Gaudiose has been recognized as a leader in the mental health and substance abuse field at local and state levels.
YOUNGSTOWN -- Martin K. Gaudiose, chief executive officer of Meridian Services, was named Mahoning County's Mental Health Agency 2002 Director of the Year.
Gaudiose was chosen by a committee of local mental health professionals, mental health consumers and their family members and mental health board members.
Gaudiose, 49, has been with Meridian Services since 1976 and has served as its CEO since 1981.
A native of Youngstown and a 1971 graduate of Chaney High School, where he was an All-City football player, Gaudiose received his master of science in education and bachelor of science in applied science degree from Youngstown State University, and is a licensed professional clinical counselor.
"I'm honored that my peers have selected me as director of the year. However, I share this award with my employees and colleagues in the mental health system. I have always believed that you are only as good as the people you work with, and we have great people at Meridian Services and in the Valley's mental health system," he said.
Gaudiose has been called an innovator in the mental health and substance abuse field, making contributions on both state and local levels.
He was one of the first board members that established the Ohio Credentialing Board for Chemical Dependency Counselors, which certifies chemical dependency counselors, prevention specialists and consultants in the state.
Gaudiose also served the state's House Bill 215 work group that has been charged with examining and making recommendations regarding the implementation, management controls and related standards for transfer Medicaid services and the community mental health and alcohol and other drug addiction services that are provided by representative departments.
He developed the first state-funded substance abusing/mentally ill outpatient dual diagnosis program in Ohio. He also developed the largest county alcohol and other drug peer leadership and prevention program in the State, called P.A.N.D.A.2 (Prevent and Neutralize Drug and Alcohol Abuse), and co-founded the Children's Circle of Friends Foundation, where every year 60 National Football League and Major League Baseball celebrities participate in a golf tournament. All proceeds go to Valley children's programs.
Gaudiose and his wife, Patti, and daughters, Lindsay and Kristy, live in Poland.