Get to know the speakers for the 2023 MAT Conference
Dr. Kari Finley
Co-Director Center for Health and Safety Culture, Research Scholar
Montana State University
About Dr. Kari Finley
Dr. Kari Finley is a Co-Director and Research Scholar for the Center for Health and Safety Culture at Montana State University. Dr. Finley holds a Ph.D. in Human Services and has approximately eight years of experience as a research scientist focusing on conducting basic and applied research on a variety of health and safety issues. She has been the principal investigator on multiple projects with specific interests in behavior change, stigma reduction, understanding motivation and intention, and measuring culture. Dr. Finley is also a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over twelve years of experience helping people with substance use disorders. Dr. Finley is a contributing author and presenter.
Assistant United States Attorney
Department of Justice
About Gregory Dorchak
Gregory Dorchak has worked in the Civil Rights Unit of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Massachusetts since 2015 where he primarily focused on addressing the opioid crisis through federal civil rights laws. Prior to working in the Department of Justice, Greg enforced fair housing at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Greg received his J.D. from Northeastern University and his Ph.D. from the University of Massachusetts.
Division of Public Health – Alaska Department of Health
About Lindsey Kato
Lindsey is a nationally recognized champion for public health who specializes in multidisciplinary work to strategically address complex issues related to public health, including healthcare, behavioral health, and public safety. She comes to the Division of Public Health most recently from the private sector working as a Senior Consultant for Health Management Associates, Inc., a national research, and consulting firm, where she brings experience working with Medicaid and other payers supporting efforts at the intersection of healthcare and public health.
Prior to that, she was embedded within the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Division of Overdose Prevention, where she co-led the National Overdose Response Strategy (ORS), a program recognized by the White House National Drug Control Strategy in 2022. In that role, she led the building and onboarding of overdose response teams, in all states and territories, focused on data driven responses based on partnerships between public health and law enforcement.
Lindsey has worked with partners across the country to implement sustainable solutions related to a multitude of complex health issues. She has experience strategically building multidisciplinary coalitions and task forces around shared visions and goals. She is fundamentally grounded in an understanding of the social determinants of health and shared risk and protective factors as they relate to health and safety. In 2017, she was awarded the U.S. Attorney’s Award for Outstanding Contributions to Cooperative Law Enforcement.
Lindsey has a Bachelor of Science in Public Health, focused on health promotion and behavior, from Oregon State University. She earned her Master of Public Health in epidemiology from the Colorado School of Public Health where she then started her career with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s Violence and Injury Prevention – Mental Health Promotion branch.
She moved back to Juneau in 2022 to be closer to family, community, and her culture. She currently coaches high school women’s soccer and beads in her free time. Lindsey is excited and honored to start as the new Alaska Division Director of Public Health and passionate about improving the health and safety of all Alaskans.
Certified Nurse Midwife
About Bethany Berry
Bethany Berry, CNM, MSN is the Senior Nurse Midwife at Southcentral Foundation in Anchorage, Alaska. She received her nursing degree at Johns Hopkins University and her midwifery degree at Yale University. Prior to her current position, Bethany worked for over 10 years with the Indian Health Service in the lower 48. Her clinical specialty areas are contraception, addiction medicine in pregnancy, and cervical cancer prevention. She currently volunteers as a member of the Exam Committee with the American Midwifery Certification Board and with the American Cancer Society’s National Roundtable on Cervical Cancer. In her free time, she enjoys spending time outdoors with her family.
Clinical Director of Addiction Medicine
About Corey Cox
Corey Cox, MD, is a provider primarily located at the Front Street Clinic in Juneau, Alaska. He was born in Pikeville, KY and attended medical school at University of Louisville in Kentucky. His post-graduate training was at Mountain Area Health Education Center in Asheville North Carolina, specializing in family medicine and addiction medicine. He loves helping families with addictions from all ages and backgrounds by working to make an inclusive and welcoming environment for all patients. He also enjoys working with the underserved and unhoused populations.
