Congratulations, Dr. Sulik!

Congratulations, Dr. Sulik!

Longtime MACMH Board member Dr. L. Read Sulik will be stepping down from the MACMH Board of Directors in November of this year to begin his tenure as the new Assistant Commissioner for Chemical and Mental Health Services for the state of Minnesota. In his new position, Dr. Sulik will be responsible for State Operated Services programs serving people with mental illness, developmental disabilities, chemical dependency and traumatic brain injury and the Adult Mental Health, Children’s Mental Health and Chemical Health divisions. When announcing the appointment, Cal Ludeman, Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Human Services, noted that “we are fortunate to have someone with Read’s clinical background and leadership experience as we build on significant progress already made in developing effective and accountable mental health and chemical health systems as well as development of SOS as an organization committed to high-quality care, continuous learning and innovation, stewardship of resources, effective communication and being an employer of choice.”

Many MACMH Conference attendees know Dr. Sulik as an inspirational and though-provoking presenter, while those in the world of healthcare know him as the Medical Director for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry of the St. Cloud Hospital/CentraCare Health System. And many St. Cloud residents know Sulik as a visionary who put his heart and soul into the building of Clara’s House, a partial-hospitalization clinic for children and adolescents with mental illness. Most recently Sulik has been working to develop the CentraCare Integrated Behavioral Healthcare Initiative, which involves mental health screening, assessments, collaboration and treatment in the primary care clinics across the CentraCare Health System. In addition to his professional credentials as a child and adolescent psychiatrist and pediatrician, Dr. Sulik also has many honors and awards to his credit. In 2007 the Minnesota Psychiatric Society named him the Psychiatrist of the Year and in 2008 he received the Society’s Distinguished Service Award. In 2008 he also received the National Alliance on Mental Illness’ Exemplary Psychiatrist Award.

Dr. Sulik, whose appointment will be effective November 3, replaces Wes Kooistra, who has accepted a position as chief financial officer for the Metropolitan Council. During the brief interim, Loren Colman, DHS Assistant Commissioner for Continuing Care, will oversee Chemical and Mental Health Services. Dr. Sulik’s appointment to this key position mean that his tireless efforts to enhance mental health policy and services will now benefit all of Minnesota’s children and families.

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