Certified Peer Specialist Advisory Council
The CPS Advisory Council provides advice and guidance to Via Hope staff on policy issues related to Via Hope’s programs and policies, including the training and certification of Via Hope Certified Peer Specialists throughout Texas.
The Certified Peer Specialist Advisory Council was first convened in 2013 and has been an integral part of Via Hope’s program development in the years since its beginning. The CPS Advisory Council has provided collaboration and recommendation on a number of important areas to the Certified Peer Specialist workforce in Texas, including the Via Hope peer specialist certification process, the curriculum for the peer specialist certification training, development of additional Endorsement trainings, resolution of ethics complaints, and development of the Certified Peer Specialist profession. The Council generally meets in person four times per year, but the Council also contains Subcommittees that may meet independently of the full Council to move forward on building recommendations in between each in-person quarterly meeting.
The Council is comprised of up to twenty-five (25) experienced peer specialists who are currently employed or volunteering as a Certified Peer Specialist. The Council members work in a diverse set of mental health organizations, including peer-run organizations, community mental health centers, state hospitals, other private mental health providers, and Veterans’ organizations. In order to best represent the Texas Certified Peer Specialist workforce as a whole, the Council maintains a diverse membership in terms of ethnicity, age, geographic location, rural or urban setting, length of experience, and participation in other Via Hope initiatives. The Council also functions as a subcommittee of the Via Hope Recovery Stakeholders Committee, and the Council chair is a member of that Committee.
Members serve for staggered two-year terms. A notice is sent to all current Certified Peer Specialists whenever there are one or more vacancies, and individuals nominate themselves. The Council’s Membership Subcommittee makes recommendations to the Director of Via Hope, who appoints the members. If you are interested in serving on the Certified Peer Specialist Advisory Council or have additional questions about the Advisory Council, please contact us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Current Members of the CPS Advisory Council, in alphabetical order (as of October 2017):
Larry Diaz, Chair
Meredith “Stacy” Jones
Jess Mulliniks, Secretary
Cassandra Ramirez, Co-Chair
You can access the meeting minutes our Archive page.