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Expanding Leadership Core with New Board Members

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The Addition of Four New SUD Treatment Executives Builds on NAATP's Foundation of Leadership

The National Association is pleased to welcome Jennifer Carvalho, Joseph Lee, William Robbins, and Christina Simos to its National Board of Directors. These four executives were identified for board service based on their demonstrated records of leadership in the addiction treatment field. They were then elected to the board by the NAATP membership at large. NAATP CEO Marvin Ventrell stated that he is "proud and honored to welcome these exceptionally talented leaders to an already stellar board of directors. As our country's addiction crisis worsens, we need experienced, dedicated, intelligent, and ethical visionaries at the table. Each of these individuals embodies those qualities." NAATP Board Chair Robert Ferguson added that he "is humbled to be joined on the NAATP board with such exemplary colleagues." 

Jennifer Carvalho is President of the SUD Division of Discovery Behavioral Health. She brings 20+ years of industry leadership to the table, namely as a Market & Hospital CEO, focusing on successful operations of diverse treatment programs. Patient access to care, stigma reduction and workforce development are a particular focus and guide her advocacy efforts. Her passion expands to professional mentorship, and she is proud to inspire her teams to lead with integrity.  A speaker on Visionary & Empowered Leadership, Ms. Carvalho is comfortable sharing her experience, strength and hope with others. As a woman in long term recovery, her focus on providing options for care is both personal and priority.


Joseph Lee, MD is the president and CEO of the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation. As a triple-boarded physician who led Hazelden Betty Ford’s Youth Continuum for 11 years before becoming CEO, he has established himself as a thought leader on addiction, mental health, and recovery. His experience working with families from across the country has provided him an unparalleled perspective on emerging drug trends, co-occurring mental health conditions, and the ever-changing culture of addiction. Dr. Lee has been featured in numerous media venues and authored Recovering My Kid: Parenting Young Adults in Treatment and Beyond, providing an honest guide for parental leadership in times of crisis.


William Robbins joined the clinical staff of Alina Lodge in 2012 and was promoted to Executive Director in 2019. Mr. Robbins is a licensed clinical social worker having earned his MSW from Columbia University’s School of Social Work. His early career began as a therapist at The Educational Alliance in NYC and later director of a 100-bed SUD residential treatment facility. During this period, Mr. Robbins opened his own private psychotherapy practice in Manhattan specializing in treating individuals with SUDs as well as anxiety and depressive disorders.  The most meaningful part of his job is watching someone’s journey from the despair and loneliness of active addiction to the joy and connection in recovery.


Christina Simos is a change maker and a connector. In January of 2022, Ms. Simos became the 4th Executive Director of Friendly House – the first women’s recovery program started in the US. She is one of the few women of color in an executive level position in the treatment industry. Ms. Simos understands the business of helping people and has been working in treatment for almost ten years learning every aspect of the business. She believes that although there is no mission without money, the focus must always be on improving treatment outcomes, improving client and staff retention, and fearlessly addressing issues facing historically excluded communities.

These four individuals begin their three-year board terms on January 1, 2023. They will join 21 existing board members including the recently seated Zina Rodriguez, CEO of Z&D Consulting and Jerry Schwab, CEO of High Watch Recovery Center. As part of the transition of leadership, NAATP extends our gratitude to retiring board member Clay Simmons of Bradford Health Services. Mr. Simmons served the association well in his tenure following a line of dedicated directors from Bradford Health.

These new board members join the NAATP Board of Directors comprised of 25 individuals who serve in executive-level leadership of entities that provide either direct Substance Use Disorder (SUD) service (Provider Members) or support such services (Supporter Members). Each individual and organization has demonstrated a commitment to the greater good of the addiction treatment community, the patients we serve, and the NAATP Mission to provide leadership, advocacy, training, and member support services to ensure the equitable availability and highest quality of addiction treatment. Candidates are considered for board service based on education, training, experience, expertise, and demonstrated commitment to NAATP Mission and Values. The NAATP Board is the governing body of the association providing oversight and vision for NAATP’s professional staff.   

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