SAMHSA Region II
26 Federal Plaza
New York, NY 10278
Dennis O. Romero formerly served as the Director (Acting) for the Office of Indian Alcohol and Substance Abuse (OIASA). In this capacity, he was responsible for establishing a new office, serving as the SAMHSA primary representative in collaborative efforts with AI/AN communities and other national AI/AN advocacy and public health groups. Mr. Romero provided executive leadership in establishing the framework necessary to ensure a coordinated approach involving all major federal efforts assist tribal governments, through trainings and technical assistance to enhance their alcohol and substance abuse prevention programs.
Mr. Romero also served as the Deputy Executive Officer and Deputy Director for the Office of Program Services at SAMHSA which oversees the conduct of management and administrative operations throughout the agency. Prior to that, he served in senior leadership capacities in SAMHSA's Center for Substance Abuse Prevention where he was responsible for providing national leadership and direction in substance abuse prevention, setting the goals and objectives of the Center, participating in the formulation of strategies and guidelines needed to plan, implement and manage national programs and projects, and where he directed new initiatives on meeting the needs of traditionally underserved populations.
Mr. Romero has extensive experience in the fields of administration, mental health services, chemical addiction, prevention, and program development, among others. Mr. Romero has served as Deputy Director of the Alcoholism Council of New York (ACNY), in New York City as well as the Assistant Director of Mental Health at the William F. Ryan Community Health Center in New York City, one of the Nation's largest and most comprehensive community-based health organizations. As the Inpatient Programs Manager at the Ellis Hospital Department of Psychiatry, in Schenectady, NY, he was directly involved with health care delivery systems, especially as they relate to managed care and quality assurance, Medicaid, and other issues of health care reform. He was instrumental in establishing an adolescent inpatient psychiatric unit as part of the comprehensive psychiatric services of Ellis Hospital as well as serving as the mental health liaison to the county.
Mr. Romero has served on many professional committees, advisory boards, and commissions (at state, regional and local levels) that address issues related to the field of behavioral health as well as allied social and educational issues. He is currently an active member of the National Association of Hispanic Federal Executives. He is also the recipient of numerous awards, honors and recognitions. Earning his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Philosophy and Psychology from Cathedral College, Mr. Romero also holds a Masters Degree in Counseling Psychology from Manhattan College. He received post-graduate training at the State University of New York (SUNY), Albany Campus.