Workforce Solutions Jam: Workforce Expansion

Expanding the workforce is critical to meeting the growing need for timely and effective behavioral health care. Workforce expansion can help improve accessibility to services and enhance the overall quality of care.

Be part of the solution and join us on Tuesday, May 21, 1-2 p.m. ET for the first Workforce Solutions Jam! This monthly webinar will build national momentum for addressing the workforce crisis and encourage collaboration through the Center for Workforce Solutions.

The Workforce Solutions Jam will provide an opportunity to:

  • Learn innovative new practices.
  • Stay informed about ongoing efforts.
  • Engage with subject matter experts.
  • Hear about new legislation and federal workforce efforts.
  • Take action!

On May 21, we’ll cover innovative behavioral health workforce expansion projects, such as Accelerate the Future and Mass League.

Key highlights of this Jam include:

  • Learn how Massachusetts has addressed a workforce shortage through apprenticeships and loan forgiveness .
  • Hear about how a foundation has invested in projects to build a well-defined behavioral health career ladder and well-paying employment opportunities.
  • Understand the Center for Workforce Solutions’ use of collective impact to address the workforce crisis and key accomplishments since our November 2023 webinar.
  • Learn more about SAMSHA’s Behavioral Health Workforce Workgroup efforts.

The Workforce Solutions Jam is open to members of the behavioral health workforce, clients, peers, policymakers, providers, researchers, educators, activists, advocates — anyone who is interested in working to create solutions to address the behavioral health workforce crisis.

Speaker Information

Ross Lohr, Managing Director, Accelerate the Future

Ross Lohr (he/him) is the managing director of Accelerate The Future, a private family foundation based in Massachusetts. Originally from Newton, Massachusetts, Lohr received his bachelor’s degrees in economics and psychology from Boston University and an MBA in non-profit management from the Heller School of Social Policy at Brandeis University. While at Boston University, Lohr founded a non-profit organization providing educational opportunities to children in rural Tanzania, and later founded a social enterprise creating fair wage jobs at a worker owned factory in North Carolina around textile recycling.

Alexis Murray, MSW, Director, Program Operations, Loan Operations, Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers

Alexis Murray is the Director of Program Operations, Workforce Initiatives at the Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers (Mass League). She directs many programs that are in support of a broad range of the Massachusetts workforce, including the Mass League’s community health centers as well as other community-based organizations.

Alexis’ passion for community health centers began when she was a child to her single mother who was the Executive Director of a CHC in Seattle, Washington, where she grew up.  She would often attend meetings, go to the health center and to national conferences alongside her mother where she would observe her mother’s passion for CHCs – that passion has continued through Alexis in her career in community health.

Over the course of the past fifteen years, Alexis has become an expert and advocate for the Massachusetts workforce needs.  In 2017 and again in 2022, Alexis was selected to be on Mass League’s procurement response teams that ultimately brought in the two largest contracts ever to be awarded to the Mass League.  The first being $115M Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment (DSRIP) Statewide Investments which was comprised of loan repayment programs, special projects initiatives, family medicine and nurse practitioner residency programs as well many other workforce initiatives.  The second being the $300M MA Repay Loan Repayment Program.  These programs were some of the first to focus not only on the needs of the CHCs and primary care but also the needs of the behavioral health and substance use disorder workforce at many other MA community-based organizations.

Alexis holds a Bachelors in Psychology from Suffolk University as well as a Masters in Social Work from Simmons University.

Brie Reimann, Vice President, Practice Improvement and Consulting, National Council for Mental Wellbeing

Brie Reimann (she/her) is the Vice President of Practice Improvement and Consulting at the National Council for Mental Wellbeing, a membership organization that drives policy and social change on behalf of 3,400 mental health and substance use treatment organizations and the more than 10 million children, adults and families they serve. In her role she provides department leadership over 40+ practice improvement initiatives that aim to improve access to and quality of care for individuals living with mental illness and substance use concerns. She is a passionate change leader who believes that all individuals and families should have equitable access to quality health care services. Prior to joining the National Council Reimann led statewide integrated care initiatives in Colorado focusing on primary care, mental health, substance use and HIV care settings working toward advancing comprehensive care  to provide essential primary, treatment and recovery services for all individuals and families.

Amy B. Smith, LPC, Public Health Advisor, Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT)

Amy B. Smith, L.P.C. is a Public Health Advisor within the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT), Division of Systems Improvement (DSI).  She serves as a co-staff lead for the Cross-SAMHSA Workforce Workgroup and co-POC for the Behavioral Health Workforce Research Center which is funded by SAMHSA and Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). She is the ACOR for the National Center for Substance Abuse and Child Welfare (NCSACW) a collaborative effort between CSAT and the Administration for Children and Families (ACF). Amy is the SME lead for the Pregnant and Postpartum Women (PPW) programs in DSI and a member of the HHS Maternal Mental Health Task Force. Prior to joining the DSI team, Amy was the co-lead for the Bringing Recovery Supports to Scale -Technical Assistance Center Strategy (BRSS TACS).