Maryland Behavioral Health Advisory Council

Authority and Purpose

Pursuant to the Annotated Code of Maryland, Health General 7.5 - 305, and federal Public Law (PL) 102-321, the State of Maryland has established the Maryland Behavioral Health Advisory Council to promote and advocate for: 

  • planning, policy, workforce development, and services to ensure a coordinated, quality system of care that is outcome-guided and that integrates prevention, recovery, evidence–based practices, and cost-effective strategies that enhance behavioral health services across the state; and
  • a culturally competent and comprehensive approach to publicly-funded prevention, early intervention, treatment and recovery services that support and foster wellness, recovery, resiliency, and health for individuals who have behavioral health disorders and their family members.​


The Maryland Behavioral Health Advisory Council By-Laws were amended and approved March 21, 2017.

Behavioral Health Advisory Council - By-Laws​​​​



The Maryland Behavioral Health Advisory Council consists of 28 In-Statute Ex-Officio Members (or designees) representing state and local government, the Judiciary, and the Legislature; 13 members, appointed by the Maryland Department of Health (MDH) Secretary, representing behavioral health provider and consumer advocacy groups; and 14 representatives that include a diverse range of individuals who are consumers, family members, professionals, and involved community members.​​

Membership Roster

Makeitha Abdulbarr

The Maryland County Behavioral Health Advisory Councils

Barbara L. Allen, Co-Chair

Community Advocate

Barbara Bazron

The Office of the Deputy Secretary Behavioral Health , MDH

Dori S. Bishop

Family Member

Karyn M. Black

The Maryland Association of Core Service Agencies (MACSA)

Lori Brewster

The Maryland Association of County Health Officers

Kelby Brick

The Governor’s Office of Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Mary Bunch

Family Member (Child)

John-Pierre Cardenas

The Maryland Health Benefit Exchange

Kenneth Collins

The Maryland County Behavioral Health Advisory Councils

Jan A. Desper Peters

The Black Mental Health Alliance, Inc.

Kathryn Dilley

The Maryland County Behavioral Health Advisory Councils

Lillian M. Donnard

The Maryland Association for the Treatment of Opioid Dependence

Catherine Drake

The Maryland Division Of Rehabilitation Services

The Hon. Adelaide Eckardt

Maryland State Senate

Kate Farinholt

The National Alliance on Mental Illness of Maryland

Robert L. Findling

Academic/Research Professional


Ann Geddes

The Maryland Coalition of Families for Children’s Mental Health

Lauren Grimes

On Our Own of Maryland, Inc.

Elaine Hall

The Maryland Health Care Financing, MDH

Shannon Hall

The Community Behavioral Health Association of Maryland

Christina Halpin

Consumer (Youth/Young Adult)

Carlos Hardy

The Maryland Recovery Organization Connecting Communities

Rosanne Hanratty

The Maryland Department Of Aging

Dayna Harris

The Maryland Department of Housing & Community Development

Virginia Harrison

The Maryland Association of Boards of Education

The Hon. Antonio Hayes

Maryland House of Delegates

James Hedrick

The Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention

Michael Ito

The Maryland Department of Juvenile Services

Sylvia Lawson

The Maryland State Department of Education

Sharon M. Lipford

Community Advocate

The Hon. George Lipman

The Maryland Judiciary District Court

Theresa Lord

Family Member (Child)

Dan Martin, Co-Chair

The Mental Health Association of Maryland, Inc.

Jonathan Martin

Maryland Department of Budget and Management

Dennis L. McDowell

Family Member

Stephen T. Moyer

The Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services

The Hon. Dana Moylan Wright

The Maryland Judiciary Circuit Court

Kathleen O’Brien

The Maryland Addiction Director’s Council

Luciene Parsley

Disability Rights Maryland

William Patten

The Maryland County Behavioral Health Advisory Councils

Keisha Peterson

The Maryland Department of Human Services

Mary Pizzo

The Office of the Public Defender

Charles Reifsnider



Keith Richardson

The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence of Maryland

Kirsten Robb-McGrath

The Maryland Department Of Disabilities

Dana Sauro

Consumer (Youth/Young Adult)

Catherine Simmons-Jones

Medical Professional

Clay Stamp

The Office of the Secretary, Maryland Department of Health

Jeffrey P. Sternlicht

Medical Professional

Tracey Webb

The Governor’s Office for Children

Anita Wells

Academic/Research Professional-Not State Employee