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Snyder makes appointments to Mental Health Diversion Council

Monday, May 12, 2014 

LANSING, Mich. – Gov. Rick Snyder today announced the appointments of Michele Bell, of Midland, Soleil Campbell, of Okemos, Ronald Derrer, of Grand Rapids, and John Searles, of Wheeler, to the Mental Health Diversion Council.

Executive Order 2014-7 expanded the the Mental Health Diversion Council to 18 members.The council is located in the Michigan Department of Community Health and helps to strengthen the state's mental health system. The commission offers solutions to improve services for Michiganders living with mental health conditions to help ensure better quality of life, safety, and independence.

“I appreciate the commitment of these new appointees. I am confident they will use their youth program experience to further the council’s work,” Snyder said.

Bell is the director of court services and program development for the 42nd Circuit Court Family Division. She also is assistant director of the Midland County Juvenile Care Center, and program administrator of the Day Treatment Program, where she coordinates and develops evidence-based, research-driven programs designed to meet the needs of juveniles and their families involved in the court system. Bell earned a bachelor’s degree in individual and family studies from Penn State University. She will represent advocates or consumer representatives on juvenile justice issues.

Campbell is the juvenile programs and technical assistance manager for the Department of Human Services juvenile programs. She leads the Adjudicated, Disabled Youth Reentry Steering Committee. She also coordinates the Crossover Youth Practice Model with Georgetown University Center for Juvenile Justice Reform and Casey Family Programs in Oakland County. Campbell earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s in clinical social work, both from Michigan State University. She will serve as the designee of the Department of Human Services.

Derrer is a school psychologist and head of the psychology department for Hudsonville Public Schools, where he leads student psycho-educational evaluations, creates student transition plans, assists in developing targeted supports, and participates on the district’s crisis intervention team. He also serves as a traumatic brain injury transition team member for the Ottawa Area ISD. He was previously a psychology instructor at Michigan State University, a mental health counselor in the adolescent psychiatric unit at Glen Oaks Hospital and served as interim director of special education for Hudsonville Public Schools. Derrer earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Wheaton College, a master’s degree in liberal studies from Northwestern University, and a Ph.D. in school psychology from Michigan State University. He will represent juvenile mental health treatment practitioners.

Searles is the superintendent of Midland County Educational Service Agency, where he implemented the Longview Early Childhood and Family Center. He also works with Midland Kids First. He previously served as superintendent for Merrill Community Schools, assessment and school improvement coordinator for Kentwood Public Schools, and adjunct faculty from Aquinas College and Michigan State University. Searles earned a bachelor’s degree in English and Spanish from Aquinas College, a master’s degree in educational leadership from Western Michigan University and is currently working on his dissertation for a Ph.D. in curriculum, teaching and educational policy at Michigan State University. He will represent school systems.

Members serve four-year terms expiring Jan. 30, 2018. Their appointments are not subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.