Meet the Experts
MAT for Opioid Use Disorder

Nick Stavros began working in the addiction treatment field in 2012 and became the company’s CEO in 2013. Previously, Nick served 8 years in the US Army as an intelligence analyst, Arabic linguist, Airborne Ranger, and later as an Infantry Captain where he led an Infantry Platoon in combat operations in Iraq. Nick sits on the Board for the American Association of the Treatment of Opioid Dependence (AATOD) as the Arizona state representative and is the co-chair for the Substance Abuse Committee for the Arizona Council of Human Service Providers.

Charrisa Riggs is a nurse practitioner currently working at Community Medical Services as the Medical Operations Coordinator. She has been treating individuals with OUD since 2017. Mrs Riggs is currently working on her doctorate and working towards getting her certified addictions registered nurse - advanced practice certification to elevate her practice and passion in caring for individuals with OUD.

Sara Salek, M.D. has been the Chief Medical Officer for the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS) since June 2014.  In her current role, Dr. Salek oversees all clinical operations for AHCCCS, including quality management, medical management, dental and pharmacy services.  Specific initiatives aimed at improvement of service delivery and overall health of Arizonans includes active efforts to tackle the opioid epidemic, overseeing suicide prevention efforts, improving services to children with autism spectrum disorder, and improving service delivery to children and families involved with Department of Child Safety.

Dr. Salek grew up in Tucson, AZ and graduated from The University of Arizona College of Medicine.  She completed the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Residency Training Program at Boston Children’s Hospital through Harvard Medical School

Jason White is a fourth generation native to Arizona and loves his wife and four kids.  Jason graduated from NAU with a Bachelor of Arts in Public Administration.  Jason has worked for the Chandler Fire Department for 22 years most recently serving as the Battalion Chief of Emergency Medical Services (EMS).  Chief White oversees all EMS activities some of which include certifications, patient care, training, equipment management, hospital and ambulance services.  The Chandler Fire Department EMS division has an Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) and provides training for Maricopa, Gila River, and Arizona Fire and Medical Authority.  Chief White loves working in the region with all entities to further the cause of excellent service to the community.

After struggling with opioid use disorder for most of a decade Patrick utilized methadone for three years to find sobriety. Patrick subsequently received a bachelor’s of science in psychology from the University of Arizona, graduating in 2013. Patrick started in the behavioral health field in 2014 and a year later became a recovery coach at an opioid treatment program in Tucson. Patrick started working for CMS in Tucson in 2017 and is currently their correctional health liaison for Pima County, working with local drug courts and reentry programs to engage clients in MAT treatment. Patrick is currently working on his masters of public health online through the University of Massachusetts. When not working or studying Patrick enjoys spending time with his wife and two children.

Dr. Peterson was born and raised in Ogden, Utah, and attended Utah State University where he received a Bachelor of Arts in Biology. After receiving his medical degree from A.T. Still University Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine he graduated from the University Of Arizona College Of Medicine - Phoenix Family Medicine Residency. He then completed an Addiction Medicine Fellowship at Swedish Cherry Hill Family Medicine Residency in Seattle, WA. He enjoys all aspects of Family and Addiction Medicine. He has developed an outpatient addiction clinic integrated into the Banner University Medical Center Phoenix Family Medicine Center. His special interests include integrating addiction treatment into the primary care setting, substance use disorder in pregnancy, transplant Addiction Medicine, and government policy regarding Addiction Medicine.
Claire McLoone, LMSW, is a social worker and Lecturer at the Arizona State University School of Social Work, also serving as a Field Instructor to agencies hosting interns. Claire has been a social worker in various settings, including inpatient behavioral health, residential treatment, public/private schools, and nonprofits. She was a collective member of Shot in the Dark, Maricopa County’s first syringe access program, engaging in street outreach with people who use drugs from a harm reduction framework for several years. She is a train-the-trainer for naloxone and harm reduction methods. Claire is currently a Co-Investigator on a research project with the Center for Applied Behavioral Health Policy in a study exploring perceptions of people who have overdosed with first responders. Her interests include drug policy, the history of social movements in Arizona, policing, advocacy, mental health, and racial disparities in health outcomes.
Physician Assistant (PA) certified by the American Academy of Health Care Providers in the Addictive Disorders as a Certified Addiction Specialist. Mr. Christensen has twice been appointed to the PA Regulatory Board for the State of Arizona. He is a national expert in the field of neurobiology as it relates to chemical dependency and has treated more than 200,000 people addicted to opiates. As a clinical consultant to the Arizona criminal justice system Mr. Christensen provides treatment to opiate-addicted pregnant women. He also lectures at thr University of Arizona in collaboration with Northern Arizona University PA Program, Midwestern University PA Program/Medical School, and the A.T. Still University PA Program. His experience includes work in a heroin amnesty program while a US Army clinical specialist in Vietnam in 1971, and award-winning work with the Centers for Disease Control Prevention and Arizona State Dept of Health Services early in the hepatitis B and C epidemics, conducting the first HIV seroprevalence study with intravenous drug users in Arizona. Mr. Christensen chaired the scientific portion of the National Methadone Conference in Washington, DC, in 1992 and chaired the National Methadone Conference in Arizona in 1995m receiving the prestigious Nyswander-Dole Award for Lifetime Achievement in the field of addiction medicine that same year.
Sarah’s experience in drug policy began in Washington as a research assistant on investigations of drug trafficking and money laundering in South America. After a stint organizing congressional advocacy campaigns to raise awareness of Venezuelan humanitarian crises, she moved to Santiago, Chile to conduct research for a think tank on drug flows between Peru, Bolivia, and Chile. She returned to the US in the midst of the overdose epidemic, determined to advocate for policy that moves from a criminalization model to an approach based in health and human rights. When she’s not working you can find her playing volleyball or eating sour candy.