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February 9, 2009

Kathie Osterman, Communications and Legislative Services, (402) 471-9313


Beatrice State Developmental Center Gets Interim CEO

Lincoln - John Wyvill, director of the Department of Health and Human Services Division of Developmental Disabilities, announced today that Claire E. Mahon, MSW, will begin on February 16 as Interim Chief Executive Officer for the Beatrice State Developmental Center (BSDC) while a search continues for a permanent CEO.

“Claire has extensive experience working with programs that have been involved in Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) oversight,” Wyvill said.

Mahon is from Flemington, NJ and is a management consultant for public and private human services and health care agencies. She has been working with BSDC as part of the CMS appeal.

Her prior experience includes operational responsibility for a state developmental disability agency; programs providing community-based residential, day program, and supported employment for people with developmental disabilities; and developing Home and Community-based Waiver services.

She served as Executive vice president for PSCH, Inc. in College Point, NY from 1996 to 2004. The agency provides residential habilitation services; day programs; a clinic providing psychiatric, dental, nursing and therapy services; and an intensive psychiatric rehabilitation treatment program and a job-training program for people with mental illness.

She also served on a special assignment as CEO of Woodbine Developmental Center in New Jersey for 15 months. During this time, she administered the decertified state ICF/DD facility serving 700 residents and employing 1,400 staff while it regained certification and restored program quality.

Assisting her in leading and supporting the existing management team at BSDC will be:

  • Craig Blum, PhD, is a psychologist who is a former Joint Commission surveyor with experience in a broad range of behavioral healthcare settings
    serving those with developmental disabilities, mental health problems, physical health problems and substance abuse. He is from Melbourne Beach, FL.
  • Peter Pastras, MSSW, LCSW, is a social worker with extensive experience as a regulatory remediation specialist and actively involved in a variety of
    state-level projects with evaluation, development and oversight responsibility for services to those with developmental disabilities. He is from Midland
    Park, NJ.
  • Theodore Kastner, MD, MS, is an expert in remediation related to Department of Justice and CMS cases and a developmental medicine specialist with
    a large group practice specializing in the care of those with developmental disabilities. He is from Bloomfield, NJ.

Also assisting is Paul Kaufmann, JD, PhD, ABPP-CN, a board certified neuropsychologist and DHHS legal counsel for BSDC. Kaufmann has experience as a chief executive in Illinois state operated facilities and serves as the DHHS liaison to the team of professionals supporting the existing management team.