Meet The Board
DENI CARISE, PH.D.
Deni Carise, Ph.D. is a Clinical Psychologist and part of the recovery community for over 30 years. She is currently Chief Scientific Officer of Recovery Centers of America (RCA). RCA is the first provider of substance abuse and recovery support services in the country dedicated to creating neighborhood-based treatment and recovery campuses that include detoxification, residential, partial hospital, intensive and traditional outpatient, and family services all available on one campus. From March 2016 – March 2018, they opened 6 such campuses, 2 in MA and MD, and 1 each in PA and NJ.
Deni has held similar positions at CRC Health Group, providing behavioral health services to more than 42,000 men, women and teens every day at more than140 programs in 33 states and Phoenix House, a nonprofit substance abuse treatment provider with over 100 programs in 10 states where Dr Carise developed national standards for clinical care, Clinical Toolkits for over 30 evidence-based practices, and helped usher in a new era of care to position the company to successfully address changes secondary to healthcare reform. Dr Carise was also Chief Clinical Advisor for Sierra Tucson, a premier facility treating substance abuse, pain, mood, eating and trauma disorders.
Dr Carise was an NIH-funded scientist and Director of the Treatment Systems Section at Treatment Research Institute. At TRI from 1994 to 2010, she made significant advances in the quality of substance abuse treatment through the development, application, and research of new interventions, systems, and technologies through receipt of numerous NIH and other federal grants. She has published over 100 articles, books, and chapters.
Dr Carise is currently an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the University of Pennsylvania, Perelman School of Medicine (since 1997). She has been affiliated with UPENN since completing a NIDA Post-Doctoral fellowship at the Center for Studies of Addiction in the Department of Psychiatry from 1994-1996. She earned both her Bachelor’s Degree and Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Hahnemann (now Drexel) University, she interned at Homewood (part of the Johns Hopkins Health system) and Union Memorial hospitals in behavioral medicine.
She has worked extensively internationally, with treatment providers in Nigeria, Mexico, Thailand, Egypt, Greece, Singapore, Brazil, and China and numerous other countries to help develop national systems that integrate scientifically-validated tools into clinical treatment delivery.
Committed to the accurate portrayal of addiction, treatment, and recovery in the media, Dr Carise consulted on Martin Scorsese’s film, Wolf of Wall Street, working with the primary actors on depicting characters who are abusing cocaine and other drugs, and has been instrumental in other movies and screen plays accurately depicting drug abuse, treatment and recovery. She has also been featured in segments of Nightline, MSNBC, Fox News, ABC, CBS and NBS evening news, Access Hollywood, New York news and many Federally-funded Web-casts and has also been quoted in popular newsprint media such as US News and World Report, Fox News, Wall Street Journal, Alcohol and Drug Abuse Weekly, NIDA Notes and others. Dr. Carise has presented over 200 lectures by invitation (approximately 35 internationally). She is also a frequent blogger on Huffington Post (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/deni-carise) on topics including treatment, recovery, prescription drug abuse, the media’s portrayal of drug problems, Healthcare Reform, Parity, and emerging drug trends.
Mr. Collins had a career as a successful entrepreneur, executive and investor in the global mobile telecoms industry for almost 20 years before substance use disorder made his life unmanageable. Since beginning his journey in recovery in 2013, Ted co-founded MOBER, Inc. (a technology company that develops mobile apps for the recovery community), launched YPR’s Los Angeles Chapter and served as California State Captain for the Unite to Face Addiction Rally. Ted holds a B.A. in Government cum laude from Harvard College (Cambridge, MA) and an MBA from INSEAD (Fontainebleau, France).
Alexa Eggleston is Founder of Audacia Consulting LLC, a consulting practice she launched to support strategic advances in improving the lives of young people and those impacted by substance use and addiction. Prior to starting her business, Ms. Eggleston led implementation of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation’s youth substance use prevention and early intervention initiative. With more than 20 years of experience in the non-profit sector, including more than 10 years in leadership and management positions leading national initiatives, developing and implementing strategic plans to affect policy and practice change, and increasing research translation and implementation, Ms. Eggleston is committed to creating and expanding prevention, treatment, and recovery approaches that are rooted in equity and non-punitive health-based responses. Her expertise and knowledge has a focus on youth development, health and well-being, and substance use and mental health, and spans a wide range of federal and state legal and policy issues in criminal justice, healthcare, education, and child welfare that impact youth and families affected by substance use. Ms. Eggleston also has experience launching new programmatic initiatives in the non-profit and philanthropic sector.
