Barbara J. Bazron, PhD was appointed by Mayor Muriel Bowser as Acting Director of the Department of the Behavioral Health in April 2019. In this role, she manages the District’s recovery oriented, integrated behavioral health system. Throughout her career, Dr. Bazron has used her expertise in strategic planning and organizational development to build systems of care that promote the integration of mental health and addictions services, foster equity with physical health care and address disparities in health care. Prior to her appointment, Dr. Bazron served as the Deputy Secretary of the Maryland Department of Health’s Behavioral Health Administration which is responsible for the state’s services and supports for individuals with mental health and substance use disorders, including five psychiatric hospitals. During her tenure, she led improvements in the forensic services system.
Dr. Bazron previously served as Interim Director and Senior Deputy Director of the District’s Department of Behavioral Health where she led initiatives to expand evidence-based practices for children and youth, integrate peer leadership in treatment models and increase access to care in non-traditional settings, including an urgent care clinic located at the US Superior Court for immediate service for court-ordered referrals. She also established a research and evaluation division to collect accurate, reliable data to drive sound decision making.
Dr. Bazron is an early innovator and a published author on cultural competency in behavioral health. She also has clinical experience as a family therapist and as an educational diagnostician. Dr. Bazron received a Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Pittsburgh, a Master of Education from the University of Cincinnati and a Bachelor of Arts from Oberlin College.