Director departs state Behavioral Health Services | Arkansas Blog

Director departs state Behavioral Health Services


Charlie Green has resigned as director of the state Division of Behavioral Health Services to take a private sector job, according to a Department of Human Services news release.

Jay Hill, director of the Arkansas Health Center, will be interim director and manage facilities that include the State Hospital. The release said Paula Stone, assistant director of the agency, will "have primary responsibility for programs and take a lead role in transformation."

According to an automatic response from his e-mail account, Green is going to become the CEO for the Arkansas affiliate of Preferred Family Health Care Services, a multi-state Missouri-based company which provides community-based mental health services at multiple locations in Arkansas. (It has been mentioned recently as a recipient of General Improvement Fund money funneled through the Northwest Arkansas and Central Arkansas development districts. A grant mentioned in Micah Neal's kickback plea was returned, the agency said, and it has said it had no knowledge or involvement in the crime with which Neal was charged.) I also wrote yesterday about Preferred Health's application for money to provide meals to needy families at Thanksgiving and Christmas. It got a total of $59,500 from two agencies for that purpose.

UPDATE: The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette confirmed that Green is replacing Rusty Cranford at Preferred Health. Cranford, who is also a lobbyist, is among the players mentioned in the events that underlie the Michah Neal/GIF matter.

Green started work for the state in 1999 as superintendent of the Alexander Human Development Center, then led Developmental Disabilities Services before getting the director's job in 2014.

In addition to operating the State Hospital for the mentally ill and the Arkansas Health Center at Benton, which serves the elderly and disabled with services not generally provided at conventional nursing facilities, the Division provides services for mental health and substance abuse prevention, treatment, and recovery.

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