Office Based Addiction Treatment Training and Technical Assistance (OBAT TTA)

A Resource for Healthcare and Social Services Professionals

About us

Our Staff


Colleen LaBelle
Colleen LaBelle

Colleen LaBelle, MSN, RN-BC, CARN

Colleen is the Director of Office Based Addiction Treatment (OBAT) Training and Technical Assistance Program for the state of Massachusetts and is the founder and director of Boston Medical Center's (BMC) OBAT Clinic, the largest of its kind if New England serving over 700 patients annually. She also serves as the Program Director of numerous other grants and projects including two Opioid Addiction Treatment Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes (ECHOs) at BMC. Ms. LaBelle has over 30 years of clinical experience treating HIV and addiction and over a decade of experience advising health care organizations on how to build addiction treatment into their programs. She is a member of the Massachusetts Board of Nursing and Governor Charlie Baker's Opioid Working Task Force. Ms. LaBelle is a member of the International Nurses Society on Addiction (IntNSA); she founded and serves as Executive Director of the Massachusetts IntNSA Chapter. In recognition of her work to improve and expand treatments for patients with addiction, Colleen received the 2018 Innovators in Health Award from the Network for Excellence in Health Innovation, the 2017 Betty Ford Award from the Association for Medical Education and Research in Substance Abuse (AMERSA), and the 2016 Lillian Carter Exemplary Acts in Nursing Award from Modern Healthcare in partnership with the Lillian Carter Center for Global Health & Social Responsibility at the Emory University School of Nursing, in addition to many other awards and recognitions. Ms. LaBelle is board certified in addiction nursing and pain management.

Justin Alves
Justin Alves

Justin Alves, RN, ACRN, CARN

Justin is a Clinical Nurse Educator for the State Technical Assistance and Treatment Expansion of Office Based Addiction Treatment (STATE OBAT) at Boston Medical Center, with specific expertise in infectious disease and their co-occurrence with substance use disorders, community outreach, and harm reduction. He serves as an expert on the Substance Use Disorder Care Continuum ECHO team, providing opioid addiction training and mentoring to health centers throughout the SUD care spectrum. He also sits on the item writing committee for the Addictions Nursing Certification Board, which oversees the accreditation of addiction nurses via the Certified Addictions Registered Nurse (CARN) and the Certified Addictions Registered Nurse-Advanced Practice (CARN-AP) examinations. Justin has dedicated his career to caring for patients living with HIV/AIDS and suffering from substance use disorders across the continuum of care, working first in the community for a mobile health unit offering free HIV/STI testing and case management services and most recently as a staff nurse at Massachusetts General Hospital in the Infectious Disease Division. He is an AIDS Certified Registered Nurse, serving as the President-elect of the Boston Association of Nurses in AIDS Care, and a Certified Addictions Registered Nurse, serving as the Vice-President of the Massachusetts Chapter of the International Nurses Society on Addictions. He is also the current President of the Gamma Epsilon Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing. Justin received his BSN from Northeastern University in 2013 and is currently in a MSN program at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth with a focus in nursing education.

Lexie Bergeron
Lexie Bergeron

Lexie Bergeron, MPH, LCSW

Lexie is the Operations Manager for OBAT Training and Technical Assistance (TTA) at Boston Medical Center. Lexie develops systems and tools for delivering technical assistance and assists community organizations to identify their TTA needs. She advises community health centers on clinic administration and protocols related to providing substance use disorder treatment in a primary care setting. Lexie has 10 years' experience as the Program Manager of BMC's OBAT Clinic responsible for day-to-day administration. As Program Manager, Lexie established collaborative relationships with community agencies and was often the initial point of contact for new patients. She also managed data collection for the STATE OBAT B Grant, working with Community Health Centers throughout Massachusetts to report on their programmatic and patient data once they had implemented the Massachusetts Model of nurse care management. Lexie received her BA from Brown University and her MPH and MSW from Columbia University in New York City.

Benjamin Bloomenthal
Benjamin Bloomenthal

Benjamin Bloomenthal, MBA

Benjamin is the Grants Administrator for OBAT Training and Technical Assistance at Boston Medical Center. Benjamin oversees the financial components of grant research, grant writing, and grant program design. Benjamin also manages program budgets and spending, and coordinates relationships with consultants and suppliers. He develops financial projections to ensure OBAT has the resources to provide assistance to community-based treatment programs. Prior to joining the team at BMC, Benjamin was responsible for the federal grants program at the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority. While at the MBTA, he focused on project delivery through grants management, to improve access to public transportation. He is skilled in data collection and management and has expertise in federal and state compliance. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Suffolk University and received his Master's in Business Administration, with a concentration in Healthcare Policy and Management from Brandeis University's Heller School for Social Policy and Management.