Analytics Grant Specialist
Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium
About Jen Freeman
Jen serves as the Analytics Grant Specialist at Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium (ANTHC). She has a passion for data and how it can be leveraged to positively influence Alaska Native and American Indian communities. As part of ANTHC’s Data and Analytics Team, Jen supports several grants and initiatives related to indigenous health and collaborates with Tribal Health Organizations across the state to foster a data-driven culture. Jen is a member of the Sun’aq Tribe of Kodiak, which is located on Kodiak Island in the northwestern edge of the Gulf of Alaska. She is a graduate of the University of Alaska Anchorage where she earned her Masters of Science in Project Management.
Banyan Treatment Centers
About Sam Garcia
Sam is a Kewa Indian from New Mexico. He was born and spent most of his time in Alaska. He is married with 4 children and enjoys fishing, hiking and cross-country skiing. He is also in long term recovery from substance use disorder and has not used alcohol or drugs since April 8th, 2016. Sam’s lived experience inevitably led him to working as a peer support specialist helping others on their pathway to recovery and out of the same pit, he once found himself. After obtaining a certification as a chemical dependency counselor he also became one of the first certified peer support specialists in the state of Alaska. Currently Sam works as Banyan Treatment Center’s military and veterans community liaison to support our service members on their path to recovery.
Connection and Engagement Manager
About Michelle Gutierrez
I have been in recovery for the last 5 years in which I was able to utilize a MAT program to help me in achieving the goals I had for my life in recovery. I have worked hard to build a strong support system within my family and community.
Interior AIDS Assoc.
About Brenda Henze-Nelson
Brenda Is the Clinical Director at Interior AIDS Association, an AIDS service organization providing services for the prevention and treatment of HIV including education, prevention and testing, a syringe services program, SBIRT, and medication assisted treatment. She has worked at Interior AIDS Association since 2002 when she started as a substance abuse counselor. Brenda is a licensed professional counselor, a master addictions counselor, and is a certified chemical dependency counselor in the State of Alaska. She received her bachelor’s degree in psychology and master’s degree in counseling from UAF, where she has taught as adjunct faculty and from where she has welcomed multiple practicum students and counseling interns. Brenda is a member of the local Wellness Coalition, the Fairbanks Opioid Work Group, the Community Action Planning group, and has served on the HUB team for the Co-Occurring Behavioral Health Opioid and Stimulant Use Disorders ECHO for the past two years.
Alaskan AIDS Assistance Association
About Robin Lutz
Robin Lutz is the Executive Director of the Alaskan AIDS Assistance Association and has been working in the HIV and Harm Reduction field for over 20 years. She has extensive experience providing direct services through syringe access programs as well as HIV Care and Prevention. She lives on Dena’ina land (Anchorage) with her dog, co-parents a lovely 5 year old, and is a member of Anchorage’s Queer community.
NW Regional Director
Community Medical Services
About Andrea Mankee
Andrea Mankee has been an operations leader over the past 15 years working in Oncology, Pain, Dermatology and Addiction Practices. Before coming to CMS she was the Practice Manager of a Responsible Pain Management Practice with 5 locations and 2 Outpatient Treatment centers for 6 years. Since coming to CMS she has been a Clinic Manager, Sr. Clinic Manager and Operations Lead for the Tiger Team. She is a dynamic operations leader with an expertise in servant leadership, team development, culture, she is client focused with a harm reduction approach. She enjoys reading, traveling and spending time with her 3 kids and husband.
About Joe Opala
Police Officer for the Wasilla Police Department since 2019. I am Crisis Intervention Team Coordinator and have been working with the Mobile Crisis Team as a liaison.
Fairbanks Reentry Coalition Coordinator
City of Fairbanks
About Marsha Oss
Ms. Oss is a person with lived experience and started volunteering in Correctional facilities at one year of sobriety. She has worked inside and outside juvenile and adult correctional institutions, hospitals, and treatment agencies as a Counselor.
