Motivated to refocus services to create and maintain a variable healthcare system for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD), Hope Levy has served as the Executive Director of Premier HealthCare, a YAI affiliate, since 2017. Every year, Premier sees more than 9,000 patients, many of whom would otherwise have limited access to medical and dental care. Levy’s efforts to overhaul legacy systems ended years of operating deficits in 2019. Since then, she has instituted numerous innovations as Premier became among the first specialty clinics in the United States to make telemedicine available. Given the increased vulnerability to infection within the I/DD community, Levy’s efforts over the earliest months of the pandemic saved lives. For more than 20 years, Levy has held increasingly senior roles in the I/DD field. Prior to joining Premier, she served as Senior Director of Business Development and Government Relations at YAI. Throughout her career, she has played a crucial role in expanding early intervention, Article 16 services, Article 28 clinics, and has provided technical assistance to more than 150 I/DD nonprofit agencies throughout New York City. In 2021, Crain’s New York Business called Levy one of New York’s “Notables in Health Care”. She earned her Master of Social Work from New York University.
Deputy Secretary, NC Medicaid Division of Health Benefits, North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services
Richard’s vision for Medicaid is to ensure a sustainable, person-centered and innovative Medicaid program for more than 2 million North Carolinians who use Medicaid. As the programs undergo transformation to even better fit the needs of the state’s residents, he is committed to improving the health and well-being of all residents by working closely with Medicaid stakeholders.
Prior to leading Medicaid, Richard was the Deputy Secretary for DHHS Behavioral Health and Developmental Disability Services and the State Operated Healthcare Facilities divisions. He joined DHHS in May 2013 as the Director of the Division of Mental Health, Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services.
Richard had previously led The Arc of North Carolina, an advocacy and service organization for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, as its Executive Director for 24 years.
Richard’s has a bachelor’s degree in education from Louisiana State University.
Sandra K. (Sam) Hedrick, RN, JD
Sam Hedrick has been an advocate for people since entering the field of human services forty years ago. She began as an RN at North Carolina Memorial Hospital in Chapel Hill. There, she worked in a post-operative unit with people with life-challenging diseases and traumas. Later, she completed her Juris Doctorate at North Carolina Central University, and afterwards, served as an Assistant Public Defender in Durham for six years. In this role, she worked with youth in juvenile detention; people involuntarily committed to psychiatric units; and many other North Carolinians charged with criminal offenses. She observed that many of these individuals had mental illness, intellectual disabilities and/ or substance use disorders. With an eye towards improving people’s quality of life, Sam next became President of RHA Howell, a not-for-profit providing mental health, developmental and intellectual disability, and substance use disorder services to children and adults in communities across North Carolina. Sam served in that role for fifteen years. While there, she received an award from the Triangle Business Journal, as “ Healthcare Hero for 2014.” She also received an award from Disability Rights North Carolina as the 2016 “Champion for Equality and Justice.”
Today, Sam serves as Senior Advisor for the ADA in the Office of the Secretary. She oversees the implementation of a lawsuit brought to NC by US DOJ along with the work that the NC Department of Health and Human Services’ is doing devoted to Olmstead planning.
Joseph Lee, MD
On June 28, 2021 Dr. Lee will become the eighth president and CEO of the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation and the fifth president of the Hazelden Betty Ford Graduate School of Addiction Studies.
As the medical director for Hazelden Betty Ford’s youth services the past 11 years, Dr. Lee has established himself as a thought leader on matters related to all matters related to addiction, mental health and recovery. A triple-boarded physician, he completed his Adult Psychiatry residency at Duke University Hospital and his fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry from Johns Hopkins Hospital. He is a diplomat of the American Board of Addiction Medicine and is a member of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry’s Substance Use Disorder Committee.
Dr. Lee’s experience with families from across the country and abroad provide him with an unparalleled perspective on emerging drug trends, co-occurring mental health conditions, and the ever-changing culture of addiction. Given his unique degree of specialization and powerful messaging, Dr. Lee has been featured in numerous media venues and national academic conferences alike. He is the author of Recovering My Kid: Parenting Young Adults in Treatment and Beyond, which provides an honest guide for parental leadership in times of crisis.
