Ellen Bemis, CPA
Chief Executive Officer
Ellen Bemis serves as AMHC’s Chief Executive Officer. As Chief Executive Officer, Ms. Bemis ensures the achievement of the agency’s service mission in conformance with AMHC’s philosophy of service, organizational values, strategic vision, and the policies established by the Board of Directors. Prior to joining AMHC, Ms. Bemis served for 20 years as the Chief Financial Officer of the Aroostook County Action Program and as a member and past president of AMHC’s Board of Directors since 2011. She began her career as a Certified Public Accountant with Newman, Noyes & Associates in Portland and David N. Felch, CPAs in Caribou. Ms. Bemis holds a Public Accounting degree from Husson College. She is a native of Maine and resides in Presque Isle with her husband Frank and their three children.
Michelle Ferris, LCSW
Chief Operations Officer
Michelle Ferris, LCSW, is Chief Operations Officer. She oversees AMHC’s day-to-day operations across all services and sites in partnership with the senior leadership team. Michelle joined AMHC in 2006 and assumed increasing roles of responsibility primarily in emergency services. She joined the senior leadership team in 2019 as the Program Director of Emergency Services in Aroostook, Washington, and Hancock counties. Michelle is a graduate of Columbia University School of Social Work in the City of New York. A native of Michigan, she resides in Presque Isle with her family.
Christy Daggett, MPP
Chief Financial and Administrative Officer
Christy Daggett, MPP, is AMHC's Chief Financial and Administrative Officer. As the Chief Financial and Administrative Officer, she is responsible for providing leadership for the financial and administrative systems of the organization. Prior to joining AMHC, she has worked in public service in Maine for close to a decade, holding program-oriented and leadership roles at MCD Public Health, the Maine Center for Economic Policy, and the Aroostook County Action Program. She has served as Board President of Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Maine Affiliate, President of the Aroostook Training and Education Coalition (ATEC), and Board Member of the Maine Children's Alliance. A native of Presque Isle, Christy earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Maine and her master's in Public Policy and Management from the Edmund S. Muskie School of Public Service at the University of Southern Maine. She has testified as an expert on rural public policy issues before the Maine Legislature, and her pieces have been published in many statewide and national forums, including health policy research on Medicaid expansion, health care price transparency, cancer screening access for rural Mainers, and the correlation between school-based health clinics and better graduation and attendance outcomes for K-12 students.
Laurie Deerfield, D.O.
Laurie Deerfield, D.O., is AMHC’s Medical Director/Psychiatrist. Dr. Deerfield is located at AMHC’s Ellsworth Outpatient Office and connecting with clients and staff agency-wide through telehealth. She was most recently in private practice in New Jersey focused on general and addiction psychiatry, caring for patients diagnosed with various disorders including anger management, anxiety/panic disorders, depression, chemical dependency/substance use, and more. She has served as a Medical Director and Provider for substance use treatment and recovery centers, as well as an independent contractor and medical consultant to multiple professional boards and organizations including Professional Assistance Program of New Jersey, Board of Medicine, Board of Nursing and other health and legal boards.
Lorraine Chamberlain, LCSW, CCS
Lorraine Chamberlain, LCSW, CCS, is AMHC’s Director of Behavioral Health and Integration for Aroostook County. She joined the agency in 1982 and has been a member of senior leadership for 26 years. Lorraine supports the behavioral health continuum of care through prevention, peer recovery, outpatient and residential care services for substance use and mental health for all ages.
Lorraine is AMHC’s lead for integration services through the advancement of physical and behavioral health in a variety of community settings, specifically in primary care settings. She has led numerous agency initiatives with a goal to offer high quality, easy access to behavioral health in AMHC’s three-county service area including overseeing two federally funded SAMSHA grants across the three counties. Additionally, Lorraine was a lead developer of the Maine Crisis Network, “Crisis Curriculum” for certification of mobile crisis providers across the State of Maine; implementation of MAT services within AMHC outpatient offices and the county jail; current AMHC project titled “Zero Suicide”, with a goal to reduce the high rates of successful suicides.
Christine Y. Brown, LCSW
Christine Brown is a Program Director with oversight of Community Integration services across AMHC’s service area. She began her career at AMHC in 1999 as the Office Director for Caribou Outpatient Office, where she held that position for 5 years. When AMHC implemented the High Performance Teamwork model, Christine was one of the first trainers and coaches to work with teams and was very actively involved with trainings and coaching for the first 6 years of implementation. Christine transitioned to the Quality Department in 2006 and then in 2008 was hired as the Program Director for Community Integration, her current position. She continued to step in to provide HPT trainings as needed.
