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DBHDS Press Releases


April 19, 2010

Governor McDonnell Announces Additional Appointments to Natural Resources and Health and Human Resources

RICHMOND- Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell today announced additional appointments to his gubernatorial administration in the Natural Resources and Health and Human Resources secretariats.  The Governor also made three appointments in Health and Human Resources: Dr. Dianne Reynolds-Cane as Director of the Department of Health Professions;  James Stewart as Commissioner of the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services; and Douglas Bevelacqua as Inspector General for Behavioral Health and Developmental Services in the Office of the Inspector General.  The Governor reappointed Dr. Karen Remley as State Health Commissioner. 

James W. Stewart, Commissioner, Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services

Jim Stewart was appointed to serve as Interim Commissioner of the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (DBHDS) by Governor Bob McDonnell immediately following his inauguration.  Prior to coming to DBHDS, Jim was appointed as the Commonwealth’s Inspector General for Behavioral Health & Developmental Services by Governor Mark Warner in 2004 and most recently by Governor Tim Kaine in 2007.  The Office of the Inspector General is responsible for reviewing and inspecting the quality of services provided by state mental health facilities and training centers, local community services boards, and other providers. Recommendations for improvement are made by the OIG to the Governor and General Assembly. 

Jim served as mental health director (1977 - 1981) and executive director (1981 - 2004) of the Henrico Area Mental Health and Developmental Services.  Prior to coming to Virginia, he worked as an outpatient center director and clinician in a local community mental health center and as a social worker in a state hospital in Tennessee.  He served as an officer in the United States Navy, stationed in Norfolk, VA.   With a personal interest in organizational development and change, Jim has provided consultation to many public and private organizations.   

Throughout his 35 years in public behavioral health and developmental service, he has worked actively at local, state and federal levels to shape policies, regulations and funding initiatives with the goal of enhancing services for individuals with mental illness, developmental disabilities and those with substance use problems.  He has served on numerous boards and commissions focused on improving mental health services.  He served as president of the National Association of County Behavioral Health Directors and currently serves on the Supreme Court Commission on Mental Health Law Reform.

Jim received his bachelor’s degree in economics from Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee and a master’s degree in social work from the University of Tennessee. 



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