City of Philadelphia

Deputy Commissioner – Department Of Behavioral Health And Intellectual Disability Services

3+ months agoPhiladelphia, PA

Company Description

A best-in-class city that attracts best-in-class talent, Philadelphia is an incredible place to build a career. From our thriving arts scene and rich history to our culture of passion and grit, there are countless reasons to love living and working here. With a workforce of over 30,000 people, and more than 1,000 different job categories, the City of Philadelphia offers boundless opportunities to make an impact. 

As an employer, the City of Philadelphia values inclusion, integrity, innovation, empowerment, and hard work above all else. We offer a vibrant work environment, comprehensive health care and benefits, and the experience you need to grow and excel. If you’re interested in working with a passionate team of people who care about the future of Philadelphia, start here.

What We Offer:

  Impact - The work you do here matters to millions. 

  Growth - Philadelphia is growing, why not grow with it? 

  Diversity & Inclusion - Find a career in a place where everyone belongs.

  Opportunities in Tech - Don’t wait for the future, shape it.

  Benefits - We care about your well-being.

Agency Description

The mission of DBHIDS is to improve the health status of Philadelphians in need of behavioral health and/or intellectual disability services. This is accomplished through an emphasis on recovery and resilience-focused behavioral health services, as well as an emphasis on self-determination for individuals with intellectual disabilities. The goal is to help individuals realize their goals and attain the highest quality of life possible. DBHIDS works with persons recovering from mental health and/or substance use, individuals with intellectual disabilities, families, communities, and service providers to ensure that high-quality services are accessible, effective, and appropriate and is committed to developing a system of care that is data-driven, trauma-informed, employs evidence-based practices, promotes cultural competence and eliminates health care disparities. DBHIDS is the principle funder and provides oversight to Community Behavioral Health(CBH), a not-for-profit 501c (3) corporation contracted by the City of Philadelphia to provide mental health and substance abuse services for Philadelphia County Medicaid recipients.

Job Description

The Deputy Commissioner for Behavioral Health will provide leadership around the development of integrated policies to ensure the seamless delivery of behavioral health services with the infusion of principles of recovery, resilience, and self-determination. The Deputy Commissioner would be part of an executive team that drives public sector service delivery in a highly visible leadership role across the DBHIDS and the provider community.

Essential Functions

  • Provides strategic leadership and guidance for all aspects of the DBHIDS service system including identifying system goals, priorities, and general direction in close collaboration with senior department leaders. 
  • Assesses the functioning of the behavioral health service system through the use of empirical and qualitative data and proactively addresses system problems, as well as builds on system strengths to improve outcomes.
  • Works with the provider network to ensure appropriate service provision and utilization of resources.
  • Works with state and city leadership to support policy and processes that serve Philadelphians in need of behavioral health programs and services
  • Works in collaboration with senior leadership throughout the DBHIDS to ensure that the Department accomplishes its mission in the most effective manner possible.
  • Provides leadership in the development and implementation of practice standards, policies, procedures, and performance criteria, as well as initiatives consistent with DBHIDS’ PACE strategic plan (Prioritizing for a Changing Environment) and TEC vision (addressing Trauma, achieving Equity, engaging Community).
  • Ensures that the core values of recovery, resilience, and self-determination, as well as the core values of diversity, equity, and inclusion, are incorporated into all Departmental policies.
  • Works to transform behavioral health services towards a recovery/resilience-oriented, outcomes-focused, person/family-directed philosophy of care in which people receiving services, their families, and other supporters, the community-at-large and professionals are equal partners.
  • Utilizes the DBHIDS Practice Guidelines and other strategic documents to ensure a responsive and high-performing service system. 
  • Establishes best practices and guidelines for DBHIDS service providers, promoting the best clinical outcomes for people served, including the expansion of evidence-based practice (EBP) initiatives and data-driven decision making.
  • Ensures that DBHIDS operates an efficient, highly effective system of care and that Departmental staff is utilizing state-of-the-art management strategies, particularly in public sector managed care.
  • Participates in and provides leadership and promotes collaboration across various DBHIDS and cross-system clinical, operational and financial initiatives.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.


