West Central Behavioral Health names new CEO

  • Roger Osmun (Courtesy photograph)

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 9/20/2019 8:40:35 PM
Modified: 9/20/2019 10:05:03 PM

LEBANON — A new leader this week took the helm of the Lebanon-based community mental health center that serves most of the New Hampshire side of the Upper Valley.

Roger Osmun, a 53-year-old psychologist, has replaced Suellen Griffin as CEO of West Central Behavioral Health, which in addition to Lebanon, also has offices in Claremont and Newport. Griffin had held the post for nearly 12 years.

Osmun, a Pennsylvania native, said he was drawn to West Central by the scope of services it provides, including emergency services and peer support.

“If it was just outpatient services, I wouldn’t have been excited about the opportunity in the same way,” Osmun said on Friday.

Osmun, who started on Monday, said he also was glad to see that West Central, where about 80% of revenue comes from Medicaid, provides both mental health and addiction treatment, services that are “often in silos,” he said.

Osmun was selected from a pool of 45 applicants after a nationwide search, Pete Bleyler, chairman of West Central’s board of directors, said in a Friday news release.

Osmun “immediately stood out due to his outstanding credentials and his in-depth leadership in both clinical and management positions,” Bleyler said in the release.

Osmun brings 20 years of experience as the chief clinical officer and two as chief operating officer at Holcomb Behavioral Health Systems, a nonprofit behavioral health organization in Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland and New Jersey.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Rochester (N.Y.) and a doctorate in clinical psychology from Temple University in Philadelphia.

Osmun’s salary information was not immediately available, but Griffin earned $154,455 in 2016, according to the organization’s 990 tax filing.

Osmun said the challenges that West Central faces, including workforce issues and stagnant Medicaid rates, are familiar to him.

“Recruitment and retention I think at least in the U.S. in behavioral health, is almost a universal challenge,” he said. “Reimbursements are not as high as we would like them to be.”

Valley News Staff Writer Nora Doyle-Burr can be reached at ndoyleburr@vnew s.com or 603-727-3213.

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