The State Bar of Arizona's "Member Assistance Program" (MAP)
1. Summary of the State Bar of Arizona Scandal
2. The Policy Behind MAP
3. Junk Science
4. "Uppity" Minorities
5. How MAP Targets Bar Members and Membership Applicants
6. Why MAP is Denial of Equal Protection and Fraud
7. Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt, MAP Director
8. Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt, Ex-Convict
9. Text of MAP "Therapeutic Contract"
10. Reader Reactions
11. Material from Erstwhile Website of Nevitt's Company
12. Photograph of Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt
(1) Summary of the State Bar of Arizona Scandal
For years, the State Bar of Arizona has illicitly operated as a health provider by employing a licensed mental health "therapist" to whom, as a condition of maintaining a law license, it has obliged Bar members and applicants to direct themselves for "evaluation" and/or "treatment." This "therapist," the Director of SBA's so-called "Member Assistance Program," is an ex-convict, a murderer, and a sexual predator. Attorneys and Bar applicants have been disbarred or refused admission for resisting, and attorneys have been disbarred for reporting him for sexual assault.
The Member Assistance Program is a part of the State Bar of Arizona's disciplinary armamentarium. MAP forces SBA members into mental illness treatment as a condition of obtaining or retaining their licenses to practice law. For several years the longstanding Director of MAP, Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt, has been the subject of repeated agency complaints and other reports to civil and criminal authorities for sexual misconduct. SBA has been aware of the complaints. It has failed to publicly dissociate Nevitt from SBA.
This failure raises substantial issues of SBA corruption. MAP sanctions are imposed with astonishing frequency, whether the attorney-victim has a prior mental illness or substance abuse history or not. For this reason, MAP has long been integral to the SBA disciplinary apparatus, so much so that SBA can neither publicly respond nor react to complaints against its Director without drawing attention to its own motives, policies and conduct toward its members. In addition, there must be a great deal known to Nevitt about abuse in the SBA disciplinary apparatus, which could be at risk of exposure should the ruling class of SBA hang Nevitt out to dry. Public money is not involved. The SBA discipline operation is funded by impositions on Bar members. (See this website, page header State Bar of Arizona: About, .) In other words, Bar members pay. SBA members are paying for the cover-up of Nevitt's misconduct, and when targeted by the SBA office which he directs, they pay again. They pay to be publicly humiliated and discredited, and they pay again for the privilege of risking sexual assault by an SBA official.
AZAACPR has received reports that in the course of doing purported "therapy" and/or "mental evaluation" of Bar members and applicants, Nevitt has repeatedly been, at a minimum, inappropriate; that his supposedly "professional" services to such persons have included pressuring the subject (in the guise of offering "counseling") to terminate a relationship with a spouse or significant other; and that in some instances, to further his design of breaking up a female attorney/Bar applicant's marriage, he has seen to it that SBA issues an order for not only that person, but also that person's non-attorney spouse, to undergo mental examination as a condition for the attorney or Bar applicant to practice law.
Moreover, AZAACPR has received reports from multiple victims that when meeting for "evaluation" or "treatment," Nevitt tends to ask Caucasians as to their willingness and preferences for association with "Black people" as contacts, friends, relatives or relations. Likewise, reports have come to AZAACPR that Nevitt tends to follow with inappropriate and impertinent questions (questions that cannot possibly bear on anyone's fitness to practice law) indicative of his own sexual prurience, including inquiries as to who the lawyer or Bar applicant has "fucked."
In an "Adverse Action," File No. 2011-0063, the organization that licenses "master's-level therapists," the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners, sanctioned Nevitt on November 15, 2011. The sanction included a $1000 fine and a requirement to temporarily refrain from engaging in "clinical supervision." (See http://www.azbbhe.us/investigations/2011advaction.pdf, scroll to p. 29 [or go to the website, then use the command "Find" and type in "Nevitt"].) In sanctioning Nevitt on one allegation, AzBBHE dismissed a second allegation against him in the same file, alleging sexual misconduct.
Since January 18, 2012, Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt, his private company and his marital community have been named Defendants in a civil suit brought by a woman plaintiff in Maricopa County Superior Court, CV2012-001509, alleging counts of assault and battery, among others. (See http://www.superiorcourt.maricopa.gov/docket/CivilCourtCases/caseInfo.asp.) In the Maricopa County Superior Court civil case, on November 14, 2013, Nevitt (defendant's) counsel filed a motion for reconsideration which was occasioned thus: the plaintiff, through counsel, in bringing allegations of sexual assault, battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress, filed a motion to compel medical examination of the defendant, asserting that in the course of the incident, Nevitt had exposed himself to her, and that she could identify, with specificity, unique characteristics of his genitalia. On November 14, 2013, the judge granted her motion to compel. The request for reconsideration asserted that the plaintiff's motion had been motivated by a wish to embarrass and harass Nevitt (which seems ironic in light of the numerous victimized Bar members and applicants over the years who Nevitt, acting at the behest of the State Bar of Arizona, has libeled and has publicly and privately harassed, embarrassed and shamed beyond the limits of reason, decency and humanity). The preceding (excluding the previous parenthetical) is public record in the case file. The case file also shows that the court denied the motion for reconsideration on November 18, 2013.
It appears that in accord with the court's order, Nevitt has had multiple opportunities to comply; more than one date has been scheduled for Nevitt to make his appearance at a doctor's office for physical examination. Nevitt has not complied as of March 1, 2014. It remains to be seen whether the judge, in exercise of his legitimate powers, may deal with Nevitt's flagrant violation of judicial order by issuing a bench warrant for Nevitt's arrest, or by some other means available to the court. AZAACPR is unsurprised that a present or past official of SBA would violate a court's order.
AZAACPR has received information that in summer, 2014, Nevitt's attorney in CV2012-001509 sought to avoid Nevitt's showing his privates in the court-ordered medical examination by offering to settle the case. The amount of settlement offered was the entirety of the benefit limit under Nevitt's "therapist" malpractice insurance and, as it is indisputable that Nevitt was a State Bar of Arizona employee at the time of the alleged sexual assault, it seems very likely that this insurance policy was provided as a perquisite to Nevitt by the State Bar of Arizona. In that case, since SBA receives its operating monies entirely from impositions on its lawyer members, this would be an instance where SBA has hired a degenerate and then spent its members' money to deal with the financial and legal consequences.
In a Phoenix Police Department report, DR No. 2010 01588991, dated November 5, 2010, law enforcement authorities document a criminal investigation of Nevitt on allegations of sexual assault and stalking.
In the criminal investigation, Nevitt hired and was represented by a Phoenix attorney Joe Chornenky, a criminal defense lawyer. On the other hand, in Case No. 2011-0063, the formal proceedings before the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners, Nevitt was represented by counsel Frederick Cummings of Jennings, Strouss & Salmon, PLC. It seems likely that SBA procured and may also have paid for the services of a Jennings Strouss attorney to represent Nevitt, choosing that particular firm because the firm is one of SBA's pet law firms. (See this website, page header Inquisitional Discipline,  [a] [A].) In addition, there is evidence that SBA hired the services of the mammoth Snell & Wilmer L.L.P. law firm (through the services of attorney John F. Lomax, Jr.) as a consultant to evaluate SBA's potential culpability in the criminal matter. Assuming it is true that SBA has been paying lawyers at Jennings, Strouss and Snell & Wilmer to engineer a cover-up and damage control, this has occurred at the expense of the Bar, as impositions on members alone fund the activities of SBA. (See this website, page header State Bar of Arizona: About, .) (See also below, ,regarding a second 2011 complaint lodged against Nevitt.)
On or about July 16, 2012, the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners opened a new file (File No. 2013-0002) investigating Nevitt on an allegation of sexual misconduct unrelated to the allegation investigated in its previous file. See http://azbbhe.us/ProDetail.asp?ProfID=30640. This complaint had a very long and circuitous history. The Board took over a year to even begin to take action on this complaint. Then, an open-to-the-public "informal meeting" of AzBBHE's Social Work Credentialing Committee addressing this matter was scheduled. It was set originally for August 9, 2013, then rescheduled for September 13, 2013 at 9am at Ste. 908, 3443 N. Central Avenue, Phoenix. As of August 14, 2013, the Board canceled the proceeding without providing a reason or setting a new date; then, as of early September, 2013, the Board set a new date of October 3, 2013 at 9am; and on September 25, 2013, it gave notice that it was also canceling the October 3 hearing! (On the Arizona Auditor General's determination that the Board excessively dithers in disciplinary investigations, see http://www.auditorgen.state.az.us/Reports/State_Agencies/Agencies/
As of late October, 2013, AzBBHE indicated it would convene a hearing of its licensing committee in File No. 2013-0002 on December 5, 2013, but on November 18, 2013, in response to the complainant's phoned inquiry, AzBBHE staff made a return phone call stating that there was no December 5 hearing date and that it was scheduling no hearing in the matter. Nevertheless, AzBBHE sent, postmarked two days later (November 20, 2013), to the complainant, a notice that the hearing would be held in Phoenix at 3443 North Central Avenue, 9th Floor, at 9am on December 5, 2013. At the December 5 meeting, which the complainant attended while Nevitt did not (he was represented by his counsel, one Mr. Faren Akins), the Board, without discussion, unanimously voted to dismiss the complaint, following the assertion of the Board's Executive Director Debra Rinaudo that there was no clear and convincing evidence of licensee wrongdoing. Apart from the primary allegation of sexual misconduct, about which no evidence has been made public that any investigation took place, it does not appear the Board gave any consideration to an allegation of the complainant that the Board had licensed Nevitt in violation of state statute (which prohibits AzBBHE from licensing convicted felons). (See below, .) Another unaddressed question is the role in Nevitt's licensure of the Arizona Attorney General's Office. The AG's advisor to the board has, for many years, been Nevitt's crony, Assistant AG Marc Harris. (See this website, page header State Bar of Arizona: About, ; and see below, [ix][b].) Because he advises the Board on matters of state law, it would seem nearly certain that when Nevitt irregularly obtained a license, Harris must have had some role. It remains an unresolved question whether Harris, as a personal friend, may have counseled Nevitt not to disclose on his application that he was an ex-convict. (See id.)
Regarding yet another, unrelated complaint to AzBBHE about Nevitt, see below, .
AZAACPR is unable to determine how many complaints in all the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners has received concerning Nevitt. This is because, unless there ensues formal action at a Board meeting against the licensee complained of, AzBBHE does not publish information about it.
Through powers illegally bestowed on him by SBA Presiding Disciplinary Judge William J. O'Neil, Nevitt has been accorded extraordinary discretion to interfere in the privacy and personal liberties of SBA members. Not only has Nevitt had discretion to force members with no bona fide evidence of mental illness into psychiatric intervention as a condition of practicing law, and to publicize these illegal conditions being imposed on them, but he has even had the privilege of forcing an at least one SBA member, as a condition of practicing law, to wear an "ankle bracelet." See below,  [iv], [v].
As another example of an unprofessional act so egregious as to raise a question of SBA Presiding Disciplinary Judge William J. O'Neil's quality of mentation, consider a case reported in the July/August, 2012, issue of Arizona Attorney magazine. P. 71 of that issue reports on SBA Disciplinary Files Nos. 11-0204, 11-1119 and the corresponding formal proceeding file PDJ-2011-9064. In that disciplinary matter, an order of suspension followed by two years' probation was imposed, but the report states, "The MAP director will have discretion to reduce Respondent's probation to one year." Of course, this references Member Assistance Program (MAP) Director, SBA employee and ex-convict Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt, the subject of complaints to the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners (AzBBHE) for various offenses, including sexual predation (see this webpage, above). Readers may wish to re-read that sentence as it appears in SBA's own magazine: "The MAP director will have discretion to reduce Respondent's probation to one year." In other words, Judge O'Neil deputized Nevitt to an assistant judgeship ... which makes about as much sense as getting a school nurse to determine how many days in a calendar year a pupil has to attend school. Hello? Would our readers care to hazard a guess as to the size of a wall large enough to have listed on it all the possibilities when it comes to the kinds of leverage that Nevitt could exert over a Bar member to reduce a probationary term by a year? No wonder since at least 2011, AzBBHE has been receiving repeated complaints of sexual misconduct against Nevitt. For issuing such orders as this one, Judge William J. O'Neil should be investigated, suspended both from his judgeship and from practicing law, and made to have his head examined. O'Neil has been publicly accused of corruption by several attorney-victims of SBA and also by non-lawyers; see http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/politics/2014/04/16/divorce-case-stirs-ethics-allegations-judge/7765749/. That piece notes that the allegations against O'Neil are of sufficient weight that he has had to retain legal counsel. His counsel is Tucson attorney Stanley Feldman, former Arizona Supreme Court Chief Justice and a man with a notorious history of complicity with the SBA's development of its dirty tricks in lawyer discipline, and dishonesty in dealings with the public.