Danna E. Gobel
Danna E. Gobel

Danna E. Gobel, MSW

Danna is the Coordinator and Co-Facilitator of the Boston Medical Center Opioid Addiction Treatment ECHO (now complete), the Massachusetts OBAT ECHO, and the New England OBAT ECHO. Danna interfaces with community health centers, health care professionals, specialists, and OBAT staff to ensure the operations of the bi-monthly teleECHO clinics with BMC experts. Danna has been managing educational and nonprofit programming for over 20 years. Prior to joining BMC, Danna worked with youth and families in under-resourced communities in Chicago. She also worked as a clinician in community health centers in the city. In 2008, Danna moved to Cairo, Egypt to provide clinical and psychosocial support to refugees fleeing such places as Sudan, Iraq, Ethiopia, and Eritrea. Danna holds a Master's Degree in Social Work from Loyola University Chicago, and a Graduate Diploma in Forced Migration and Refugee Studies from The American University in Cairo. She has recently been certified in Social Justice Mediation.

Rachel King
Rachel King

Rachel King, MD, FASAM

Rachel is the Medical Director of Community Health Outreach for OBAT Training and Technical Assistance at Boston Medical Center. She is the medical director for the New England OBAT ProjectECHO and the SUD Care Continuum ECHO. She works as a primary care physician, infectious disease and addiction specialist at the South End Community Health Center. She is the medical director of the HCRC Methadone OTP located at the Lemuel Shattuck Hospital. Her focus is to promote increased access to MOUD through skill development of primary care teams. She has presented nationally on implementing OUD treatment in community health center settings. She received her medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine and completed residency at Boston Medical Center. She is board certified in addiction medicine and internal medicine.

Charmaine Lastimoso
Charmaine Lastimoso

Charmaine Lastimoso, MPH, MSN, NP-C

Charmaine is a Nurse Practitioner and Clinical Educator for the Office Based Addiction Treatment (OBAT) Program at Boston Medical Center and Boston University School of Medicine with clinical expertise in homeless health and complex care coordination. Charmaine has been involved in work around substance use since 2007, initially as a research assistant on the IMPACT (Integrated Management of Physician-delivered Alcohol Care for Tuberculosis patients) Study based in Tomsk Oblast, Russia, at the Division of Global Health Equity at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston after completing her MPH. Seeking a more clinical role, she earned her MSN and subsequently worked at Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program as a respite care and primary care provider, working with patients with complex medical needs including substance use disorders. Charmaine was previously a nurse practitioner on a multidisciplinary team working to mitigate 30-day readmissions among a high risk group of patients at Addison Gilbert Hospital and Beverly Hospital through the Community Hospital Acceleration, Revitalization and Transformation (CHART) program through the MA Health Policy Commission. Charmaine recently joined the clinicians at Faster Paths to Treatment, BMC’s substance use disorder urgent care center, with a full DATA2000 X-waiver. Charmaine completed her Master’s of Public Health in Epidemiology at the Boston University School of Public Health and her Master of Science in Nursing from Boston College with a concentration as a Family Nurse Practitioner.

Stacey Mitchell
Stacey Mitchell

Stacey Mitchell

Stacey is the Administrative Assistant to Project Director Colleen LaBelle and to the OBAT Clinical Team at Boston Medical Center. Stacey coordinates trainings and other events, managing registrations, room setup, and preparation of training materials and supplies, and has over 5 years' experience supporting the BMC OBAT operations. Stacey also maintains the Treatment and Referrals Hotline for the State of Massachusetts. As the primary Hotline representative, Stacey speaks to callers seeking treatment for opioid use disorders about what kind of treatment they are looking for and provides information about the treatment options accessible to them in their local area. Prior to joining BMC OBAT, Stacey worked at multiple community-based health centers in the greater Boston area.

Melissa Mitchell
Melissa Mitchell

Melissa Mitchell

Melissa Mitchell is the Data Coordinator for OBAT Training and Technical Assistance at Boston Medical Center. Melissa receives all of the required Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) forms submitted by OBAT grant-funded programs across the state and enters them into the state database. She reviews the forms for completeness and contacts programs to obtain missing information. Melissa provides technical assistance to programs in the correct completion of the DPH forms in order to facilitate the collection of complete and accurate data on office-based addiction treatment services statewide. Melissa maintains databases that track the patients enrolled at each individual clinical site and monitors the receipt of the required paperwork for each patient. Melissa has been with BMC OBAT for over 10 years.

