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Wendy Bailey
Executive Director for the
Mississippi Department of Mental Health

Wendy Bailey currently serves as the Executive Director of the Mississippi Department of Mental Health (DMH). A role she assumed in January of 2021. She has been with the agency for 16 years beginning her career at Mississippi State Hospital in 2005. During her years at the agency, she has focused on strategic planning, performance development, and budget management. She received her bachelor’s degree from Belhaven University and her master’s degree from Webster University. She is a graduate of the John C. Stennis Institute of Government and is a Licensed Mental Health Administrator and Certified Public Manager. Ms. Bailey serves on numerous boards and task forces including the Governor’s School Safety Task Force, Southeast Mental Health Technology Transfer Center Advisory Board, Board for the Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services, State Early Childhood Advisory Council, Certified Public Manager Program Board, and the Mississippi’s Suicide Prevention Task Force. She serves as a liaison with national organizations such as Mental Health America, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors Research Institute. She lives in Rankin County with her husband, Charles, and their son, Brandon.

Lynda Stewart
Division Director,
Mississippi Department of Mental Health

Lynda Stewart has served at DMH for over 17 years in the Division of Professional Licensure and Certification and the Division of Children and Youth Services. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Southern Mississippi and is a Licensed Professional Counselor.  Prior to joining the Department of Mental Health, Lynda was a children’s therapist at Pine Belt Mental Healthcare Resources and Pine Grove Recovery Center in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.   Lynda became the Director of the Division of Children and Youth Services in January 2020.  

Jackie Chatmon
Program Administrator IV,
Mississippi Department of Health

Jackie Chatmon has been employed with the Mississippi Dept. of Mental Health since February 2007.  She currently serves as the Project Director for the federally funded System of Care grant, Crossover XPand.  In this role, she ensures achievement of goals and compliance with federal requirements in collaboration with the service delivery sites are met. She fosters collaborative relationships, including inter-agency/across organization in support of a coordinated system of care for Mississippi’s children and families.   In addition, she facilitates training on various topics including suicide and mental health. She has coordinated the Trauma Conference for the last 7 years in collaboration with an awesome planning committee. 


With 25 years in the behavioral health field, previous experience include employment at a local Community Mental Health Center serving in several capacities including a therapist, Outpatient Substance Abuse Coordinator and Substance Abuse Director, an Intake Counselor at a private behavioral health hospital and an Outreach Specialist at a transitional A&D residential center for female ex-offenders.

Keynote 1

Transforming Stigma into Strength


Mike Veny

Keynote 4

Racial Trauma: Building the Beloved Community Through Cultural Humility

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Gloria Morrow

Keynote 7

In My Own Backyard: The Sexual Trafficking and Online Exploitation of Children in Mississippi and Beyond

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Hollie Jeffery

Keynote 2

Why I Promote the Science of Hope


Chris Freeze
M.S., M.A.

Keynote 5

Triumph: Overcoming the Odds

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Russell Lehmann

Keynote 8

The Antwone Fisher Story


Antwone Fisher

Keynote 3

Trauma and HIV

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Gina Brown

Keynote 6

Cape Recovery: Unmasking the Protective Nature of Women of Color


Jerrilyn Dixson


Shalonda D. Carlisle



Nikki Flippins


Karlyn LeBlanc

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Shelia Thomas

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Karen D. Cathey-Austin, Ph.D.

M.Div., LPC-S

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Kenisha W. Gordon


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Tunja L. Morton

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Rachel Daniels,



Marcia Hale

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Ron Mumbower


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Kim Dixon

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Alisha Hardman



Izzy Pellegrine

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Lori Elmore-Staton, Ph.D.

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Tammy Moore Kolbo


Zowee Shanks


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