SBA's disciplinary policies and practices are a fraud on the public trust, in addition to a fraud, financially and otherwise, on members of the Arizona Bar. In an email dated August 1, 2012, State Bar of Arizona CEO John Phelps informed AZAACPR that its factual bases for concerns about Nevitt include "a number of inaccurate statements regarding our Member Assistance Program (MAP) and Mr. Nevitt, too numerous to address in an email." In September, 2012, one of AZAACPR's correspondents advised that SBA is currently misleading the public into an impression that Nevitt no longer directs MAP or works for SBA. The correspondent writes: "When a 'lay person' calls SBA and asks for Nevitt they are told, 'He is no longer at this office.' When the person asks if he is still the MAP Director, they say, "Are you a member of the SBA, and if so, what is your name?'" If the SBA staff is satisfied that the caller is a lawyer who has been referred to MAP, the caller is provided with the phone number for Nevitt's private, off-site company, Innovative Workplace Solutions, LLC, located a few miles from the SBA's premises in Phoenix, where Nevitt continues MAP business as usual on behalf of SBA. This is the same SBA that routinely disciplines attorneys on allegations of lying to or misleading courts, clients, and/or the public.
As recently as autumn, 2012, SBA has been providing new Bar admittees with a brochure which names Nevitt as Director of MAP. See http://www.azbar.org/media/438414/new_member.pdf. On p. 6 of that brochure, his phone number at SBA is given as (602) 340-7334, and on p. 12, his attentions as MAP director are recommended to members in need of "help." As of the autumn of 2012, orders issued by SBA's Presiding Disciplinary Judge William J. O'Neil have started referring to Nevitt as "former MAP Director;" see e.g. http://azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=mWdsr2Z_Y90%3D&tabid=6472&mid=9452. However, while item 6, p. 2 of that order refers to Nevitt as "former MAP director," it also discloses that as of mid-2012, SBA members were still being directed to undergo mental "assessment" by Nevitt. As of November, 2012, it is AZAACPR's impression that SBA is endeavoring to foist a fraud on the public, to make it look as though it is outsourcing its mental illness-tagging activities to an outside enterprise (the oxymoronically named "CorpCare," as if a corporation could care) (see http://www.azbar.org/professionaldevelopment/map/resources/
faqsaboutmemberassistanceprogram), comprising a front to allow SBA more secrecy as it continues to steer business to Nevitt, in disregard of Bar members' safety. (According to reports of attorney-victims, when directed to a CorpCare-affiliated "therapist" other than Nevitt, the "therapist" occasionally has candidly admitted that SBA officials tell the "therapist" what to find on "evaluation" and what "treatment" to recommend. The puppetmaster in such instances is likely to be Nevitt, SBA's only "therapist" employee.) Nevitt, for his part, continues to put it about that he is the Member Assistance Program Director for the State Bar of Arizona;
see, inter alia, http://cst.agd.org/pdf/constituents/Region14/infection%20control%202013.pdf; also http://familypsych.info/hal-nevitt-ceap/; http://www.adamsclark.com/professional-challenges.asp; http://www.linkedin.com/pub/hal-nevitt/12/172/64b; http://www.zoominfo.com/#!search/profile/person?personId=770636223&targetid=profile; http://familypsychassociates.com/therapists.html; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pbp85yG7ZYs; etc. (Nevitt also puts it about that he is a Director of a Phoenix charity; see http://www.bizapedia.com/az/BERGENS-MISSION.html.) As of 2013, Nevitt is also still being called to testify about the mental competence of Bar members at SBA disciplinary hearings; see e.g. p. 8 of http://azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=Qc3aaE3_2xE%3D&tabid=6733&mid=9822.
One item of evidence, called to AZAACPR's attention by a correspondent, supporting the fact of Nevitt's remaining an SBA employee, is that his contact listing with the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners, of which he is a licensee, remains unchanged. Under Arizona statute, AzBBHE licensees are to maintain a current contact listing with AzBBHE and to report any changes within thirty days. Arizona Revised States (A.R.S.) sec.32-3276. Nevitt's AzBBHE contact listing long has been, and as of mid-January, 2013, continues to be: State Bar of Arizona, 4201 N 24th St #200, Phoenix AZ 85016 (602) 340-7334. See http://azbbhe.us/ProDetail.asp?ProfID=30640. It is possible that, in 2012, SBA may have provided employee Nevitt with a new title; it appears that in fact, SBA changed his title to MAP Compliance Monitor. However, whether in the eyes of the State Bar of Arizona, Nevitt is currently Director of the Member Assistance Program, or whether in its eyes he is the current King of Sheba, the evidence indicates that Nevitt remains employed by SBA. According to 2016 reports to this website, SBA still currently employs Nevitt in the same capacity as in prior years, authorizing him to engage in the same acts as before where members and Bar applicants are concerned; and although it acts through its hack Presiding Disciplinary Judge William J. O'Neil, this means SBA is still sentencing lawyers to submit to sexual assault by Nevitt. As well, there continues to be a lucrative racket between SBA and Nevitt whereby SBA refers lawyers to him in his capacity as an SBA employee and Nevitt in turn takes payment from them privately, by coercing them to become patients of his off-site Phoenix-area "therapy" operation. According to 2016 reports, the only thing that is new is that SBA now does not designate Nevitt as the "Director" of the "Member Assistance Program" but as the "Member Assistance Program Compliance Monitor."
Both SBA and Nevitt have gone to considerable effort to conceal the fact of their remaining in cahoots. As noted above, in 2012 SBA made a sham announcement that MAP would no longer directly impose "therapy" on anyone and that SBA had outsourced the task to the private corporation "CorpCare." Nevertheless, all these years after it made the sham announcement, the State Bar of Arizona is continuing its longstanding practice of endangering its licensees by foisting Nevitt upon them. (For instance, at least as recently as February, 2013, SBA members have been accorded lenient treatment in disciplinary proceedings upon their providing evidence of having taken "counsel" specifically with Nevitt
(see p. 12 in http://azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=FqwRoyMsnjk%3D&tabid=6732&mid=9821).) That said, of course, following their longstanding playing of a shell game with MAP files and other Nevitt-related issues (see below, ), at any time, Nevitt and SBA could arrange to have his AzBBHE address changed to the address of his private company "Innovative Workplace Solutions, LLC" (appearing in records of the Arizona Corporation Commission variously as 3040 E. Cactus Blvd. #A and as 13835 N. Tatum Blvd. #9-178, but the latter is a UPS store with mail boxes) in Phoenix, in order to make the public think he does not work at SBA or that the supposed services he does with lawyers is not for SBA. Meanwhile, in all likelihood, SBA is compensating Nevitt's "Innovative Workplace Solutions" under the rubric of vendor. Nevitt has also tried to disguise his whereabouts and activities by launching a website which gives the name of the (non-incorporated) entity doing business at 3040 E. Cactus Blvd. #A as "Family Psych Associates;" see http://familypsychassociates.com/therapists.html and also see http://familypsych.info/hal-nevitt-ceap/ (both websites list Nevitt as "staff," not "owner," of that entity). Telling evidence, however, that Nevitt still works for SBA and directs MAP is the fact that as of May, 2013, SBA has not announced a successor MAP Director.
As noted, several years ago, SBA began trying to deceive the public by making statements referring to a "compliance monitor" while hiding the fact that the person is actually Nevitt. It made a show of is designating a clerical as its "compliance monitor" or "probation compliance monitor" and was directing victims of MAP sentencing to contact that person by phoning the same number mentioned in the previous paragraph, (602) 340-7334 (see http://www.azbar.org/professionaldevelopment/map) (and advising the victims not to start by contacting CorpCare) although an alternative number for this MAP contact, who in 2014 official documents is named as one Yvette Penar, also has been published, (602) 340-7258 (see http://azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=cxc8ZoDIf1s%3D&tabid=7418&mid=10802, p. 11, a document dated March 31, 2014, and see http://azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=xxvHdq6rWLE%3D&tabid=7230&mid=10550, p. 9, a document dated December 6, 2013). AZAACPR suspects both paths to contacting MAP ultimately lead to SBA's resident sex offender Nevitt, although this awaits confirmation. It is indisputable that, in violation of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), SBA is continuing to operate a system of consigning attorneys it chooses to libel as mentally different to second-class membership (conditional admission and special conditions on maintaining bar membership), since this is the basis of appeals that victims have been filing in the Supreme Court of Arizona. Two such appeal cases going on as of autumn, 2015, are SB-15-0040 and SB-15-0043. The likely outcome is that the Supreme Court will deny the appeals and the victims will be directed to contact the MAP office at the SBA, where the subsequent course will be overseen by Nevitt. The MAP program will avoid ever bringing up Nevitt's name, but AZAACRP believes he will be running the show.
In 2015, Nevitt continues to be a threat to community safety and morals as he is not only still licensed to do so-called "therapy," but also appears to be currently employed (at least part-time) by an organization "Desert Cove Recovery Center" at Ste. 4, 15170 N. Hayden Rd., Scottsdale AZ 85260 (see http://desertcoverecovery.com/contact/ and http://desertcoverecovery.com/about-us/staff/), inasmuch as a correspondent of this website reports that he is both receiving mail at that address, and responding to it. (Records of the Maricopa County Assessor and the Maricopa County Recorder indicate that Nevitt's and his wife Ellen's home address is 14447 N. 20th St., Phoenix 85022.) And as of autumn, 2014, and continuing into late 2015, AZAACPR's website "contact" form has been receiving serial expressions of concern about Nevitt's demeanor toward patients at yet another "therapy" outfit, North Ridge Counseling of 8889 E. Via Linda, Scottsdale AZ 85258, where Nevitt is a "Program Clinical Director," according to the outfit's website.
(2) The Policy Behind MAP
Many state bar organizations maintain an office whose purported purpose is to address problems when members' professional activities are adversely affected by substance use or mental illness. The State Bar of Arizona's version of this is euphemistically called the "Member Assistance Program," or MAP. SBA's stated objective is to protect the public. (See http://www.azbar.org/ home page). However, SBA does not limit using MAP for the rehabilitation of attorneys or would-be attorneys who have an established substance abuse or mental health issue. In fact, most attorneys, at the time of sentencing to MAP, have a documented history neither of a substance abuse issue nor a mental illness.
MAP, rather, is a tool whereby SBA engages in attacks upon the privacy, dignity and personal rights of Arizona individuals who happen to be attorneys.
A sanction to participate in forced psychiatric intervention may be imposed either during the Bar admission process or during the Bar discipline process. For instance, a period of MAP is among the special conditions which may be imposed as part of a disciplinary sanction when an attorney is determined to have committed an ethics rule violation.
While ostensibly offering MAP as a service for lawyers who voluntarily seek help, SBA actually uses MAP punitively. MAP is one of the means in SBA's armamentarium for abusing the confidentiality and reputation of lawyers on whom it is involuntarily foisted. SBA publicizes the fact that an attorney has been sentenced to MAP. Once a lawyer has been subjected to MAP, the Bar publicly reintroduces that fact as an "aggravating factor" in determining any subsequent discipline.
Additionally, SBA goes so far as to demand that lawyers forced into MAP sign a false statement that they are cooperating "voluntarily." (See MAP so-called "Therapeutic Contract," below, .) Thus SBA not only lies, but forces attorney-victims into complicity with its lying as a condition of practicing law.
AZAACPR recommends that, except where an SBA applicant or Bar member's substance abuse or mental illness is established either by court finding, or by the individual's putting it at issue in applying for membership or defending a disciplinary proceeding, sanctions involving imposition of participation in mental illness treatment under the aegis of MAP be discontinued.
(3) Junk Science
The incapacity of so-called mind science--psychology and psychiatry--to protect society from terrorists, violent sociopaths, murderers, rapists, etc., is far too well known to bear discussion here. (See, inter alia, Margaret A. Hagen, Ph.D., Whores of the Court, ReganBooks 1997.) Likewise, there is not one scintilla of evidence that coercing an applicant or member of the Bar into forced mental illness treatment by a psychologist or psychiatrist, under a sentence of MAP, makes the subject a better lawyer.
What it does do is make the State Bar of Arizona look like the Government of China.
