Mayfield TWP. — Lauren Emmons has been with Lapeer County Community Mental Health (CMH) for 38 of the department’s 50 years, and 2023 will be his last year. He plans to retire on his January 31, 2024.
Emmons, 65, came to CMH in 1985 after graduating from Michigan State University with a master’s degree in social work. He grew up in Morenci, a city in Lennawee County on the Ohio-Michigan border, and had offers to work in Lapeer and Indiana. He chose to come to Lapia because it resembled the area he grew up in.
“It felt comfortable,” he said.
Emmons began her career at CMH as an aftercare therapist. More recently, that position has been called Clinical Case Manager. He provided outpatient counseling to those with private insurance and worked on the reintegration of those coming out of the Clinton Valley Center, a state hospital for the mentally ill that closed in 1997.
A few years later, Emmons became the supervisor of the Day Treatment Program, the predecessor of what is known today as Harmony Hall. This program was where people spent their days and returned home at night.
In 1989, CMH wanted to start the Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) program, an intensive case management for people with mental illness. Emmons says he did so until the mid-1990s and “still has that program running today.”
At the time, CMH only offered outpatient counseling for children and families, but wanted to expand the services offered, so he worked on grants and started CMH’s in-home program for families and children. Did.
As the 90s progressed, Emmons found himself with more administrative responsibilities, and the state began funding managed care through CMH to help people with developmental disabilities (e.g., in Oakdale, Lapeer). people who would have been Support services for home, respite care and independent living. Emmons became Associate Director of Psychiatric Services.
He spent a year working on the development of the Thumb Mental Health Alliance. It was his four county effort that eventually became today’s Region 10 PIHP. His role changed several more times, and in 2007 Emmons was named Chief Operating Officer (COO) after he was joined by Robert Sprague on the board. Sprague fell ill in his 2016, and Emmons stepped in as interim director five years before him outright. Now he’s ready to rewind and enjoy his retirement with his wife, Toni, who will be able to meet his three children, who live in Lapeer and Holland, Michigan, and New Concord, Ohio, plus more. He has three grandchildren who are looking forward to it. They are also preparing to move into a new house they have just built and plan to stay in Lapia.