David Measel Executive Director

David has a degree in Political Science from Wayne State University (Detroit, MI) and is a Pennsylvania Certified Peer Specialist (CPS), CPS Supervisor, and National Certified Peer Specialist. In addition to these certifications he has also completed the enhanced skill trainings of Certified Older Adult Peer Specialist (COAPS) and Certified Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) Facilitator. He is the former Executive Director of Recovery Connections (a consumer satisfaction team in Lancaster County, PA) where, aside from running the day-to-day operations of the organization, he also developed and delivered trainings based on recovery principles to key stakeholders.

Following this position David was a Certified Peer Specialist and Supervisor at Recovery InSight, a peer run and operated provider agency. At the same time he also served on the Board of Directors of the Pennsylvania Peer Support Coalition where he chaired the bylaws committee and communications committee.

In 2015 David became the Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Peer Support Coalition where he completed a number of projects that help enhance Peer Services in Pennsylvania. In partnership with the Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) and Temple University, David was the lead individual charged with the creation of a three-day Certified Peer Specialists in Crisis Services Training, which went “live” in 2015. He has continued facilitating the crisis training with other individuals he trained in the curriculum ever since. In 2017, in coordination with OMHSAS and the Pennsylvania Certification Board (PCB), David helped lead the workgroup that created the framework for a new formal credentialing process for Pennsylvania CPSs. David is excited to continue to lead the PaPSC as it expands its scope to represent the interests of all peer professionals in Pennsylvania

David has a 12-year old son, Sam; and currently lives in Strasburg, PA with his husband, Ken, and two dogs, Fritz (7-year-old dachshund) and Eli (2-year-old mixed breed).

Keith Elders Grant and project Coordinator

Keith works for the Pennsylvania Peer Support Coalition (PaPSC) as our Grant and Project Coordinator. Prior to taking on this role at PaPSC, Keith worked for the Alternative Community Resource Program where he served as Director/MHP of Peer & Recovery Support Services. He has worked as a Peer Based Professional in Pennsylvania for nine years. In addition, Keith has enhanced certifications in Forensic Peer Support through PMHCA and Drexel University, CPS in Crisis Services, as well as Older Adult Peer Support and holds CRS and CPS Supervisor credentials. His unique life experience is what led him to pursue a career in this field, and since beginning this work, he has truly found his passion for helping others in peer-to-peer settings. Through his diligent work ethic, and application of peer-based principles in his own life, he went on to complete his bachelor’s degree at the University of Wisconsin-Stout where he was awarded ‘Student of the Year’ in the Human Development and Family Studies program in 2018 and is currently pursuing his Masters of Public Administration with a focus on non-profit management at Villanova University. Additionally, he was responsible for conducting weekly Seminar I WRAP® groups within the Transitional Housing Unit (THU) at SCI Laurel Highlands where he introduced justice involved males, who were within one year of release, to WRAP® and what it has done for him personally, as well as the potential that it holds in their lives. While at PaPSC, Keith has led the charge in developing an Ethics training to help Peer Based Professionals better understand their Codes of Ethics through the Pennsylvania Certification Board, an LGBTQ+ training designed specifically for Peer Based Professionals, and, in coordination with his teammates and partners, was responsible for writing and obtaining the $1 million “Building a Peer Support Workforce in PA” grant through the Appalachian Regional Commission. Keith strives to continue to empower the individuals he works with and support them in their life goals through the embodiment of peer-based principles, both through the projects he’s played a part in developing, and in every area of his own personal recovery journey.

Beck Schultz Logistics Coordinator

Beck is the Logistics Coordinator for the PaPSC on our second Appalachian Regional Commission project: Providing Opportunities in Workforce and Entrepreneurship through Recovery (P.O.W.E.R.). Beck is certified as a CPS, CPSS, and an Advanced Level WRAP Facilitator and has been employed in the peer field in both Montgomery County and the Lehigh Valley in the past in roles such as Education and Employment CPS and Peer Run Respite Supervisor. Beck has been with the Coalition since October of 2020. In their current role, Beck provides support to peer professionals in new initiatives in TTA, Entrepreneurship, upcoming Wellness Retreats, and existing Recovery Ecosystem Coalition meetings. They also provide support to all of PaPSC’s training offerings in facilitating, scheduling, and coordinating, so if you have any questions about getting a training on the calendar, reach out! They feel grateful to serve the peer profession and peer professionals themselves every day in a variety of ways.