Joseph Kvedar, M.D.
At Mass General Brigham (formerly Partners HealthCare), Dr. Joe Kvedar has focused on driving innovation, creating the market, and gaining acceptance for connected health for nearly three decades. He is now applying his expertise, insights, and influence to advancing adoption of telehealth and virtual care technologies at the national level. Dr. Kvedar continues to guide the transformation of healthcare delivery as a respected thought leader, author, and convener.
Dr. Kvedar is Chair of the Board of the American Telemedicine Association (ATA). As Editor-in-Chief of npj Digital Medicine, a Nature Research journal, he is working to establish the evidence base needed to guide innovation and the implementation of virtual care.
He is co-chair the American Medical Association’s (AMA) Digital Medicine Payment Advisory Group (DMPAG), which works to ensure widespread coverage of telehealth and remote patient monitoring, and successfully established several new provider codes for telehealth reimbursement through the CPT process. Dr. Kvedar is also a member of the AAMC’s (Association of American Medical Colleges) telehealth committee, creating tools that will enable medical schools and residency programs to integrate telehealth into the training of future practitioners.
Ken Carr brings over 30 years of finance, technology, data analysis and reporting experience in the health and human service field to OPEN MINDS. He currently serves as a Senior Associate with the OPEN MINDS consulting practice. In this role, Mr. Carr serves as a subject matter expert in the OPEN MINDS consulting practice where he has led numerous engagements in strategic planning, merger and acquisition prospecting, business process improvement, managed care and value-based contracting preparedness, financial analysis of service lines, and technology selection.
Prior to joining OPEN MINDS, Mr. Carr served as the Chief Financial Officer for Elite DNA Therapy Services, a mental health provider based in Fort Myers, FL. In this position, Mr. Carr led development of the strategic plan, identified opportunities to optimize the EHR, and restructured financial reporting and analysis by service lines and key metrics.
Prior to his role at Elite DNA Therapy Services, he served as the Chief Financial Officer of The Centers, a community mental health center in Ocala, Florida. In this position, Mr. Carr led a realignment of the organization’s financial management functions. This included revenue cycle management, EHR bill implementation and reporting, cash management enhancement, and strategic financial analysis.
Prior to his role at The Centers, Mr. Carr served as Chief Financial Officer of Guild Incorporated, an organization providing residential and community based mental health services in St. Paul, Minnesota. As CFO, Mr. Carr led the financial, billing, IT, quality, informatics, compliance, and facilities activities. During his tenure at Guild Incorporated, Mr. Carr used his expertise in change management and business process improvement to lead the EHR implementation team, align service data reporting and financial performance, and lead the financial and data capture activities for new service initiatives.
Mr. Carr has also held the positions of Administrative Director and Finance Director at the St. Paul National Testing Laboratory, a biomedical testing facility of the American Red Cross. In those positions he oversaw activities to enhance inventory management, align financial results to industry standards, and improve financial and facilities performance through problem analysis and quality management initiatives. He also was involved in directing human resource functions during laboratory closing near the end of his tenure.
Mr. Carr earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of South Dakota, and a Master of Divinity Degree from Sioux Falls Seminary. He maintains an active CPA license with the State of South Dakota.
Carol Clayton, Ph.D.
Carol Clayton brings over 30 years of experience in the health and human service fields to the OPEN MINDS team. She has a wealth of experience both in clinical work and in executive management. Her areas of expertise include data-driven strategy development and management, performance measurement and outcomes reporting, quality improvement, and growth strategies.
Prior to joining OPEN MINDS, Dr. Clayton served as the Vice President of Behavioral Health Solutions Integration for Relias, an online training solution for health care providers. At Relias, Dr. Clayton led the development of analytics-focused market solutions. Her areas of focus were performance measurement systems, management team dashboards, and analytics for managing value-based reimbursement.