Marsha Oss relocated to Alaska from Idaho in 1996 and went to work for Tanana Chiefs Conference between 1997-2002. She worked in the Community Health Department, traveling the Interior of Alaska working with prevention and chaperoning elders & youth for Denakkanaaga. In 1998, she moved to the position of Primary Counselor, then Clinical Supervisor, and finally Acting Director of Old Minto Family Recovery Camp.
Marsha spent the past 6½ years as the Fairbanks Reentry Coalition Case Manager, helping justice-involved folks return to the community. Marsha joined the City of Fairbanks in 2022 as the Reentry Coalition Coordinator. Marsha completed her AA and BA in Interdisciplinary Studies with Minors in Justice, Political Science, and History through UAF in August 2022. She currently holds an NCAC-I and is certified through Alaska as a CDC/BHC II, and PSS/TPSS.
Mental Health Clinician
Anchorage Fire Department
About Jennifer Pierce
Jennifer Pierce is currently a PhD student in the Clinical-Community Psychology program at UAA and works as a clinician with the Anchorage Fire Department Mobile Crisis Team. She has experience working as a police officer with the Anchorage Police Department for over 8 years. After earning her master’s in clinical psychology, she worked as a therapist at Providence on an inpatient mental health unit, in the emergency department, and also continues to teach verbal-escalation.
Prevention Section Manager
About Tony Piper
Tony Piper currently serves as the Division of Behavioral Health’s Prevention and Early Intervention/ASAP Program Manager and is responsible for the oversight of 12 ASAP offices around the state as well as the case management/probation officers for nine specialty courts including the Mental Health Courts, Felony DUI and Drug Courts and our Veterans and Family Care court. The Prevention section oversees the state’s Suicide Prevention, Underage Drinking, Rural Human Services program and many Community Based coalition grantees.
Access to Care Program Manager
About Sara Platt
Sara has spent the last fourteen years in the behavioral health world, including advocating for people with mental illness, being a case manager in residential and non-residential settings, integrating counseling services within schools, providing individual and group therapy, and overseeing admissions and early interventions for a community behavioral health clinic that provides both outpatient and residential services for substance use disorders. Sara arrived in Alaska 6 years ago and feels grateful for the opportunity to call Alaska her forever home. She has a passion for connecting individuals, families, and providers to each other, to themselves, and to shared goals to improve well-being for all Alaskans.
Anchorage Fire Department
About Michael Riley
Michael has been with the Anchorage Fire Department for over 10 years, and for the last 5 of those years he has worked as the Mobile Integrated Health Program (MIHP) Coordinator. Two significant programs were and are the Restore Hope in the Linkage to Care Collaboration and a first of its kind Fire Based Mobile Crisis Team (MCT).
Technical Expert Lead III
JBS International, Inc.
About Laura Ross
Laura Ross, LMFT brings more than 20 years of experience directing clinical and administrative behavioral health care programming in a range of settings. Her expertise includes developing trauma-informed, client-centered and evidence-based treatment programs for behavioral health integration.
True North Recovery INC
About James Savage
James Savage is a lifelong Alaskan who grew up in the Matsu Valley. James began working in behavioral health at a relatively early age opening an assisted living home in 2009 that he still runs today. His life took a drastic turn with his introduction to substance use at a personal level after a workplace accident. As a result of his need for recovery himself at one time. James now devotes his time a Director of Operations for True North Recovery helping those that suffer from substance use disorders find their path to recovery. Combining lived experiences and education James is a leading recovery advocate in the state of Alaska. James is a current Alaska Mental Health Board member as well as a founding member and Co-Chair of the Mat- Su Opioid Task force.
