ATLANTA -- Frank W. Berry, III, has been named Commissioner of the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities by Georgia Governor Nathan Deal. Berry’s tenure will begin August 11, 2012. Since 2009, Berry has served as CEO of View Point Health in Lawrenceville, GA (formerly the Gwinnett Rockdale Newton Community Service Board). DBHDD is the state agency responsible for programs and policies for people with mental illness, developmental disabilities, and substance use disorders; it began operations in July 2009.
“Georgia is improving the way it provides help to people with behavioral health issues and developmental disabilities, serving more people closer to home,” said Governor Deal. “I’m pleased to announce that Frank Berry will bring his experience in building community services to lead that transformation.”
In a special meeting Friday, the Board of DBHDD approved the appointment and thanked outgoing Commissioner Frank E. Shelp, MD, MPH, for his service as the agency’s first commissioner.
"I'm looking forward to working with Frank Berry,” said Don Cole, Chair of the Board of DBHDD. “His familiarity with the system and fresh perspective will be a real asset."
As CEO of View Point Health, Frank Berry has led a workforce engaged in the full spectrum of services overseen by DBHDD. He’s worked with the agency’s leadership to innovate new service models and been a leader among the state’s Community Service Boards, the primary providers for many of the services funded and regulated by the department. Before assuming the position of CEO of View Point Health in 2009, Berry was the Director of System of Care Initiatives for the Gwinnett Rockdale Newton Community Service Board, State Director of the Office of Behavioral Health at the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice, and the Director of Child and Adolescent Services at the Gwinnett Rockdale Newton Community Service Board. He holds an MS and BS in Child Development from Florida State University.
“I’m excited to serve the State of Georgia in this capacity,” said Berry. “I appreciate Commissioner Shelp’s leadership over the last few years and the bold steps he took to transform the way we provide services to the people of Georgia. I am committed to continuing the good work that he started.”