Meet The Team

TINRC Staff

NYS TINRC staff are a unique group of licensed professionals, educators, and community leaders committed to elevating the network and creating responsive, more expansive communities across New York State.

Elizabeth Meeker, PsyD

Senior Director, The Center of Excellence for Equity-Focused Trauma-Responsive Practice

Anita Black, MS, MSW, LCSW

Director of Operations, NYS Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center

Margarita Tegas, MPH

Project Coordinator, NYS Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center

Josh Higgins

Community Provider Engagement Specialist, NYS Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center

Denise Quamina, M.Ed., CAS, MSW

Senior Consultant, NYS Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center

Gwen Olton

Senior Consultant, NYS Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center

Rachel Rios-Richardson, MSW​

Senior Consultant, CCSI's Research and Evaluation team

Elizabeth Meeker, PsyD

Elizabeth Meeker, PsyD

Senior Director, The Center of Excellence for Equity-Focused Trauma-Responsive Practice

Elizabeth Meeker, PsyD, is a clinical psychologist specializing in the treatment of trauma. She is a seasoned consultant working with a broad range of organizations to implement and integrate practice change initiatives to improve outcomes and sustain change. As the Vice President of Consulting and Technical Assistance at Coordinated Care Services, Inc, Elizabeth leads a multi-disciplinary team of talented professionals who partner with organizations to ensure that they are best positioned to provide high impact services and supports for those they serve. As the lead for the New York State Trauma Informed Network and Resource Center, her dynamic team provides training, coaching, consultation, and practical tools to make trauma-responsive practices a living, breathing part of systems, organizations, and daily work.

Elizabeth has enjoyed growing her professional skills through the course of her career. She mentors emerging psychologists and is an Adjunct Faculty for the Rochester Institute of Technology’s Clinical Psychology Doctoral Internship program providing supervision and educational opportunities. Elizabeth is also a Qualified Teacher of Mindfulness Based  Stress Reduction with a particular focus on enhancing staff wellness. She has a private clinical practice specializing in working with children, adolescents and young adults and their families who have experienced grief, loss, and trauma.

Elizabeth’s personal and professional work is guided by the belief that “you transform the world by transforming yourself” and she is on a continuous journey of discovery, learning and unlearning. She lives in Rochester, NY with her husband Chris and enjoys traveling especially to visit her children, Ilana in LA and Jordan in Burlington, VT.

Anita Black, MS, MSW, LCSW​

Anita Black, MS, MSW, LCSW

Director of Operations, NYS Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center

As the Director of Operations for the New York State Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center (TINRC), Anita manages the day-to-day operations for TINRC including team coordination, partner collaboration, budget monitoring, adherence to timelines, and more. The efforts of Anita and her team advance the learning, connection, and deepening of trauma-responsive knowledge and practices for organizations and communities across New York State. 

Anita is a passionate and transformative leader for systemic change, having worked across sectors for over 30 years supporting children and families on the individual, group, community, organization, and system levels. 

Anita is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and has earned degrees from Syracuse University and the University of Maryland.

Prior to coming to CCSI, Anita was the Program Officer for the Great Rochester Health Foundation where she worked with stakeholders on a child health strategy focused on racial equity, parent partnership, and social-emotional wellbeing.

Margarita Tegas

Margarita Tegas, MPH

Project Coordinator,, NYS Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center

Margarita is the Project Coordinator for the New York State Trauma Informed Network and Resource Center. Margarita has completed previous internships focusing on Adverse Childhood Experiences, adversity screening tools, and resilience practices. She received her BA in Anthropology and Psychology and Master of Public Health from St. John Fisher University.

Josh Higgins

Josh Higgins

Community Provider Engagement Specialist, NYS Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center

Josh Higgins is currently the Community Provider Engagement Specialist with the NYS Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center (TINRC). Bringing over 20 years of experience in the human services industry, Josh will be working with trauma-informed champions statewide to expand membership and active participation in the TINRC.

Josh received a B.S. in Psychology from SUNY Cortland in 2009. Josh’s most recent professional experiences have centered around program and project management, specifically in the development and integration of peer-focused, community-based mental health programs within not-for-profit organizations. This includes marketing and promotion, quality assurance, data analysis and reporting, as well as serving as a lead representative and advocate in various local, regional, and statewide mental health collaboratives and leadership consortiums.

Additionally, Josh is an accomplished musician and producer, and is currently a member of the Ithaca, NY based socially conscious hip-hop collective Gunpoets.

TINRC Staff

Denise Quamina, M.Ed., CAS, MSW

Senior Consultant, NYS Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center

Denise Quamina, a Senior Consultant with the NYS Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center (TINRC), recently retired from public education after a dedicated 32-year career. Working in both New York City and western New York, she began her professional journey as a mathematics teacher and finally retired as an assistant principal.

Throughout her extensive tenure in education, Denise has always been a champion for the wellbeing of the students she served. She became even more driven when she earned her master’s degree in social work thirteen years ago. As a student in the social work program, Denise gained insights into adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and their profound impact on the brain, learning, and behavior when left unaddressed. Since then, she has passionately championed trauma-informed practices, delivering presentations to various audiences, including teachers, support staff, administrators, district personnel, security, and participants in groups addressing grief and loss. She is committed to viewing situations through a trauma-informed lens which has become an integral part of her personal and professional identities.

Denise’s educational background include a bachelor’s in Economic and Statistics, an Advanced Certificate in Administration and Supervision, a master’s in Education, certification in Mathematics, 7-12, and a master’s in Social Work.

TINRC Staff

Gwen Olton

Senior Consultant, NYS Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center

Gwen Olton (she / they) is a Senior Consultant with the New York State Trauma-Informed Network and Resource Center (TINRC) where they’ll be leading technical assistance, training and content development, and implementation support throughout the network. Before returning to CCSI, Gwen was the co-Executive Director of the Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence. She considers herself a lifelong student of nonviolence and brings a unique background in geological and health sciences, philosophy, and creative practices to their work. Gwen is passionate about communication models and group processes that call forth our whole-selves, bring people together, and leverage for systemic and liberatory change. They love to draw and write and published a book on conflict transformation last year.

Rachel Rios-Richardson

Rachel Rios-Richardson, MSW

Senior Consultant, CCSI's Research and Evaluation team

Rachel Rios-Richardson, MSW, is a Senior Consultant on CCSI’s Research and Evaluation team. In her role, Rachel manages a portfolio of projects to support government agencies and community-based organizations to design and implement evaluation and quality-improvement practices. Before moving into program evaluation, Rachel began her career as a legal advocate advancing disability rights and access to mental health services. She brings over a decade of experience in social services, including experience across multiple sectors such as mental health, substance use, healthcare, vocational rehabilitation, and homelessness services systems. Rachel has led a wide range of evaluation and technical assistance projects including federally funded evaluations, implementation planning projects, community assessments, and a randomized control trial. In a previous role, she assisted Arizona’s Medicaid agency to develop an implementation plan for the rollout of 988 as a three-digit crisis number. At CCSI, Rachel leads teams to develop and implement high-quality, equity-focused evaluation practices. Rachel is passionate about centering the experiences of people most impacted by social injustice and engaging program participants and front-line providers at every stage of program evaluations. Rachel obtained her Bachelor of Arts degree from Davidson College and went on to receive a Master of Social Work degree from Arizona State University, with a focus on policy, administration, and evaluation.

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