Mark Gagnon, associate dean of student services and director of counseling services, has been appointed by the Vermont Secretary of State’s Office to serve as an adviser to the Office of Professional Regulation for social work. Mark will serve as one of two advisers in the state for a five-year term, which began Nov. 1.

A variety of occupations are licensed through the Office of Professional Regulation, including licensed psychologists, pharmacists, clinical social workers and dieticians through an adviser model of regulation. Under the model, the advisers make recommendations to the director of the Office of Professional Regulation relating to the profession.

“It’s really an honor to serve the profession and to protect the public,” Mark said. “I look at it as serving fellow colleagues. It’s protection for them, too. Part of it is making sure regulations are appropriate.”

Mark expects to advise the office on matters including scope of practice and requirements for licensure. He will also be called upon to make recommendations to the office on licensure complaints and serve as the state’s expert in licensure hearings.

Mark said it is a considerable honor to serve on the board.

“Colleagues really advocated for me in letters of support from faculty and administration at CSJ, faculty at Castleton State College and Rutland Regional Medical Center,” Mark said.

The next meeting is Nov. 26 in Montpelier. The office often meets on an as-needed basis.

Mark is the Associate Dean of Student Services, Director of Counseling Services and STEPS at College of St. Joseph. Mark is an adjunct instructor for the division of psychology and human services at the College of St. Joseph, and both a licensed independent clinical social worker and licensed alcohol and drug abuse counselor. He graduated with his BSW and a double major in sociology from Castleton State College. He went on to earn a clinical MSW from the University at Albany.  Mark has clinical experience working with individuals and families specifically in the areas of depression, anxiety, substance abuse and PTSD. His social work interests include family therapy, integrating spirituality within social work practice and substance abuse treatment.  He also provides consulting services in the areas of program development, higher education and clinical services. Mark has served as a director at large for the Vermont chapter of the National Association of Social Workers.