Ms. Eggleston has served as Substance Abuse Program Director with the Council of State Governments Justice Center in Bethesda, Maryland where she was responsible for advising governmental and non-governmental agencies on developing and implementing substance use treatment and other rehabilitative services for individuals involved the criminal justice system, including youth in the juvenile justice system. Eggleston worked as Director of Public Policy for the National Council for Behavioral Health where she conducted public policy activities to increase access to substance use prevention, treatment and recovery services through federal legislation and enact criminal justice and healthcare reform. She also spent several years as the Director of National Policy for the Legal Action Center where she directed policy and government relations activities to improve laws and policies that affect people with histories of addiction, HIV/AIDS, or criminal records. She received her Bachelor of Arts from John Carroll University and her Juris Doctor from University of Maryland.
Brittany Fonteno is a seasoned strategist, trainer, and reproductive justice leader with nearly 15 years of experience in sexual and reproductive health, rights, and justice. She has expertise in health care, progressive advocacy, communications, organizational strategy and operations, fundraising, and coalition building. Her work focuses on achieving equity for all people by bringing the most marginalized communities to the center of sexual and reproductive health care.
Brittany has worked at Planned Parenthood for the past five years and is currently the Chief External Affairs Officer at Planned Parenthood of Southern New England. In this role, she leads the public policy, advocacy, organizing, education and training, and communications and brand experience teams, and also serves on the agency’s executive leadership team. Previously, she held positions at reproductive justice organizations, including the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Justice and the New York Abortion Access Fund, where she served on the board of directors. Brittany holds a bachelor’s degree in communications and Spanish language from American University and a master’s degree in communications from Georgetown University. She is currently pursuing a master’s of public health from the City University of New York. Brittany is proud to have come to the recovery community as a young person and has been in long-term recovery for over eight years.
BEN A. GUILL
Ben A. Guill is managing partner and co-founder of White Deer Energy, an investment firm with offices in Houston and New York. During that period, he helped the firm and the funds it raised grow from $812 million with seven investment professionals to $7.8 billion with 35 investment professionals. Mr. Guill managed First Reserve’s Houston office, focusing on deal origination, investment analysis, negotiation of acquisitions and management of portfolio companies.
Prior to 1998, he was Co-Head of Investment Banking at Simmons & Company International, a leading specialized investment bank serving the energy industry. Mr. Guill joined Simmons in 1980 and served 19 years in corporate finance, working primarily on mergers and acquisitions, financings and corporate restructuring. Prior to his service with Simmons, he was an Associate at Blyth Eastman Dillon.
Mr. Guill is currently a Director of National Oilwell Varco (NYSE:NOV). He serves on the Board of MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston and the Houston region of Teach for America. Mr. Guill holds an MBA in Finance from Wharton School and a BA in English from Princeton University.
Over four years into recovery from a decade-long opioid addiction, Ryan Hampton has been rocketed to the center of America’s rising recovery advocacy movement. A former White House staffer, he has worked with multiple non-profits and political campaigns. He is now a prominent, leading face and voice of addiction recovery and is changing the national dialog about addiction. With content that reaches over 1 million people a week, Ryan is breaking down cultural barriers that have kept people suffering in silence and is inspiring a new generation of people recovering out loud through his Voices Project. He’s also advocating for solutions and holding public policy makers accountable.
He was part of the core team that released the first-ever U.S. Surgeon General’s report on addiction in 2016 and was singled out by Forbes as a top social media entrepreneur in the recovery movement. Ryan connects a vast network of people who are passionate about ending the drug epidemic in America. He has been featured by USA Today, NPR, HLN, Vice, Forbes, Slate, HuffPost, The Hill, the Wall Street Journal, and others.
On October 22, 2018, Ryan announced Recovery Voices Vote, an initiative he’s leading to register and engage 1 million recovery oriented voters by the 2020 election.
