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GETTYSBURG, Pa. (September 23, 2018) — Over 250 health and human service executives convened in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania this past week for The 2018 OPEN MINDS Executive Leadership Retreat, a week-long event focused on strategy, business practice models, and personal resiliency tools executives need to tackle the unique challenges of a changing health and human service market.

The week kicked off with an information-packed seminar led by OPEN MINDS Senior Associate, Richard Louis, titled: How To Build Value-Based Payer Partnerships: An OPEN MINDS Executive Seminar On Best Practices In Marketing, Negotiating, & Contracting With Health Plans. Executives from organizations throughout the country convened at this initial event to discuss best practices in understanding and demonstrating ‘organizational value’ in a way that will capture health plan interest and secure optimal service agreements.

On Tuesday, September 18th , William Lopez, M.D., CPE, Senior Medical Director-Behavioral Health, Cigna Behavioral opened the main event with the highly-anticipated plenary address: Key Issues Shaping The Market: What Executives Need To Know To Succeed. Over 250 executives were in attendance for this initial plenary — and that number increased throughout the week as the expanded program continued. In addition to the battlefield case study sessions, special events, and insightful discussion sessions, Wednesday’s program was highlighted by Debra Smyers, Plan Product President, Sunshine Health. Her innovation-focused plenary, Next Generation Models For Health Plan Behavioral Health Services, explored the changing expectations for behavioral health provider organizations in a value-based market and reviewed Centene’s new models of care management for behavioral health.

The comprehensive program for the event featured numerous industry thought leaders as faculty, including:

  • Craig Albers, RN, MSN, MBA, President & Chief Operation Officer, Mercy Health St. Charles Hospital
  • Frank Baumann, Chief Operating Officer, BayMark
  • Debbie Cagle, Chief Marketing Officer, Centerstone
  • Joe Dan Beavers, CPA, MHA, President and Chief Executive Officer, LifeSkills, Inc.
  • Peggy DeCarlis, MSSA, LCSW-C, Former Chief Operating Officer & Current Executive Consultant, New Directions Behavioral Health
  • Matthew M. Dorman, Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Credible Behavioral Health Software
  • Wayne Easterwood, Chief Information Officer, Centerstone
  • Terry G. Fox, Licensed Battlefield Guide, Gettysburg
  • Scott Green, Senior Vice President & General Manager, Behavioral Health, Netsmart
  • Marlowe Greenberg, MPP, Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Foothold Technology
  • David C. Guth, Jr., Chief Executive Officer, Centerstone
  • Matthew E. Hanis, Executive Producer & Founder, Business of Healthcare
  • Babette Hankey, Chief Operating Officer, Aspire Health Partners
  • Paul Harris, Chief Executive Officer, VPAC Clinical
  • Anthony Hassan, Ed.D, LCSW, Chief Executive Officer & President, Cohen Veterans Network
  • Tine Hansen-Turton, President & Chief Executive Officer, Woods Services
  • Michael J. Hayduk, MS, MGA, Retired Leader, Retired U.S. Army Chief Warrant Officer 5, Defense Information Systems Agency
  • Steve Holman, Chief Financial Officer, Centerstone
  • Laurie Keenan McGarvey, Senior Consultant for Organization Effectiveness, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania
  • Mark Lashley, Chief Executive Officer, Caregiver, Inc.
  • Bob Lincoln, Chief Executive Officer, County Social Services Mental Health & Disability Services Region
  • William Lopez, M.D., CPE, Senior Medical Director-Behavioral Health, Cigna Behavioral Health
  • John Markley, MBA, Chief Executive Officer, Centerstone Illinois
  • Neil Massey, Deputy Director, Autism Treatment Center (ATC)
  • Jonathan G. Morphett, Managing Director, Head of Investment Banking, Avondale Partners, LLC
  • Gary D. Nettis, Jr., Vice President, Corporate Development, Caregiver, Inc.
  • Robert Prosperi, Licensed Battlefield Guide, Gettysburg
  • Vasanta B. Pundarika, Senior Vice President, Raymond James
  • John Sheehan, MBA, President and Chief Executive Officer, Harbor Behavioral Health
  • Debra Smyers, Plan Product President, Sunshine Health
  • Jim Stefansic, Ph.D., MBA, President and Chief Executive Officer, Raiven Healthcare
  • John Stupak, President & Chief Executive Officer, Sequel Youth and Family Services
  • Linda Timmons, President & Chief Executive Officer, Mosaic
  • Peggy S. Terhune, Ph.D., President & Chief Executive Officer, Monarch
  • Bob Vero, Ed.D., Chief Executive Officer, Centerstone Tennessee
  • Amanda Verner Thompson, Senior Vice President, Raymond James Healthcare Finance
  • Jim Wallis, Director of Business Development / IBHHC – Executive Director, Chestnut Health Systems

The retreat closed out on with two events on Friday, September 21st How To Develop A Strategic Plan: An OPEN MINDS Executive Seminar On Best Practices In Strategy, Portfolio Management, & Scenario-Based Planning focused on best practices in strategic plan development and the keys to success in strategic plan implementation and a full day event The 2018 OPEN MINDS Mergers, Acquisitions, & Affiliations Summit: Best Practices For Non-Profit Health & Human Service Organizations – A Centerstone & OPEN MINDS Collaboration, the first-of-its-kind event, which was a collaboration between OPEN MINDS and Centerstone, designed for non-profit executives serving complex consumers—focused on best practices models for addressing the strategic issues of scale in behavioral health, autism, I/DD, children’s services, and long-term care.

All presentations and materials from the event are available online to Institute attendees and OPEN MINDS Circle Elite and Premium members. Learn more about becoming an OPEN MINDS Circle member online at

The 2019 OPEN MINDS Executive Leadership Retreat will be held on September 9-13, 2019 at the Wyndham Gettysburg Hotel in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

Next in the OPEN MINDS executive education series is The 2018 OPEN MINDS Technology & Informatics Institute. The Institute is the premier national meeting focused on the tech tools executives need to improve performance, streamline decision-making, and add value to the management and delivery of care for consumers with complex needs. Early registration is recommended as this institute, now in its 15th year, historically sells out. Online registration is available online at:

For additional questions and inquiries, please contact Sarah C. Threnhauser, Executive Vice President, OPEN MINDS or Stacey Cotton, Institute Director, Education Programs at 717-334-1329 or

OPEN MINDS is a national market intelligence and strategic advisory firm focused on the sectors of the health and human service field serving consumers with chronic conditions and complex support needs. Founded in 1987 and based in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, the 175+ associates provide market insights and innovative management solutions designed to improve operational and strategic performance. Learn more at

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