Ohio Citizen Advocates for Addiction Recovery

 

6500 Emerald Parkway, Suite 100

Dublin, OH 43016

Email:  advocate@oca-ohio.org

 

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Board of Directors

Our organization can only succeed by the dedication and passion of our Board of Diretors.  Our Board consists of individuals in recovery, friends and family members, and allies with  diverse backgrounds, cultures, and experiences from all over the state of Ohio.

 

If you are interested in joining the OCAAR Board of Directors please complete an OCAAR Board of Directors Application and submit it along with a current resume or Curriculum Vitae to:

sthompson@oca-ohio.org

Board Member Application

J. Gary Gonnella, President

Mr. Gonnella is a licensed Social Worker, Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor and a trained Peer Recovery Coach, Gary currently provides counseling services to adults at the Center for Alcoholism and Drug Addiction Services (CADAS) in Montgomery County.  He has worked there since 2006 starting in the adolescent in-patient unit and for the last 5 years in the adult residential/outpatient area. 

 

As a person in long-term recovery Gary is very passionate about his work, and is committed to tirelessly promoting abstinence as the gold standard for those in recovery.  He has also worked as a chemical dependency technician and supervisor at TCN Behavioral Christopher House.  Prior to this Gary spent 28 years at Delphi Kettering where he enjoyed great success as a trainer, organizer and employee assistance program representative. 

Currently enrolled at Wilberforce in the Rehabilitation Masters program, Gary graduated Summa cum Laude from Capital University in 2012 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work. 

 

David Caperton, Vice President

Dave Caperton is a Ohio native born in Medina County on November 10, 1945. He
grew up in a large farming family. Dave served in the U.S. Navy during the Viet Nam
war. He became addicted to alcohol after his return home. It was after this Dave found
recovery and began the walk on the pathway to a new life. His sobriety date is
September 8, 1977. Since that date he has had no reason to use alcohol or mind
altering drugs.


Dave spent many years in the automotive field, and retail sales. After retirement in 2008
he determined to pursue a career in substance abuse counseling. He enrolled as a
freshman at The University of Akron with a focus on alcohol and drug treatment.
Today Dave continues to share his experience, strength, and hope with other alcoholics,
and addicts.

 

He is employed as Peer Support Specialist at the Medina County Jail.
Remaining active Dave sponsors several men in recovery,and participates in many
community recovery activities, and programs. He serves on The Ohio Citizens Advisory
Panel, and has been a OCAAR board member since 2012.

Stefanie Robinson, Treasurer

Stefanie Robinson has been in recovery from drugs, alcohol and an eating disorder for over 8 years. She is from Medina, Ohio and works for Grace Church as a full time graphic designer & communications specialist.

 

Stefanie also owns her own communications company, Simply Bold LLC. She is a professional public speaker and has shared her recovery story with over 50,000 people in the past 7 years.  Stefanie is active in her community where she does recovery peer support for Medina County Drug Court and works in addiction and recovery advocacy and education with a local non-profit, Robby’s Voice.  Stefanie joined OCAAR in 2015 and has been intregal in the transformation of the organzation.  She has dedicated her time helping the Executive Director with the branding of the organization.

 

Stefanie is married and has two children. She loves to spend time with friends and family, living life to its fullest…one day at a time!

Cindy McQuown, Secretary

Cindy is a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor and a Licensed Independent Chemical Dependency Counselor.  A graduate of the University of Akron, she is also a Clinical member of the American Association of Marital and Family Therapists and the Ohio Counseling Association.  She works in both private practice and also serves as Program Director for Cornerstone Wellness, Inc, a non-profit devoted to education and prevention of behavioral health concerns, as well as professional consultation to the Medina community regarding behavioral health needs and services.

 

Cindy’s clinical areas of expertise include the treatment of chemical dependency and eating disorders throughout the lifespan and helping families and couples with these issues.  In her work for Cornerstone Wellness, Inc., she has served with a team of professional research consultants on several grant funded initiatives that serve Medina County.  She has worked in the development of evaluation plans, data gathering protocol, and data interpretation.  She has co-authored research published in Aging and Mental Health, regarding a promising prevention program for older adults called Prevention BINGO.  She has also co-authored two chapters on issues of retirement with Dr. Harvey Sterns.  She completed the University of Akron’s certificate in Gerontology in May, 2013.   