In 2016, Ryan created the web series Facing Addiction Across America, documenting his 30 day, 28 state, 8,000 mile cross-country trip visiting areas hit hardest by the addiction crisis. His first book, “American Fix — Inside the Opioid Addiction Crisis and How to End It” published by St. Martin’s Press, was released in August 2018.
BENJAMIN S. HELDFOND
The owner of Heldfond Holdings, LLC a holding company that invests in a wide variety of companies. Everything from real estate, private equity, restaurants, and a record label. Some of them he has an active role either through management or the board of directors. Heldfond Holdings currently holds approximately 20 companies.
Began his real estate career in 1999 with a focus on commercial real estate as Vice President, Diversified Assets at DeBartolo Holdings, LLC, Tampa, Florida. He played an integral part in the company’s real estate development acquisitions and diversified investing transactions as well as taking an active role in the Tampa Bay community through the various DeBartolo Family Foundation philanthropic programs and is a founding board member of the Brooks DeBartolo Collegiate High School,acharterschoolthathelpsunderprivilegedchildren. BenisalsoCo-Authorof“OurHappy Divorce”, a book Ben and his Ex-Wife Nikki DeBartolo, wrote about their journey through divorce and how it brought them closer together.
Graduated from The University of California, Berkeley with a Bachelor of Science degree in African American History and Business Administration. Since then he has been involved with many non- profit organizations focused on addiction/alcoholism including: Facing Addiction w/NCADD, Road Recovery, and Phoenix House.
Ben is an avid golfer and sports enthusiast, who currently resides in South Tampa with his wife, Nadia; his 16-year-old son, Asher; his 6-year-old daughter Isabella, and his 4-year-old son Jackson.
Gary Montrose has worked as a market research, strategy, and program planning consultant to numerous trade associations, state and national government entities, Fortune 500 companies, commercial vendors, health plans, and medical providers in over 40 states over the past 30 years.
Gary has provided strategic guidance, proposal development and program evaluation services in the area of long-term care and chronic care management, with a Medicaid focus. He has led long-range business planning, advocacy, and program implementation engagements supporting adults with disabilities for over ten years.
For HHS/CMS, Gary served as an industry domain expert for development of the official solicitation documents and technical evaluation guidelines for vendor bidding on the Chronic Care Improvement Demonstration Project (Medicare Health Supports). Gary has also guided the State of Colorado in developing a suite of multi-agency, technology-enabled disease management and care coordination programs with some of the industry’s leading non-profit and commercial vendors.
Gary is a visionary thinker with an exceptional talent for identifying and driving industry trends. He served as a member of the Governor’s Council on TeleHealth (Colorado), Legislature Healthcare Reform Task Force, and as Interim Coordinator of the Colorado Blue Ribbon Health Care Reform Commission. He is co-author of “Managing Health Care Demand,” a 500-page text (Aspen Publications).He has served as a visiting instructor in strategic planning at the University of Colorado-Health Sciences Center and Denver University.
Dr. Lisa Johnson Pratt
Dr. Lisa Johnson Pratt is a physician who has spent over 25 years in the pharmaceutical industry. She is currently the SVP, New Product Strategy at Akcea Therapeutics in Carlsbad, California. As she has progressed through her career, she has led teams in both the drug development/ clinical trials arena and in the commercial realm. Her career has allowed her to work globally, including in emerging markets, including China and Vietnam, on products that have contributed strongly to improving patient health. From preventing cervical cancer, to supporting cancer drugs through the development process, to preventing the sequelae of uncontrolled asthma and hypertension, Lisa has worked to improve the quality of life of people.
After her daughters experienced trauma, Lisa started Ananias Ventures. Ananias Ventures seeks to provide resources to individuals who are trying to magnify the voice of the voiceless. This has led to the creation of the Life After Abuse platform which seeks to inform and support victims of abuse. In Lisa’s case, the sequelae of abuse is not theoretical. While suffering from PTSD, her daughter developed an addiction. Being a physician allowed her to be able to successfully navigate and support her daughter during the recovery process, but during that process she began to recognize the challenges that exist throughout the process for patients entering and existing recovery. She remains committed to ensuring that patients in recovery have the support that they need to live their best life and fulfill their purpose.
