Will County Executive Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant has announced the appointment of seven members to serve on the newly created Will County Community Mental Health Board. The appointments were approved by the Will County Board.
The board was approved by Will County voters by referendum in the 2022 General Election. It will be tasked with evaluating the community’s mental health needs, creating targeted local support and coordinating a comprehensive system of services to help with mental health issues, intellectual and developmental disabilities, as well as substance abuse issues.
The seven members appointed to the Will County Community Mental Health Board are:
• Elnalyn Costa of Bolingbrook has been appointed to a two-year term. She is the Will County Board member representing District 11 and is a Fund Administrator for the SEIU Healthcare Illinois Benefit Fund.
• Orlando DeYoung of Plainfield has been appointed to a two-year term. He is a local mental health advocate with a passion for connecting young community members with mental health services.
• Michael Flanagan of Green Garden Township has been appointed to a four-year term. He is a retired firefighter with years of experience with providing peer support for firefighters, police officers, and military veterans. His civic involvement includes the Illinois Firefighter Peer Support Group, 100 Club of Illinois, National Association of Down Syndrome and the Will County Historic Preservation Commission.
• Katrina Jones of University Park has been appointed to a three-year term. She is a nurse with 22 years of experience in the medical field and has received various specialized mental health training during her career. She was appointed with the recommendation of County Board Chair Judy Ogalla.
• Terri King of Plainfield has been appointed to a four-year term. She is a retired Will County employee and has over 20 years of experience as a mental health advocate. Her local involvement includes serving for 15 years as a Board Member for NAMI Will Grundy and as a support groups facilitator for Family to Family.
• Jessica Parks of Bolingbrook has been appointed to a four-year term. She is a practicing LCSW who has direct experience with mental healthcare in a variety of settings, including community mental health, substance use disorder treatment and federal probation counseling. She is the owner of Rooted Counseling LLC and serves in leadership roles on the Bolingbrook Pride Board and Will County Pride Coalition Board.
• Ashley Searing of Joliet has been appointed to a three-year term. She is a Community Mental Health Awareness Advocate who serves as a Paraprofessional with Joliet District 86. She also founded RejuveNate Plants & Wellness to raise awareness of Mental Health and Suicide Prevention.
Under the guidelines of the State of Illinois Community Mental Health Act, the newly appointed mental health board members will now hold a meeting prior to July 1 in order to elect its officers and establish governing rules and regulations. The board members will then be tasked with outlining a proposed budget and levy, which will by voted on by the Will County Board.