Abigail Boccardi Wellness Coordinator

After earning her CPS certification in 2019 Abigail joined Geisinger Health Plan as one of their first Certified Peer Specialists on the Behavioral Health Case Management Team. In her time there she quickly became the team’s main point of contact for youth and young adults, as well as LGBTQIA+ cases. Once becoming involved with the PaPSC, Abigail volunteered to become a lead for the Coal Region REC and helped both develop and facilitate “When Self-Soothing Becomes Self-Harm”, a training designed for peer professionals on how to support those who experience thoughts of non-suicidal self-injury.

During her time at GHP and volunteering for the PaPSC, Abigail saw the need for education on the role of peer professionals and ways to support them through compassion fatigue, burnout, and vicarious trauma. She joined as the Wellness Coordinator to address that need by helping the Coalition develop and implement wellness retreats and continue to support the state’s RECs. Her work will ensure the PaPSC continues its vision of supporting peer professionals throughout the state with networking and professional development.

Before becoming a CPS, Abigail worked for one of the largest video game companies in the US, running a team that provided community support via social media. When she’s not passionately advocating for peer support you can find her playing and making mods for video games, adding to her board game collection, or designing and running tabletop RPG campaigns.

Elizabeth (Lizzie) Karns-Waters Project Assistant

Elizabeth “Lizzie” Karns-Waters (she/they) is the Project Assistant at the Pennsylvania Peer Support Coalition. Since 2017, Lizzie has been a dedicated peer specialist, drawn to the field after navigating a personal loss of one of their closest friends. This experience has fueled their passion for peer services and played a crucial role in their own recovery journey.

Beginning their personal recovery in adolescence, Lizzie entered peer support work at age 20 in Clearfield County and later shifted to Blair County during the pandemic, primarily focusing on the Youth and Young Adult population and LGBTQAI+ communities. Lizzie, a Certified Peer Specialist Supervisor, is committed to supporting both peers and CPS staff alike.

Collaborating with the Pennsylvania Certification Board (PCB), Lizzie contributed to the development of the Pennsylvania Certified Peer Specialist state certification test. They also played a role in creating the Study Guide and Desk Reference with the Pennsylvania Peer Support Coalition (PaPSC) and actively participated in PaPSC’s Advocacy Committee.

Currently an honor’s student and National Society of Leadership and Success (NSLS) member at Pennsylvania Highlands Community College, Lizzie is pursuing a social work degree with plans for higher education. Beyond academics, Lizzie champions their community in the art and music scene. In their free time, they enjoy moments with toddler Finn, and their cats and dog, writing, and occasionally guitar playing and singing.

Brian Kammerer Member Coordinator

Brian has worked in the field of drug and alcohol addiction treatment since 2008 when he took his first job in the field as a counselor’s assistant at Caron Treatment Center. During his 9 years at Caron Brian held several positions including the CA Supervisor of the Adolescent Boys unit as well as the Clinical Quality Analyst. Brian has served as the Drug and Alcohol Program Specialist with the Council on Chemical Abuse (COCA) since 2017. While at COCA, Brian established an Overdose Education and Naloxone distribution program in Berks County and has conducted over 400 interventions as part of the Blue CARES Law Enforcement intervention program launched in 2019. Brian led an expansion of Blue CARES in 2021 which empowered officers to divert individuals to treatment instead of filing criminal charges. Most recently Brian has accepted the role of Southeast Pennsylvania Recovery Ecosystem Coalition Coordinator with the Pennsylvania Peer Support Coalition.

Brian graduated in 1993 from Marple Newtown High School located in Delaware County Pennsylvania. He then went on to graduate magnum cum laude from Alvernia University in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in Behavioral Health concentrating on Addiction. Brian currently holds a Certified Allied Addiction Practitioner (CAAP) certification and a Certified Recovery Specialist (CRS) certification from the Pennsylvania Certification Board. Brian is also a National Certified Peer Recovery Support Specialist with the National Certification Commission for Addiction Professionals.

Brian is a person in long term recovery from substance use disorder since July 2005. He is a CRS subject matter expert for the Pennsylvania Certification Board and recently helped develop the standardized CRS training curriculum and exam. Brian is an active member of the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Berks County where he serves as the Food Pantry Coordinator, providing a weeks’ worth of groceries to more than 100 families each month.

Brian is also an avid hiker, triathlon enthusiast, Deadhead, and unfortunately a loyal Flyers fan, but most importantly, Brian is the father to an amazing 8-year-old human.