Weitzman ECHO Peer Recovery Specialists 2024 (July 17, 2024)

July 17, 2024

Program Information

Weitzman ECHO Peer Recovery Specialists is available for enrollment to Peer Recovery Specialists or similar roles who work through a health system from Delaware and regional states. You should have received an access code in your email communication about registering for this program. If you are interested in enrolling and have not yet received an access code, please submit a ticket to our Support Center and a representative from our team will respond as soon as possible. 

The Weitzman Institute partners with local and regional stakeholders to offer state or regional Project ECHO programs. If you are interested in receiving information on these partnerships, please submit a ticket to our Support Center and a representative from our team will respond as soon as possible. 

Weitzman Peer Recovery ECHO is a collaboration between the following organizations:

peer recovery ECHO collaborators

Acknowledgement of Support

This program is offered by the State of Delaware's Department of Health and Social Services in collaboration with the Weitzman Institute for Peer Recovery Specialists in SAMHSA Region III as well as National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors throughout the northeast region.

Target Audience

This activity is appropriate for peer recovery specialists.

Registration Information

There is no fee associated with this program.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this activity, the participant should be able to do the following:

  • Define "team based care."
  • Describe the benefits of "team based care."
  • Review the peer role in a team.
  • Discuss co-opting and how to stay true to the peer role.
  • Share challenging client case studies and discuss possible options for addressing those challenges.
Activity summary
Available credit: 
  • 1.00 Participation Hour(s)
    If you are not able to utilize any of the above credit types, you are able to download an unaccredited Participation Certificate for your records.
Activity opens: 
Activity expires: 
Event starts: 
07/17/2024 - 3:00pm EDT
Event ends: 
07/17/2024 - 4:00pm EDT


This ECHO meets the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of every month from 12-1pm ET. Below are the dates of all sessions:

  • January 3, 2024
  • January 17, 2024
  • February 7, 2024
  • February 21, 2024
  • March 6, 2024
  • March 20, 2024
  • April 3, 2024
  • April 17, 2024
  • May 1, 2024
  • May 15, 2024
  • June 5, 2024
  • June 19, 2024
  • July 3, 2024
  • July 17, 2024
  • August 7, 2024
  • August 21, 2024
  • September 4, 2024
  • September 18, 2024
  • October 2, 2024
  • October 16, 2024
  • November 6, 2024
  • November 20, 2024
  • December 4, 2024
  • December 18, 2024


Karen DiNardo, BA, works for Mental Health Association in DE (MHA) and is the Director of Peer Training and Outreach Services. Karen works with Peer Specialists as well as those interested in becoming a Peer throughout Delaware. (MHA) is the approved training provider in Peer Support for the Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health (DSAMH). Karen also consults with a variety of (DSAMH) providers/agencies who seek to add Peers to their workforce. Karen recognizes the power that the Peer role plays, in both a team-based and individual environment, with those who are in recovery from substance use, mental health, or co-occurring issues. Karen sees how pivotal it is for all Peer Specialists to share their personal recovery stories with the individuals they support as well as “broker” communication issues, teach self-advocacy and inspire hope. Karen has worked in Peer-related services since 2010 when the state of Delaware reached a settlement agreement with the Department of Justice in relation to services received by individuals with substance use, mental health, and co-occurring issues. Prior to her work in Peer services, Karen spent over 18 years working for J.P. Morgan Chase. 

https://education.weitzmaninstitute.org/sites/default/files/media/2023-06/Gallucci.pngGerard Gallucci, MD, MHS, is currently the Acting Medical Director for the Delaware Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health.  From 2012-2017 he was the Medical Director of the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services.  He is a graduate of Columbia College (BA), the George Washington School of Medicine (MD), and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health MHS). He completed his psychiatry residency at Johns Hopkins and an NIH-sponsored fellowship in psychiatric epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. His clinical and research interests are in public psychiatry, psychiatric epidemiology, and the mental health aspects of developmental disabilities. He holds faculty appointments at Johns Hopkins, The Sidney Kimmel Medical College (Thomas Jefferson University), Drexel University College of Medicine, and the University of Delaware. Dr. Gallucci is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association.

Mary Wise, MA, MFA, BSN, RN, is a DSAMH Special Projects Nurse who works with Dr. Sherry Nykiel, Acting Medical Director and Chief of Addiction Psychiatry, to develop and implement projects designed to directly address the opioid crisis in Delaware. Mary knows that substance use disorders thrive in an environment of shame and secrecy and believes it is her mission to educate, provide resources, and help afflicted individuals rise up so they can feel whole again. She knows that treating individuals with a substance use disorder is complex and takes a multi-faceted approach that builds a strong foundation of support and resources. Mary works on multiple projects evolving under the SOR grant and is in the process of developing additional routes to bridge OUD patients with the support they need to help rebuild their lives within the community. Mary is a Registered Nurse, certified in BLS and ACLS, with a background in acute care. She is a former college professor and is working toward becoming a Certified Addictions Nurse.  Mary holds an MA in Curriculum and Instruction from Rosemont College, a BSN RN in Nursing from West Chester University, and an MFA in Writing from Sarah Lawrence College.

https://education.weitzmaninstitute.org/sites/default/files/media/2023-06/Natalie.pngNatalie Klaus-Rogers, BA was hired to work on a Peer run Warm Line in Cincinnati, Ohio over 15 years ago. She “battles” mental health challenges, she doesn’t “suffer” from them. She’s passionate about having the privilege to support others on their own recovery journey. Today she continues her 15-year journey in Peer Support as the Manager of Education for the Department of Corrections for MHA in Delaware. She spent both her junior years of high school and college studying aboard in Germany on scholarship. She earned BA in German Languages and Literature from The University of Cincinnati. Natalie is an Advanced Level WRAP Facilitator, Certified Mental Health First Aid Instructor, and incoming member of the State Rehabilitation Advisory Council and Temple University Collaborative on Community Inclusion Steering Committee. She lives in urban Wilmington with her husband, young children, and one cat too many.

