Board of Directors
Barbara Burgess - Chair
Prior to her retirement in 2006, Barbara was a registered nurse in the mental health sector for 37 years. “My many years of working in mental health, in a variety of positions at well-known teaching hospitals, makes my role as a Board member – and Board Chair - rather unique,” says Barbara. “My primary goal in all that time was to work with clients and their families to help them reach their goals for wellness and a happier life. I worked alongside many other health care professionals as part of multi-disciplinary teams working with clients. My career goal was to make a difference with clients and with my variety of clinical experiences I developed skills which increased my ability to work effectively with clients.”
When Barbara retired, she says it was sheer luck that she ran into a board member for Mental Health Services - Hastings Prince Edward and learned that they were looking for new board members. “This was a new adventure, as I had never been involved with a board previously, but felt it would allow me to continue to make sure clients with mental health and addictions problems received the best possible care.”
Barbara says the new agency has great staff and Board. “We are all here to help clients receive the kind of care they need,” she says. “I think this new agency will move forward to become the agency to contact when residents of this area need help with mental health and addiction problems.”
Joan Greenwood - Vice Chair/Secretary
Joan, a Certified Human Resources Leader (CHRL) and a Business Administration graduate, has worked on numerous Board committees, Boards and acted as an officer on several Boards prior to joining Mental Health Services (MHS). “I joined the MHS Board when they were looking for someone with human resources expertise,” Joan explains. “I was part of the Finance/Human Resources Committee and Vice-Chair of MHS and I am very much looking forward to my role as Board member of Addictions and Mental Health Services.”
Joining this Board was a good fit for Joan, not only because she’s a great believer in giving back to your community, but because she has a number of family members and friends experiencing difficulties with mental health and addictions, and finds it gratifying to see positive things happening for people experiencing these problems.
As to the agency’s future, Joan says she sees the agency becoming a premier, single-point of access for addictions and mental health services within Hastings/Prince Edward. “I hope that our agency can provide smooth, professional access to service for all clients and I hope to see all staff happy working in a healthy work environment, with outstanding leadership.”
“I became involved with the Board of the Addictions Center through a colleague at the Belleville Police Service where I work,” explains Nadine Langlois. “They were looking for a secretary and that was a good fit for me at the time. That was fifteen years ago. I became a Board Member about five years ago and have since performed both roles. My career has been predominantly in Human Resources and Administration - in Toronto for nineteen years and in Belleville for twenty-eight years. That tells you a little bit how about my age.”
Nadine says she donates her time, energy and talents to the agency because she has come to admire the folks who sit at the table with her. “They are capable, committed people and are an inspiration to me,” she adds. “I’m a proponent of positive psychological health and have family members who have struggled with addictions. I hope, through my support of the agency, we can continue to help others.”
Looking forward the future, Nadine says, “I am confident that the staff will lead us forward in the area of addictions and mental health services in the community.”
Stephen Rendell’s involvement at the Board level for addiction agencies began in 1994 with Addiction Services (formerly Serenity House). “I acted as Board Chair for ten years until we merged with the Addictions Treatment and Assessment Counseling Centre in 2001, where I remained chair for the first eleven years.”
“I have witnessed how an addiction to alcohol or drugs can destroy a person's life as the phenomenon of progression slowly takes over,” says Stephen. “Recovering from an addiction is very difficult. It is so important that community based treatment programs are in place and those programs, along with twelve step programs, are promoted and utilized. The key to recovery is positively impacting one's life - body, mind and spirit - and this is what a treatment program can successfully provide.
It is my goal, as a Board Member of Addictions and Mental Health, Hastings Prince Edward, to have a positive impact on this recovery process.” Stephen says the new agency will better provide for the requirements of those in need of a more all-inclusive support and treatment in both substance addiction and/or mental health issues.
“As we move forward, we must continue to expand the awareness and treatment for substance abuse and mental health problems,” says Stephen. “I feel that addictions and mental health treatment must be treated separately, in terms of public awareness and treatment options, and that residential treatment remain as part of addictions. We also must continue public awareness programs, as well as reaching out to our community partners, including related twelve step programs."
Patricia Ward has been a Board Member of Mental Health Services – Hastings Prince Edward since 2010. Within her first year on the Board, she was nominated as the Chair of the Finance/HR Committee and has continued in this role ever since.
Patricia says she see her role as a Board Member as an opportunity to help others who need help. “I’m not a clinician and I certainly don’t have any formal healthcare training, but I do have financial and leadership skills,” she says. “Being a volunteer in this capacity for an organization that helps to improve the lives of others is my chance to contribute.”
