Welcome to the New Jersey Department of Human Services, Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services 2022 Opioid Summit! The purpose of this Summit is to present relevant, research-based information to addiction professionals, medical professionals, nursing professionals, social workers, peers, family members and other community stakeholders. Numerous initiatives have been created throughout New Jersey to support treatment and recovery services for opioid use disorder (OUD). Over the past several years however, New Jersey residents have faced additional stressors due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This Summit aims to address the impact of COVID-19 on OUD, as well as provide information on medication for opioid use disorder (MOUD), alternatives to pain medications, OUD and mental health, harm reduction, innovative, evidence-based and best practices for OUD treatment, recovery support systems, and OUD treatment.

About DHS

The New Jersey Department of Human Services (DHS) is the state’s largest agency. It serves about 2.1 million New Jerseyans, or about one of every five state residents and one out of every three children. We serve older New Jerseyans, individuals and families with low incomes; people with developmental disabilities, or late-onset disabilities; people who are blind, visually impaired, deaf, hard of hearing, or deaf-blind; parents needing child care services, child support and/or healthcare for their children; people who are dealing with addiction and mental health issues; and families facing catastrophic medical expenses for their children. Through our eight divisions, we provide numerous programs and services designed to give eligible individuals and families the help they need for economic and health challenges. They include health insurance through NJ FamilyCare or Medicaid, food assistance through NJ SNAP, independent living supports, personal care services, and much more. For more information and resources, please visit https://www.nj.gov/humanservices/


The Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) serves as the Single State Agency (SSA) for Substance Abuse and the State Mental Health Authority (SMHA) as designated by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The Division oversees the provision of a broad range of community mental health and addiction services throughout the State, and contracts with various entities to provide and support community-based prevention, early intervention, treatment, education and recovery services, including for at-risk and special populations. It contracts with more than 120 agencies for a wide range of community mental health services that assist consumers living in the community; and supports and monitors a wide variety of substance abuse treatment and prevention services providers designed to reduce the misuse of alcohol and other drugs through effective evidence-based treatment. For more information please visit https://www.state.nj.us/humanservices/dmhas/home/about/.

Keynote Feature

Dan Schneider was born in 1950 in the Ninth Ward of New Orleans. He resided there for just 3mos, then white flight moved him to suburban Chalmette. He lived there for 56 years until 1 year after Katrina. He then moved to higher ground an hour away to Mandeville, La., where he resides today. His advocacy related to drug/addiction problems has most been in St. Bernard until the docuseries “The Pharmacist.” Schneider went to public schools and graduated in 1969 from Chalmette high, where he was an All-District Tackle on the 1968 all-time greatest football team. Later he went on to Xavier pharmacy school and graduated in 1975 with honors. (Just Kidding) His wife and high school sweetheart (Annie) were married in 1971. She worked and provided. He went to school and worked part-time. His wife retired to become a full time Mom. His son Danny was born 9/27/76. Lil Danny was a blond haired blue-eyed beautiful boy. He brought the Schneiders much joy. Their daughter Kristi came along in 1980 and completed what many called the Griswald family. Station wagon, family trips, a 17 ft. Christmas tree. Schneider started working at K&B as a pharmacist and later at Eckerd Drug, and then on to Bradley’s Pharmacy now also of Netflix fame. Then on 4/14/1999 their life changed. Their son was murdered while attempting to buy drugs. He had been a polite kid, no fights, no detentions, never stole from them or others. Only drug issue was he occasionally smoked pot, or so they thought. They were shocked, ashamed and blamed themselves for a while. After briefly doubting and being angry with God, Schneider grew closer to his faith than ever. He had to go find his son’s killer. Schneider asked God for help and protection for himself and the witness and promised that if he could get Danny’s killer off the street, he would go on a mission for him. Schneider would educate parents, youth and do anything to reduce the drug/addiction problem and prevent tragedies such as theirs. His story is told in the Netflix docuseries “The Pharmacist”. The story is not over, it is still being written as he strives to build a nationwide movement to end the Opioid and Addiction Pandemic that has killed nearly a million since his son died. He calls Their Mission “The Tunnel of Hope”, as he hopes to bring Light to this dark National Tragedy.


Theme: The Evolving Opioid Crisis – A Collaborative Approach

Please select your time zone

7:30am to 8:30am

Registration/ Login/ Networking EST

8:30am to 8:45am

Welcome/ Opening Remarks

8:45am to 9:50am

Keynote: Daniel Schneider

Daniel Schneider


9:50am to 10:00am


10:00am to 11:15am

Panel 1: New Jersey State Department Collaboration to Mitigate the Opioid Crisis

Kelly Levy

Deputy AG, Office of the Attorney General

Lisa Asare

Deputy Commission of Health Services, Department of Human Services

Katherine Stoehr

Deputy First Commissioner of Operations, DCF

Herbert Kaldany

DO – Director of Psychiatry, Mental Health and Addiction Services, Department of Corrections

11:15am to 11:25am


11:25am to 12:40pm

Panel 2: Collaborative Approaches to Recovery and Other Supports

Sarah Mikulis

Telephone Recovery Support, UBHC, Rutgers

Cole Zaccaro

Community Health Center of Asbury Park

Stephanie Evans

STAR Program, Rutgers UBHC

Jeff Deverin

Oxford House

Heather Ogden

Oxford House

Mayisha Ware

NJ ATOD, Executive Director of STS

Moderator: Harry Reyes

LPC, LCADC, Assistant Division Director of Office of Treatment and Recovery Supports, NJ DMHAS

12:40pm to 1:40pm


1:40pm to 2:40pm

Workshop Sessions (6 workshops)

  1. Paramedicine Program at Cooper – Dr. Caroll, Dr. Haroz and Tim Seplaki
  2. Contingency Management for Treating Stimulant Use Disorder: Theories, Principles and Practice – Beth Ruthkowski
  3. Strategies to Overcome the Opioid Impact (North, Central and South Jersey) – Joel Torres, Lesley Gabel, Joe Williams
  4. Understanding Opioid Use Disorder within the LGBTQ+ Community – Dr. Wanzer and Dr. Zazzarino
  5. Launching Innovative, Integrative Care Approaches to Reducing Overdose Death – Elizabeth Ruebman
  6. Advocacy Grounding in Social Justice: Eliminating Disparities & Building Health Equity – Dr. Haner Hernandez
2:50pm to 3:50pm

Workshop Sessions (6 workshops)

  1. Living Life to Its Fullest: Alternative Approaches to Pain Management for Older Adults – Andi Williams, Kelly Larney, Elizabeth Jacobsen
  2. Current Drug Environment Trends and Implications – Captain Jason Piotrowski
  3. Law Enforcement Assisted Addiction and Recovery Referral Program – Danielle LoRusso and Felix Pacheo
  4. Harm Reduction – Assistant Commissioner Chris Menschner, Eddie Frierson, Caitlin O’Neill
  5. Trends within Drug Abuse and Healthcare – COVID and Beyond – Dr. Richard Dart
  6. Integrating Peers into a More Recovery Oriented System of Care – Heather Ogden, Angela Cicchino, Jordan Warner, Pete Morely, Michelle Price, Jenna Bonstein, Jen Denlinger
3:50pm to 4:00pm


4:00pm to 4:15pm

Closing Remarks

Frequently Asked Questions

Click on the login button and enter the credentials that you registered with in order to sign in.
No, the event is going to open 21st September onwards.