In most instances where MAP is imposed, there is no question of assisting an individual who needs to overcome a mental illness or substance abuse problem in order to responsibly serve a clientele. If an attorney had a documented substance abuse problem or an independently documented history of mental illness (a history not arising out of the Bar's forcing him or her to seek a diagnosis), then it might make sense that the state bar organization take a hand in straightening the subject out. But that is not the usual basis for SBA's imposing the sanction, since most attorney-victims have neither a history of substance abuse nor, prior to being sentenced to MAP, a diagnosis of mental illness.
SBA's principal purpose in imposing disciplinary psychiatry, rather, is to collect revenue. Annually, SBA takes in a quarter of a million dollars for lawyer discipline "services." (See this website, page header State Bar of Arizona: About, .) The SBA member's supposedly "voluntary" cooperation with MAP and other discipine is never free of charge to the member. (See id.) MAP annually collects many tens of thousands of dollars for its purported "costs" in providing "services" to attorney-victims, even though SBA is not a mental health provider.
A second purpose of discipline by MAP is to humiliate and stigmatize Bar members--individuals who, more often than not, are women, middle-aged, and members of ethnic, religious and/or racial minorities. SBA uses MAP as a pretext to justify in the public's eye its longstanding position that women and minorities do not have the prerequisites of character and emotional stability to make good lawyers.
(4) "Uppity" Minorities
There is a history of SBA male officials engaging in sexual harassment. In 1996, SBA's Executive Director was investigated and forced to resign over harassment allegations by female clerical and administrative employees. (See http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/content/printVersion/163509.) See also below, .
Likewise, the Arizona judiciary has a longstanding history of sanctioning or punishing Bar members, or membership applicants for being "uppity" minorities, outspoken in opposing illegal personal discrimination. For a revealing example from America's Civil Rights period, readers may consult Ronwin v. State Bar of Arizona, 686 F.2d 692 (U.S. 9th Cir. Apps. 1981). (Federal Appeals Court affirms District Court decision upholding recommendation of Supreme Court of Arizona's Committee on Character and Fitness not to admit a graduate of the Arizona State University law school who was found "mentally unfit" due to having vociferously protested the school authorities' failure to address repeated incidents of anti-Semitic taunting and baiting by fellow law students.) See http://law.justia.com/cases/federal/appellate-courts/F2/686/692/414920.
Similarly as regards MAP, sex and social characteristics make a difference. When a member is sanctioned with MAP, SBA is imposing on that member a requirement to undergo "treatment" for purported mental illness as a condition of keeping or obtaining a license to practice law. SBA's practice in this regard tends to reflect suspect classification. MAP is much more likely to be imposed on members of the Bar who are (a) women and/or (b) minorities. MAP is less frequently imposed on Caucasian male members of SBA.
White male members are significantly less likely to undergo any form of discipline, let alone MAP, compared with women and/or minorities (and especiallly, minority women). It is, moreover, rare that highly-placed counsel in large influential law firms are subject to any disciplinary sanction, with or without MAP. As a result, in the case of attorneys belonging to favored social classes, MAP is infrequently imposed as a sanction.
Much of SBA disciplinary activity takes place in the shadows. The numerous SBA Staff Bar Counsel who handle attorney disciplinary files meet as a group weekly (at present, on Wednesdays). They meet in the heart of SBA's Phoenix premises, and they do not disclose any part of their deliberations to which they do not wish to make privy either rank-and-file Bar members or their counsel. SBA provides very limited public information about its disciplinary practices.
Among the statistics about which neither SBA nor the Arizona Supreme Court has published information is the ethnic, racial, sex, age, and practice setting characteristics of individuals on whom (a) disciplinary sanctions are imposed and, among the sanctions, (b) on whom a sanction of MAP is imposed.
The available sources for information about characteristics of sanctioned Arizona attorneys are two.
The first of the two sources is anecdotal. Most issues of SBA's monthly magazine Arizona Attorney have a back-page section summarizing selected disciplinary decisions, both those arising from formal proceedings as well as otherwise ("discipline by consent").
A more informative source of information about individual SBA disciplinary cases is a website "Matrices." This website provides summaries and reproduces disciplinary order documents from formal disciplinary proceedings. Cases are organized on a year-by-year basis depending on the year of the final outcome (not the year of the case's origination). The website address is: http://www.azcourts.gov/attorneydiscipline/DisciplinaryCasesMatrix.aspx.
"Matrices" is a cumbersome source for statistical analysis of attorney discipline files because it cannot be perused quickly. Each disciplinary file is individually listed and, since "Matrices" is unindexed, accessing information on any particular case can be time-consuming. In addition, for cases concluded after 2010, "Matrices" is no longer available. At present, one way known to AZAACPR to look up disciplinary cases applies to cases wherein the Supreme Court of Arizona has issued an order: see http://www.azcourts.gov/clerkofcourt/statebarjudgments.aspx. Another way applies to cases resolved at the level of the Presiding Disciplinary Judge: see http://azcourts.gov/pdj/Home.aspx. Yet another way is to examine SBA's website; see http://www.azbar.org/Search?search=discipline&page=1. However, since SBA does nothing accidentally, and since discontinuing "Matrices" has made public information much less accessible--information that would be revealed in the documents filed during the progress of a disciplinary matter (beginning with SBA's Complaint) prior to the final Order of the Presiding Disciplinary Judge and/or the Supreme Court of Arizona--it is a virtual certainty that not only the effect, but also the purpose of discontinuing "Matrices" has been to reduce the public's ability to scrutinize the conduct of Staff Bar Counsel and the rulings of the Presiding Disciplinary Judge, and make it impossible for the public to even find out what the Respondent attorney was charged with, let alone that a formal matter is in progress at all, until a sentence issues.
AZAACPR has studied several recent years' listings in "Matrices," thereby arriving at an impression that other things being equal, minority and women SBA members--and especially, women who belong to ethnic or racial minorities--are significantly more likely to be sanctioned, as well as more severely sanctioned, compared with Caucasian males. Compared to their White male counterparts, female and ethnically or racially diverse Bar members, excluding those who serve large influential law firms, garner a larger number of sanctions, lengthier sanctions, and a greater likelihood of being forced into involuntary mental illness treatment ("MAP") compared to their white male counterparts, the most typical target of a MAP sanction being a middle-aged woman in solo practice. Such individuals are also significantly likelier to be re-sanctioned repeatedly with punishment including MAP, as well as likelier to spend virtually their entire law practice careers serially under the imposition of one disciplinary sanction after another.
As an illustration, one may compare the following two "Matrices" cases from the year 2010.
(a) Les A. Boegemann, Disciplinary File No. 09-0342, Case No. SB-10-0077-D (by Judgment)
(b) Yvonne Yragui, Disciplinary File No. 08-1333, Case No. SB-10-0061-D (by Judgment)
In case (a), Attorney Boegemann defrauded a very elderly client (100 years old) of $50,000. He received SBA's lightest sanction (censure)--essentially, a formal reprimand. Attorney Boegemann was not referred to MAP nor forced into treatment for a purported mental illness.
In case (b), Attorney Yragui, in requesting a continuance of a hearing date before a court, made an inconsequential misstatement of her reason for the request. She then self-reported to SBA and voluntarily invited discipline. Yragui was sentenced to a censure together with a year's probation plus a coterminous year of forced mental illness "treatment" under the aegis of MAP.
These two cases are also respectively summarized in the October, 2010 and December, 2010 issues of SBA's mouthpiece publication Arizona Attorney (although the summary of case (b) in the December issue leaves out of the account the fact that Ms. Yragui was forced to see a headshrinker as a condition of continuing to practice law). It bears note that Mr. Boegemann, the subject of case (a), is a Caucasian male, while the subject of case (b), Ms. Yragui is a woman ... and a member of a minority.
The foregong cases are cited in mutual contrast in order to illustrate SBA's differential sanctioning of attorneys of differing social classes and backgrounds. However, it does not reflect any thoroughgoing statistical study of how race, ethnicity, sex, age, and practice setting (solo v. small/medium/large private v. public employer) may interrelate with sanctioning. To AZAACPR's knowledge, no such study yet exists.
AZAACPR calls upon the Supreme Court of Arizona to commission an independent investigator to produce a report documenting the statistical breakdown of various sanctions and lengths of sanctions imposed over the previous decade on Arizona lawyers stratified by age, sex, ethnic/racial background, and practice status.
(5) How MAP Targets Bar Members and Membership Applicants
Throughout this section and below, the feminine pronoun will be used to refer to the typical individual sanctioned with MAP. This seems reasonable, since males are less likely to undergo this sanction, so that to use the masculine pronoun below would mislead the reader.
a. SBA Members
Some referrals to MAP occur as an outcome of formal disciplinary charges against a Bar member. SBA may decide on the basis of an adverse report by a member of the public, a client or ex-client, a court official, or an opposing attorney (SBA has no scruples when it comes to intervening in ongoing litigation), or on the basis of some anonymous "tip" information from a source that declines to identify itself), to initiate disciplinary proceedings. (See this website, page header Inquisitional Discipline, .) Or SBA may initiate disciplinary proceedings sua sponte (on the basis of no report at all). After prescribing a short period within which the attorney-victim may respond (and which may be shorter than the period specified by Arizona Supreme Court rule; see id., ), Staff Bar Counsel can dismiss the allegation(s) or, alternatively, make a written recommendation to a committee, called the Probable Cause Committee, made up of SBA officials, other lawyers, and lay members appointed by the Arizona Supreme Court. The Committee operates as a rubber-stamp, automatically and uncritically agreeing with Staff Bar Counsel's recommendation. With that, the matter ceases to be an adverse report and becomes a formal "charge" concerning which Staff Bar Counsel prepares a written "complaint." At this stage, Staff Bar Counsel may or may not initiate negotiations to achieve a resolution of the matter directly with the attorney-victim ("discipline by consent," or resolution by plea-bargaining), and the discipline thus imposed may include a sentence of MAP. For some attorneys, then, submitting to MAP is a condition of resolving a Bar charge short of formal proceedings. Unless the matter is resolved informally, within 90 days after the issuance of the "complaint," a formal proceeding is convened. This entails a hearing before the Presiding Disciplinary Judge (presently, Hon. William J. O'Neil of Pinal County). His joined by one lawyer and one lay individual to comprise a hearing "panel," the purpose being to provide the proceedings with an appearance that the outcome is not the decision of the PDJ alone. When taking the decision, the Presiding Disciplinary Judge (in the name of the "panel") may order that the victim be sentenced to MAP. (See this website, page header Inquisitional Discipline, .)
There is evidence that the appointment of the non-lawyer or "public member" of the hearing panel has been manipulated in order to give a false impression that the said member is impartial when, in fact, he was appointed precisely to support Presiding Disciplinary Judge William J. O'Neil's preferences. In 2010 and 2011, the "public member" of the hearing panel in a number of SBA disciplinary cases that went to a formal hearing was a Casa Grande, Arizona, man named Robert M. Gallo who, public sources disclose, died in the autumn of 2012. Before his death, Gallo was listed as a panelist public member in various SBA disciplinary cases including PDJ-2012-9029 (see http://azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=p37twSyE5IM%3D&tabid=6328&mid=9266); PDJ-2011-9084 (see http://azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=6aZU2jNxzbw%3D&tabid=6173&mid=9003); PDJ-2011-9051 (see https://azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=PTZPGSDM6Tw%3D&tabid=6016&mid=8738); PDJ-2011-9060 (see http://azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=Bxb6BHcP5YY%3D&tabid=6174&mid=9008); and SBA File No. 10-1167 (see http://azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=bc5eODUUVEA%3D&tabid=3856&mid=4976).
It turns out that Pinal County, Arizona public records of the County Assessor, accessible at http://pinalcountyaz.gov/Departments/Assessor/Pages/ParcelInfoSearch.aspx, show that Gallo and Presiding Disciplinary Judge O'Neil were neighbors; the former, with his wife, was joint owner of record of a residence at 10729 West Martin Road in Casa Grande, Arizona, and the Judge, with his wife, is of record as joint owner of a property at 10525 West Martin Road in Casa Grande. In addition, it is public record that O'Neil and Gallo had a long history of mutual financial dealings, as can be seen from recorded documents, Fee Nos. 1984-021598; 1984-022904; and 1991-011335, Records of the Pinal County Recorder, accessible at http://pinalcountyaz.gov/DEPARTMENTS/RECORDER/Pages/DocumentSearch.aspx.
As is obvious from this, Judge William J. O'Neil deliberately arranged for the disciplinary hearing panel hearing the cases of SBA members accused of wrongdoing to be fraudulently constituted so as to include his buddy and business associate Robert Gallo as a purported "public member." For this perpetration of a fraud upon the public, Judge O'Neil should be debenched. In addition, those officials and employees of the State Bar of Arizona who knowingly countenanced and did not overtly oppose O'Neil's fraudulent and dishonest conduct should be investigated and disbarred.
