Want to serve on a licensing board? You will have to do this first!

Posted By: Hayley Twyman Brack Licensure Board Updates,

The Oklahoma State Board of Behavioral Health, Board of Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselors, and the State Board of Licensed Social Workers are entities consisting of licensed professionals and members of the public who are tasked with creating rules and resolutions for mental healthcare workers practicing across the state. Depending on the board by which one is licensed, mental health professionals must either be recommended by an organization or complete an application directly with the office of Governor Stitt to be considered for appointment as a member of their licensing board. So here are the steps Oklahoma clinicians must take to be appointed for board membership.

Oklahoma State Board of Behavioral Health
The Oklahoma State Board of Behavioral Health oversees Licensed Professional Counselors, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists, and Licensed Behavioral Practitioners. According to the BBHL enabling statute, membership on the board must consist of four LPC clinicians, three LMFT, and two LBP clinicians, along with two members representing the general public.

Also according to the BBHL enabling statute, licensed clinician members must be recommended for appointment by specific associations. For example, LPC clinicians who wish to be appointed to the board must be recommended by the Oklahoma Counseling Association. According to a representative from OCA, in order to be recommended a clinician must be a member of OCA. The representative stated that recommendations are based on experience, involvement, and interest in serving.

LMFT clinicians must be recommended by the Oklahoma Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. According to a former board member, LMFTs must also be active members of OAMFT to be recommended.

As stated in the BBHL enabling statute, LPBs must be recommended by the North American Association of Masters in Psychology, though the organization no longer exists. According to a representative from the BBHL, The American Association of Masters in Psychology (TAAMP) has replaced NAAMP. Two attempts were made to email TAAMP for more information on the qualifications LBP clinicians must hold to be recommended to sit on the board, but as of the publication of this article no response has been given.

Oklahoma State Board of Licensed Social Workers
The Oklahoma State Board of Licensed Social Workers oversees Licensed Clinical Social Workers. According to the BLSW Agency Rules, three board members must be licensed social workers or licensed clinical social workers, two licensed social work associates or licensed masters social workers, one the president of the Oklahoma chapter of the National Association of Social Workers, and the remaining members of the general public.

According to a representative from the BLSW, clinicians who wish to be considered for membership of the board do not need to be recommended by any organization. Instead, if a clinician believes they meet the qualifications for board membership outlined in the agency rules, they can submit an application for appointment directly to the Governor’s Office here.

Oklahoma Board of Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselors
The Oklahoma Board of Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselors oversees Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselors and Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselors. According to Title 59 of the LADC statutes, the LADC board consists of 7 members, at least six of whom must hold an alcohol and drug counseling certification recognized in Oklahoma, five of whom must hold a masters degree or higher level of education, and one member must hold at highest a bachelor’s degree. At least five board members must be licensed drug and alcohol counselors and one member must not have ever been a licensed or certified alcohol and drug counselor nor married to one.

According to the statutes, four members must be recommended by the Oklahoma Drug and Alcohol Professional Counselors Association, one by the Oklahoma Substance Abuse Services Alliance (now known as Oklahoma Behavioral Health Association), and one from the Oklahoma Citizen Advocates for Recovery and Treatment Association.

According to a representative from the Oklahoma Behavioral Health Association, a clinician must be a member of OBHA to be considered for recommendation. Attempts have been made to contact representatives of ODAPCA and OCARTA to inquire about the qualifications necessary to be recommended by the respective organizations for board appointment, but as of the publication of this article no response has been given by the contacted representatives.

After Recommendation
In order to serve on any of the aforementioned boards, the candidate must be appointed by the Governor. As previously stated, in order to be considered for the BLSW the clinician must make an application directly to the Governor’s Office. When recommendations by associations are required, the associations supply their lists of recommended names directly to the Governor. When there is a vacancy, the governor reviews the names and selects candidates to be appointed. After an appointment is made, the legislative branch is responsible for confirming the appointment. For more information on how to be recommended for appointment, contact the Office of the Governor and your respective licensing board.