Prior to her role at Relias, Dr. Clayton served as the Chief Executive Officer for Care Management Technologies (CMT), an analytics solution organization of which she was a minority owner. With CMT, Dr. Clayton worked with state and county governments and provider collaboratives to develop shared performance management and performance improvement platforms. Her work included creating solution-specific health information exchanges promoting data sharing between multiple payer and provider organizations.
Prior to joining Care Management Technologies, Dr. Clayton served as the Executive Director for the North Carolina Council of Community Programs. In this role, she worked with both public agencies and private provider organizations during the evolution of the North Carolina MH/DD/SA service delivery system to a new managed care model. Her work involved both advocacy to public policy makers and the legislature, as well as working with member organizations on improving their delivery system.
Previously, Dr. Clayton also served Executive Director for Magellan Behavioral Health. In this role, she was responsible for the Magellan book of business – at-risk managed care, administrative service organization (ASO) contracts, and employee assistance program (EAP) contracts for two million lives across four states.
Dr. Clayton started her career as a Staff Psychologist at John Umstead Hospital. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Special Education from Appalachian State University, and her Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Paul M. Duck
Paul M. Duck brings over 30 years of experience in leadership and management focusing on managed care, health information technology organizations, strategy, business development, and market expansion, and customer experience optimization to the OPEN MINDS team.
Prior to joining OPEN MINDS, Mr. Duck served as the Vice President, Strategy & Development at Beacon Health Options. In this role, Mr. Duck led the organization’s strategy and business development efforts – responsible for a 30% increase in net revenue and initiated over $1 billion in revenue generation. Mr. Duck was active in national behavioral health initiatives as an executive of Beacon Health Options, including participating as a speaker at national and state association meetings.
Before joining Beacon Health Options, Mr. Duck was the Vice President of Business Development at Netsmart Technologies. During his tenure, Mr. Duck was responsible for business planning, including, the oversight of strategic activities including acquisitions, development, and execution of strategic initiatives, and positioning, and sales of large strategic customers. He also led the rollout of the company’s benchmarking and data analytics product suite.
Prior to Netsmart, Mr. Duck served as the Chief Executive Officer for Coastal Orthopedics and Pain Management, a large group practice with five clinic locations and two ambulatory surgical centers. As the organization’s chief executive officer, Mr. Duck was responsible for significant positive changes in leadership and corporate culture, financial and operational performance, compliance, and governance. Mr. Duck improved net collections by over $1 million per month and grew the practice through negotiating better contract rates with payers. He also implemented an organizational rebranding initiative and launched a new marketing campaign.
Prior to Coastal Orthopedics and Pain Management, Mr. Duck served as the President and Chief Executive Officer for Florida Radiology Imaging, one of the largest outpatient diagnostic imaging service companies serving the greater Orlando market. During his tenure, Mr. Duck led the construction of three new, full modality, diagnostic imaging locations. Mr. Duck revolutionized the company’s culture by creating a highly attractive and functional work environment.
Mr. Duck earned his Bachelor of Arts in Business Management from Case Western Reserve University. He earned his Associate of Arts in Electronic Engineering Technology from the Electronic Technology Institute. Mr. Duck received an award by Inc Magazine for leading Florida Radiology Imaging as one of America’s fastest-growing companies. Mr. Duck recently served as a contributing author to the book The New Health Age: The Future of Health Care in America.
Sharon Hicks, OPEN MINDS Senior Associate, has more than 20 years of experience in the health and human service field. She has extensive experience and wide range of expertise in health plan management, in clinical operations management, and technology.
Prior to joining OPEN MINDS, Ms. Hicks spent two decades in a number of executive positions within the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) system and within its health plan division. Ms. Hicks served as the Chief Operating Officer for Community Care Behavioral Health, a managed behavioral health organization. She was responsible for all aspects of the organization’s operations including fiscal, information systems, the claims processing department, and the design of clinical systems. In addition Ms. Hicks managed the day-to-day operations of including human resources, facilities, purchasing, and security.