 

Cindy lives in Seville, Ohio with her husband and two daughters.  She has two grown children and two sets of twin grandchildren. 

 

Walter Asbury, Director

Walt has been in long-term recovery since 1981. He is active in twelve step programs and working to eliminate the stigma of being in recovery. He is a founding board member of sober clubs and meeting halls in the Columbus area.

 

Starting in street outreach with Inner City Ministries in the mid-eighties, Walt continues to connect clients with housing as well as treatment and advocates for treatment in lieu of conviction within the court system. He formerly worked as a coordinator for a DUI program, and then worked in marketing for a local treatment provider. Walt currently serves as a Ohio Mental Health and Addiction Services Planning Council, and serves on the PAIMI (Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness) Council.

 

Walt continues the work of providing services to the underserved, advocates for services through drug courts and provides family intervention services. He has competed the Ohio Peer Supporter training program and is a Certified Peer Supporter in addictions and mental health.

Wayne Ford, Director

Wayne Ford is a person in long-term recovery.  Wayne is on the Board of Directors for Ohio Citizen Advocates for Addiction Recovery (OCAAR). Wayne, once the Executive Director of Focus on Friends ,was instrumental in transforming the organization into  Hancock County's first Peer-Driven Recovery Center in Findlay, Ohio. The agency was recognized by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) in Washington, D.C. in exceeding expectations in Recovery Month initiatives in their first year as a Recovery Center.  They also successfully open two recovery homes (one for women and one for men) during their first year. 

 

Wayne left Focus on Friends on July 31, 2017. to start Gabriel's Open Doors, LLC, which is a speaking and training platform organization to address well-being and lead a legacy of Hope for our children.  Wayne is also speaking, advocating and training at both the local and state level on recovery from mental health, addiction and trauma opportunities that individuals, families and communities face.  Wayne is an advocate of individual growth, expanding, learning, becoming and well-being.  He believes that recovery is bold and that many pathways exist for us to become the masterpieces that we are.  Wayne's mantra is: "It takes what it is takes for our individual voices to be heard! Get back up again because You are beautiful." 

 

Joey Supina, Director

Joey Supina is the Founder and the Executive Director of Sandusky Artisans Recovery Community Center established in 1996. Joey is a Board member of the Ohio Citizens Advocates for Addiction Recovery, Board Treasurer of Sandusky's Safe Harbor Domestic Violence Shelter and Board member of the Very Special Arts Ohio. He is a Recovery Peer Supporter Trainer for the State of Ohio’s Mental Health & Addiction Services Integrated Ohio Peer Support Program, a Recovery Peer Supporter and a person in long term Recovery for over 42 years.

 

He is the artist in residence for the Mental Health Recovery Board of Erie & Ottawa Counties, Ohio and has for over 20 years help curate the Art Exhibit entitled “Artists In Recovery” at the University of Akron. Joey is the writer for the Sandusky Register Newspaper’s Recovery Opinion Page. He established Camp Recovery that is held twice a year on Kelley's Island at the 4-H Campground. He initiated the Annual Sandusky Recovery Walk. Joey helped conceive and facilitates the Outreach Program called A Chance To Change at the Northern Ohio Juvenile Community Correctional Facility. He is a co-facilitator for the Sandusky Citizen Circle Program for the newly released incarcerated.

 

Sarah J. Thompson, Executive Director

Sarah Thompson joined OCAAR as new the Executive Director in 2015.  In 2012, Sarah began her career in the nonprofit sector when she was an active member in the AmeriCorps, providing direct services to at-risk youth in Hawaii.  Following her volunteer service in Hawaii, she began her journey advocating for addiction recovery with the Ohio Physicians Health Program, where she was able to see firsthand, the impact advocacy has on individuals, families and communities throughout the state of Ohio.  Sarah stays active in the community by volunteering her time advocating for women’s and girl’s issues and helping build a stronger society through a professional women’s network.  In addition to her professional experience, she has her own personal experience with recovery, a strong education of the non-profit sector and robust understanding of fundraising.  Sarah is a champion for the recovery community, and a young thought leader dedicated to ensuring Ohioans have the resources and opportunities necessary to enter and sustain long-term recovery.  Sarah studied Public Affiars at The Ohio State University with a specialty in Non-Profit Management.

sthompson@oca-ohio.org

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