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Staff & Board

The Bridge Center for Hope Board of Directors is diverse and has skill sets that align with the mission of the organization. Behavioral health professionals, health care leaders, patient and consumer advocates, and justice system leaders provide a balance to the board. A nominating committee recommends board members to the full board. Board members serve two and three-year terms.

Reports & Bylaws


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Executive Director

Charlotte Claiborne, MBA

Executive Director, The Bridge Center for Hope
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Early in my college years, I interned at a psychiatric clinic and counseled young children dealing with traumatic life experiences. I oftentimes wonder what happened to those children into adulthood and if they sought mental health services. Mental health and/or substance use awareness is important to me because I believe that these issues and challenges have no face and can affect anyone.



Patrick D. Seiter, JD, Chair

Taylor Porter Law Firm
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As an attorney practicing health care law in Baton Rouge for almost three decades, I have seen the gaps in services available in our community to people experiencing behavioral health issues and their families. In times of crisis, people have ended up either in a hospital emergency room or jail – neither of which is equipped to provide the interventions needed to address the underlying mental health issues. The Bridge Center for Hope’s mission of providing pathways to treatment for people experiencing behavioral health issues fills this long-standing gap in the continuum of care needed to successfully address behavioral health issues. Serving on the Bridge Center Board has confirmed for me the value this new and innovative model of care delivery brings to our community.


Donna Collins-Lewis, Vice Chair

Program Manager, Set Free Indeed
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As a parent impacted firsthand by the overarching devastation of substance abuse on not only the abuser but the entire family, I realize the great need for the services offered by The Bridge Center for Hope. It is my hope that the services offered will help other families navigate through what can be a very difficult road to recovery.

Sharon B. Robinson, MBA, CPA (Inactive), Treasurer

Former LA State Inspector General
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Serving on The Bridge Center for Hope’s Board of Directors is a great honor and an opportunity to give back to the Greater Baton Rouge community. It is also a chance to be a part of helping to bring hope and healing to families affected by mental health issues and substance abuse.


Lauren C. Crump, Secretary

Vice President, Nonprofit Excellence, Baton Rouge Area Foundation
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As a strategist, I’m motivated by successful ends. I want to see people win. When the mind is healthy, I know that likelihood is higher. Serving on The Bridge Center for Hope’s board means I help ask the questions, clear the pathways, and make the connections that position people to achieve.


Board Members At-Large

Charles J. Abboud

SVP Benefits, Cadence Insurance
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As a volunteer caregiver, I have witnessed the struggles facing those suffering with mental illness, the desperation of family members to find help, and the challenges to law enforcement and emergency healthcare providers to do their jobs effectively while treating those with mental health conditions with dignity and respect. Thank you to the voters of East Baton Rouge Parish for making The Bridge Center for Hope a reality.


Denise Amoroso

Metropolitan Council, District 8
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I have heard many of the stories of our citizens in Baton Rouge and the surrounding areas who are challenged with mental illnesses and drug addiction. I am honored to be a part of The Bridge Center for Hope that will bring the hope and help these people need.


William “Beau” Clark, MD, D-ABMDI

Coroner, East Baton Rouge Parish
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The East Baton Rouge Coroner’s Office exists to serve the citizens of East Baton Rouge Parish, and the State of Louisiana, by providing service to the mentally ill and their families by offering services including Orders of Protective Custody and Coroner Emergency Certificates.


Kathleen Crapanzano, MD, MACM

Associate Professor of Clinical Psychiatry, LSU School of Medicine, Baton Rouge
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I am excited for the opportunity to serve on The Bridge Center board.  I have dedicated my professional career to the care of people with mental illness and have advocated for compassionate, high quality and accessible services.  I believe the members of our community who need the services of The Bridge Center will greatly benefit from its presence in Baton Rouge.


Michael Denicola

Director, Emergency Medical Services (EMS)
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Being a public servant in pre-hospital care for 30 years, I have seen many aspects of mental illness professionally and personally.
Having encountered many patients with addiction and mental illnesses, which now are on the rise nationally and within our parish, has shown a growing need for facilities such as the Bridge Center for Hope. I am proud to be a part of bringing change within our society.