https://education.weitzmaninstitute.org/sites/default/files/media/2023-06/Rachel_0.jpgRachel Smith, BA, has been in recovery for 8 years now. She began as a peer for Connections in 2016 and was asked to take the position of the Director of PROMISE Peer Services in 2019, and has been doing so since then. The PROMISE peer program helps individuals become comfortable in the community by increasing socialization and decreasing isolation with the help of peers. The peers share their experience to provide support and motivation. PROMISE Peer Services switched to Conexio Care in August of 2021. She earned a BA in Psychology and hopes to help as many people as possible. She is passionate about the work that she does and hopes to continue learning throughout this experience.

https://education.weitzmaninstitute.org/sites/default/files/media/2023-06/Nicole.jpgNicole J. Perefege, JD, Manager of Peer Education Curriculum, is a recovering attorney who has worked in peer services since 2008, before Peer Support became a “thing” in Delaware.  She has been involved in adult education since 1996, developing curricula and presenting classes and trainings at Immaculata University, University of Delaware Graduate Studies, Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers (LCL) Continuing Education, and the Delaware Substance Abuse and Mental Health (DSAMH) Training Office.  She has been a Peer Educator with Mental Health Association in Delaware since 2016, becoming curriculum manager in 2022.  Nicole was active in the Chester County, PA Bar Association (CCBA) for 17 years, serving on the Board of Directors for 3 years.  She wrote curricula and taught classes for The People’s Law School (sponsored by the CCBA), and co-wrote and edited manuals on Elder Law and the Americans with Disabilities Act, Real Estate Law, and Estate Planning.  She also led the Sole Practitioner Section of the CCBA for 7 years.  Nicole has been a peer volunteer for LCL (Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers) since 2006, helping attorneys and law students who struggle with depression. Nicole has been an Advanced Level WRAP (Wellness Recovery Action Plan) Facilitator since 2014 and a Certified Mandt instructor from 2010 to 2021.  She was the HIPAA Compliance Officer for DSAMH from 2008-2016. Nicole has a strong need to help others overcome the difficulties, stigma, and discrimination that she experienced or witnessed in her own recovery and tries to be an example of recovery to others.  She loves travel, and is a devoted fur-baby mom to a dog and three cats.

Terry Cowan, CPRS, CSPS, is a Certified Peer Recovery Specialist and Certified Supervisor of Peer Specialists. He has lived experience with early childhood trauma and sexual abuse. He has been homeless and incarcerated for years. I am in recovery from alcoholism and substance abuse. He has a mental health diagnoses that he treats. Because he treats and continues to recover from these circumstances he is able to help others do the same. This is why he has become a Peer. He started out volunteering at the recovery house that was a client. He then worked for them as a Resident advisor. He also worked part time at the detoxification center I took advantage of for years. After, it was suggested he took the training and exam to become a Certified Peer Recovery Specialist, he enrolled in MHA's peer program. After completing the program and passing the certification exam, he began working as a weekend peer for the Bridge Clinic under DSAMH. Gradually, he worked up to a full time position and then to a supervisory role. He was the second on their leadership team. He received more training and experience that help me to gain a Certified Supervisor of Peer Specialists certification. Recently, it was suggested that he interview for a new role within DSAMH as the Peer Services Administrator for DSAMH on the HISD team of Social Determinants. He has since transitioned into this new role and has had the honor and privilege to work on a team that focuses on not only helping a broader group of people, but allows him to demonstrate the effectiveness of the peer role. In doing this he can hopefully grow the usefulness and application of peer services while maintaining peer fidelity and its core competencies.

Weitzman Institute Disclosure Statement

It is the policy of the Weitzman Institute to ensure that Continuing Education (CE) activities are independent and free of commercial bias. To ensure educational content is objective, balanced, and guarantee content presented is in the best interest of its learners' and the public, the Weitzman Institute requires that everyone in a position to control educational content disclose all financial relationships with ineligible companies within the prior 24 months. An ineligible company is one whose primary business is producing, marketing, selling, re-selling or distributing healthcare products used by or on patients. Examples can be found at accme.org.

Faculty participating in a Weitzman Institute-sponsored activity must disclose to the planning committee and audience all financial or other relationship(s) with ineligible companies.

Faculty Disclosures

No faculty disclosed a relevant financial relationship for this program.

Accreditation Statement

In support of improving patient care, Moses/Weitzman Health System Inc. and its Weitzman Institute is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credential Center (ANCC) to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.   

By completing this activity, you provide Moses/Weitzman Health System Inc. the permission to share completion data with the ACCME and the certifying board(s).

Joint Accreditation logo

Please note that continuing education credit requirements differ by state, jurisdiction, and licensing agency. It is your responsibility to confirm if your licensing/credentialing agency will accept the credits offered by this activity.

Available Credit

  • 1.00 Participation Hour(s)
    If you are not able to utilize any of the above credit types, you are able to download an unaccredited Participation Certificate for your records.
Please login or register to take this activity.
  • Please register for this activity prior to the start of the first session you wish to attend.
  • If you are attempting to register for this activity after the session you wish to attend has started and the activity says "expired," please submit a ticket to our support center. A member from our team will respond as soon as possible. 

Required Hardware/Software

  • This online activity requires use of a device connected to the Internet, such as a computer tablet or mobile device. 
  • The activity will take place over Zoom, which must be accessed directly from within the activity.