Ms. Hicks also served as the Vice President, Internet Strategy, UPMC Insurance Services Division and, since 2002, as the Chief Executive Officer of Askesis Development Group, Inc. since May of 2002. In this role, Ms. Hicks was responsible for the growth of the company, profitability of the company, and the direction of software development.
Ms. Hick started her impressive health care career as a psychiatric social worker before being promoted to Assistant Director of Social Work. Prior to her executive promotions, Ms. Hicks served as a Clinical Administrator for both Ambulatory Services and Emergency and Intake Services at the UPMC Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic. In this role, Ms. Hicks managed the behavioral health division, the budgets for all departments, and implemented new software replacing paper billing for clinical services.
Ms. Hicks received both her Masters of Business Administration and Masters of Social Work degrees from the University of Pittsburg. Before pursuing her graduate education, Ms. Hicks received her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology.
Jason Lippman brings over 15 years of executive experience in the health and human services field to the OPEN MINDS team, with expertise in health care strategy, public policy and government relations, managed care, and communications. Prior to his role with OPEN MINDS, Mr. Lippman served as the Vice President of Strategy & Development for Beacon Health Options. In this role, Mr. Lippman developed strategic relationships and solutions to facilitate new growth. He also identified opportunities to integrate physical and behavioral health services to improve both quality and affordability.
Before his time with Beacon Health Options, Mr. Lippman served as the Executive Vice President of The Coalition for Behavioral Health, a New York-state based behavioral health provider association. In that role, he was responsible for operations, development, financial management, and member services. Mr. Lippman also secured $263,000 to drive provider business transformation and established a Regional Addiction Resource Center and an e-learning system for over 6,000 users.
During his tenure at The Coalition for Behavioral Health, Mr. Lippman also served as Interim President and Chief Executive Officer. In this role, he developed and implemented a strategic restructuring plan that achieved 23% savings and realigned $1.5 million in contracted training programs into a center for excellence to maximize value and achieve operational efficiencies.
Prior to his role with The Coalition for Behavioral Health, Mr. Lippman was the Director of Public Policy & Government Relations for Amida Care, a New York City-based Medicaid health plan. In this role, Mr. Lippman served as the lead for Medicaid redesign strategies and delivery system reform initiatives. He secured a $500,000 DSRIP planning grant and over $100,000 in New York City Council funding for member-driven health and wellness programs.
Earlier in his career, Mr. Lippman served as a Director of Policy and Advocacy for The Coalition of Behavioral Health Agencies, where he advanced policy strategies to increase opportunities for membership under healthcare reform. Mr. Lippman’s efforts increased the number of advocates and members by more than 30%.
Mr. Lippman received a Master of Arts in Public Affairs and Policy from the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy at the University of Albany. He also received Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Binghamton University.
Margaret Mays brings over 20 years of health care industry experience to the OPEN MINDS team. Ms. Mays currently serves as a Senior Associate at OPEN MINDS. Her areas of expertise include health plan contracting, and reimbursement, quality program design and metrics-based programs, training development, health care processing systems, policy development, and accreditation/regulatory requirements.
Prior to joining OPEN MINDS, Ms. Mays served as the Vice President of Quality Improvement at Magellan Health Services, where she provided comprehensive quality leadership, developed high-performance teams, and improved metrics. She launched the Magellan Lean Six Sigma Training Institute resulting in an ROI of $1.7 million. Ms. Mays cultivated a high-performance team of over 20 staff members and improved department productivity through mentoring and coaching.
Prior to her role at Magellan Health, Ms. Mays served as the Director of Quality Management at TLC Family Care Healthplan, a division of Amerigroup, where she successfully managed MCO NCQA accreditation and directed all HEDIS processes. Ms. Mays helped produce a 27% improvement in Early Periodic Screening, Diagnosis, and Treatment. She also achieved 95% and above performance on state audits through a full-spectrum quality improvement program.
Previously, Ms. Mays served as the Director of Quality and Compliance at Magellan Health Services, where she managed a wide range of quality processes, developed high impact reporting, and collaborated with cross functional teams to improve data accuracy. At Magellan, Ms. Mays achieved a track record of exemplary audit scores through implementing state-of-the-art practices.
