My name is Monica L. Thomas. I completed my MSW in 2002 and I am a Licensed Social Worker in several states. I have a 2nd master’s degree in master’s degree in public administration. My concentration was focused on Non-Profit and Human Resource Management. I present with both a clinical and administrative experience and skill set. I am a Native New Yorker until relocating to AZ in 2019.
My experience in the behavioral health field includes both clinical and administrative roles and responsibilities. As a clinician and administrator, I provided executive leadership, support and supervision for residential and outpatient behavioral health services, including medically supervised facilities, behavioral health counseling and treatment programs, therapeutic communities, housing and the shelter system, programs for seniors and community case management program (s). These modalities of care serviced individuals experiencing various and dual social issues related to substance use and mental health symptoms. I have over twenty-five years of experience working in the behavioral health social services sector. As a beneficiary of similar services 30 years ago, throughout my career I have focused on the behavioral health population as I continue to be an advocate for increased resources and social change. Individuals I’ve worked with and continue to service in my current role (s) experience symptoms related to substance use, mental health, homelessness, legal and other social issues. I also have experience working with individuals that need EAP services and couples who present with relationship concerns.
In my current role as an Independent Contractor and Licensed Clinician my focus is on ensuring quality, compassionate, person-centered, trauma informed care coordination that meets the needs of the persons served. I am also focused on creating telehealth services, a clinically driven system and service environment for individuals that prefer a telehealth mode of treatment and counseling. My experience working with individuals; techniques and interventions used during service delivery as a licensed social worker include working with individuals who present with a substance use and or mental health disorder, relationships issues, anger management or legal issues, trauma, including PTSD and depression, employment concerns or career counseling, gambling addiction and other social issues. When working with clients’ techniques used are based on a person-centered, compassionate care approach and individual assessment results. I frequently use evidenced-based practices such as cognitive and dialectical behavioral therapy, motivational interviewing and stages of change, trauma informed care, compassionate care, and care coordination. When working with clients either face to face or telehealth my approach is geared towards assessment and engagement; client/counselor relations and relationship building; staff training and professional development; ethical responsibilities, wellness, boundaries, and confidentiality; networking, advocacy and resources.
In my many roles as an Executive/ Administrator I have managed up to a $30 million budget, over 150 employees and 1200 clients, which included (9) city/ state funded contracts and (6) facilities. My experience includes providing leadership, supervision and support for each role as indicated in their job descriptions; Clinical Staff, specifically, Program Director (s) the Director (s) of HR, IT, Facilities, Finance and Quality Assurance. While in these roles I had the opportunity to connect with and engage the clients by ensuring an office or workspace at each site, by employing an open-door policy and conducting monthly town hall meetings with the clients and staff and by responding timely and fairly to grievances. My journey from beneficiary to the many roles I experienced helping others has been rewarding and gratifying.