About Us

 

Our leadership team reflects the broader collaborative spirit of UHRC: only by bringing together people from all sectors of society can we create innovative solutions that address common pain in our communities. 

We believe that substance misuse is a symptom of other difficulties people may be experiencing. Everyone is their own primary agent of change and we support their right to choose their own definition of recovery. We are proud of our treatment first model and we embrace all pathways to recovery - our only requirement for treatment is the desire for change.

Our Mission:

 

The Utah Harm Reduction Coalition (UHRC) is a non-profit community-based organization providing harm reduction services, education, and advocacy throughout the state of Utah. Our mission is to provide evidence-based interventions to aid people in reducing health and social harms associated with substance use.

Our Staff and Board
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Mindy Vincent MSW, LCSW, MPA
Founder and Executive Director

 

Mindy is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker specializing in mental health and addiction treatment and is the founder and Executive Director of the Utah Harm Reduction Coalition. Mindy started the first legal syringe exchange in the state of Utah and has done extensive work in harm reduction, opioid overdose prevention, awareness and treatment and continues to work to educate the community, stakeholders and policymakers about harm reduction and expand services throughout the state.


Mindy owns a private practice, Life Changes Counseling, in Heber City, Utah and is an adjunct professor of social policy at the University of Utah. She received her bachelor’s degree from Utah Valley University and earned her Masters of Social Work and her Masters of Public Administration from the University of Utah.

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Turner C. Bitton
Board Chair

A native Utahn, Turner fell in love with public service at a very young age. Turner’s life has been defined by a commitment to the people around him and he spends his time in service to his community. Driven by a deep sense of compassion and justice, Turner believes in the power of bringing people together to solve complex problems. He is recognized as a leader and serves on the board of directors of over a dozen nonprofit organizations as well as in appointed positions in local and state government.


Turner has a certificate in public policy design from the Harvard Kennedy School and attended Arizona State University for a BS in Political Science. An unapologetic conversationalist, it is likely you’ll strike up a conversation with him that will last too long and make you late for your next appointment. 

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Mark Bigler LCSW, PhD
Board Member

Mark O. Bigler, LCSW, PhD is a Professor and chair of the Department of Social Work and Gerontology at Weber State University in Ogden, Utah.  He earned undergraduate degrees in psychology and French from the University of Utah, where he also completed his master’s degree in social work (MSW).  He holds a PhD in human sexuality and health education from New York University.  He is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and sex therapist and has worked with couples in private practice for several years.  In addition, he has devoted a good share of his professional life to HIV/AIDS prevention and clinical services in Utah and in New York City in both substance abuse treatment and AIDS services settings. Dr. Bigler has taught health, sexuality, and social work courses as an adjunct at various colleges and universities in Utah.  He has been a full-time faculty member in the Department of Social Work and Gerontology at Weber State University since 1999 and has served as the department chair since 2005.  His professional and research interests include: human sexuality, sexual functioning and sex therapy, sex guilt and religion, sexual aggression, gender issues, HIV/AIDS, harm reduction, substance use/abuse, and national and international drug policy.

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Jen Thompson, LCSW
Clinical Manager

Jen Thompson is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has been in the field of mental and behavioral health for over 11 years. Jen graduated from the University of Utah College of Social Work with both of her Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Social Work. Jen has worked in the field of Substance Use Disorders for the majority of her career, working closely with the justice involved population. Jen has experience in leadership, policy writing, program development, advocacy and Strategic Planning. Jen has also had the opportunity to teach a variety of different courses in the Substance Use Disorder Certificate Program and the Master of Social Work Program. Jen believes that it is critical for an individual to learn the power that lies within them when they just believe in themselves.

Jen specializes in:

 

· Trauma

· High-Risk Violent Offender/ Justice Involved Population

· Substance Use Disorders

· Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

· Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

· Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)

· Moral Reconation Therapy (MRT)

 

And is certified in: DBT, MRT and EMDR.

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Dusti Jordan
Program Manager

Dusti joined the UHRC team in 2021. Simplicity and kindness are her guiding values, which shows in her volunteer and education choices, ultimately leading to her strong belief in Harm Reduction.  Dusti is currently working on a degree in Social Work, is a Certified Peer Support Specialist, and is a certified phlebotomist. Dusti’s passion for Harm Reduction started with the book In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts by Gabor Maté and has grown rapidly since. For Dusti, Harm Reduction is offering compassion to the individual instead of judging their behaviors and life circumstance. It’s about helping people find their own inner strength using love, compassion, education, and accountability in a delicate balance. When Dusti isn’t working or furthering her education, you will find her in her garden, on her motorcycle riding cross-country with her partner, or hiking up a canyon with her dog, Ziggy.  Regardless of what she is doing, her deep yearning for knowledge results in her always having a dog-eared book along, just in case.

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Justin Arriola
Board Vice-Chair

Justin was accepted into the US Navy advanced nuclear propulsion program for nuclear engineering and mechanical curriculum when he was 17 and graduated at the top of his class, becoming a staff instructor in the program. He currently owns two engineering tech companies, one of which is in the cannabis industry.

 

Stemming from both personal and professional experiences, Justin began advocating over 6 years ago for sound, evidence-based drug policies and education on both a state and federal level and was an integral part in the passage of Proposition 2, Utah’s ballot initiative for medical cannabis.
Justin continues to fight for patient access as well as social and economic justice within our recently begun cannabis program in Utah. He has served on the board of directors for the Drug Policy Project of Utah, TRUCE, and has now joined with the Utah Harm Reduction Coalition to aide in their drug policy reform work and education efforts.

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Evan Done
Board Member

Evan’s passion and dedication for harm reduction began as a teenager when he co-founded the Salt Lake City chapter of DanceSafe, a national organization promoting health and safety within the electronic music community. With over a decade of experience in social justice advocacy, he is dedicated to creating a more equitable and sustainable world. A systems administrator and programmer by trade, Evan now uses his wide array of IT skills to assist non-profit, social service, and public policy organizations to further their mission and heighten their impact. Evan is now a person in long-term recovery from a substance use disorder and is currently employed as the Community Outreach & Empowerment Coordinator for the Utah Support Advocates for Recovery Awareness (USARA).