Criminal Justice Planner
About Kristine Schwankl
Kristine is a life-long Alaskan who began her career with the Department of Corrections (DOC) in 2000. She previously worked as an Institutional Probation Officer prior to becoming a Criminal Justice Planner, overseeing substance use disorder programs for the department. She graduated from UAA with a bachelor’s degree in Justice and minor in Psychology and later received her master’s degree from UAF in Administration of Justice.
Reentry Release Planner
Partners for Progress (DOC Contractor)
About Christina Shadura
Christina is a lifelong Alaskan with predominant work experience in a non-profit organization here in downtown Anchorage aimed at reducing recidivism. This experience has allowed her to develop her case management skills into a relationship-building, problem solving, client-centered approach in order to provide direct services for those returning to our community after incarceration. She currently serves in a Contractor role between Partners for Progress and Department of Corrections which has embedded her into Anchorage Correctional Complex full time to provide release planning and resource support for all inmates, as well as coordination with institutional staff on matters related to community reintegration. Prior to this, she provided direct service and grant reporting for a special case load of high risk/high needs reentrants that allocated additional grant based financial, treatment and housing supports in partnership with the MHTA and DBH.
Help Me Grow Alaska
About Sonya Sipos
Sonya, a lifelong Alaskan, has worked with children and families across the state for over 20 years. She enjoys helping families find their way to healing and wholeness through whatever path best suits their needs. Sonya has worked extensively with families in crisis and believes the best way to help children is through promoting health in every aspect of their home and family, whatever shape that may take. As a mother of five, she has an intimate understanding of the many challenges a family may face and finds a great deal of satisfaction in helping parents and children achieve their goals. In her free time, Sonya enjoys exploring all the many wonders Alaska has to offer—whether fishing, hunting, camping, hiking or just enjoying her back yard with her children.
Addiction Medicine Specialist
Ninilchik traditional council
About Sarah Spencer
Dr. Spencer has been treating patients with addiction in rural Alaska since 2009. She provides low-threshold addiction treatment on the southern Kenai and via telemedicine to remote tribes. She is the volunteer medical director of the Homer syringe access program and provides non-profit teaching and consulting through the Opioid Response Network and ANTHC, and is the co-author of the state guide to medications for addiction treatment.
Office of Substance Misuse & Addiction Prevention, Program Coordinator
State of Alaska, Department of Health & Social Services
About Jane Sullivan
Jane has lived and worked in Alaska for over 30 years. She has a strong passion for rural Alaska, where she has lived the majority of her life. She has served rural communities by working in early education, providing local government assistance and currently works at OSMAP.
About Jacqueline Summers
Jacqueline Summers is the Executive Director of Health TIE, an Alaskan healthcare innovation hub and has worked in program operations and business development for over 20 years.
CDC Division of Overdose Prevention
About Andrew Terranella
Dr. Terranella is a medical epidemiologist in CDC’s Division of Overdose Prevention. He researches best practices to improve access to treatment for substance use disorder and harm reduction programs in young adults and adolescents. He is also a board-certified pediatrician, is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Arizona, and practices general pediatrics and adolescent medicine in Tucson, Arizona. He received his BA in Biology from Kalamazoo College, attended medical school at the University of Virginia, and received an MPH from Emory University. He trained in Pediatrics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine/Jacobi Hospital in the Bronx, NY in 2007 and completed an Epidemic Intelligence Service Fellowship at the CDC in 2012. Prior to coming to CDC, he served 14 years with Indian Health Service on the Navajo and Tohono O’odham Nations and most recently as the Chief Medical Officer for the Portland Area Indian Health Service.
Assistant Director Healthcare for the Homeless and Opioid Treatment Program Spon
Front Street Clinic/SEARHC
About Claudette Thor
Claudette Thor, MS-Claudette has earned her Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice and her Master of Science in Counseling and has worked for Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) for the past 6 years where she has held numerous positions, most recently as the Assistant Director-Healthcare for the Homeless. And, in the development and oversight of SEARHC’s Opioid Treatment Clinics in 3 Southeast Alaska locations. Prior to joining SEARHC she spent significant time in leadership roles in the Medication Assisted Treatment field and both administrative and clinical positions with patients experiencing co-occurring addictions and severe mental illness.
