My job as Executive Director is to make sure family voice is heard and understood in a variety of settings- local communities, state offices, collaborations with other agencies, and with legislators. I often find myself acting as a ‘connector’- making sure that families have the opportunity to connect to each other or to ACMH, or facilitating conversations between different agencies or collaborative bodies. I believe that real conversations and relationships are the path to better lives for kids and families.
Favorite piece of wisdom:
Reaching out and asking for support isn’t a sign of weakness- it’s a sign of strength. And sometime, you’ll have the opportunity to be a support for someone else.
In my role as Education Coordinator I provide information and training to parents, youth and community partners across Michigan and coordinate statewide training and events including the ACMH Conference. I also participate in community education & events to help raise awareness about the issues of children and youth with mental health challenges and their families. I am also a certified Youth Mental Health First Aid Trainer. One of my favorite activities is hosting ACMH Parent and Youth Leadership Camp where I have the opportunity and privilege to meet and share information and skills with so many passionate & gifted future family leaders!
Favorite piece of wisdom/Quote:“Be generous, be delicate, and always pursue the prize.”– Henry James I think this piece of wisdom can be especially helpful to you along your journey of advocating for your child, yourself, family and your community!
Krissy Dristy, Youth Peer Support and Parent Support Partner Program Manager
Hi, I’m Krissy Dristy! In my role at ACMH, I help oversee our peer delivered services for youth and families. In partnership with the staff at ACMH, I provide training and technical assistance to Youth Peer Support Specialists, Partner Support Partners and supervisors around the state. I am passionate about the importance of lived experience in our public mental health system, and the difference our stories can make when supporting youth and families to find their voice. I love talking about how YPS and PSP enhance our service array in Michigan, and I am very fortunate to be able to do this regularly in my work!
Favorite piece of wisdom:
Trust the process. When you are going through hard times remember who you are, where you are going and how far you have come. It may be a bad day, but it’s not a bad life!
Sara Reynolds, Youth Peer Support Statewide Coordinator
Hello! My name is Sara Reynolds and I am the Statewide Coordinator for Youth Peer Support. I lead the Youth Peer Support training and certification model by facilitating trainings, coaching calls, and technical assistance as well as heading up our continued development of the model. As a person with my own lived experience with mental health challenges, I am passionate about Youth Peer Support – particularly the hope and empowerment that is at the core of this unique service. I believe that we are extremely fortunate to have such a powerful support available to youth in Michigan and I am so pleased to be able to partner with the Youth Peer Support Specialists and their supervisors across the state who are truly making a difference.
Favorite piece of wisdom: “We rise by lifting others”
Kelly Bailey, Parent Support Partner Statewide Coordinator
I provide all of the training, technical support and assistance to Parent Support Parters, PSP Supervisors and Agencies who employ Parent Support Partners across the state. I am also a mom and a grandmother.
Favorite piece of wisdom: Where there is love, there is hope.
Laura Marshall, Parent Support Partner Trainer (photo coming soon)
It is an honor to assist in training and equipping future Parent Support Partners. I look forward to sharing my experiences and things I learned from the families I worked with in order to better prepare those willing to serve in this role.
I also continue on the journey of raising my kids, 3 boys, with my husband as my partner. Self-care is important to surviving the challenges. I practice self-care by reading, gardening, growing orchids, and spending time with the ‘other’ kids, our 5 goats.
Favorite piece of wisdom: “Imperfections are not inadequacies; they are reminders that we are all in this together.”
Cecilia Nguyen, Youth and Young Adult Statewide Coordinator
My role is to assure that youth and young adult voice is incorporated in all aspects of the Healthy Transitions program. I provide Healthy Transition Peers with technical assistance and guidance in their roles in accordance to the Transition to Independence Process model. I believe that youth and family voice is invaluable and is the key to progressing the way we create and provide services in the mental health system.
Favorite piece of wisdom:
I believe in planting seeds for resiliency and recovery. By taking just a moment to actively listen to an individual’s story and letting them know that they’re not alone in their journey, you are planting a seed of hope for change and growth.
I have worked at ACMH since 1996. I was originally hired to work from home transcribing letters. My Administrative Assistant job title has included a lot of different duties over the years as our organization has evolved. I currently work out of our state office in Lansing assisting with the Parent Support Partner training & certification program as well providing office support. I also serve in the unofficial role of “accidental techie” for all things computer related.
I have one husband, two kids and one very AWESOME God…life is good!
Mary Porter, Business Manager photo coming soon