Kimberly Nelson (Kim) is the Regional Administrator for Health and Human Services (HHS), Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) for Region 7 which includes Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska and Missouri. Kim is a licensed addictions counselor with a master’s degree in public administration; she has worked in the behavioral health field since 1992. Her initial work focused on addiction services, in community-based settings for women’s and children’s residential programs. She then moved into work with criminal justice clients in community-based residential and outpatient settings, as well as with prison-based therapeutic communities. Later, Kim worked for the State of Kansas with the Addiction and Prevention Services Division as the Medicaid Coordinator, and then moved into the position of Director of Managed Care for the Behavioral Health and Disabilities division in the state, helping to implement a statewide comprehensive managed care system.
Most recently, Kim was the vice president of marketing and new business development for a large integrated health services provider in Kansas providing substance use disorder services, prevention, mental health services, correctional re-entry, treatment services, and Health Home care coordination for those with severe mental illness. Kim is a person in long term recovery who is also certified in the state of Kansas as a peer mentor.