About Kathleen Totemoff
Kathleen Totemoff is the Founder/President of iEXIST, LLC, a company dedicated to saving lives and strengthening communities through innovative approaches and strategic partnerships in changing the trajectory of the substance misuse epidemic. She has served as an adjunct faculty member at the University of Alaska College of Business and Public Policy for more than a decade and spent more than four years as a Medication-Assisted Treatment Project Director/Grant Manager for a rural Alaska clinic. Kathleen is also a Certified Health Coach whose work background includes behavioral intervention, residential treatment, and rural economic development. She earned her Psychology degree from the University of Alaska Anchorage and completed extensive undergraduate coursework in sociology, human and social services, and criminal justice. She lives with her family on a small homestead with her dog, goats, chickens, geese, rabbits, honeybees, and the occasional moose that wanders into the yard.
Narcotic Drug Treatment Center, Inc.
About Paula Valdez
I have been employed at NDTC for more than 11 years. I coordinate care for all new patients entering treatment for opioid use disorder; this includes communication with outside agencies to enroll patient at NDTC. I am the point of contact for patients seeking services.
Providence Breakthrough Substance Use Treatment Program
About Ryan Wallace
Dr. Ryan Wallace is a board-certified psychiatrist, addiction psychiatrist, and addiction medicine physician. He earned his MD, MPH from the University of Washington School of Medicine. He attended Yale University for psychiatry residency, addiction psychiatry fellowship, and served as assistant professor – he co-led development of a clinical trial examining psilocybin in the treatment of depression and was a founding member of the Yale Psychedelic Science Group. He currently serves as the Program Director for the Alaska Addiction Medicine Fellowship, is faculty for the Alaska Family Medicine Residency, and is the Medical Director for the Providence Breakthrough Substance Use Treatment Program. Dr. Wallace is passionate about pursuing innovative treatment modalities, teaching harm reduction, working with partners throughout Alaska, and serving his community.
Mat Su Health Services, Inc
About Janet Wilkinson
Janet Wilkinson, APRN is an Adult Nurse Practitioner certified in Adult and Addiction Medicine. She earned her undergraduate degree in Nursing from the Milwaukee School of Engineering and completed her Master of Science from University of Wisconsin – Madison. Her interests include inpatient and outpatient treatment of substance use disorders in underserved communities including ambulatory detoxification protocols for management of withdrawal symptoms in community-based settings. She has served as the Medical Director of a 96-bed inpatient residential Chemical Dependency Treatment Center in North Central Minnesota. She relocated to Alaska in 2021 to help develop and create a co-occurring Medication-Assisted Treatment model including medication assisted treatment of alcohol use disorders, opioid use disorders to develop an ambulatory detoxification programs for the treatment of substance use disorders.
Chief Medical Officer
State of Alaska
About Anne Zink
Dr. Anne Zink grew up in Colorado and attended college in Philadelphia and medical school at Stanford. As a practicing emergency medicine physician, she saw that the emergency department was where all good public health policy comes to fail. She quickly realized that if she was going to care for her patients, she needed to care about health policy as well. She focused her work on the opioid epidemic, complex patient care, workplace violence, and health care reform.
Deputy Chief Mental Health Officer
Department of Corrections
About Doug Zock
Doug started his career with the Department of Corrections in July of 2011 where he provided direct care services to the mentally ill offenders housed at the Anchorage Correctional Complex. In 2018, he was promoted to the Substance Use Disorder Criminal Justice Planner position and provided oversight and guidance for all the SUD program needs within the department. He currently is the department’s Deputy Chief Mental Health Officer and assists with providing oversight of mental health, sex offender, substance use disorder, and domestic violence treatment services for the department.
Register for the 2022 MAT Conference!