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In order to meet our mission, NAMI FaithNet (NFN) is supported by an Advisory Group that provides advice, guidance, recommendations, leadership, promotion and content to ensure that the voice and needs of our grassroots constituency is strong and reflected in our work.
NFN Advisors are volunteers who recommend to NAMI national staff NFN web content, materials, activities, tools and other resources. On the local and state level, NFN Advisors support the initiation of faith outreach activities through their NAMI local and state affiliates. In addition, they help plan, manage and/or execute recommendations for networking, workshop, symposia sessions and an interfaith service for the NAMI Annual Convention.
Doug is the chairperson of the NAMI FaithNet Advisory Group. He is an advocate for better mental health care and the current President of NAMI San Antonio. He is also a NAMI Family-to-Family instructor and leads a Family Grace faith-based support group for families impacted by mental illness. Doug is also the chairperson for the 2017 Pathways to Hope Conference held in San Antonio, a county and regional event to help engage the faith community along with mental health professionals, social agencies, law enforcement and the judiciary and families and individuals impacted by a mental illness. In 2016 Doug received the Visionary Award from the Bexar County Health Collaborative for his leadership in organizing the initial Pathways to Hope Conference. In 2009 he and his wife began a mental health ministry which has become a model for other churches throughout the city.
With the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health since 2007, Vicky has committed more than 30 years to increasing awareness, offering services and enhancing systems to support individuals, youth and families living with mental health conditions in Texas.
Her work has supported youth and families in Houston, as well as faith-based communities throughout Texas. Vicky has served as an executive board member and secretary for the National Leadership Council on African American Behavioral Health. A certified licensed professional counselor supervisor and Mental Health First Aid instructor, she holds a Bachelor of Science in child and family development and a Master of Education from Texas State University.
Pastor Brad Hoefs has committed his life to empowering those who have mental illness, as well as their loved ones, with faith-filled hope. He is a certified peer specialist and mental health advocate. He serves on the State Advisory Committee to the Governor of Nebraska Mental Health Services. In March of 2013 Brad’s first book, Fresh Hope: Living Well in Spite of a Mental Health Diagnosis was released. He regularly coaches others to live well despite their struggle with mental health issues. He’s committed to helping break the stigmas regarding mental illness and challenging the church-at-large to address the needs of those who struggle in silence.
Paul is a member of the NAMI California board of directors and volunteer NAMI FaithNet coordinator for NAMI Orange County. He believes faith and spirituality can be a significant factor towards recovery for people living with mental illness and can also be the source of comfort, hope, and strength for family members and friends. As the parent of an adult child with mental illness, he is motivated to bring hope, comfort, and assistance to other families in similar situations. Paul holds a Master of Theology degree from Fuller Theological Seminary, a Master of Aeronautical Science degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, a Doctor of Business Administration degree from Nova Southeastern University and is currently a doctoral student at Fuller Seminary.
Babu is president of the board of directors of NAMI Colorado. He grew up in India and before moving to the United States in 1994, had over two decades of experience in sales and marketing in the printing and graphic arts industry. After his daughter was diagnosed with anxiety and depression, Babu found a home with NAMI in 2015. He is part of a NAMI Family Support group and teaches NAMI’s Family-to-Family education program. Babu also belongs to the Interfaith Network on Mental Illness (INMI) and promotes mental health awareness and support to interfaith and South Asian communities. He is currently coordinating this outreach initiative and networking with faith leaders in Colorado.
Chris is a religious studies teacher at a Catholic High School in the San Francisco Bay Area. He most recently worked for Catholic Charities Santa Clara County supporting the Community Action Poverty Simulation program as well as serving as the youth and young adult coordinator at a 5,000 family parish in San Jose, CA. Prior to this position, Chris taught theology and served as director of campus ministry at a Catholic boarding school in Connecticut. He also worked as the Director of Youth Ministry at a Catholic parish in Palo Alto and worked as a middle school teacher in Gilroy and San Jose, CA. He is currently the co-chair of the Council on Mental Illness, sponsored by the National Catholic Partnership on Disability, a founding member of the Diocese of San Jose Mental Health Ministry Network, a member of the California State Mental Health Policy Workgroup, and a member of the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention’s Faith Communities Task Force. Chris recently graduated with a Doctoral Degree in Education at the University of San Francisco, focusing research on the Kairos Retreat experience in Jesuit High Schools in the United States.
Dr. Dan Morehead is the Supervising Psychiatrist for the Samaritan Counseling Center in Austin, Texas. He is board certified in General Psychiatry, and Neuropsychiatry and Behavioral Neurology, and is a Diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. He has received numerous awards including the W.C. Menninger Teaching Award, the Paul W. Pruyser Writing Award and was a Seeley Fellow. While Dr. Morehead is very knowledgeable in the fields of psychiatry and neurology, he is also an astute theologian. He is a gifted presenter and has a profound ability to take information that is difficult for non-medical professionals and present it in a very understandable format.
Gabrielle (Gabby) Leon Spatt is a genuine connector who is passionate about bringing people and organizations together to accomplish big dreams. A personal tragedy led Gabby to start volunteering with The Blue Dove Foundation, an Atlanta-based non-profit focusing on mental health and substance abuse education, outreach and awareness through a Jewish lens. Gabby transitioned from board member to staff member in April 2019. She devotes her time to civic and community engagement to improve the lives of families around Atlanta and beyond through her leadership at The Blue Dove Foundation which has connected with thousands of individuals in Atlanta and around the world.
AbdulAziz is a practicing psychotherapist at Khalil Center (Illinois Chapter), an international non-profit wellness center that aims to bridge the gap between the psychological sciences and the Islamic tradition. He is registered as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and School Social Worker in the state of Illinois and is a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist. AbdulAziz believes that every person is an expert on their experience and that by creating a safe, welcoming and warm environment, we can all begin our journey towards healing. He has been serving Muslims from across the globe and hopes to continue to find more innovative and dynamic ways to serve all people. He considers himself to be a lifelong learner and continues to take professional development coursework and engage in his own spiritual journey. He earned his Master of Social Work Degree from Governors State University.
Jason is an ordained Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) minister and Licensed Clinical Social Worker. He spent the last seven years working at Iliff School of Theology, where he provided career coaching, mental health support, curriculum development and taught classes in pastoral care and theology. Today, Jason works as a therapist, coach, writer and speaker with Mosaic Insight in Denver, Colorado. He teaches courses at Iliff School of Theology and the Graduate School of Social Work at University of Denver. Jason holds a Masters in Divinity from Union-PSCE, a Masters in Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University, and a Doctorate in Religion and Psychology from the Joint PhD program at University of Denver and Iliff.
Rachel Yehuda, Ph.D., Professor of Psychiatry and Neuroscience, is the Director of the Traumatic Stress Studies Division at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine which includes the PTSD clinical research program and the Neurochemistry and Neuroendocrinology laboratory at the James J. Peters Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Dr. Yehuda is a recognized leader in the field of traumatic stress studies. She has authored more than 250 published papers, chapters, and books in the field of traumatic stress and the neurobiology of PTSD. Dr. Yehuda's research on cortisol and brain function has revolutionized the understanding and treatment of PTSD worldwide and has been awarded the renowned Max Planck Institute for Psychiatry (Munich, Germany) 2004 Guest Professorship. Dr. Yehuda received her PhD in Psychology and Neurochemistry and her MS in Biological Psychology from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and completed her postdoctoral training in Biological Psychiatry in the Psychiatry Department at Yale Medical School.
Call the NAMI Helpline at
text "NAMI" to 741741