Dec 22, 2009 6:39 PM by Sarah Rosario

New Acadiana Outreach CEO Will Bring In the New Year

After 10 Years as the leader of Acadiana Outreach Valeria Keller is handing over the reins to a Little Rock Native.

Keller said she's seen a huge transformation to the center since she first began. "I've worked over the last decade to transform this once blighted campus downtown into this inspirational place that helps us to provide services that help people to become housed, employed and sober."

Keller will now further her career by continuing to get her Masters in Business. She's been traveling back and forth from England for the past year. She's a student at the University of Oxford.

Keller's replacement is Rick Newton. He was selected in a nationwide search. He has 30 years experience as both a clinician and administrator in the field of behavioral healthcare in Kentucky and Arkansas. He has provided clinical and administrative leadership for all ages of people with an emphasis in the area of chemical dependency. Keller deems him perfect for the job. "I have the utmost confidence that Rick is the right person, the right place, the right time. We haven't seen anything yet from Acadiana Outreach Center," she said.

Those who work at the center have hopes for the new guy. "I'm looking for the same passion and the foresight to bring innovative ideas and help us change and grow," said Community Relations
Director Amanda Toups.

Even though Keller is gone its not for good. She will still work for the outreach center as a consultant. "I know that wherever I take my work I will never forget the outreach center and the amazing lessons that I've learned here."

Newton will officially start work January 1st.

Sarah Rosario



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