Who We Are

A Journey of Empowerment and Hope


The Council on Alcoholism of the Finger Lakes was incorporated in 1986. In 1992 when the NYS Division of Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse consolidated with the NYS Division of Substance Abuse Services, the Council changed the name with the IRS to the Council On Alcoholism and Other Chemical Dependencies of the Finger Lakes. Since that time, the Council filed a “DBA” in Ontario County to shorten the name to the Council on Alcoholism and Addictions of the Finger Lakes

This Council is designated by the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services as a community-based alcohol/drug abuse prevention, education and information and referral agency with the sole responsibility of combating alcohol and drug abuse. The Council serves the five-county central Finger Lakes Region of Ontario, Schuyler, Seneca, Wayne and Yates Counties, with a total population base of 280,400 (2014). The Council currently sponsors five categories of programming: A Community-Based Education and Training Prevention Program in Ontario. Schuyler, Seneca, Wayne and Yates counties; a Student Assistance Program (licensed by the state of New York as a Youth Counseling Program) in school districts in both Schuyler and Yates Counties; an Environmental Prevention

Initiative across all five counties, School Educators in Ontario Co., and a Gambling Prevention

Program serving all five counties.


Within these categories of service, this Council On Alcoholism has now delivered over 232,760 units-of-service (prevention activities) for hundreds of thousands of individual contacts (youth, parents, professionals and the general public.) The Council provides classroom presentations, teacher trainings, parent trainings, and youth counseling services. Staff have worked with all the community action groups, local governments and schools. The agency provides consultation on public policy, provides free brochures, pamphlets and literature on different issues of drug abuse, and over these past years has helped to facilitate over 10,000 referrals to alcohol/drug treatment programs.

The Council has excelled by sponsoring skills development programming, character education programs, national and state initiatives including the national Red Ribbon Week Campaign, Alcohol Awareness Month, Safehomes, National Recovery Month, International FAS Bell Concordance Day, and the Great American Smokeout. The staff provide programming to churches, schools, colleges, civic groups, and to human service agency client groups; provide individual counseling, assessment and family services as appropriate; and provide hundreds of individual consultations and educational sessions for alcohol, drug or tobacco information.

A Mission to Transform Lives

As recorded in the Certificate of Incorporation, the Council on Alcoholism and Addiction embarked on a mission to transform lives in the Finger Lakes region. Our goals are clear and resolute:

    • To reduce the extent of alcohol and other drug abuse in the Finger Lakes
    • To reduce the future incidence of alcoholism and other drug dependence
    • To minimize the harm experienced in society due to the consequences of abuse and dependence

Timothy VanDamme

Timothy VanDamme

Executive Director

Meet the Executive Director, Timothy (Tim) Van Damme. Mr. Van Damme came to the Council eight years ago and has 36 years of experience in the human services field. He has worked with diverse age groups in multiple settings including Substance Abuse and Mental Health. Tim proudly served in the U.S. Navy before receiving his Associate’s Degree in Human Services from Finger Lakes Community College, and his Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Keuka College. In May 2015, Tim graduated with honors, from Keuka College with a Master’s Degree in Organizational Management. Currently, Tim maintains an Advanced Credentialed Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Counselor (CASAC) that he has had for several years.

Mr. VanDamme is active in the community, coaching Jr. Varsity Baseball and Varsity Football at Midlakes High School. Tim has been happily married for 13 years to his wife Jessica VanDamme, who is the Dean of Students at Midlakes Central School. He is a proud father of six children. Jacob, 28 years old, is a Sergeant Corrections Officer for the Ontario County Jail. Matthew, 26 years old, is a School Psychologist at Waterloo Central School, Zachary, 22 years old, studying music at Finger Lakes Community College, and 9-year-old triplets – Olivia, Camden, and Shea.

Billie Kingsbury-Lohr

Billie Kingsbury-Lohr

Director or Programming

Responsible for all social media, Facebook, Instagram, website design and maintenance as well as print and radio advertising, development and design of program/event brochures/flyers. Coordinates company events and maintains/orders Company wearables, public relations giveaways, office supplies, program materials, etc. Responsible for entering program data into WITNYS and provides day-to-day administrative support to all employees.

Sara Kirkham

HR/Finance Coordinator

Responsible for all HR functions of the company, accounts payable/ receivable and all financial day-to day operations.

Claire Keating

Executive Assistant

Coordinates company events and maintains/orders Company wearables, public relations giveaways, office supplies, program materials, etc. Responsible for entering program data into WITNYS and provides day to day administrative support to all employees.

Marita Smith

Environmental Specialist

Responsible for the assessment of community needs in the five-county Council service region by working closely with Coalitions, for developing an environmental prevention plan to meet those needs, for
identifying and mobilizing a “best practices” based action plan to address community ATOD needs, and to implement that model in a multi-systems format consistent with other prevention initiatives. Delivers community and professional training and sup-port, for education on the protective factors model of prevention services, for conferences and training programs associated with the prevention initiative, for other presentations and educational consultations in an individual and/or public format as consistent with the program goals and standards of the Council, and for evaluation of the initiative and components as appropriate

Our Board of Directors

Executive Comittee

Laura Moore


Pat Cochrane


Linda Michielson

Tammy Orlopp

Guy A. Morse

Michael Ballard

David Jacobus

County Community Educators

Dr. Daniel Ofstein

Ontario County Community Education Coordinator

Responsible for oversight and supervision of Ontario County School Educators, as well as community outreach providing Prevention Programming/Education i.e. Triple P Parenting Program, etc.

Idelle Dillon

Yates County Community Educator

Gretchen Silliman

Schuyler County Community Educator

Dale Davis

Wayne County Community Educator

John Kriegelstein

Seneca County Community Educator

School Based Educators

Dawn Jansen

Midlakes and Red Jacket School

Nicole Drost

Honeoye and Bloomfield School

Colleen Owens

Canandaigua Schools & Marcus Whitman

These individuals are responsible for providing the
Council’s evidenced based programming in the schools we serve. Too Good, Second Step, Life Skills, etc. These positions operate on the school calendar.

Ontario and Wayne Community Youth Prevention Counseling Program

Cathy Landschoot

Ontario County

Kendall Klement

Wayne County

Working with at risk youth and adolescents primarily through referral sources

SBIRT Community Outreach Specialists – Ontario and Yates County

Ontario County

Grant funded program designed to emphasize screening tool for at risk substance use where clients congregate i.e. college screenings, etc.

Youth Prevention Counseling Program 

All of these individuals are working daily in the Penn Yan, Dundee and Watkins Glen
School systems working with youth in an individual setting as well as group education/events

Melinda Johnson

Youth Counseling Supervisor (also does counseling work as well)

Kayla Scialpa,

Yates County

Working with at risk youth and adolescents primarily through referral sources

Sarah Minns

Yates County

Holly Wilson

Schuyler County

Working with at risk youth and adolescents primarily through referral sources

Michelle Peacock

Yates County

Sarah Thompson

Yates County Prevention Coalition Leader

Dine Kellogg

Wayne County Drug-Free Coalition Leader

Each County of service has a County Community Educator who acts as a primary prevention specialist, with primary responsibility for the design and delivery of sound alcohol/drug abuse and dependency prevention education programs and presentations in a public format, including local school districts consistent with the OASAS Prevention Guidelines and the Council mission and program standards. The position allows for initiative and innovation in program development and delivery, under the guidance of the Director of Programming. The position also includes working with criminal justice system, area coalitions and other community agencies.