Education and Experience

  • Doctorate in psychology, social work, counseling or closely related behavioral health discipline strongly preferred. Masters degree and undergraduate degrees in related field required.
  • Minimum of ten (10) years of clinical experience in mental health and/or substance use service delivery.
  • Minimum of five (5) years of progressively responsible supervisory or administrative experience including some experience as a senior member of an executive leadership team preferred.
  • Thorough understanding and demonstrated commitment to the delivery of public sector behavioral health services consistent with the principles of recovery and resilience.
  • Demonstrated understanding of and clinical experience working with a culturally diverse urban population.
  • Thorough understanding of major trends within the behavioral health field and their impact on public sector behavioral healthcare including but not limited to healthcare reform, evidence-based practices, trauma-informed care, population health and wellness, reduction of health disparities, data-driven decision making, etc.
  • Ability to conceptualize clinical care at a systems level and an understanding of management principles and practices in a public sector environment.
  • Demonstrated leadership ability and effectiveness at driving large-scale systemic change.
  • Excellent interpersonal, communication, and negotiation skills including the ability to represent and present to a broad cross-section of providers, individuals, families and communities, governmental entities, and other stakeholders.
  • Demonstrated writing and verbal communication skills and the ability to effectively articulate and advocate for a wide variety of viewpoints.
  • Adept at establishing and maintaining effective relationships with a wide range of professionals within the behavioral health community and broader community, including the general public and elected officials.

Competencies, Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

Knowledge of:

  • Interrelationships between behavioral health and other social determinants of health, such as health, human services, homeless programs, the criminal justice system and the public education system.
  • Extensive programmatic knowledge of behavioral health, mental health, substance abuse or related program area.

Skills in:

  • Unflappable leadership skill.
  • Excellent communication skills, oral and written, noted for clarity.
  • Strong interpersonal skills that support a collegial style of leadership.
  • Decisive abilities that support the vision.
  • Ability to function within a political environment without being political, politically savvy.
  • Strong fiscal practices that reflect appropriate fiscal discipline but leverages resources. 

Ability to:

  • Establish the organization as a cohesive unit of behavioral health services and services for mental health, substance use disorders, and intellectual disabilities.
  • Develop a client centered and community informed programmatic and clinical vision for the system.
  • Develop and improve access to services and a comprehensive service system and, enhance the services across the lifespan and across the organization.
  • Develop standards that address quality of services and standards of care that are widely accepted.
  • Develop and enhance the cultural competency and capacity of the private provider system and community.
  • Leverage the inherent flexibility of a behavioral health managed care system to address program needs and expand services.
  • Integrate organization-wide project management, strategic planning and quality improvement principles
  • Support the reform and development of the behavioral health system to reflect a similar level of innovation and comprehensive services for consumers, children, and their families.

Additional Information

Please attach a cover letter, resume and reference list in the additional attachments section. Applications without all documents will not be considered.

Did you know?

  • We are a Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program qualified employer
  • Employees are eligible for a 25% tuition discount program (and sometimes spouses and dependents as well) in partnership with area colleges and universities
  • We offer comprehensive health coverage for employees and their eligible dependents
  • Our wellness program offers eligibility into the discounted medical plan
  • Employees receive paid vacation, sick leave, and holidays
  • Generous retirement savings options are available 

Successful candidate must be a city of Philadelphia resident within six months of hire

The City of Philadelphia is an Equal Opportunity employer and does not permit discrimination based on race, ethnicity, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, marital status, source of income, familial status, genetic information or domestic or sexual violence victim status. If you believe you were discriminated against, call the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations at 215-686-4670 or send an email to For more information, go to: Human Relations Website:


Job ID: 743999738365895