Correspondents of the AZAACRP website who, in the past few years, attended disciplinary hearings at which Gallo was present comment that he appeared mentally absent and possibly either senile, or otherwise showing the effects of his baseline illness (cancer, which he almost certainly was aware of having at the time he was serving as a panelist, and which eventually caused his death). As correspondents have also noted, the evidence of a personal connection between Judge O'Neil and Public Member Gallo suggests that the latter was repeatedly appointed to hearing panels as someone Judge O'Neil personally knew and trusted not to make any independent contributions to the outcome of disciplinary hearings.
AZAACPR recommends that the decision of the disciplinary panels in all cases presided over by Judge William J. O'Neil, wherein Robert M. Gallo was the designated "public member" and the outcome was adverse to a Bar member, be set aside, owing to the evidence and appearance of fraud in the hearing procedure.
Robert Gallo's case is not the sole one in which PDJ O'Neil, evidently, has corruptly tapped a person over whom he holds influence to sit on the hearing panel in attorney discipline cases. For several years as of 2014, PDJ O'Neil has been embroiled in an ugly controversy involving a Pinal County non-lawyer named Mark Dixon (see http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/politics/2014/04/16/divorce-case-stirs-ethics-allegations-judge/7765749/). In a Maricopa County Superior Court Case No. CV2014-009269, based on evidence subpoenaed from internet service providers, Dixon is suing one Mark Salem (operator of a large auto repair facility "Salem Boys Auto") as responsible for a website which published defamatory statements insulting and derogatory to Mr. Dixon under the web address www.pinaljustice.com. It turns out that this Mark Salem (a) per his LinkedIn.com listing, worked for the Scottsdale, Arizona, police department as an officer at a time overlapping the service in the same department of SBA MAP Director Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt; (b) was nominated by the Arizona Supreme Court in 2010 to be a member of its "Committee on Improving Judicial Oversight and Processing of Probate Court Matters;" and (c) is well known to Judge O'Neil since at O'Neil's instigation, Salem has served as a so-called "public member" on a number of disciplinary hearing panels, including the following cases: PDJ-2010-6012 (see http://www.azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=5NbD0kJAZlQ%3D&tabid=3856&mid=4976); PDJ-2012-9104 (see http://harryfriedlanderaz.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/Friedlander.pdf); PDJ-2012-9106 (see http://www.azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=4u0J3mKHwWs%3D&tabid=6678&mid=9747); PDJ-2012-9018 (see http://www.azcourts.gov/Portals/101/Cifelli%20Final%20Report%20and%20Recommendation.pdf); PDJ-2012-9099 (see http://www.azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=Qc3aaE3_2xE%3D&tabid=6733&mid=9822); PDJ-2013-9011 (see http://www.azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=7d3170jyHbc%3D&tabid=6784&mid=7); PDJ-2013-9083 (see http://www.azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=0TUVjeZYPFI%3D&tabid=7230&mid=10550); PDJ-2013-9113 (see http://www.azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=8z6iEvlA4WA%3D&tabid=7418&mid=10802); PDJ-2013-9005 (see http:/www.azcourts.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=QtTwtw2F9hk%3D&tabid=6771&mid=9894).
Dixon's lawsuit raises the distinct possibility that as Mark Salem published defamatory web content attacking Dixon, and as Salem is a longstanding associate of O'Neil, it may be that Salem acted on the PDJ's inducement to get back at the judge's enemy, Mark Dixon. The facts in the lawsuit's public record certainly give rise to an appearance of impropriety on Judge O'Neil's part. If O'Neil has improperly used a crony non-attorney to attack a personal enemy, it gives rise to a question of the legitimacy of the dispositions of the several lawyer disciplinary cases cited in the previous paragraph, on which that non-attorney individual served as a panelist. At a minimum, there is a question of the propriety of the decisions reached in disciplinary proceedings wherein PDJ O'Neil's fellow panelist and "public member" was a person of such questionable character as would eventually publish a defamatory website attacking a personal enemy of the PDJ. Again, therefore, AZAACPR recommends that the decision of the disciplinary panels in all cases presided over by Judge William J. O'Neil, wherein Mark Salem was the designated "public member" and the outcome was adverse to a Bar member, be set aside, owing to the evidence and appearance of fraud in the hearing procedure.
Through reports from correspondents, AZAACPR has become aware that the Respondent of a disciplinary matter PDJ-2012-9057 (SBA Disciplinary File Nos. 2011-2008, 2011-2801), through counsel, on November 30, 2012, filed a pleading entitled "Verified Request/Motion for Removal of Judge," asking that Judge O'Neil be removed from adjudicating the charge(s) owing to evidence that he was biased and had conducted himself as an interested party in the matter. The pleading recited some of the facts about fraud in Judge O'Neil's selection of members of hearing panels which have been discussed in the several paragraphs above. The Request also cited his role in the reinstatement of attorney Carmen Chenal, the reported lover of Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne (see this website, page header State Bar of Arizona: About, , fifth paragraph). Also stated was that the Arizona Commission on Judicial Conduct currently is investigating Judge O'Neil for personal financial misconduct and for misconduct as SBA's Presiding Disciplinary Judge in previous disciplinary matters. (See http://www.scribd.com/doc/112852009/William-J-O-Neil-Arizona-Presiding-Disciplinary-Judge-judicial-complaint.) The pleading asked for an evidentiary hearing on O'Neil's fitness to serve. In the subsequent history of PDJ-2012-9057, a Report and Order Imposing sanctions dated January 28, 2013, was issued by the Office of the Presiding Disciplinary Judge. It purported that in not ordering Respondent's disbarment, the PDJ was being lenient in sentencing the Respondent to what it characterized as a lesser sanction--four years' suspension followed by two years' probation. On p. 25, the Report and Order stated that the suspension/probation sanction was ordered despite the PDJ's annoyance at unspecified "disrespectful" conduct by Respondent's counsel--the attorney who, on Respondent's behalf, requested the removal of Judge O'Neil. It is noteworthy that Arizona Rules of Civil Procedure, R. 42(f), provides for a party to call for a change of judge (either as a matter of right--that is, effective merely upon the party's notice to the court--if the request is made early in the action, or otherwise, upon a showing of cause for replacing the judge). The Report and Order's adverse comments about Respondent's counsel in PDJ-2012-9057 raises doubt that out of sheer megalomania, Judge O'Neil may imagine that he is not subject to the same limitations on absolute power as other judges. It also demonstrates that effective assistance of counsel is foreclosed to Respondents of SBA's formal disciplinary actions. Most defense counsel in these matters are former SBA Staff Bar Counsel who remain, after going into private practice, beholden to SBA (see this website, page header Inquisitional Discipline,  [a] and  [b] [ii]); they cannot possibly risk providing their clients with a spirited and vigorous defense; and when, as in PDJ-2012-9057, an attorney who is neither former Staff Bar Counsel nor SBA ex-employee takes on such a matter and uses vigorous, permitted litigation maneuvers in the Respondent's defense, it makes matters worse for the Respondent because the PDJ's office labels the counsel as "disrespectful."
In many instances, SBA threatens members with discipline as a matter of sheer personal harassment. Among the abuses which have been relayed to AZAACPR are the following: (a) SBA member, upon suspension, is threatened with disbarment for using the initials "J.D." after his/her name (in a context in which no offer to perform legal services was stated or implied), as if being suspended from practicing law were equivalent to having to return one's law degree; (b) attorney, upon suspension, is threatened with heightened discipline for accompanying an individual into court for whom the suspended attorney is a valid agent under a properly executed power of attorney; (c) although allowing non-lawyers to prepare legal documents as "certified legal document preparers," upon ordering an attorney to be disciplined, SBA threatens to take heightened disciplinary action if the attorney is caught preparing a will or trust, even if for himself or herself. The preceding are examples of SBA engaging in sheer bullying and lawyer abuse.
b. SBA Applicants
Lawyers already in the Bar are not the only targets of MAP. Other referrals to MAP occur at the stage of the individual's applying to join the Bar. Successfully applying entails demonstrating the requisite legal knowledge. This is usually accomplished by passing the Bar examination offered by SBA semi-annually, in addition to passing a national standardized Legal Ethics examination.
A successful Bar application also entails passing personal background screening by a committee operating out of the premises of the Arizona Supreme Court in central Phoenix, called the Committee on Character and Fitness (CCF). It is largely composed of attorneys trusted by the Judiciary, with one or two so-called public members, also individuals selected by and trusted by the Judiciary.
In addition to fingerprinting, the Character and Fitness component of the Arizona Bar member application requires certain disclosures:
address of every residence of the applicant for the past decade, however short-term, plus contact information of multiple neighbors at each location;
details of every past employment, however brief, and employer contact information;
details of every tribunal-adjudicated action to which the applicant has been a party, irrespective of whether the applicant conducted the case on her own behalf or was represented by counsel.
Such a superfluity of personal detail (e.g., a list of every place one has ever resided) is not requested by any other Arizona licensing body, including those that license medical doctors and nurses. CCF's motive for gathering such useless surfeit of information is not "investigation"--CCF does not have competent investigators to verify the accuracy of reports it solicits from past neighbors, acquaintances, or employers; rather, CCF merely assumes the truth of every report it solicits, without checking--instead, CCF's purpose in collecting such material is "fishing." CCF routinely lies to the Arizona Supreme Court about its grounds for recommending special conditions on an applicant's admission. It does this, in many instances, by reproducing false reports it receives from people the subject has known, without investigating them for accuracy (for instance, any past neighbor who is a crank can accuse an applicant of some nonsense thing, and CCF swallows it hook, line and sinker); and, as well, by confabulating. For instance, if an applicant admits having been publicly cited, albeit never convicted, of some legally recognized offense, such as DUI, CCF reports falsely to the Supreme Court that the applicant is a DUI offender. Or, if a woman applicant has been a plaintiff in a wrongful death suit against some hospital, CCF misrepresents to the Court that she sued over sexual harrassment as a disgruntled hospital ex-employee--which, even if true, is hard to construe as evidence of poor character (but CCF seizes on it as such all the same, reflecting the Judiciary's sensitivity over the fact that in the past two decades, more than one SBA official has been implicated in sexual assaults on women).
When it labels an applicant as meriting Bar admission subject to special conditions, CCF provides the applicant with a copy of the recommendation on her conditional admission that it furnishes to the Arizona Supreme Court. In fact, the recommendation document is public; any member of the public can peruse it and find out that the Committee deemed the applicant a nut case! Yet the Committe's file on the applicant, containing the purported factual basis for the recommendation, is secret, disclosed neither to the public nor even to the applicant herself. For that matter, Arizona Supreme Court proceedings wherein the justices rubber-stamp CCF's recommendations are kangaroo proceedings--the applicant gets no opportunity to attend, let alone to address the justices. Also, (except sporadically, when CCF instructs SBA to provide the applicant with a hearing on allegations in the Character and Fitness file--which is not routinely done, no matter how adverse the findings), the applicant is denied the due process rights of confronting adverse evidence and witnesses, since CCF keeps her Character and Fitness file's contents a secret.
In sum, at the stage of Character and Fitness screening, an applicant may be flagged by CCF and required to submit to special conditions on her Bar admission. What is the nature of these conditions? The members of CCF, as noted above, are largely attorneys--they have no qualifications for weighing the mental stability of applicants--for that matter, they never even meet with applicants. Notwithstanding, invariably, CCF will delay approval of a targeted applicant's Bar admission until and unless she submits to a further screening by the Director of MAP--SBA's so-called Member Assistance Program.
This generates revenue, since there is a fee for such screening. It also stigmatizes the applicant, and it does so absolutely publicly. As a condition of joining the Arizona Bar, the applicant who in some way looks different from everyone else in the Character and Fitness screening must acquiesce in being "evaluated" by MAP. This invariably results in the applicant being labeled as mentally ill and in need of "treatment" as a precondition to practicing law in Arizona. No one is ever found "sane." Moreover, unless the victim is so fortunate as to reside well outside Maricopa County, Arizona, the likelihood is that the Director of MAP, Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt, will assign the victim's further "treatment" and "evaluation" to himself, forcing the victim, willing or not, to submit to secluded, unsupervised meetings with him.
AZAACPR has received reports from multiple victims of this bogus procedure that when meeting for "evaluation" or "treatment," Nevitt tends to ask Caucasians as to their willingness and preferences for association with "Black people" as contacts, friends, relatives or relations. Likewise, reports have come to AZAACPR that Nevitt tends to follow with inappropriate and impertinent questions (questions that cannot possibly bear on anyone's fitness to practice law) indicative of his own sexual prurience, including inquiries as to who the lawyer or Bar applicant has "fucked."