Annie Potter
Annie Potter

Annie Potter, MSN, MPH, NP, CARN-AP

Annie is a Clinical Educator with the State Technical Assistance and Treatment Expansion of Office Based Addiction Treatment (STATE OBAT) at Boston Medical Center. Annie educates and supports health care providers on best practices in the treatment of substance use disorders. She also serves as an expert on the Opioid Addiction Treatment ECHO team providing opioid addiction training and mentoring to health centers across the country. Her areas of clinical expertise in addition to treatment of substance use include: HIV, Hepatitis C, family planning and LGBTQ health care. Annie holds a Masters of Nursing from The Johns Hopkins School of Nursing and a Masters of Public Health from The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Prior to joining Boston Medical Center, Annie practiced at a community health center where she helped establish and served as the clinical lead for the first walk-in HIV treatment and prevention program in Baltimore City. She is board certified in addictions and holds specialty certifications for treatment of HIV and Hepatitis C.

Shereen Sodder
Shereen Sodder

Shereen Sodder

Shereen is the Project Coordinator for OBAT Training and Technical Assistance at Boston Medical Center. She manages the planning, implementation, and evaluation of conferences and training events hosted by OBAT and the OBAT website. Shereen also coordinates activities related to OBAT's role in the PROUD Clinical Trials Network study, based out of Kaiser Permanente in Washington State, which measures the efficacy of expanding the Massachusetts model of addiction treatment nationally. Before joining the OBAT TTA team, she worked with BMC's Office of Development as an associate on the Foundation Relations and Government Grants team. Shereen holds a Bachelor's degree in Science, Technology, and Society from Vassar College, with minors in Biology and Italian.

Mansi Varma
Mansi Varma

Mansi Varma

Mansi is the Program Assistant for the OBAT ECHO training model at Boston Medical Center. She facilitates the logistics of the OBAT ECHO clinics such as planning clinics, conducting surveys, managing IT, and more. Before joining OBAT TTA, Mansi was part of the Marketing and Communications team at Integrative Sports and Spine Rehab. She is currently a MPH candidate at Boston University, focusing on Mental Health and Substance Use and Health Communications. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Public Health Policy and Psychology and Social Behavior, with a minor in Biology, at University of California, Irvine.

Alicia Ventura
Alicia Ventura

Alicia Ventura, MPH

Alicia is the Director of Special Projects and Research for BMC's OBAT team. Her focus is on expanding the capacity-building arm of BMC's OBAT Program to educate healthcare providers at the local, state and national level about how to provide high-quality, evidence-based care to people who use drugs. She is responsible for overseeing all research and evaluation related to BMC's OBAT Program, ensuring results are disseminated widely and that any gaps and areas of need are identified and addressed. Alicia also currently serves as Public Health Clinical Research Advocate on the advisory board team for Families for Sensible Drug Policy, a global coalition of families, professionals, and organizations representing the voice of the family impacted by substance use. She has published in numerous peer-reviewed journals on topics including: reproductive health, HIV, consequences of alcohol and other drug use. Alicia received her Master's in Community Public Health at New York University and has over 15 years of experience working in the healthcare system overseeing implementation of large NIH-funded research studies, and managing the development, implementation, and evaluation of clinical and public health programs related to addiction, behavioral health, women's health and reproductive healthcare. She is a fierce advocate for people who use drugs and their families and is committed to social justice and harm reduction as guiding principles.

Kristin Wason
Kristin Wason

Kristin Wason, MSN, NP-C, CARN

Kristin is a Nurse Practitioner and Clinical Educator for the Office Based Addiction Treatment (OBAT) Program at Boston Medical Center and Boston University School of Medicine. Kristin has been working in the field of addiction medicine since 2009; initially practicing as a Registered Nurse within BMC's multidisciplinary OBAT clinic medically managing a large caseload of patients with opioid use disorders and alcohol use disorders, and now as a primary care Nurse Practitioner with a full DATA2000 x-waiver. In addition to her clinical work, Kristin advises and supports community health centers on integration of best practices for managing and treating substance use disorders into clinics across Massachusetts. Kristin has served as an expert panel member on the Opioid Addiction Treatment ECHO and will be serving on the New England Opioid Addiction Treatment ECHO, providing addiction training and mentoring to health care providers across the country. Kristin achieved her MSN, Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner degree from Salem State University. She is board certified in addictions nursing through the Addictions Nursing Certification Board.