Midwest Region Representative

Kristy L. Brown, LMHC, NCC, CADC

I would be honored to continue serving on the AMHCA board as Midwest Region Director. 
Kristy L. Brown is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, National Certified Counselor, and Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor in the state of Iowa.  She is a graduate from the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, IA (CACREP) with a Master's degree in Mental Health Counseling in 2004.  Kristy currently serves as a Behavioral Health Specialist, working with a special population of clientele in the state of Iowa with the highest need of complex concerns.  Additionally, she has previous experience as a clinician, both at a psychiatric mental health institute (PMIC) and on outpatient levels for children, adolescents, adults, and family therapy.  Kristy specializes in trauma and is a certified trauma focused cognitive behavioral therapist (TF-CBT).  She is trained in Discovery for sexual abuse victims under the age of 6. Kristy has recently been trained as a volunteer for the Red Cross Disaster Mental Health Fundamentals and Psychological First Aid.  
Iowa Mental Health Counselors Association (IMHCA)
Kristy has been active with her state chapter for a number of years where she has served as President Elect in 2013, President from 2013-2015, and is currently in the role of Past President from 2015-2017.  Within these roles, she has had the opportunity to network with a number of individuals in our profession and advocate for mental health counselors. Kristy helps promote awareness for mental health by attending and volunteering for events such as golf tournaments, conferences, board meetings, and other community functions, along with being active regarding legislative policies.
American Mental Health Counselors Association (AMHCA)
Kristy has been an active member of AMHCA since 2013.   Kristy has participated at AMHCA Leadership for the last four years in Washington DC, Seattle, Philadelphia, and New Orleans.  In July 2015, Kristy co-presented at the leadership conference on ways to successfully build state chapters.  Kristy served on the AMHCA State Chapter Relations committee in 2015, to help strengthen state chapters.  She was appointed to the AMHCA board of directors for the position of Midwest Region Director in October 2016 and is actively serving in this position.
Kristy’s goals are to continue to represent the Midwest Region, serving as a liaison between the state boards and AMHCA board, supporting the development of leaders.  She would like to continue to strengthen relationships with other advocates in the mental health community.  Having helped develop a strong chapter on the Iowa board, Kristy’s goal is to continue to serve in that capacity on the national level, joining each of you in supporting our profession. 
2013-2014 AMHCA State Chapter Development Grant $2,500 for IMHCA  
2014-2015 AMCHA Outstanding Membership Growth as a State Chapter for IMHCA
2014-2015 State of Iowa’s Pass the Love's Award of Excellence Nominee 
2015-2016 AMHCA Outstanding State Chapter Award for IMHCA

Francesca G. Giordano, Ph.D, LCPC

I am currently the Program Director for the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program at The Family Institute at Northwestern University. 
Full Clinical Professor of Counseling and Senior Therapist at The Family Institute; treating a full-caseload of clients with specialization in anger, sexuality and relationship restoration. 
AMHCA Diplomate and Clinical Mental Health Specialist in Couples and Family Counseling. 
20 years counselor educator at Northern Illinois University
20 years maintained successful private practice. 
Ph.D. from University of Virginia
Consultant to area agencies in behavioral health management
Offer test-preparation workshops for the NCMHCE in Illinois and Indiana.

American Association of State Counseling Boards (AASCB)
Board Member, American Association of State Counseling Boards (2008-2010). 
Member of Supervision Standards Subcommittee, American Association of State Counseling Boards (2001-2003).  

Illinois Counselor Licensing and Disciplinary Board 

Vice-Chair, Professional Counselor Licensing and Disciplinary Board (2003-2013). 

Illinois Mental Health Counselors Association
President Elect, President, Past President and Board Member, Illinois Mental Health Counselors Association (2003-2006; 2013-2015; 2016-2018).

Illinois Counseling Association 
President-Elect, President and Past President Illinois Counseling Association (2010-2013).
Co-Editor, Journal of Counseling in Illinois (2009-2016).
Editor, Contact Newsletter, Illinois Counseling Association (2006-2009). 

American Counseling Association
Member of American Counseling Association, Taskforce for Exemplary Practices with Mental Health Models in School Counseling (2005-2006)
Member, Awards Committee, American Counseling Association (2007-2008).

I hope to be able to use my knowledge of regional/national licensure issues, scope of practice issues, portability concerns, and reimbursement struggles and my abilities to facilitate goal-setting and task achievements with others to accomplish the following goals: 

  • Work with state leadership to accomplish state level goals in the areas of increased membership, licensure and reimbursement concerns. I believe my role as regional director is to help state division leadership. 
  • Communication with AMHCA the specific concerns of the Midwest region and represent Midwest regional concerns in national AMHCA board meetings. 
  • Help states to create or enhance division membership and strength division leadership by helping to market divisions, increase services to members and develop regional leadership training opportunities. 
  • Clarify the specific effects of the current uncertain reimbursement climate on specific states and the Midwest region. Communicate and represent these concerns to AMHCA and help increase states’ advocacy.   
  • Help states be able to use social media more effectively to attract/retain members, deliver services to members and advocate. 
  • Write articles for the Advocate that highlight activities and successes in the Midwest region. 

Leo G. Bent Award for Outstanding Professional Counseling Program in Illinois (2016). Illinois Counseling Association. 
Outstanding Professional Accomplishment Award,  (2014) , The Family Institute at Northwestern University 
Robert J. Nejedlo Distinguished Leadership Award (2013), Illinois Counseling Association. 
C.A. Michelman Award for Outstanding Service to ICA and Professional Counseling (2009), Illinois Counseling Association
Counselor Educator of the Year (2006), Illinois Counselor Education and Supervision.
Distinguished Service Award (2002), Illinois Mental Health Counselors Association.
Counselor Educator of the Year (1998), American Mental Health Counselors Association.