Women and minorities predominate as subjects of Character of Fitness screening referrals (and the ensuing humiliation at the hands of fraudsters such as Nevitt). One reason for this is, as mentioned above, that the Character and Fitness portion of the Bar application requires disclosure of all employment undertaken in the prior decade--every position, irrespective of whether it may have been short-term, part-time, or even unpaid.
This requirement has the effect of creating a disproportionate burden on applicants who are women, especially women in middle age, since they are treated differentially in the workplace. In the USA, women as a class still earn around 70 cents for every dollar earned by men, a statistic that reflects the tendency of employers to single out women employees to underpay, underpromote, and otherwise, treat inferiorly. In addition, both women and older applicants (and, especially, older women), compared with their younger peers, are likelier to have a history of multiple employments. The Bar insists not only on the applicant's disclosing the identities of each and every past employer, and but also on receiving a written character report from each.
Of course, this policy invites a higher proportion of negative reports from employers. Older, minority and women ex-employees who, having left an unhappy work situation, dusted themselves off and gotten into law school, and who then present themselves for admission to the Bar, will find that an abusive ex-employer is invited to have at them again. Female ex-employees in particular, many of them stymied from advancing in their prior profession, find that unscrupulous ex-employers get to bash them all over again when they apply to join SBA.
In sum, CCF makes the ex-employee pay twice by its policy of holding older and/or minority women to an unfair and disproportionate burden, whereby even a single adverse employer report makes them automatically unfit to get admitted to SBA without getting their heads examined.
In all such situations, CCF treats the former employer who turns in a negative character report as truthful, and the Bar applicant's side of the story as meriting no weight whatsoever. One woman reader of this website has reported that CCF flagged her and put her through additional screening, delaying her Bar admission for a year, because an unscrupulous former employer untruthfully stated that she had been fired for insubordination. In fact, the ex-employee had not been fired. She had resigned in preference to obeying an illegal order of the employer.
As also noted above, CCF likewise requires every applicant to disclose all litigation to which she has ever been a party. Unless an applicant has conducted her own, or some other individual's, legal matter in defiance of restrictions on unauthorized practice of law, however, it is hard to know what a history of participating in litigation has to do with fitness to practice law. Yet CCF automatically flags applicants with a prior litigation history, even if it is limited to being a represented party to routine litigation, such as being a plaintiff in a wrongful death or personal injury suit. And it is not an exaggeration to state that more than one applicant has been admitted conditionally, subject to undergoing MAP, merely because prior to attending law school, the applicant filed a few suits in small claims court over purchases of defective merchandise. The practice seems designed to introduce an additional basis for discriminating against older applicants since, with age, comes a comparatively longer history of life events, which may include having to go to court to vindicate one's rights.
In character screening, CCF's grounds for flagging an application are, as mentioned above, customarily withheld from the applicant. CCF does not accede to requests by applicants, or by admitted members, to review their own Character and Fitness files. In addition, according to reports, when applicants phone for information, the responses of CCF and Arizona Supreme Court administrative staff are generally uninformative and, on occasion, rude and/or uncooperative. Letters of inquiry may go unanswered; or, in some instances, outright misinformation is provided. AZAACPR has also received reports that when a referral is made to MAP pending the completion of character screening, both CCF and SBA usually do not apprise the applicant of any right to a hearing. Absent a hearing, and without recourse to review her file, the applicant has no opportunity to discover, let alone confront, any falsely adverse information furnished to CCF. Under these circumstances, sentencing to forced mental illness treatment under MAP becomes a take-it-or-leave-it condition for entering the Bar.
As this indicates, CCF flags and discriminates against SBA applicants with a life history in any way out of the mainstream: minorities, older applicants, and above all, women. Further, any pretext suffices for CCF to label an applicant as a mental case who needs "treatment" to qualify to practice law. CCF can flag an applicant as to character and fitness for good reason, bad reason or no reason. CCF abuses applicants by flouting procedural due process rights; the rights to notice of allegations, and the opportunity to be heard.
(6) Why MAP is Denial of Equal Protection and Fraud
When MAP is imposed as a sanction, whether as an outcome of an applicant's referral to the program by CCF, or on an admitted Bar member as a form of discipline, the victim is required to sign consent to involuntary psychiatric examination and to so-called "treatment." For this purpose, SBA has a document termed a "Therapeutic Contract." An SBA "Therapeutic Contract" is reproduced below, unredacted except for names of individuals, calendar dates and other unnecessary particulars. (See MAP "Therapeutic Contract," below, ).
Many may be unaware that although the determination that the member must sign a "Therapeutic Contract" is made exclusively by the Director of SBA's MAP office, that individual does not generate a diagnosis. SBA's does not have on its current staff a qualified and licensed psychiatrist or psychologist.
The victim, rather, is required to meet the MAP Director. Following the meeting, she is required to pay a fee for "services" by the MAP office, and to continue paying fees for the duration of the imposition of the MAP sentence. This appears to be how the MAP Director retains his position, by rendering it self-funded (through imposing his attentions, i.e. so-called "MAP services," on virtually all comers). But the meeting does not produce a diagnosis.
Rather, after being referred to and undergoing the meeting (interview) with this Director (the current incumbent is Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt, about whom more will be said in the following sections of this webpage), the victim gets a letter in the mail. The letter states that the Director has decided that the victim must submit to "treatment" as a condition of either joining or remaining a member of the Bar. However, no diagnosis is stated. Instead, MAP requires the attorney-victim to undergo mental illness "treatment" after she arranges, at her own expense, to get a preliminary "diagnostic evaluation" from a psychiatrist who is on an SBA list of approved providers. That is, as a condition of practicing law, the attorney-victim must agree to seek "treatment" for an as-yet undiagnosed mental illness. She must so agree in advance of diagnosis. As soon as she signs to this, and before going to see the headshrinker, the attorney-victim is allowed to engage in practice of law. In other words, she is required to sign the "Therapeutic Contract" and embark on, or resume (if she has been admitted to the Bar and then suspended) practicing law first, and get herself diagnosed with a mental illness (that is, provide a justification for "treatment"), after. It is an Alice in Wonderland case of sentence first, evidence later.
Of course, the absurd condition that one is required to get diagnosed as mentally ill as a condition of practicing law is a denial of equal protection. Also, it is an obvious fraud. The fraud is evident from the terms of the so-called "Therapeutic Contract" reproduced below, . The document presumes that the lawyer has a diagnosable mental illness; no professional evaluation by a qualified psychiatrist or psychiatrist is necessary to establish this--the pronouncement of the Director of the MAP office suffices. The so-called "Therapeutic Contract" says that by signing, the signatory agrees to court a mental illness diagnosis from a legitimate practitioner. That is, after signing, the lawyer is supposed to go to the psychiatrist (who does the required "diagnostic evaluation) and procure a diagnosis.
Some readers report to AZAACPR that on initially visiting an SBA-approved psychiatrist, the latter professed to be unable to find evidence of any mental illness. Since no diagnosis means nothing to treat, this has left some of MAP's attorney-victims with no recourse but to visit another psychiatrist, seeking one who will agree to impose a diagnosis as required by the "Therapeutic Contract." In sum, to practice law, the lawyer has to participate in a libel against herself.
Another obviously fraudulent aspect of SBA's MAP apparatus is that SBA purports to be a legal services support organization and a subagency of the Supreme Court of Arizona, yet its disciplinary use of MAP violates Arizona statutes.
In the first place: SBA is neither a health care provider, much less a mental health provider, nor is MAP Director Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt a doctor. Nevertheless, SBA and Nevitt purport that the records that MAP has been amassing on hapless attorney-victims have some sort of therapeutic objective. SBA has conducted itself as a health care provider to the extent that, in keeping with that pretense, it has been eliciting, collecting and storing information about selected SBA members' health circumstances, as well as requiring them to obtain "therapy" under the aegis of SBA's program, the Member Assistance Program (MAP). SBA has induced and permitted its employee, Nevitt, to amass records purporting to show that attorney-victims are mentally ill. Yet upon request, SBA and Nevitt alike refuse to provide attorney-victims with copies of such records. In this, SBA and Nevitt have been acting contrary to Arizona statute, A.R.S. sec. 12-2293, protecting a patient's right to access his/her own medical records from a health care provider. Nevitt has been playing a shell game of transferring such records between SBA and his private company ("Innovative Workplace Solutions, LLC"). The licensing body, the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners, responsible for Nevitt's "master's-level therapist" credential, has accommodated SBA and Nevitt by refusing to investigate him for violating Arizona statute. (See http://azbbhe.us/minutes%20agendas/board%20oct%2011%20min.pdf, an AzBBHE document confirming the dismissal of a 2011 complaint, File No. 2011-0119, evidently lodged against Nevitt for refusing an individual's request for copies of that individual's MAP file, i.e. the individual's "mental health" records created on SBA's behalf by its employee Nevitt.)
In the second place: According to Arizona statute, A.R.S. sec. 12-2294 (A) - (C), a health care provider has an obligation to maintain confidential the medical records of persons under its "care." While SBA is neither a health care provider nor Nevitt a doctor, through its employee Nevitt, SBA has been coercively eliciting information about selected attorney-victims' purported "health" matters, and Nevitt has been "treating" many of them. To that extent, SBA and Nevitt have comported themselves as health care providers (even if neither legitimately exercises that authority). As such, both should be held to the standards of that statute. Yet SBA continually violates the privacy of its members by making public various documents purporting that MAP Director Nevitt has "diagnosed" one or another attorney-victim with a mental illness. (See, inter alia, SBA Disciplinary File No. 09-6000, "Hearing Officer's Report, " p. 5 , available as: http://www.supreme.state.az.us/dc/2009_scanned/HO_Reports/Toledo_HO_rpt.pdf.) Since SBA has been involving itself in supposed mental health issues of its members through the services of an employee who has an Arizona "therapist" license, AZAACPR believes SBA has likewise put itself in the scope of the category of "covered entity" within the definitions of Title II of federal law, HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996). SBA is violating federal law by directing its members' labeling, by this employee, with alleged mental conditions, which it then publicizes. Nevitt himself has been disciplined by licensing authorities for violating HIPAA privacy restrictions (see below, , 11th paragraph).
Over many years, SBA has made public numerous disciplinary adjudication documents, such as "Hearing Officers' Reports," in which Arizona caselaw (such as In re Fioramonti, 176 Ariz. 182, 859 P.2d 1315, , In re Neville, 147 Ariz. 106, 708 P.2d 1297 ) is cited for the proposition: "The purpose of lawyer discipline is not to punish the lawyer, but to protect the public and deter future misconduct." This is hogwash. If SBA discipline, in particular MAP, had any such actual purpose, SBA would not go so far as to abuse both statute and human rights principles to mount pointlessly vicious, personalized attacks upon the dignity and privacy of the organization's members, whether they suffer from genuine mental illness or not.
Apart from equal protection under the U.S. Constitution, Fourteenth Amendment, the imposition of MAP also violates the following federal and state protections:
a. U.S. Constitution, Fourth Amendment, privilege against unwarranted searches; and, possibly, Fifth Amendment, privilege against self-incrimination.
b. U.S. Constitution, Fourteenth Amendment (penumbral) personal privacy right (as per the interpretation of Roe v. Wade by the US Supreme Court, 410 U.S. 113 ); and explicit guarantee of a right of personal privacy in the Arizona Constitution, Art. II, sec. 8. Also, as regards medical documentation, Arizona Revised Statutes (A.R.S.) secs. 12-2293, -2294.
c. Title VII, Civil Rights Act of 1964 (78 Stat. 241, Public Law 88-352) insofar as MAP, which stigmatizes attorney-victims and impairs their opportunities to participate in the legal profession, is imposed discriminatorily on the basis of suspect classifications.
d. Title I, Americans with Disabilities Act (104 Stat. 327, 42 U.S.C. secs. 12111-17), whereunder discrimination in employment on the basis of "disability" subsumes mental illnesses as well as organic disabilities; and whereunder not only actual disability, but also assumed disability, is a forbidden ground for restricting the individual's opportunities for employment.
e. Title II (privacy provisions), Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), Pub. L. 104-191, 110 Stat.1936, insofar as SBA does not maintain confidentiality of records of its members that it causes to be labeled with purported mental illnesses.
f. Arizona Revised Statutes, A.R.S. sec. 32-2076, and Arizona Administrative Code, Title IV, Ch. 16, Art. 2, prohibiting the practice of medicine without a license. The practice of sanctioning with MAP entails that SBA is arrogating to its medically unqualified officials, including the Presiding Disciplinary Judge, authority to determine without a foundation in medical evidence that an individual needs psychiatric evaluation and care.
