive event, we will follow all guidelines and requirements set by state and local authorities as well as Centers for Disease Control (CDC)). Please note, these guidelines and requirements may change.

Mask Policy

The mask policy for CBHA’s 50th Anniversary Celebration and Winter Conference will follow the City of Chicago Department of Public Health and Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) guidance. As of October 14th, 2022, Illinois guidance says, "all individuals, including those who are fully vaccinated, are recommended to wear a face covering consistent with CDC guidance." Currently, the CDC recommends masking based on what it defines as "community levels" of the virus, designations which the agency updates weekly.

CDC’s mask use guidance provides additional information when to wear a mask and considerations for specific groups of people, such as those with weakened immune systems or medical conditions that put them at risk for severe COVID.

CBHA will monitor community levels and follow the guidelines accordingly. We will notify attendees of any policy changes.

COVID-19 Vaccination Policy

CBHA strongly recommends COVID-19 vaccination for all participants attending the conference, but proof of vaccination is not required to participate.

Be Well

If you have tested positive for COVID-19, are waiting for COVID-19 test results, have COVID-19 symptoms, or have had close contact with a person who has tested positive for or who has symptoms of COVID-19, please stay home.

Pick A Lanyard Color

In order for attendees to know how others would like to be greeted, we will utilize a lanyard color system. As conference participants pick up meeting lanyards, they will be encouraged to select a red, yellow, or green to easily announce their level of comfort in social distancing at the meeting. Green = I’m okay with hugs and handshakes, Yellow = I’m okay with an elbow bump and some distance, Red = I’m okay with talking, but please give me additional space.