Texas Council of Community Centers represents the 39 public Community Centers throughout Texas providing services and support for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, serious mental illness, and substance addictions.

We facilitate policies and funding decisions that support the public mission of the Centers.

The functions of Texas Council are governed by a Board of Directors that is comprised of one delegate from the local board of trustees of each member Center and carried out by an Executive Director appointed by the board. In collaboration with its members through leadership and staff consortia, committees, and workgroups, the Texas Council accomplishes the following on behalf of Centers:

  • Promote the purpose and vision of Centers
  • Initiate and seek adoption of regulatory policy with state agencies and statutory recommendations to the Texas Legislature that will enhance and improve community services
  • Provide critical issue identification and analysis to member Centers
  • Build consensus among member Centers on solutions to issues and challenges
  • Provide educational opportunities on board roles and responsibilities to assist Center trustees and opportunities for trustees to seek advice and consultation from other Board members
  • Develop, oversee, and/or sponsor pooled resource initiatives specifically designed to meet the needs of Centers

Our History

In 1965 the Texas Legislature passed the Texas Mental Health and Mental Retardation Act, now known as the Texas Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities Act. This Act established a state agency to operate legislatively directed services for people with mental illness and intellectual disabilities and authorized the creation of Community Centers to serve as local agencies to work in partnership with the state and federal government to develop community-based services as alternatives to institutional care.

In 1976 Ward Burke, Frank M. Adams, Woodrow W. “Woody” Allen, and other Center trustees recognized the magnitude of what it would take to carry out the promises of the 1965 Act. In response, they founded the Texas Council of Community Centers to serve as a unifying organization through which Community Centers work together as a public system of care.

Today, the Texas Council upholds the original, unifying purpose, by advocating on behalf of Centers, fostering a strong internal communication network, and actively seeking to improve the resources necessary to carry out the broad public mission of the Centers.


Lee Johnson

Chief Executive Officer

Danette Castle

Senior Advisor

Mike Horne

Chief Financial Officer

Jolene Rasmussen

Chief Strategy Officer

David Weden

Chief of System Finance

Maria Rios

Chief of Communication, Education, and Training

Erin Lawler

Chief of System Policy

Leela Rice

Chief of Behavioral Health Policy

Tara Brown

Administrative Services Manager

Janet Paleo

Director of Government Relations for Recovery Based Services

Jacquelin Wang

Director of Communications

Rae Horne

Financial Data Manager

Tim Sneed

Healthcare Analytics Specialist

Board of Directors

Name Community Center
Keith Youngblood Andrews Center
Elijah Anderson Betty Hardwick Center
Judge Roxanne Nelson Bluebonnet Trails Community Services
Roberto Vela Border Region Behavioral Health Center
David Cozadd Burke
Shelby Dupnik Camino Real Community Services
Shane Britton Center for Life Resources
Louella Tate, PhD, LPC-S, NCC Central Counties Services
Judge Carroll Gerber Central Plains Center
Judge Rudy Madrid Coastal Plains Integrated Health
Randi Leffall Community Healthcore
Dr. Linda Holloway Denton County MHMR Center
Tommy Goldfarb Emergence Health Network
Steve Hipes Gulf Bend Center
Jamie Travis Gulf Coast Center
Dennis Wilson Heart of Texas Behavioral Health Network
J. Brian Elby Helen Farabee Centers
Donna Eccleston Hill Country Mental Health & Development Disabilities Centers
H. Ed Calahan Integral Care
Thomas Brown Lakes Regional MHMR Center
Rick Crawford Jr., EdD LifePath Systems
Kenneth Bernstein Metrocare
Gerald Yezak MHMR Authority of Brazos Valley
William R. Brown My Health My Resources of Tarrant County
Cary Houston MHMR Concho Valley
Vacant Nueces Center for Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities
Elizabeth Lawrence Pecan Valley Centers for Behavioral & Developmental HealthCare
Margaret Jones PermiaCare
Frank Coffin Spindletop Center
Judge Drue Farmer StarCare Specialty Health System
Sue Fagan Texana Center
Larry Adams Texas Panhandle Centers
Margie Morris Texoma Community Centers
Daniel Barrett The Center for Health Care Services
Judge Bonnie Hellums The Harris Center for Mental Health and IDD
Sharon Walker Tri-County Behavioral Healthcare
Saul Garcia Tropical Texas Behavioral Health
Judge Lee Norman West Texas Centers
W. W. Allen Honorary Life Time Member
Ward Burke Honorary Life Time Member
Alfred Forsten Honorary Life Time Member
Ira Smith, Jr. Honorary Life Time Member
George Stewart Honorary Life Time Member
Dr. Martha Tevis Honorary Life Time Member
Sam Williams Honorary Life Time Member