Christine moved to Caribou from Boston, MA where she previously worked at Uphams Corner Health Center, located in Dorchester, MA as the Director of Guidance and Counseling Department. Prior to Boston, Christine lived in Geneva, Switzerland for a number of years. She is a graduate of the School of Social Work in Geneva and was employed at a psychiatric clinic there for 7 years. While working, Christine also completed a 3-year program in international development at Geneva University Institute for Development Studies. During her time in Switzerland, she became interested in health and wellness. She pursued her interest in wellness once back in the States and living in Boston by attending numerous trainings and workshops, notably a stress reduction program with Jon Kabat-Zinn and externship in behavioral medicine with Dr. Dan Brown. She is a graduate of The Polarity Institute, Watertown, MA – a 3-year training program in an energy system for healing and wellness. She has maintained her certification as a Registered Polarity Practitioner.
Clement Deveau, LCSW
Clem Deveau is AMHC’s Program Director of Behavioral Health and Integration. His primary role is the development and implementation of Mental Health and Substance Use treatment and support services in these two counties. Clem began with AMHC in the late 1980s at the Helpline and Skyhaven. He has maintained a long term commitment to the agency in both undergraduate and postgraduate roles. Clem has been involved in the development and expansion of new substance treatment programs such as Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) and Medicated Assisted Treatment (MAT) in these counties. Clem has also been highly involved in the redesign of children’s services, particularly in Washington County children’s residential services. Clem enjoys his role in partnering with other organizations and identifying collaborative projects. This has included other behavioral health organizations, primary health as well as prevention. Clem has maintained his career with AMHC except for 10 years while he and his wife Brenda served in Africa as Peace Corps volunteers and for 7 of those years working in technical program development and implementation reducing HIV among high-risk substance using populations. Clem and his wife have enjoyed their return back to the US and now living in Washington County.
Sarah Wright, MHRT-CSP
Sarah Wright, MHRT-CSP, is the Director of Emergency Support Services. Her primary role is the oversight of Mobile Crisis Services in Aroostook, Hancock, and Washington Counties as well as Adult and Children’s Crisis Stabilization Units in Aroostook. Sarah has fifteen years of behavioral health experience. She joined AMHC in 2015 as an Emergency Services Specialist and, after a brief hiatus, rejoined the agency in 2019 as the Supervisor for the Mobile Crisis Team for Aroostook County. Wright is currently pursuing her Masters of Social Work. She lives in southern Aroostook with her family.
Julia Miller is AMHC’s Program Director of Prevention and Sexual Assault Services. She oversees youth prevention and leadership initiatives provided by Aroostook Teen Leadership Camp (ATLC) and in partnership with Maine Youth Action Network (MYAN). She is also the program director for Sexual Assault Services in Aroostook, Hancock, and Washington Counties, including the Children’s Advocacy Centers, which are committed to minimizing trauma and promoting healing for children and their families following the allegation of sexual abuse. Julia served the Aroostook Band of Micmacs for 25 years including as Tribal Clerk and most recently as Tribal Administrator. She is a trained advocate in both sexual assault and domestic violence and serves as a board member for the Wabanaki Women’s Coalition (WWC) which she helped create in 2012. Julia received her Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Maine at Presque Isle, graduating cum laude. She has experience in youth, suicide, and methamphetamine prevention efforts. In addition, she completed an intensive program with Praxis International, Advocacy Learning Center, an 18-month distance learning that teaches advocacy on all levels from victim to offender to collaboration within systems. In 2014, Julia and other colleagues were honored by the Office of the United States Attorney District of Maine for work in developing WWC and in 2016 by Maine Coalition to End Domestic Violence (MCEDV) for her work in building bridges between programs. Born and raised in the county, Julia is a fully trained Reiki Master, which has assisted in grounding her in life and work.
Shannon Gove, LSW, MHRT-C, OQMHP, is Director of Residential/Crisis Units in Washington County. She oversees the residential programs in Calais including children’s residential, and both the children and adult crisis stabilization units. Shannon has fifteen years of behavioral health experience. She joined AMHC in 2014 as a Targeted Case Manager/Outpatient Site Coordinator in Calais. In 2019, she was appointed the Children’s Services Manager for Washington and Hancock counties. Shannon received her Bachelor’s in Behavioral Science from the University of Maine Machias. She lives with her family in Dennysville.
Director of Human Resources
Brittany Ballard is AMHC’s Director of Human Resources. She joined AMHC in 2008 and has been part of the human resources team for seven years, serving the last five as HR Manager. Before that, she worked as a crisis counselor in Emergency Services. Ballard is an active member of the Society of Human Resources Management. She resides in Caribou with her family.
Director of Marketing and Development
Debra L. Jacques is the Director of Marketing and Development. She is responsible for the agency’s marketing, planning and development activities. With more than 25 years of experience, the majority of Deb’s career has been in non-profit work, serving as the Business Development Director for Eastern Maine HomeCare (now Northern Light Home Care & Hospice) and as Resource Developer for Aroostook County Action Program. Active in her community, Deb is involved in a variety of activities with United Baptist Church of Littleton, is the current chair for the Greater Houlton Christian Academy (GHCA) Bike-a-thon, as well as a past board member of GHCA. She lives in Littleton with her family.