Stella V. Pappas, LCSW-R, ACSW
PRINCIPAL & FOUNDER, SPA, LLC
Stella V. Pappas, LCSW-R, ACSW, is the principal and founder of Stella Pappas Associates (SPA), LLC. Stella founded SPA in 2013 to provide access to affordable and flexible C-Suite executive talent to organizations to enhance their administrative effectiveness and efficiency through structure and process improvements. The Pappas Paradigm is to strengthen organizational capacity by integrating mission and practice into a synchronized, value driven, evidence based model for local and national replication.
Additionally, Stella is currently with Optum as the Executive Director of the NYC BHO providing leadership as the public behavioral health system transitions the care of the most vulnerable New Yorkers into managed care. Under her leadership, Optum provides administrative and management services for inpatient behavioral health treatment. By working closely with providers to improve clinical outcomes and increase access to quality care, she plays a key role in supporting New York State’s efforts to enhance the quality and efficiency of the public behavioral health system as it transitions into managed care.
Most recently Stella served as the Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President of the Institute for Community Living, one of New York City’s largest behavioral health provider agencies. She provided daily operational leadership to a workforce of over 1200 staff members. She successfully integrated operational and programmatic practice and for over 13 years acquired and honed her leadership and organizational development skills necessary to:
- develop and operate an array of high quality services
- maximize the unique talent of staff
- value deeply the consumers whose lives are positively impacted
- integrate it all into a synchronized and unified agency
Her accomplishments include:
- precedent setting innovations
- strong financial management
- outstanding regulatory result
- strategic partnerships
In 2008, Stella was among those invited by the Commissioner of the New York State Office of Mental Health to participate in the development of the State Children’s Plan, a guide for improving the social and emotional wellbeing of New York’s children and their families. In 2009, Stella helped lead the Chronic Illness Demonstration Project (CIDP), a three-year statewide collaboration between multiple agencies that focused on improving care for Medicaid beneficiaries with chronic physical and behavioral health needs. Due to the success of the CIDP pilot in New York, the State used it as a model for its Medicaid Health Home program. In 2011, Stella implemented the first NYC based Medicaid Health Home program.
Stella has served on numerous boards, including the board of the Coalition of Behavioral Health Agencies, the National Association of Social Workers, Coordinated Behavioral Care, Alliance Care Network, and the Urban Institute for Behavioral Health. She participated in the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare’s inaugural Executive Leadership Program. She has also been recognized by The Brooklyn Home Reporter and The Brooklyn Spectator as a Top Brooklyn Woman in Business, and by the National Association of Social Workers as an Emerging Social Work Leader.
Stella received her Masters of Social Work and Advanced Clinical Certificate from New York University’s School of Social Work; she holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology with honors from New York University.
Stella’s most important roles are wife and mom.