As to the future of the new agency, Patricia says it is wide open. “What I’d like to see is public awareness of what we offer; smoother transitions for clients as they move through the healthcare system; and new opportunities to assist clients improve their futures.”
Dorian has a degree in Environmental Science from Queens and runs her own consulting business.
“I became involved with Mental Health Services about 10 years ago when a family member experienced mental health issues and encountered difficulties navigating the system,” says Dorian. “I initially took the NAMI Family to Family course and then joined the Family Support Network and later the Mental Health Service Board. I have always felt it is important to give back to the community and have been involved in a variety of community organizations and boards over the years.”
Dorian stresses that she is committed to improving access to addictions and mental health services, ensuring that the right services are in place and in making the journey a positive experience for clients and family members. “I think the merging of addictions and mental health services will provide a more holistic approach to treatment and services. The Ideal Client Experience provides a platform for moving forward that I believe will benefit people dealing with addictions and mental health issues.”
Stella Maschas-Mathieu - who says she’d dress for Halloween as a Greek Goddess, mostly because she already has a toga - joined the Mental Health Services Board (MHS) in June, 2013. “I sat on the Quality Assurance Subcommittee during my two years with the Board and in September, 2014, I joined the Governance Transition Team,” she explains.
Having worked for both agencies for over twenty-one years and being familiar with all their programs, resources and client needs, Stella believes she has a unique perspective to offer. “I know and care about both agencies. I am familiar with all the programs, resources, and client needs. I have worked with many of the staff of Mental Health Services and the Addiction Centre and I have the utmost respect for them.” In addition, as a professor at Loyalist College in the Justice Studies program, Stella is currently teaching courses in both addictions and mental health and is very familiar with the addictions, mental health and justice fields.
Stella is really excited about sitting on the board of the new entity. “I know that each agency has many strengths. Now they can work together to provide the ideal client experience. I’m particularly excited about the sharing of resources like psychiatry, housing, groups and recreation. I think the clients will benefit enormously. I also think that the staff will have more opportunity to develop personally, and they will be able to assist their clients more than ever before. I think the agency is doing a fantastic job now, but if I were to look into the future, I would love to see the agency grow to address the gaps in such areas as concurrent disorders, housing, and employment,” she says.
Dave Steenburgh spent thirty-four years in education in a variety of roles - classroom teacher, counselling, special needs, vice principal and principal. In addition, he has worked with church youth groups in a variety of roles and in retirement, has had the opportunity to be the Director of Business Operations for the Belleville Bulls. “As a husband, father and grandfather of nine (soon to be ten) all of these activities have allowed me to spend most of my life interacting with so many people and user groups in our community,” says Dave. Dave says this new agency – Addictions and Mental Health Services - has a special significance to him as he has seen firsthand, in his professional and personal life, the tremendous pressure both young and old are under these days in our complex, and sometimes confusing, society. “I feel the need for both the services of a strong addiction component and mental health advocacy are paramount in our community,” Dave points out. “It is essential to counsel, direct and aid individuals to move into healthy life styles choices.”
According to Dave, the new agency now has an opportunity to take the numerous services and programs of addictions and mental health and “weave them into an even more effective, creative, fiscally responsible process, resulting in a more positive client experience”. In his remarks, Dave stresses that this process would provide a place of employment in which all staff would be able to feel they are moving forward in a positive manner in a healthy, productive atmosphere for clients and staff.”
"I began my involvement by joining the Mental Health Services Board of Directors in June 2013. Although new to the Board experience, I found myself thoroughly engaged in the people, programming and approach of Mental Health Services. Clients were provided the consistent support they needed in a manner that left them feeling empowered, not judged. I admired and respected the culture within the organization.
Although not able to take part in the Transitional Board I was quite pleased to become a member of the newly amalgamated Addictions and Mental Health Services Board of Directors at the recent Annual General meeting. I have had some experience with addictions and mental health within my professional life for the past 19 years in Child Welfare. In this role I have been witness to the impact an addiction or mental health issue can have on the individual, as well as the family unit as a whole. I have also had family members who have struggled with mental health issues and struggled to navigate the systems in place. These experiences have motivated me to become involved and help in any way I can. I believe in the importance of building awareness, breaking down stigma and meeting people where they are at in service delivery.
In our short time as an amalgamated agency I have already had experiences that make me proud to be a member of the team. Staff have managed the change with grace and ensured supports and services offered to their clients have not suffered as a result. The structures and systems in place speak to efficiency and quality service. I look forward to the future knowing there are great things to come from Addictions and Mental Health Services for our community in Hastings and Prince Edward."