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Posted on: November 4, 2022

Substance Abuse Connect Appoints New Executive Director

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The following is a press release from Substance Abuse Connect - 

The Executive Committee of Substance Abuse Connect has named Zack Terakedis as the new Executive Director.

Terakedis has a background in non-profit development and project management and will support the next phase of activation for the Substance Abuse Connect coalition. Having worked in nationwide organizations and philanthropic capacities, Terakedis will bring direction for the coalition to build capacity in the efforts to prevent substance abuse and substance abuse related crime in Yellowstone County.

When Terakedis assumes the role on November 14th, he will take over the daily operations for this innovative collective impact effort that is comprised of the community leaders in substance abuse prevention. Terakedis will lead communication, outreach and build the capacity to become an independent non-profit organization. The collective impact efforts of Substance Abuse Connect will sustain progress of partners efforts through shared data collection and reporting, securing sustainable funding for programs, and establish a governance structure that supports ongoing goals and development.

“I feel that I have a skillset that will complement the tremendous strategic developments that have been put in place since 2018 with Substance Abuse Connect. The impacts of substance abuse and misuse are being felt by all of our community members. By supporting the coordinated efforts of our existing local resources, I believe we can change the trajectory of substance abuse and related crime in Yellowstone County,” says Terakedis.

Terakedis is the current director of the Billings Industrial Revitalization District. Prior, he was a small business owner in Billings. Having managed a national leadership development program for both Coca-Cola and the Blank Family Foundation, he has seen the effectiveness of collective impact approaches to solving problems in communities nationwide. Terakedis has a B.A. degree in Psychology and Speech Communications at Baldwin-Wallace University and has worked towards his Master’s Degree in Counseling at Prescott College.

Substance Abuse Connect (SAC) coalition, with funding from the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force, created the SAC 2020-2023 plan to substantially reduce drug related crime and addiction in Yellowstone County. Over two-hundred individuals and eighty organizations were engaged in the planning process, including issue experts by profession and by lived experience, policy and budget makers, and front-line workers in prevention, diversion, treatment and law enforcement.

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