With generous support from the Ohio Humanities Council, this website provides resources with which Ohioans can hold conversations - in their community centers, libraries, schools, living rooms, places of worship, and other spaces - about the opioid crisis.

The Project

In the summer of 2019, we will facilitate ten community conversations across the state based on the resources provided on this site. First-person stories from our book, Not Far from Me: Stories of Opioids and Ohio, serve as the foundation for discussions which are meant to promote dialogue around difficult subjects and disrupt persistent stigma related to opioid abuse. These stories come from a diverse group of Ohioans, more than 50 contributors from 22 Ohio counties demonstrating that the ohio epidemic has impacted all areas of our state. In addition to resources for holding community discussions, this website includes reflections and reports from these sessions as well as up to date information about other events going on across the state and pertinent news stories.

The Team

Berkeley Franz, Ph.D (Project Co-lead) is a medical sociologist whose research and teaching focus on health disparities, hospital-community relationships, and health policy. She is currently Assistant Professor of Community-based Health at Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, in Athens, Ohio. Berkeley holds a Heritage Endowed Career Development Faculty Fellowship in Population Health Science, Osteopathic Heritage Foundation Ralph S. Licklider, D.O., Research Endowment. She additionally holds adjunct appointments in the Departments of Classics and World Religions and Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Ohio University. She received an M.A. in religious studies from the University of Chicago and a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Miami. Berkeley has worked both domestically and internationally on community-based research projects and has published extensively in peer reviewed scholarly journals and books on the theory and development of community-based partnerships. In addition to serving as co-editor of Not Far from Me: Stories of Opioids and Ohio, Berkeley’s co-authored book, Narrative Medicine and Community-based Health Care and Planning was published by Springer in 2017. Berkeley is currently working on a co-authored book (with Dan Skinner and Jonathan Wynn) on hospital-community relations for the University of Chicago Press.

Daniel Skinner, Ph.D (Project Co-lead) is a political scientist and health policy researcher who is currently Associate Professor of Health Policy in the Department of Social Medicine at Ohio University, Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, on the Dublin, Ohio campus. He earned his Ph.D in political science from the City University of New York. Dan teaches, researches, and is active in health politics and policy, especially in areas of health care access, health care reform, and access to health care services for vulnerable and underserved populations. In addition to serving as co-editor of Not Far from Me: Stories of Opioids and Ohio, Dan is the author of Medical Necessity: Health Care Access and the Politics of Decision Making (University of Minnesota Press, forthcoming 2019) and more than two dozen peer-reviewed academic articles in health policy, medical education, and political theory. He is currently working on a co-authored book (with Berkeley Franz and Jonathan Wynn) on hospital-community relations for the University of Chicago Press. Dan is co-director of the Osteopathic Health Policy Fellowship and director of Ohio University’s Comparative Health Systems—Cuba program, which affords him an opportunity to travel to Cuba with Ohio University students to learn about Cuba’s health care system. He recently launched Prognosis Ohio, a podcast affiliated with the local NPR affiliate, WCBE, on which he addresses a wide range of health care policy and politics issues in Ohio.

Kyle Rosenberger, M.Ed. (Activity Designer) is an instructional designer with Ohio University’s Office of Instructional Innovation. In his role, Kyle supports Ohio University’s Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine’s curriculum transformation project and Ohio University’s Academic Innovation Accelerator, a program designed to empower faculty to peruse scalable and sustainable innovations that enhance the student experience at the university. To date, the Ohio University Academic Innovation Accelerator has supported efforts in the realm of micro-credentialing, digital humanities, place-based pedagogy, and the healthy discourse of complex topics on campus. Kyle also plays a pivotal role in the redesign of Ohio University’s Honors Program, which aims to support community outreach and collaboration within the Appalachian Region. Kyle has presented at both national and international events such as Blackboard World, Stanford University Medicine X, and the 11th Annual Sino-American Faculty Training on Family Medicine Conference in Sichuan, China. In each presentation, Kyle promotes the creative use of technology and divergent thinking to enhance the learning experience. In addition to presentations, Kyle has published research in various outlets such as the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, Journal of Medical Educational and Curricular Development, Journal of Mobile Technology in Medicine, and Tech Trends. A lifelong Ohioan, Kyle received his M.Ed. from Tiffin University and his B.S. from Bowling Green State University. He is currently completing his Ph.D. in Instructional Technology from Ohio University. 

Lesli Johnson, Ph.D, MSW (Program Evaluation) After a successful clinical career in mental health, joined Ohio University's Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs in 1997 to lead the Planning, Evaluation, Education and Research team, one of the two teams providing services to public and nonprofit organizations throughout the region and beyond. In 2007, Dr. Johnson joined the School's faculty. Dr. Johnson holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Ohio University and a Master in Social Work from the University of Oklahoma. She has 20 years of experience working in community programs, including mental health, health, education and child welfare. Dr. Johnson enjoys working on interdisciplinary teams both as a researcher and as a project leader. As an evaluator, she has conducted evaluations on school-based programs, mental health and health interventions, community development and community readiness. She is currently serving as lead evaluator on Project Launch, a five-year SAMHSA funded program that includes a partnership between state policy makers and local service providers and the integration of services for children, birth through age eight. She is also the lead evaluator on a four-state initiative to create local coalitions dedicated to the prevention and self-management of diabetes. She teaches courses in the Master of Public Administration program on research methods, public policy analysis, implementation science, and program evaluation.

Jory Gomes, B.A. (Editorial Support) is a is a Health Policy Research Assistant in the Department of Social Medicine at Ohio University, Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, on the Dublin, Ohio campus. He was instrumental in organizing the website and populating the Events, News, and Resources sections. In addition to his work on the website, he served as editorial support for Not Far from Me: Stories of Opioids and Ohio, helping with initial edits of submissions and helping pull the final manuscript together. Jory earned his B.A. from Hiram College, where he studied Biomedical Humanities and Public Health. He recently presented research at the 2018 American Public Health Association’s Annual Meeting & Conference and is a 2019 Fellow in the Building Healthcare Collectives Program.