Kelsey Schmuhl is an Assistant Professor of Clinical Pharmacy at The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy. She enjoys teaching Introduction to Pharmacy to undergraduate students and teaching substance use disorder therapeutics to Doctor of Pharmacy students. She also provides pharmacy services to patients at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio in the Adolescent Medicine Clinic. Through her clinical work, Kelsey works with adolescents and young adults with substance use disorders to help them get the best outcomes from their medications. Kelsey is passionate about expanding access to naloxone through pharmacies and gave proponent testimony for Ohio House Bill 4, which allows pharmacists and pharmacy interns to dispense naloxone without a prescription in Ohio. In addition to teaching and clinical practice, Kelsey is a clinical content expert for Generation Rx, an educational initiative that teaches safe medication-taking practices across the lifespan.
Kelsey graduated from The Ohio State University with her Bachelor of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences and Doctor of Pharmacy degrees in 2012 and 2017 respectively. She also completed a Community Care Residency in 2018 and a Practice-Based Academic Fellowship with an emphasis on substance use disorders and behavioral health in 2019.
Kelsey currently resides in Columbus, Ohio with her husband, Dan; and daughter, Maia.
Jenna Stapleton is a dedicated and passionate philanthropist who serves as the Executive Director of the Denver-based Harmes C. Fishback Foundation, a charitable trust that provides financial support to non-profits in Colorado. Jenna also serves on the Board of Advisors of ACE Scholarships, whose mission is to provide children of low-income families with scholarships to private schools in grades K-12. She’s also a proud member of the Orrery Society at the University of Pennsylvania Libraries and recently joined the board of Young People in Recovery.
Jenna, her husband Walker, son Craig, and daughters Colette and Olivia live in Greenwood Village, Colorado. Jenna graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. She also holds a graduate degree in social work from the University of Denver as well as a certificate in marriage and family therapy from Denver Family Institute. Jenna is currently working toward her license in clinical social work. Jenna’s passions include watching live music and professional sports, playing tennis, acquiring pets, meditating, reading and being a mom to her three amazing children.
Sharon Young enjoyed two rewarding career paths and is now an active volunteer and board member for church and community organizations. She was an employee benefits consultant with a major national firm for more than 15 years. During that time, she became an active volunteer and board member with several nonprofit organizations, especially focused in the area of fundraising and development. She then leveraged her experience as a volunteer, board member, board chair, and fundraiser into a second career path, serving various organizations in a staff capacity focusing on volunteer engagement and development. Among her volunteer commitments, she served as Board Chair for Atlanta Cities in Schools, a national organization dedicated to empowering at-risk students to stay in and perform well in school; has served on the vestry of her church and, on the board of a counseling center. She is a graduate of Leadership Atlanta, one of the oldest community leadership programs in the U.S.
Sharon and her husband are the parents of a son who has dealt with substance abuse issues for many years. While he has not yet embraced a life of recovery, Sharon hopes to bring a helpful perspective from her journey as the parent of a struggling young adult. She has seen the possibilities and successes of a life of recovery, and wants to be a part of expanding opportunities for many more young people.
Sharon received an M.B.A. from Georgia State University and her A.B. degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is a passionate Tar Heel fan and bleeds “Carolina Blue” especially during basketball season.
As an early supporter and champion of YPR, Charlie Mayr is remembered by YPR as a memorial board member in perpetuity so his spirit, love of life and passion for our cause will always be with us. Mayr was appointed Chief Communications Officer of Actavis on April 27, 2012. Charlie joined Watson as Senior Vice President, Corporate Affairs in September 2009. Prior to joining Watson, Charlie operated an advertising and public relations consulting company from 1998 to 2009, serving such clients as Watson, the Generic Pharmaceutical Association (GPhA), Barr Pharmaceuticals and a variety of professional associations and consumer products and service companies. Prior to starting his consultancy business, he served as Director of Corporate Communications for Barr Pharmaceuticals, Inc. from 1994 to 1998. Prior to joining Barr, he served as Director of Global Communications from 1990 to 1994 for Sterling Drug Inc., the global brand and consumer health products pharmaceutical subsidiary of Kodak. Charlie began his career as a broadcast and print journalist and received a B.A. in journalism from New York University.