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ASU center honors behavioral health advocates

July 29, 2008

ASU’s Center for Applied Behavioral Health Policy paid tribute July 17 to behavioral health care professionals and advocates at the fourth annual Arizona Behavioral Health Awards Gala at the Hilton Sedona Resort in Sedona.

The award winners were selected from among more than 40 nominations. They were honored for their public service and invaluable contributions to the behavioral health field in Arizona.

“The center is committed to a mission of improving programs and policies for people with behavioral health disabilities and their families,” says Michael Shafer, the center’s director. “Each of the honorees this year has made significant contributions that have benefited the behavioral health programs not only in our state, but also across the country. The dedication of these honorees to the cause of behavioral health and the eradication of the gap in behavioral health services is an inspiration to us all.”

This year’s categories and honorees include:

• Legacy – Nelba Chavez has devoted more than 30 years to advocacy for those affected by mental health and substance use disorders, and she was the first administrator of the Substance Use and Mental Health Services Administration. Chavez understands the importance of ensuring those who are affected the most by government policies have a voice in their creation.

• Legislative Leadership: Arizona Sen. Tom O’Halleran (R-1), a member of the Legislature since 2001, sits on the health, education K-12 and appropriations committees, and he serves as chairman of the higher education committee. O’Halleran has been a consistent and courageous champion of health care and behavioral health services.

• Leadership in Advocacy: Timothy Schmaltz is the coordinator of the Protecting Arizona’s Family Coalition, a historic and diverse alliance of social and health agencies, faith-based groups and community organizations that are dedicated to protecting and increasing health and human services funding, and setting an agenda of tax reform.

• Leadership in Services: Timothy Dunst has led Touchstone Behavioral Health since 1983. His vision for the organization is to be the premier provider of positive outcome behavioral health services to youth and their families in the Southwest. As a leader in implementing science-based approaches, Dunst has led Touchstone to apply evidence-based practices to programs that include functional family therapy, multidimensional treatment foster care, and brief strategic family therapy.

• Cultural Heritage Award: TERROS Behavioral Health Services is a nonprofit community-based organization that has been addressing behavioral health needs since 1969 by providing prevention, education and treatment services. TERROS has grown from the Phoenix area’s first substance abuse treatment program to a comprehensive behavioral health organization of more than 300 professionals who serve more than 25,000 people and families each year.

For more information, visit the Web site or call Matthew Roy (602) 942-2247, extension 114.

Matthew Roy,
(602) 942-2247
Applied Behavioral Health at the West campus