Greg Dicharry

Founder, SmileStyle Entertainment
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I was introduced to the world of mental health while living in Hollywood pursuing my dream of working in the entertainment industry. It was there that I experienced depression for the first time and my first manic episode while directing a music video. I was hospitalized and diagnosed with co-occurring bipolar and substance use disorders. I spent the next 10 years in and out of denial about my diagnosis, which resulted in over 10 forced hospitalizations, a one-month stay in Orleans Parish Prison’s psychiatric unit, two stays in drug rehabilitation and many hopeless depressive states. In 2004, I became committed to recovery and completed a Certified Peer Support Training Program and have been working in the mental health field since that time. My personal and professional experience with mental health and substance use has shown me the importance of high-quality crisis services, so I am extremely grateful to serve on The Bridge Center for Hope board to help ensure that it best serves the citizens of Baton Rouge.


Dennis Grimes

Warden, East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office
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I am grateful to be a part of an avenue to help address the mental illness in our communities.


Gerri Hobdy

Owner, Pleroma LLC
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It’s an honor to be of service on the Board espcially since I’ve seen first-hand the trajactory of people’s lives change after being a guest at the Bridge. What better use of time than to support an institution that is restoring people so that they can reach their full potential as citizens of our community.

Randal Johnson

Partner, Southern Strategy Group of LA
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“There is a destiny which makes us brothers; none goes his way alone. All that we send into the lives of others comes back into our own.” – Edwin Markham

Kathy H. Kliebert

Consultant, Louisiana Managed Medicaid Association
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My father was a lifelong alcoholic, and I have always felt that if he had access to appropriate mental health/substance use services that he could have had a longer, happier and more successful life. Therefore, I have spent most of my professional and personal life advocating for behavioral health services, especially the provision of services that will prevent or limit the use of institutional services like jails or psychiatric institutions. I believe having a full continuum of behavioral health services will provide significant improvements in the quality of life for both impacted individuals and families and the community at large.


Jan Laughinghouse, Ph.D., LCSW-BACS, LAC

Executive Director, Capital Area Human Services
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My feelings about the importance of behavioral health services are best summed up by Elyn R. Saks, “The humanity we share is more important than the mental illnesses we do not.” My goal is to continue advocacy for people with mental health conditions and substance use disorders until everyone understands that they deserve to be treated with the same humanity, concern, compassion, and medical interventions as people with physical health conditions. Behavioral health demands a public health response.


Michael A. Mitchell, Esq.

Trial Level Compliance Officer, Louisiana Public Defender Board
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I am honored to serve on the board for The Bridge Center for Hope. Millions of people worldwide suffer from the effects of mental health and substance abuse issues. Unfortunately, because mental health and substance abuse treatment is woefully lacking in the United States, the criminal justice system has long been the de facto treatment center for these issues. As a longtime Advocate of Public Defense, I am excited that jail is no longer the first option when dealing with these members of the Baton Rouge Community.


Hillar Moore, III

District Attorney, East Baton Rouge Parish
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Mental illness should not be treated as a crime. The Bridge Center for Hope provides a much-needed resources for our community and enables our local court system to direct those suffering from mental illness to proper care and treatment.


Thomas "T.J." Morse, Jr.

Chief, Baton Rouge Police Department
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The Baton Rouge Police Department makes hundreds of referrals to The Bridge Center for Hope annually. These mental health crises in our community present an opportunity for everyone to pitch in and make a positive impact. Serving on the board for this organization is a way for me, as Chief, to show my gratitude on behalf of all the officers and community members that benefit from the services and resources that The Bridge Center has come to provide. I hope to lend insight from the perspective of a first responder and to help foster a safer, healthier Baton Rouge.

Cynthia "Cindy" Munn

CEO, Louisiana Health Care Quality Forum
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I am excited about the opportunity to serve on the Bridge Center for Hope Board of Directors. As a healthcare professional with over thirty years of experience in the industry, I have witnessed firsthand the challenges in accessing services for people impacted by mental illness and addiction. The hospital emergency room nor jail can provide the appropriate services and care needed to address mental health conditions and substance use disorders.

As a CASA volunteer, I see the effects of mental illness & substance abuse on innocent children and their families. I’ve also seen loved ones die and others incarcerated because of their addictions.

These experiences have made me passionate about addressing our community’s mental health and addiction crises.

The availability of services provided by the Bridge Center for Hope fills a void that our community has been experiencing since I got into healthcare. Everyone should have the opportunity to have a long, happy, and successful life. The Bridge Center is a beacon of hope.

Tiffany Pitts Simpson, Ph.D.

Executive Director, It Takes a Village BR
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My adult life, both professionally and personally, has been spent fighting for the forgotten men, women, and children of our society.  The Bridge Center for Hope brings such a wonderful opportunity to the Baton Rouge community.  This facility provides a chance for some of our most vulnerable neighbors, colleagues, and friends to truly begin the healing process.  I am so excited to serve on this board and be a part of something that our community has needed for such a long time.


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