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Barth Hague, President and CEO of Mirror, a Kansas behavioral health organization, today announced the appointment of Des Martens as Vice President of Prevention Services, effective immediately.

Martens first joined Mirror in 2004 and has served as Director of Prevention Services for the past several years. Her early experience as a registered nurse ignited a passion to move upstream and invest in the field of prevention and health promotion in Kansas communities. She has overseen the creation of STAND, Mirror’s nationally acclaimed youth development program which has had significant impact on reducing drug and alcohol use in many of the public schools in Harvey County. Martens also has led the effort to develop a drug free community coalition in Harvey County, known as D-FY, including winning both state and federal funding to support the coalition’s work.

“Des’ unselfish and remarkable leadership in the area of substance use prevention is inspirational,” writes Val Gleason, President and CEO of Newton Medical Center. “Her gentle encouragement repeatedly calls multiple community partners to action. She has undoubtedly protected countless youth and young adults from the predatory insidious allure of drugs and alcohol. Although Des frequently allows the spotlight to shine upon others, a closer look often reveals she is the catalyst behind substance use prevention victories. To know Des is to respect her.”

In addition to her duties at Mirror, Martens serves on the Governor’s Behavioral Health Services Planning Council Prevention Sub-Committee of which she is vice chair, the Newton Substance Abuse Advisory Board and the Newton Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors Executive Committee. Martens received the Kansas Prevention Leader Award in 2018 for exemplary work in community mobilization. She is a recent graduate of the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America’s National Coalition Academy, a trainer of trainers in SAMHSA’s Substance Abuse Prevention Skills Training, Ethics in Prevention and other evidence-based prevention programs.

“Des’ appointment is a next step in a broad vision for prevention work at Mirror,” according to Barth Hague. “We are ready to take much of our success in Harvey County to a state-wide level, and Des is the perfect person to lead that charge,” Hague remarked.