In implementing a policy of coercing unwilling individuals into psychiatric examination and "treatment" as a cost and condition of participating in the legal profession, SBA has long flouted individual rights and protections. SBA has flagrantly engaged in a pattern of violating numerous federal constitutional provisions, federal and state statutes, and administrative laws. Accordingly, AZAACPR calls upon the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate and to bring suit against SBA for illegal discrimination, violation of individual rights and protections, and corruption.
AZAACPR calls upon the Arizona Attorney General's Office to investigate SBA and Nevitt for violating the state medical records statutes, A.R.S. secs. 12-2293, -2294.
(7) Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt, MAP Director
Other than several administrative and clerical workers, the entire staff of SBA's MAP office is one man, its Director, Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt. Nevitt is neither a licensed psychologist nor a licensed medical doctor-psychiatrist. At present, SBA does not employ as staff any individual with either of those qualifications. Nevitt has a Master of Social Work degree from Arizona State University and is licensed by the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners as a "master's-level therapist." According to his online resume, he has directed MAP since February, 2004. (See http://iwswebsite.com/Resume.html and see below, .)
In addition to being employed by SBA, Nevitt advertises for after-hours business. On several websites, he presents himself as a qualified expert in behavioral health. (See, inter alia, http://iwswebsite.com/About_Us.html; http://www.healthgrades.com/provider/hal-nevitt-3g6xj; http://www.legalspan.com/catalog2/faculty.asp?UserID=20050824314499123356%20%20%20%20%20%20&OwnerColor23000033&recID=20100204-130139-81351; etc. AZAACPR is not aware of many licensed "master's-level therapists" who need to advertise via multiple websites to augment their salaried income.
Readers of this website have reported that upon referral to MAP, Nevitt requires the attorney-victim to undergo, and to pay the cost of, an interview with himself. AZAACPR has received reports that it is often an unsettling experience. An attorney-victim shows up at SBA's premises and is directed to a room; she enters and the door closes, leaving her alone. Eventually the door opens, admitting a man, and closes again; he is alone with the interviewee. The sight of Nevitt may leave her agape, as he stands five feet, nine inches and appears to weigh over four hundred pounds.
More than one interviewee reports an impression that Nevitt was hired by SBA because he can physically intimidate an attorney-victim. However, there is more to this than physical appearance alone, insofar as several individuals who have been interviewed by Nevitt describe his manner as "creepy." At the time of a first interview with Nevitt, most are unaware of the basis of their intuition since the majority of attorney-victims are then unaware of his criminal history. (See below, .)
SBA's application for Bar admission does not include questions about the applicant's sexual history.
However, in interviewing an attorney-victim under the aegis of MAP, Nevitt asks in detail about sexual orientation, sexual history and sexual propensities. (See above,  [b].)
It is hard to imagine what such questions can possibly reveal about capacity to practice law. These days, unless the subject herself introduces the topic, a competent psychiatrist, psychologist or therapist does not even raise such matters at an initial meeting since, by now, it is has been about four decades since the American Psychiatric Association withdrew from classifying homosexuality, bisexuality, or indulgence in paraphilias ("kinks") as diagnosable mental conditions in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM), the standard reference work cataloging diseases of the mind.
In sum, SBA has, for years, been gathering information about Bar members' sex lives, and Nevitt has been asking for the information, out of two motives that, while revealing little of interest about the attorney-victims, reveal a great deal about the proclivities of Nevitt and the SBA: (a) incompetence and (b) prurience. Moreover, in giving Nevitt free rein to abuse attorneys' privacy and sensibilities by putting to them intrusive and disgusting queries about their intimate habits, it appears SBA is acting upon a policy--there is nothing inadvertent about how SBA treats the membership--and that policy is; prying into an attorney-victim's sex life is an appropriate form of punishment, because any lawyer who gets referred to MAP must have been asking for it anyway.
AZAACPR calls upon SBA to terminate the employment of Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt, to publicly dissociate itself from him and his activities, and to re-open and review every disciplinary case file in which MAP has been imposed under Nevitt's direction. AZAACPR calls upon SBA to financially compensate every inappropriately "treated" victim of the forced mental treatment scheme presided over by Nevitt for harms to their legal careers and professional reputations.
AZAACPR calls upon the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate and to impose on SBA a consent decree proscribing future abuse, i.e. SBA's requiring commitments for "treatment" on the part of Bar members having no substance misuse or mental problem diagnosed independently of MAP. AZAACPR calls upon the Arizona Legislature to convene a public hearing to gather evidence from victims of inappropriate SBA admissions practices and from attorneys whose constitutional rights have been violated in the SBA disciplinary process. AZAACPR also calls upon the Arizona Legislature to renew its consideration of two bills, HB2480 which was introduced in the winter, 2013 session and HB2629 which was introduced early in 2015, both with the objective of eliminating the requirement that Arizona attorneys submit to membership in a Bar organization as a precondition of practicing law in Arizona (see e.g. http://sonoranalliance.com/2013/03/10/rep-allen-proposes-hb2480-to-eliminate-mandatory-bar-association/ and http://icarizona.com/2015/02/nine-legislators-sponsor-hb2629-to.html).
In an "Adverse Action," File No. 2011-0063, the organization that licenses "master's-level therapists," the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners, sanctioned Nevitt on November 15, 2011. The sanction included a $1000 fine (which was inexplicably "stayed") and a requirement to temporarily refrain from engaging in "clinical supervision." (See http://www.azbbhe.us/investigations/2011advaction.pdf, scroll to p. 29 [or go to the website, then use the command "Find" and type in"Nevitt"].) In sanctioning Nevitt on one allegation, AzBBHE dismissed a second allegation against him in the same file, alleging sexual misconduct.
Since January 18, 2012, Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt, his private company and his marital community have been named Defendants in a civil suit brought by a woman plaintiff in Maricopa County Superior Court, CV2012-001509, alleging counts of assault and battery, among others. (See http://www.superiorcourt.maricopa.gov/docket/CivilCourtCases/caseInfo.asp.)
In a Phoenix Police Department report, DR No. 2010 01588991, dated November 5, 2010, law enforcement authorities document a criminal investigation of Nevitt on allegations of sexual assault and stalking.
In the criminal investigation, Nevitt hired and was represented by a Phoenix attorney Joe Chornenky, a criminal defense lawyer. On the other hand, in Case No. 2011-0063, the formal proceedings before the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners, Nevitt was represented by counsel Frederick Cummings of Jennings, Strouss & Salmon, PLC. It seems likely that SBA procured and may also have paid for the services of a Jennings Strouss attorney to represent Nevitt, choosing that particular firm because the firm is one of SBA's pet law firms. (See this website, page header Inquisitional Discipline,  [a] [A].) In addition, there is evidence that SBA hired the services of the mammoth Snell & Wilmer L.L.P. law firm as a consultant to evaluate SBA's potential culpability in the criminal matter. Assuming it is true that SBA has been paying lawyers at Jennings, Strouss and Snell & Wilmer to engineer a cover-up and damage control, this has occurred at the expense of the Bar, as members' impositions alone fund the activities of SBA. (See this website, page header State Bar of Arizona: About, .)
Since July 16, 2012, the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners have opened a new file (File No. 2013-0002) investigating Nevitt on an allegation of sexual misconduct unrelated to the allegation investigated in its previous file. (See also above, , regarding a 2011 complaint lodged against Nevitt for unlawfully withholding a subject's records.)
AZAACPR is unable to determine how many complaints in all the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners has received concerning Nevitt. This is because, unless there ensues formal action at a Board meeting against the licensee complained of, AzBBHE does not publish information about it.
Through powers illegally bestowed on him by SBA Presiding Disciplinary Judge William J. O'Neil, Nevitt has been accorded extraordinary discretion to interfere in the privacy and personal liberties of SBA members. Not only has Nevitt had discretion to force members with no bona fide evidence of mental illness into psychiatric intervention as a condition of practicing law, but he has even had the privilege of forcing an at least one SBA member, as a condition of practicing law, to wear an "ankle bracelet." See below,  [iv], [v].
AZAACPR calls upon the Supreme Court of Arizona and the State Bar of Arizona to publicly disclose how much money either of these bodies has spent since 2010 on the defense of Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt in civil, agency and/or criminal investigation matters.
AZAACPR calls upon the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners to review the licensing of Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt.
AZAACPR invites comments from individuals who SBA-affiliated personnel have subjected to physical or sexual abuse under the pretext of SBA-supervised mental illness treatment. (See this website, page header Contact AZAACPR and follow instructions there.)
The Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners may be contacted with complaints about any licensee. (See http://www.azbbhe.us/complaints.htm.) Nevitt's license numbers are LCSW-3406 and LISAC-0837.
AZAACPR recommends that, where there is a legitimate question of and/or potential risk to clients owing to the substance abuse or mental illness of a Bar member (i.e., where drug abuse or illness is established either by court finding based on medical evidence, or by the member's putting the question of his/her own mental stability at issue in applying for SBA admission or defending a disciplinary charge), SBA hire a competent licensed psychologist or M.D.-psychiatrist to deal with admission and disciplinary issues. AZAACPR recommends that the incumbent be salaried subject to a restriction from seeking other income by operating sideline businesses or engaging in outside consulting.
(8) Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt, Ex-Convict
Nevitt has spent much of his adult life either incarcerated or entangled in questionable activities.
Nevitt, prisoner no. 058931, entered the facilities of the Arizona Department of Corrections in 1986 at the age of thirty. (See http://www.azcorrections.gov/inmate_datasearch/Index_Minh.aspx.) He was convicted in Maricopa County Superior Court, Case No. CR0000-156528, of two Class 2 felonies: Possession and Sale of a Narcotic Substance; and Conspiracy. While imprisoned, Nevitt was disciplined for prohibited conduct, including operating a gambling ring behind the walls, and prohibited exchange of money and/or property. He was sentenced to five and a half years and released two years early on parole.
The court papers in this matter include a March 24, 1986 psychological evaluation of Nevitt by a Ph.D. psychologist Bruce Kushner who noted Nevitt's history of cocaine abuse and dealing drugs/obstructing investigations while employed as a police officer; made the scantest of references to Nevitt's having recently shot a civilian to death [see following paragraph below]; and diagnosed Nevitt with: "Axis I - Adjustment Disorder with Mixed Emotional Features; alcohol abuse/cocaine abuse [both] in remission [Editor's Note: Nevitt had been incarcerated for a long period before this evaluation]; and Axis II - Antisocial Traits."
Lawyers sometimes stumble upon Nevitt's criminal past in the course of case law research, since he is prominently mentioned in an appellate court decision. The published opinion of the relevant case, Mulhern v. City of Scottsdale, 799 P.2d 15 (Ariz. App. 1990), may be consulted online.
(See http://az.findacase.com/research/wfrmDocViewer.aspx/xq/fac.19900510_0040291.AZ.htm/qx.) It reports on the appeal of a civil suit brought by parents of a mentally ill adult man against the City of Scottsdale, erstwhile employer of Police Officer Hal Nevitt. The fact pattern, briefly was: while on patrol, Nevitt was approached by the shouting, erratically-behaving, gun-brandishing victim. Nevitt drew his own gun and shot the man to death.
The parents sued in wrongful death and negligence. Nevitt was never charged individually in the shooting death. By the time Mulhern went on appeal, he was already a guest of the State of Arizona, owing to his convictions on the unrelated narcotics charges mentioned above. The Arizona Court of Appeals upheld the trial court's ruling that there had been no negligence by the City in retaining Nevitt on active duty despite knowing at the time, or having had reason to know, that Nevitt was then engaged in alcohol abuse, drug-taking, and drug dealing. (Nevitt was arrested on the drug charges--leading ultimately to his criminal convictions--a few weeks after the shooting.)
After release from prison, Nevitt successfully petitioned for reinstatement of his civil rights and "gun rights" in Maricopa County Superior Court, Case No. CR-0000-156528 (2003). Why, in view of the gruesome loss of life which was at issue in Mulhern, it is important to an ex-convict--working as a counselor by profession--to be able again to use firearms, defies understanding.
SBA has taken a position that notwithstanding evidence of subsequent rehabilitation, a convicted killer lacks suitable character and fitness for the practice of law. A few years ago, on these grounds, SBA refused to admit such an individual, James Hamm, an Arizona State University law school graduate. (See In re Hamm,123 P.3d 652, 655 [Ariz. 2005].) It is ironic that, having taken a position that irrespective of indicia of rehabilitation, a killer is unqualified to practice law, SBA puts into the hands of a killer, one also convicted of drug-related felonies, sole authority to decide and decree which individuals are too mentally ill to practice law.
