King County Behavioral Health Advisory Board
The King County Behavioral Health Advisory Board is a volunteer citizen board formed in April 2016 in support of the new Behavioral Health Organization (BHO). It reviews services for the King County BHO - mental health and substance use disorder services - to provide input and counsel to King County on priorities, policies, budgets and programs for the residents of King County.
The board works to promote the importance of prevention, treatment, recovery and the de-stigmatization of mental illness and addiction. The board was created in RCW 71.24.300 and is recognized in King County Code 2.32.010. The board reviews services in the public behavioral health (mental health and substance use disorder) system and provides feedback about how the system could be made better. Board responsibilities include:
- Reviewing and providing comments on plans and policies
- Local oversight on activities of the BHO including service delivery and outcomes
- Reviewing and approving recommendations from subcommittees
- Providing information to the residents of King County on system change issues
- Promoting de-stigmatization of mental illness and addiction
- Legislative advocacy related to behavioral health, including identifying and promoting issues of importance in prevention, treatment and recovery
- Serving as liaison between service provider boards, Chief Executive Officers, and clients.
Next board meeting
Thursday, May 3, 2018
11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Conference Room 123, 401 5th Avenue, Main Floor, Seattle, WA 98104
The board is made up of a 15 volunteer members. The law requires that the board be broadly representative of the diverse populations that live in the county and of the persons served by the public behavioral health system. Representation from King County’s rich ethnic and cultural diversity is actively sought. People with a lived experience with mental illness or substance use disorders now in recovery and family members of people who have received services in the public behavioral health system must make up at least 51% of the board. The board also strives to achieve broad countywide representation. Length of term is three years, which is renewable. See bottom of the page for a list of board members.
Lauren Dickinson, MSW, LICSW, resides in Council District 4. She is a Social Work Coordinator at Swedish Medical Center. In this role, Lauren provides oversight and support to nurse case managers, social workers, and case management associates providing discharge planning, chemical dependency, and mental health services. Lauren has worked in a variety of behavioral health and medical settings, including emergency departments, acute medical facilities, a youth residential treatment facility, an in-home counseling program, and an inpatient psychiatric hospital. Lauren was drawn to the field of mental health treatment and advocacy at a young age due to family experiences with mental illness.
Mary Ann LaFazia resides in Council District 8. She has a master’s degree in social work and has spent over 40 years in public social services, child welfare services, and substance use disorder treatment and prevention with an emphasis on evaluation and research. She has been the project director for several major research and demonstration studies. She has worked to expand prevention research on the risk reduction and protection enhancement framework related to youth problem behaviors, and to develop the Washington State Substance Abuse Prevention System. Upon retirement from state services, she provided technical assistance to states around substance abuse prevention issues. Ms. LaFazia previously served on the King County Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Administrative Board since 2010.
Melody McKee resides in Council District 8. She is a counselor/case manager and grant manager for the Squaxin Island Tribe’s Northwest Indian Treatment Center. She has worked in the field of substance abuse and co-occurring disorders for over 11 years in a number of capacities including counseling, case management, grant facilitation and management, support staff, supervisor, and educator. She has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Washington, and is currently working on a Masters of Science. Ms. McKee is in long-term recovery and her lived experience with behavioral health issues keeps her motivated to give back to the recovery community and the community at large. She is also a member of the Washington Recovery Alliance.
MS, RN-BC, resides in Council District 4. He is a board certified psychiatric registered nurse at Harborview Medical Center. In this capacity, he assists a chemical dependency professional with facilitation of substance abuse recovery groups. He also completed the University of Washington Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) Resident Training Program and facilitates DBT groups. Ryan works towards improving patient outcomes as a member of Harborview’s Unit Practice Council and Professional Development Council.