Ms. Mays received a Doctor of Health Sciences from A.T. Still University in Mesa, Arizona. She holds a master’s degree in Health Administration from the University of Washington. She previously earned a Bachelor of Science in Allied Health Administration from the University of Alabama
Joseph P. Naughton-Travers, EdM
Joseph P. Naughton-Travers, EdM, Senior Associate, has more than 30 years of experience in the health and human service field. In this tenure as senior associate with OPEN MINDS since 1998, he has served as lead of dozens of client initiatives, served as editor of OPEN MINDS publications, and is the author of many groundbreaking articles and presentations.
Mr. Naughton-Travers brings to OPEN MINDS a broad range of experiences in private and public sector delivery of behavioral health and social services. He started his career as a behavioral health clinician, working in both child welfare and community mental health clinic settings. Subsequently, Mr. Naughton-Travers held a senior business operations management position for a psychiatric hospital system and its community mental health clinics. Later, he was vice president of a firm specializing in information systems and billing and receivables management for community-based mental health programs.
Since joining OPEN MINDS, Mr. Naughton-Travers has developed business solutions for provider and professional organizations, state and county government, technology companies, and venture capital firms. His primary areas of expertise include strategic planning and metrics-based management, electronic health record (EHR) and technology selection and implementation, operations improvement, and corporate compliance. For the past decade, over half his consulting practice has focused on aiding organizations in technology selection and implementation, including all aspects of strategic technology planning, functional specifications development, request for proposal development, vendor selection, and contracting.
He has written numerous articles, including “Winning the Human Resource Wars: Tried, True and New Strategies for Behavioral Health and Social Service Organizations,” “Five Pillars of Management Competency,” “Data Driven Decision Making: Moving to an Organizational Measurement Culture,” “Survival of the Smartest: What is Your Organization’s Information Literacy IQ?,” and “Strategic Human Resource Management: Aligning Compensation with Employee Performance and Organizational Strategy.” Mr. Naughton-Travers is also a nationally recognized speaker, having conducted hundreds of executive and professional executive training events around the nation.
Mr. Naughton-Travers received his Bachelor’s degree from Miami University of Ohio and his Masters’ of Education in Counseling Psychology from Boston University.
Monica E. Oss
Monica E. Oss, M.S., Chief Executive Officer and Senior Associate, is the founder of OPEN MINDS. For the past three decades, Ms. Oss has led the OPEN MINDS team and its research on health and human service market trends and its national consulting practice. Ms. Oss is well known for her numerous books and articles focused on the strategic and marketing implications of the evolving health and human service field. She has unique expertise in payer financing models, provider rate setting, and service pricing. She has led numerous engagements with state Medicaid plans, county governments, private insurers, managed care programs, service provider organizations, technology vendors, neurotechnology and pharmaceutical organizations, and investment banking firms – with a focus on the implications of financing changes on delivery system design.
Laird Sapir brings a diverse background of user-experience design, project management, customer service, and over ten years of web development experience to the OPEN MINDS team. In her current role as Vice President of Web Services, Ms. Sapir leads our team of web developers; brings technical guidance and business practicality to every web-based application that OPEN MINDS develops; and defines a strategic purpose and unique digital brand for each client project that crosses her path.
Ms. Sapir has written several widely used open source plugins serving the author community, and has been cited in industry publications such as Torque Magazine and WPMU Dev.
Ms. Sapir is a Le Cordon Bleu-trained chef who has served as a Restaurant Manager and Executive Assistant to the Vice President for Nordstrom. Throughout Ms. Sapir’s history with Nordstrom, she experienced first-hand the importance of having an “ear to the ground” to better understand the customer experience. Ms. Sapir’s tenure with Nordstrom provided unparalleled insight into consumer expectations, preferences, and purchasing patterns – all of which directly translate into optimal user experience best practices. Ms. Sapir holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from the University of North Carolina, in addition to an Associate of Arts in Culinary Arts from the California School of Culinary Arts.