(9) Text of MAP "Therapeutic Contract"
Member Assistance Program
This Therapeutic Contract ("agreement") is entered into by _________, an applicant to the Supreme Court Committee on Character and Fitness ("Applicant"), and the State Bar of Arizona's Member Assistance Program ("MAP").
Applicant has voluntarily and without coercion contacted MAP and has participated in an evaluation by Mr. Nevitt. Applicant hereby consents to participate in this agreement and further agrees to be bound by the terms contained herein.
In consideration of the mutual promises contained herein, Applicant and MAP agree as follows:
I. Terms of Participation
Applicant shall participate for one (1) year from the date he/she is admitted to the State Bar of Arizona in MAP.
The existence of this agreement and its provisions shall be kept confidential among MAP, ____, M.D., or his designee, the Member Assistance Committee ("MAC"), Applicant's counselor or therapist, the Supreme Court Committee on Character and Fitness ("Committee"), Bar Counsel assigned to supervise conditional admission ("Bar Counsel"), Applicant, Applicant's Attorney, if applicable, and the MAP Monitor ("Monitor").
Applicant shall cooperate fully with his/her counselor or therapist, ____, M.D. or his designee, the Monitor and all other individuals involved in Applicant's plan of treatment.
Applicant shall fulfill the following minimum requirements:
A. Applicant shall advise MAP, the Monitor, and, once admitted, the director of membership records of the Bar, in writing, of any change in her address of record or employment status.
B. Applicant shall make and attend appointments with a master's level therapist, approved by MAP for the purpose of refining conflict management skills and life adjustment throughout the difficult first year of life as a practicing attorney. Applicant shalll meet with his/her therapist at least once a month or as recommended by his/her therapist.
C. Applicant shall select and be assessed by a licensed psychiatrist/psychologist of his/her choosing, approved by MAP. Applicant will follow any recommendations made by his/her psychiatrist/psychologist.
D. If medications are prescribed by his/her doctor, or any successor treatment professional, Applicant shall continue on the medications as prescribed.
E. Applicant shall authorize and direct or all treatment professionals or any successor treatment professional, as outlined below, to provide a written progress report to the MAP every ninety (90) days verifying that Applicant has met with him/her and is following his/her recommendations. The first progress report shall be due ninety (90) days after Applicant's admission to the State Bar of Arizona.
F. If, during the term of this agreement, Applicant elects to change treating physicians or therapist or either are unable to continue in his/her capacity as outlined in this agreement, Applicant shall immediately notify the MAP in writing of such proposed change and shall within seven (7) days provide the name of a proposed successor physician of substantially similar credentials. MAP shall approve such substitution of physician and may consult with ____ or his designee in evaluating such substitution. If a successor physician is not designated and approved within fourteen (14) days, treatment shall be handled under the direction of Dr. ____ or his designee until a successor physician is designated and approved. Applicant shall be responsible for all costs associated with any interim treatment provided under the direction of Dr. ____ or his designee.
G. Applicant shall be assigned and shall maintain regular contact with a Monitor. Applicant shall NOT be required to pay for support and monitoring activities provided by the Monitor.
H. Applicant shall meet with the Monitor at such date, time and place as set by the Monitor at least once each month and maintain weekly telephone contact with the Monitor. These contacts are for the purpose of reviewing Applicant's progress and compliance with this agreement. Missing two (2) meetings in a six-month period will constitute a breach of this agreement.
I. Member shall, at the MAP Director's discretion, schedule and hold an exit interview within 30 days of the date this agreement is scheduled to expire. There shall be no charge to Member for this interview. However, Member will not be considered to have successfully completed this agreement until he/she has met this requirement.
J. Applicant shall, within twenty (20) days of his/her signing this agreement, or within twenty (20) days of the date such authorization is mailed to Applicant, provide MAP with properly executed written authorizations as may be necessary to verify Applicant's compliance with the terms and conditions of this agreement including, but not limited to:
1. Applicant shall execute all necessary releases for communication between MAP, Dr. ____, Applicant's treatment professionals, the Committee, and the Monitor.
2. Applicant shall authorize MAP to receive a copy of all initial and subsequent evaluation reports and records relevant to Applicant's treatment plan and treatment.
3. Applicant shall authorize Applicant's personal physician, treatment counselor, therapist or other appropriate parties or institutions to discuss with MAP and the Monitor the Applicant's evaluation, medical history, treatment plan (including all prescription and over-the-counter drugs and medications), and Applicant's participation and compliance with the recommended treatment plan.
4. Applicant shall authorize MAP, Dr. ____ or his designee, Dr. ____ and/or the Monitor to provide a copy of any and all records and test results of the Applicant to and discuss them with such other persons, agencies, MAC members, or institutions as deemed necessary for implementing and monitoring compliance with a treatment program and/or the agreement.
K. Applicant acknowledges that the Monitor is acting in a voluntary capacity, without compensation, pursuant to the Monitoring Guidelines of MAP. Accordingly, Applicant hereby agrees:
1. To release the Monitor from any and all civil liability of any nature or kind whatsoever for any acts or omissions made or done in good faith and without malicious intent in the carrying out of his/her duties and responsibilities as established under MAP or this agreement, or both; and further agrees,
2. To indemnify and hold harmless the Monitor for any and all legal fees, costs, other expenses, acts and judgments incurred or arising out of serving as a Monitor on behalf of Applicant.
A. Applicant is solely responsible for any and all expenses, costs and fees incurred in carrying out the provisions of this agreement including, but not limited to, evaluation, hospitalization, in-patient or out-patient treatment, counseling or therapy, preparation and distribution of reports and records, etc.
B. Applicant shall be responsible for payment of all fees related to his/her treatment by all treatment professionals or any successortreatment professional, as outlined previously in this document.
C. Applicant shall pay $100 per month to MAP for services rendered in monitoring Applicant's compliance with the terms of this agreement.
D. Applicant specifically authorizes MAP to consult with ____ or his designee regarding implementation and compliance with the agreement. Such consultations shall be at MAP's expense, except Applicant will be responsible for any charges related to treatment or evaluation provided to Applicant by Dr. ____.
E. Once Applicant signs this agreement, unless a payment plan or other arrangements have been authorized, Applicant's failure to pay for MAP services, services provided by Dr. ____ in full within thirty (30) days of the date of any subsdequent billing shall constitute a material breach of thisagreement.
III. Material Breach
Failure to fully comply with the terms of this agreement constitutes a material breach of the agreement. Applicant hereby agrees that all material breaches shall be reported to MAP and Bar Counsel and, at Bar Counsel's discretion, the agreement may be terminated.
IV. Modification of Agreement and Required Consultation/Assessment/Evaluation
Applicant agrees that during the duration of this agreement, the terms may be modified if MAP, the Monitor, or Bar Counsel determines that Applicant has additional problems which were not identified when the agreement was executed. The length of participation under this agreement may be extended, if appropriate, by mutual agreement of the parties. MAP may require Applicant to consult with other programs and submit to assessments, audits, or evaluatons. Applicant understands that failure to do so constitutes a material breach of this agreement.
V. Severability Clause
If any provision of this agreement or the application of any such provision to any person or circumstance is held unlawful or invalid, the remainder of this agreement and the application of such provision other than to the extent it is held unlawful or invalid, will not be held unlawful, invalidated or affected thereby, and shall remain in full force and effect.
VI. Entire Agreement
This writing contains the entire understanding of the parties hereto with regard to participation in MAP. This agreement shall not be revised or modified except as provided herein.
VII. Agreement to Comply
I understand and agree to fully comply with the terms of this agreement.
Director, Lawyer Assistance Program
Supreme Court Committee on Character & Fitness
(10) Reader Reactions
i. "Madame Defarge" states:
"AZAACPR's description of how applicants for Bar admission are railroaded on flimsy and pretextual grounds into accepting membership on condition of MAP sanctions could have been taken from my history. Your description perfectly matches my experience of the SBA member admission process. When I applied to join SBA, I had no prior psychological or psychiatric history. But of course, I am a minority, no longer young, and a woman, so ... my application was held up for a year. Then, on the pretext that my character required further investigation, I was required to meet with that cretin and pervert Hal Nevitt.
"Meeting Nevitt was shocking. I would have brought a bodyguard if I'd had any inkling what an ogre the man is. He clearly has about as much knowledge of psychology as a college undergraduate who took 3 credit hours and earned a C. He asked me detailed questions about my sex life, just as the AZAACPR website states. When I attempted to leave the interview, he pawed me with his enormous hands. Nevitt then issued a letter decreeing on the basis of his sole say-so that as a condition of Bar membership, I had to be fraudulently 'treated' for mental illness under the supervision of MAP for a year.
"That under SBA policy just one man, and at that, a felon, ex-convict and violent bully, degreed neither in psychology nor medicine, has the power to make such a determination, in my opinion comprises a fraud on the Arizona legal profession.
"Also, just as AZAACPR states is typical, I tried fruitlessly to get information from the Character and Fitness Committee about why they were singling me out for such degrading treatment. I wrote Carolyn de Looper, a CCF official, requesting an explanation; she never responded. And, in accord with your description, despite my several written requests, I have never been permitted to see a copy of a supposedly damning character report by my former employer, a report that CCF described--but did not reproduce--in a paper it submitted to the Arizona Supreme Court, recommending that my Bar admission be conditioned on MAP. For all I know, the very existence of the adverse report might be fiction. Also, just as you say on your website, I was not accorded a hearing. I was also not notified of any right to confront adverse witnesses or adverse evidence. The possibility was never mentioned in ANY correspondence I received from SBA, MAP, the Committee on Character and Fitness, or the Supreme Court of Arizona.
"My experience, to me, demonstrates that the Arizona court system, like its affiliate, the SBA, is corrupt. Both are unworthy of the respect of the Arizona legal profession."
Bar Admission File No. 06-CA007
Arizona Supreme Court File No. SB-06-0029-C
ii. "Nicely Nicely" states:
"Nevitt is the narcissistic, sociopath and sexual deviant who became a cash cow for the SBA. ... [I]n approximately 90% of his 40-plus web sites, he uses his position at the SBA in his pathetic and misleading advertisements ... and doing it right out of the SBA offices located within entire [sic] state of Arizona. Most of his victims have been attorneys who were brought to him through his position at the SBA. ... [H]e manipulated attorneys for his own blasphemous addiction to power and sex, ultimately due to negligent hiring by the SBA. ... [H]e built a business over the course of ... years and was paid large amounts of money to speak at Bar Conventions in at least 2 different states. The SBA was aware of ... Nevitt's misconduct in all arenas as Nevitt made the rules and brought in a ton of cash for the SBA.
"Nevitt has also been able to parlay his impressive-looking status as SBA MAP Director into enriching himself by being engaged as an 'expert' by other licensing bodies, including the Arizona State Board of Nursing; see e.g. pp. 4 and 29ff. in http://www.sonoravet.org/STEPP_D.RN127460.PROB.06.pdf."
iii. "Sheriff Claghorn" states:
"The AZAACPR website points out that SBA's official records, such as its Disciplinary 'Matrices' and the trade publication Arizona Attorney (see  above), do not always disclose the fact that a sanctioned member has been ordered into forced mental illness treatment (MAP). Nevertheless, I have the impression that women solo practitioners are sanctioned with MAP at a rate exceeding the rate of mental illness in the general population, estimated at about 6%. (See "Facts About the Prevalence of Mental Illness" at http://depts.washington.edu/mhreport/facts_prevalence.php.) If so, it would seem literally that for a woman lawyer to try to practice on her own in Arizona, chances are she has to have her head examined.
"This is reminiscent of the situation at Harvard University Medical School described by Elizabeth Morgan, M.D., in her book The Making of a Woman Surgeon. [Editor's note: Putnam Publishing Group 1980.] As a woman applicant for admission, Morgan (along with all similarly situated applicants in the 1960's) was required to submit to a psychiatric evaluation to find out why a woman wanted to be a doctor. Morgan decided to attend Yale School of Medicine instead."
iv. "Ly Lyecin" states:
"Readers of the AZAACRP website should be advised that SBA Presiding Disciplinary Judge William J. O'Neil is as dangerous, megalomaniacal and sociopathic an individual as Nevitt, the MAP Director. O'Neil has actually issued at least one ruling in which he gave Nevitt, a failed law enforcement officer, who is not a doctor of any kind, the power and discretion to determine that as a disciplinary measure, an SBA member could be required to wear an 'ankle bracelet.' I quote from pp. 11 of the Order: 'The terms of probation are as follows: ... B. Respondent shall wear an ankle bracelet until [date] if directed by the MAP Director.'"
