About Us

CLMHD Officers


Katherine Alonge-Coons,  LCSW-R
Commissioner, Rensselaer Co. Department of Mental Health
Ned Pattison Government Center
Troy, NY 12180
Work (518) 270-2807
Fax    (518) 270-2723 

Katherine (Kathy) G. Alonge-Coons LCSW-R serves as the Commissioner of Mental Health in Rensselaer County. She was appointed to serve as the Commissioner in January 2013 after working in the Rensselaer County Department of Mental Health since 1987, where she worked as: the Director of Children’s Services, Intensive Case Manager for Children and Youth; and a clinician in the children’s outpatient clinic.  In her capacity as the Director of Children’s Services, Kathy took on the role of Director of Program Operations for the county operated Mental Health services, which included oversight of: the Department’s Management Information System Unit and the launching of electronic health records; corporate compliance program development and implementation, as well as directed services of case management and outpatient clinic services.  Kathy has been active in the development of the Capital Region Health Connections Health Home. She serves on the Board of Managers for the Alliance for Better Health Care PPS.  Kathy is an Episcopal priest and is Vicar at Grace Church in Waterford, NY.  Kathy most recently served as the Chair of the Conference’s Children & Families Committee.

First-Vice Chair

Laura Kelemen, LCSW-R
Director, Niagara County Department of Mental Health & Substance Abuse Services
5467 Upper Mountain Road, Suite 200
Lockport, NY 14094
Phone (716) 439-7410
Fax (716) 439-7418

Laura is the Director of Mental Health & Substance Abuse Services for Niagara County, where in addition to being the Director of Community Services (DCS), she also oversees a broad spectrum of direct services, including outpatient mental health & substance abuse treatment, crisis services/mobile crisis outreach, and hospital diversion. Prior to taking the DCS position in 2014, Laura served as the Executive Director and Forensic Interviewer/Trainer for the Child Advocacy Center of Niagara. Working for local non-profit human service agencies, she has more than 15 years of program management and leadership experience. In these roles, she has facilitated the implementation of evidence-based practices for mental health and trauma treatment and has secured expanded funding in high priority need areas. Laura serves on a number of local and state boards, including the Niagara County Opiate Addiction/Overdose Strategy Implementation Standing Committee, the Niagara County Behavioral Health/Justice Committee, OMH Evidence Based Practice Project Advisory Board and the NYS Preventive Health and Health Services Block Grant Advisory Council.

Second-Vice Chair

James M. Haitz, LCSW-R
Director, County of Wayne Department of Mental Health
Wayne Behavioral Health Network
1519 Nye Road
Lyons, NY  14489
Phone (315) 946-5722
Fax (315) 946-7079

James has served as the Director of Community Services for Wayne County, since 2005, where he oversees the county department of mental health and the county system of care for all services and treatment programs related to mental health, alcohol & substance use, and intellectual/developmental disabilities. James also serves as the Director for the county’s mental health and substance abuse treatment agency, Wayne Behavioral Health Network. During his tenure Jim has led the planning and development for expanding county clinic mental health and addiction services, including establishing a licensed mental health clinic in every Wayne County school building, he also launched a sexual offender treatment program in collaboration with the county probation department, he expanded jail based mental health and addiction treatment services, expanded treatment programs for men with a history domestic violence, he led the effort for construction of a 60 unit apartment building for a mental health supportive housing program, developed a countywide suicide prevention coalition, among many other accomplishments.  James was appointed by Governor Cuomo and has served as a member of the Governors Statewide Suicide Prevention Task Force; he also serves on many boards and committees statewide, regionally and locally.  Jim is New York State Licensed Clinical Social Worker and received his Master’s Degree in Social Work from Syracuse University, and has worked in the behavioral health care arena since 1986.  Mr. Haitz has a long history of proven successful organizational leadership and management.  Prior to coming to Wayne County, James was the Mental Health Director at the Monroe County Jail and Correctional Facility. Previous to that he led the out-patient mental health clinic at Rochester Rehabilitation Center. He also previously worked as a mental health clinician at Genesee Hospital-Genesee Mental Health Center.  He has been member of the adjunct faculty as a Senior Instructor at the University Of Rochester Department Of Psychiatry, and as an Associate Professor at Monroe Community College-Human Services Department where he taught for 20 years. Most recently Jim served as the Conference’s Finger Lakes Regional Representative from 2012 until being elected as Second Vice Chair. 


Darcie Miller, LCSW-R
Commissioner, Orange County Department of Social Services
Acting Commissioner, Orange County Department of Mental Health
30 Harriman Drive
Goshen, New York 10924
Work (845) 291-2600   
Fax (845) 291-2628

Darcie is an LCSW-R and Commissioner of Mental Health for Orange County. Prior to that she served as the department’s Deputy Commissioner for seven years and has been part of the County’s mental health team for more than a decade. As Commissioner, Ms. Miller oversees Orange County’s planning, development, and coordination of services in the fields of mental health, developmental disabilities, and chemical dependency.  She has administrative responsibility for leading the development and assisting in facilitating a Sex Offender Community Management Task Force, Orange County Middletown Court Connection Project, serving as the Principal Investigator for the Children’s Mental Health Initiative System of Care, and participating in bringing evidence based initiatives to Orange County. She serves on many local and statewide committees. Darcie is a member of the multi-disciplinary County Team which focuses on youth needs in the community, as well as SUNY Orange Advisory Committee, the Medical Reserve Corp, and the Cultural Equity Task Force.  She has a Masters in Social Work and sits on the following Conference committees: Chemical Dependency, Developmental Disabilities, Mental Health, and Finance.


Brian Hart, LCSW-R
Director, Chemung County Mental Health Hygiene Department
425 Pennsylvania Avenue
PO Box 588
Elmira, NY 14902
Work (607) 737-5501
Fax (607) 737-5500

Before serving as Director of Community Services for Chemung County, Brian worked as Deputy Director of Community Services for Tioga County, with Broome-Tioga BOCES and ARC and at the Robert Packer Hospital where he developed behavioral health criteria for an Independent Physician Association.  In addition he served as Quality Assurance and Senior Clinical Director of Services for Employee Network Inc., a national employee assistance program.  Under Brian’s leadership, Chemung County received national recognition as the 2008 SAMHSA Science to Service Award. He is a board member for Compeer of Chemung County, has been an adjunct Professor for Mansfield University as well as a lecturer for the Bradford County courts.  Brian has his Masters in Social Work, established the CLMHD Mentoring Program and sits on the following Conference committees: Chemical Dependency, Children & Families, Developmental Disabilities and Mental Health.