The Mental Health Drug and Alcohol Services Board of Logan and Champaign Counties will be going through some administration changes during the next month, with Executive Director Tammy Nicholl stepping down to move into the private sector in direct client services.
The board approved at their last meeting a new executive director for the organization — Dr. Adam Sorensen, who has worked at the MHDAS Board since 2018 as the director of treatment and recovery. Just in the last month, the Mechanicsburg resident also attained his doctorate in health care administration from Franklin University. He moves into the new position July 1.
“I’m just so grateful that I get to serve our community in this role. It’s a privilege and an honor,” Sorensen said.
“I have a great peace about everything. We’re in a good place here and it feels like a good time to make the transition,” said Nicholl, who has served as executive director for the past five years, and has worked at the MHDAS Board since 2005, previously serving as the director of service systems.
Her last day at the MHDAS Board is July 14. She said she is looking forward to serving the needs of the community as a life coach at the new SOZO Center, 661 S. Main St., Bellefontaine, opened by Shannon Maier and Journey Living Ministries. The SOZO Center “aims to give hope to the hurting and healing to the broken-hearted,” according to Journey Living’s Facebook page.
“I’ve missed working in direct services and helping people. This has been on my heart for awhile,” said Nicholl, who is a licensed social worker and has a counseling background.
Nicholl will continue serving as the coordinator for the LOSS Team, or Local Outreach to Survivors of Suicide, a group of volunteers that serves Logan and Champaign counties. The trained team responds at any hour of the day after being notified by law enforcement or coroner of a suicide death to meet with and provide support to loved ones.
“I’m looking forward to continuing in that role and being able to invest even more time into it,” she said, noting that she also has been re-appointed to another term on the West Central Ohio Community Corrections Board as well.
Prior to his start at the MHDAS Board, Sorensen was a clinical director at Oesterlen Services for Youth in Clark County.
“The kids in residential care stole my heart right away,” he said. “It was quite the happening place. We even started a garden there.”
While at Oesterlen, Sorensen said he discovered he is a “systems guy” with a passion for examining how to make sweeping positive changes to systemic practices.
The incoming executive director praised the advancements made under Nicholl’s leadership, including new providers, funding and grants.
“There are so many opportunities to get involved. Our peer support programs has grown five to six times in recent years, and medication-assisted treatment has grown as well.”
“The need for our services has expanded exponentially. The funds used to be the biggest challenge. Now the mental health and addiction funds are more readily available, but the challenge has become the workforce shortage — finding people to carry out the work.”
The MHDAS offices are located at 1521 N. Detroit St., West Liberty, and website is available at https://www.mhdas.org/. Officials note the national suicide and crisis hotline is available by dialing or texting 988. The 24/7 crisis hotline is (800) 224-0422 or text “4HOPE” to 741 741.
Info from MHDAS