September 16, 2020
PHILADELPHIA – Mayor Kenney today accepted the resignation of David T. Jones, Commissioner of the Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services (DBHIDS).
The Mayor has named DBHIDS Deputy Commissioner Jill Bowen as Acting Commissioner while a national search is underway for Jones’ replacement.
“David Jones did a great job over his three years as the leader of DBHIDS. He helped battle the city’s opioid crisis, worked to further de-stigmatize mental health issues, and ensured continuation of vital health services during the ongoing COVID pandemic. I wish him the best,” Mayor Kenney said. “I am confident that Jill Bowen will offer continuity and leadership during the transition for the city’s vulnerable residents, as well as the network of providers, given her strong organizational background and expertise.”
Jones has accepted the position of director of the Division of Substance Use Prevention and Recovery for the State of Illinois Department of Human Services. The division’s mission is to provide a recovery oriented system of care along the continuum of prevention, intervention, treatment, and recovery support where individuals with SUD, those in recovery and those at risk are valued and treated with dignity and where stigma, accompanying attitudes, discrimination, and other barriers to recovery are eliminated.
“I’m proud of the work DBHIDS has managed during my time here. We make a difference in the lives of city residents every day. We empower the entire community to take charge of their health and wellness in order to help create a Philadelphia where every resident can thrive,” Jones said.
Bowen is currently the Deputy Commissioner of Administration and Finance for the Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbilities Services. Bowen has more than 30 years’ experience in behavioral health services and management, including an extensive track record in staff development and training, organizational management, and strategic planning. Prior to joining DBHIDS, she was senior adviser for mental health with the Office of the Mayor in New York City. Dr. Bowen trained as a clinical psychologist and received her doctoral degree at the Derner Institute for Advanced Psychological Studies/Adelphi University.
Jones’ last day will be Oct. 9. Headshots available on request.
Highlights of David T. Jones’ Career with DBHIDS
- Flexibility: During the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, David ensured that DBHIDS would continue to offer life-saving funding and services to Philadelphians in need of behavioral-health treatment, intellectual disability services and birth-to-three supports thanks to extensive in-depth preparations and the unwavering commitment of the entire staff.
- Preparation: Initiated a five-year strategic plan to ensure stability and focused growth in five key areas: Prevention and early intervention; treatment and services; health economics; infrastructure and intelligence; and innovation.
- Training: Since 2017, DBHIDS delivered more than 1,000 Mental Health First Aid sessions resulting in more than 20,000 additional individuals trained in MHFA; trained hundreds of additional Certified Peer Specialists; and, in 2019, launched a new adaptable Trauma Awareness Training that has educated more than 1,000 people.
- Innovation: Established Community Wellness Engagement Unit, a multilingual team designed to meet people most in need and make sure they get access to the services the city has available to them; launched the Treatment Availability Database, which provides real-time information about available treatment capacity, as well as a list of community medication assisted treatment programs; established 24-hour NET Access Point to offer on-demand treatment for people in addiction seeking help.
- Partnerships: Worked with the provider network to see record numbers of Philadelphians access treatment, with growth exceeding 50,000 new Philadelphians participating in treatment from 2016-2018. Worked with stakeholders to expand access to medication assisted treatment, the crisis system, the array of child and family services supports, and social determinants of health. Partnered with the Philadelphia School District to develop new models, inclusive of Support Team for Education Partnership and Intensive Behavioral Health Services, that were introduced to better meet the behavioral health treatment needs of students in their respective schools, homes and communities.