Hales was nominated for the honor by Mary Ann Carrasco, deputy director, behavioral health services, alcohol and drug program administrator and mental health director for Sacramento County. He is medical director for the Sacramento County mental-health plan.
Carrasco said she nominated Hales out of gratitude for his longtime and tireless efforts to ensure that Sacramento County has the psychiatry coverage needed for county-operated mental-health clinics, and for his participation in efforts to integrate mental-health with health-care services.
Sacramento County honored Hales with the Sacramento County Department of Health Director’s Award for Excellence in 1997 and the Sacramento County Department of Health and Human Services Recognition Award in 2006.
“He is extremely knowledgeable and is always willing to assist with any programming issues when needed,” Carrasco said of Hales. “He is also a very compassionate doctor and is very client centered in his thoughtful advice and guidance.”
UC Davis psychiatrists and psychologists provide psychiatric and psychological clinical services at a broad array of county-operated facilities, including the Intake Stabilization Unit, Mental Health Treatment Center, two adult psychiatry outpatient clinics and the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Clinic, among several others. All told, 20 psychiatrists and psychologists and 15 psychiatric residents and post-doctoral clinical psychologists work at the county mental-health sites.
“I’m happy that I’ve been able to work with my colleagues at Sacramento County to provide high-quality mental-health services to underserved people in Sacramento County,” Hales said of receiving the honor. “We have worked together to develop an effective team approach.”
Hales came to UC Davis in 1995 as a clinical professor of psychiatry. He rose to vice chair of the department in 1996 and chair in 1998. In 2002, Hales assumed the Joe P. Tupin Endowed Professorship of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. He is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including Distinguished Fellow, American Psychiatric Association in 2003 and Educator of the Year of the Association for Academic Psychiatry in 2006.