February 11, 2011 "Report and Order
SBA Disciplinary File No. 10-1167
v. "Rita Haywire" states:
"So between them, that lovable S&M duo Judge O'Neil and Hal Nevitt require as a condition of practicing law that a member of the Bar wear an ankle bracelet. What's next? Handcuffs, leather restraints and bullwhips?"
vi. "Lon Esta" states:
"The bias and corruption of Presiding Disciplinary Judge William J. O'Neil became apparent to me on observing one formal hearing wherein medical expert testimony was presented by the defense, while the Staff Bar Counsel did not bring in a medical expert to counter the testimony. The expert testified that medical records from shortly before the defendant's alleged offense showed that the defendant was very impaired due to organic illness and that medical records from shortly afterward showed the defendant was still untreated, hence it was his opinion that the defendant was impaired severely at the time of the alleged offense and therefore, the lapse in conduct had had a medical basis and was not willful on the defendant's part. O'Neil reacted by angrily attacking the expert, saying, 'You can't know that the defendant was impaired on the day that the act occurred.' The expert stood his ground and maintained that he could and did know that. O'Neil simply disregarded the testimony, even though as stated, the expert's opinion was unopposed. This shows that the judge is simply too biased (probably because if he doesn't stick it to defendants, he can't collect his purported 'costs') to oversee a fair hearing."
SBA Disciplinary File No. 10-0329
vii. "DSM Doubter" states:
"As the AZAACPR website states, there is no scientific basis to 'mind science', notwithstanding its practitioners' efforts to pose as medical professionals, and most of what is promulgated under that rubric are doctrines to be taken on faith. As such, when SBA imposes a sentence of 'mental therapy' on a member with no substance abuse issues and no ongoing issues or past history of mental illness, what SBA and the body of which it is a satellite (the Arizona Judiciary) are doing are imposing on the member a requirement to accept and adopt what amounts to a religion of the state agencies' choosing."
viii. "Officer Cupcake" states:
"The website's version of the so-called 'Therapeutic Contract,' the illegal agreement which attorney-victims have been required to sign under a sentence of MAP, has been edited to omit references to 'Dr. Sucher.' Michel Sucher, M.D., is an Emergency Medicine physician in private practice ('Addiction Medicine') in Scottsdale. He's not a psychiatrist and he is not an SBA employee. On March 18, 2003, Sucher addressed a letter on 'Greenberg & Sucher, PC' stationery to Joe Chornenky, the lawyer who represented Nevitt in the matter wherein Nevitt received the 1986 felony conviction (noted on the AZAACPR website) [Editor's note: see this webpage, ], as well as in the 2010 sexual misconduct criminal investigation (also reported on the AZAACPR website). In the 2003 letter, Sucher called on the State of Arizona to set aside Nevitt's criminal record. In Maricopa County Superior Court Case No. 0000-156528, wherein Nevitt sought restoration of his 'rights' following his felony conviction, Sucher's letter was attached as an Exhibit. It accompanied an August 5, 2003, Application to Set Aside Judgment of Guilt, Dismiss Charges, Restore Civil Rights and Restore Right to Possess Weapons, filed in the court. This demonstrates that Nevitt and Sucher are longstanding cronies. I suspect that Michel Sucher is also a quack doctor and a French-fried phony."
ix. "Denice DeMenice" states:
"It is interesting to follow the AZAACPR website. I find it worthwhile to re-examine it from time to time since I appreciate that it is continually updated. I'd like to make two points.
"a. The webpage headed 'SBA "Member Assistance Program' has a comment by a reader ('Officer Cupcake') mentioning a Dr. Michel Sucher. Readers deserve to know a bit more about his business relations with Member Assistance Program (MAP) Director Howard 'Hal' Murray Nevitt. Prior to Nevitt becoming MAP Director in 2004, the predecessor MAP Director was a Diane Ellis, and during her tenure, around 2003, Sucher's name appears in disciplinary records, identified as 'MAP Medical Director.' He figures in disciplinary cases in regard to substance abuse problems of members and/or applicants for SBA membership. See e.g. http://www.azcourts.gov/Portals/36/2004_scanned/Agreements/Pohto_Agreement.pdf. After Nevitt took over as MAP Director, disciplinary records--several from 2006 to 2008--indicate that Nevitt and Sucher were making a tidy business of referring alleged substance abuse-related disciplinary matters to one another, respectively as MAP Director and MAP Medical Director. See e.g. http://www.supreme.state.az.us/dc/2007_scanned/HO_Reports/Hilzendeger_HO.rpt.pdf;
http://www.azcourts.gov/Portals/36/2006_scanned/DC_Reports/SpencerDCrpt.pdf. Before that, we find that Sucher was one of the individuals who, in 2003, provided the Maricopa County Superior Court, in Case No. 0000-156528 (cited by 'Officer Cupcake'), with a letter supporting Nevitt in Nevitt's request for setting aside of his felony criminal record. One would be daft not to conclude that in so doing, Sucher was seeing to his own pecuniary interest.
"b. Another individual who provided Nevitt with a supporting letter in the 0000-156528 matter was Marc Harris, mentioned on the first page of the AZAACPR website. Harris is an Arizona Assistant Attorney General and, as your website reports, he is in a conflict of interest because he is on the Board of AzBBHE (Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners) which is supposed to judge complaints against its licensees such as Nevitt. It appears that Harris and Sucher (along with a few others) wrote letters pleading Nevitt's side to the court in hopes of making him salable to SBA as a successor MAP Director to follow Diane Ellis. The year after the court matter, Nevitt became MAP Director. Over the subsequent years, Sucher's name has been seen less often in disciplinary records as Nevitt has expanded the scope of his 'mental health' activities well beyond members and applicants with substance abuse issues, and has increasingly gone after hapless lawyers and would-be lawyers who have no prior history of substance abuse or any other mental health issues (especially going after women and minorities in solo law practices, as the website notes). Yet there is a question whether Nevitt is legitimately qualified to practice mental health 'therapy' at all. AzBBHE appears to have failed to follow its own guidelines in giving Nevitt his licenses. He had an unexpunged felony conviction record at the time he became licensed, which was in 1994 when he got his original AzBBHE license as a 'Certified Baccalaureate Social Worker.' (See http://www.azbbhe.us/ProDetail.asp?ProfID=30640.) Moreover, he was and remains ineligible for licensure under AzBBHE's licensing standards because he was stripped of his law enforcement authorization in the mid-1980's when he was fired for misconduct from the Scottsdale Police Department. It is an interesting question who intervened, and why, with the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners to ensure that Nevitt got licensed when he wasn't qualified for licensure." [Editor's Note: for a compendium of disqualifications ignored in Nevitt's licensure, see Arizona Revised Statutes, secs. 32-3251 (12) (a), (b), (d), (k), (l), (q), (r), (t), (v), (x), (y), (z), (aa), (bb), (ee), (gg), (hh), (ll) and 32-3275 (3), (5), (6), (7).]
x. "Phoebe Jeebee" states:
"Insofar as it makes outrageous impositions upon the personal lives, health and safety of members, the SBA disciplinary system is neither about protecting the public nor about protecting the integrity of the legal profession. It is a perversion."
xi. "Riff Raff" states:
"The website reports that in an ongoing court case in which the central allegation is sexual misconduct, Nevitt has been ordered to submit to a medical examination of his genitalia. [Editor's note: see this webpage, .] It appears that it has been years since Staff Bar Counsel and SBA officials have done any thinking about lawyer discipline with their brains. Accordingly, they should all be required to have their genitals examined."
xi. "Kydd Kuhl" states:
"Criminal law has a term for the State Bar of Arizona's relationship to Hal Nevitt; other self-styled headshrinkers; and everyone else who's been complicit. The term is sex trafficking."
(11) Material from Erstwhile Website of Nevitt's Company
[Editor's Note: Since 2003, when it was registered with the Arizona Corporation
Commission, Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt has been operating his own company,
"Innovative Workplace Solutions, LLC" in Phoenix. Until approximately
September, 2012, the company displayed the following material on a website,
which has since been taken down. As of November, 2012, AZAACPR understands
that Nevitt still works out of his company address, 3040 E. Cactus Blvd. #A, Phoenix,
AZ 85032, as Director of the SBA's "Member Assistance Program." (Records of the Arizona
Corporation Commission also give the company address as 13835 N. Tatum Blvd.
#9-178, Phoenix 85022, but this is a UPS store with mail boxes.) In addition,
another company, "Family Psych Associates," has a website announcing that it
operates at that same address and suite number, and it lists Nevitt as one of
the staff and says he is Director of SBA's Member Assistance Program. (See
http://familypsychassociates.com/therapists.html; also see http://familypsych.info/).
Also, the "resume" material reproduced below is similar to a narrative version of his life
story which Nevitt filed in Maricopa County Superior Court, Case No.
0000-156528, seeking restoration of his "rights" following his felony
conviction. Readers aware of a discrepancy between Nevitt's life story, as
he has put it about, and the actual facts, are invited to use the "Contact"
form on AZAACPR's website to share their information.]
Innovative Workplace Solutions, LLC
A Smart Partner for Smart Business
Like our name says our goal is to provide Innovative Workplace Solutions (I.W.S.) for both individuals and businesses. We do this by taking time to understand the issues and concerns our clients are facing. For the individual, the process may include completing surveys or questionnaires, in depth interviews and treatment planning. The results can range from gaining a better understanding of what obtacles are in the way, attaining valuable stress management skills, to acquiring a stronger sense of worth and self esteem.
For the business, the process may include review of documentation and history of disruptive events, completing an internal audit of management practices and policies and interviews with key personnel. The outcomes we strive to achieve are determined by our client and usually include improved employee morale and engagement, enhanced operations efficiency and productivity output. BOTTOM LINE: Everyone benefits!
In order for an individual or a business to be successful, they need to be equipped and confident in making decisions, exercising authority and managing unexpected upsets either in the workplace or at home. At I.W.S., we give guidance and consulting focused on enabling our clients to better understand challenges or obstacles impeding beneficial results and what can be implemented to overcome them. We work toward helping our clients consider different perspectives. By eliminating any "victim" mentality thinking, we're able to effectively empower others to succeed.
Copyright 2009-2010. Innovative Workplace Solutions, LLC. All rights reserved.
Hal M. Nevitt, LCSW/CEAP
Owner, Innovative Workplace Solutions, LLC, Therapist, Consultant, and Motivational Speaker
Hal Nevitt holds licensure in Arizona, for Social Work, Substance Abuse, and is certified nationally, as an Employee Assistance Professional. Hal has more than 17 years experience providing therapy to individuals, couples, families, and adolescents. Hal’s clinical experience includes the assessment and treatment of substance abuse/dependency disorders, including those with concurrent psychiatric diagnoses, depression, anxiety, and other stress related symptoms. Additionally, he has considerable experience with critical incident debriefings, to include World Trade Center Personnel. Hal has helped to select, train, and implement debriefing teams for police and fire departments across the state of Arizona. Hal also provides workplace trainings for employees, and supervisors, covering a variety of issues. Hal has testified as an expert witness for the
Attorney General’s office on Mental Health Issues. In addition to owning his own business, Hal is employed as the Director of the Member Assistance Program (MAP), for the State Bar of Arizona. He also works jointly with other MAP programs nationwide.
What really makes Hal unique is his testimony about overcoming life-changing struggles and staying in recovering from alcohol and cocaine addiction for more than 20 years (1DAT). Add to this his experience as a Marine serving in the Vietnam Era, a former Police Officer for Scottsdale Police Department including undercover work as a Narcotics Detective, and his time spent in Arizona State Prison. Yes, you read right. Hal wasn't a visitor seeing clients like he is today. In 1984 he was an inmate.
Hal was arrested and convicted for his involvement in the possession and attempted sale of drugs. Although this conviction has since been expunged from his record, it doesn't lessen the impact it had on his life. He's currently working on a book which tells his story from his first drunken incident at the age of 14 to his current standing as an inspirational speaker, counselor and therapist today.
With a motto of, "Don't quit 10 seconds before the miracle," Hal knows what it's like to lose everything you care about and feel like you are at the end of your rope. He literally lost all of his material possessions, his marriage and his dignity when he finally hit bottom. He started over and since that time, made a NEW life for himself. "It takes perseverance, tenacity and hard work to overcome adversity -- don't quit," says Hal. Today he still attends one to two AA or NA meetings a week. He understands that sobriety doesn't just happen, it has to be constantly worked at. Hal uses his proven methods and techniques to empower his clients to have their own successes. Knowing what Hal has been through in life, helps his clients "tell the truth," face their shortfalls and begin to incorporate positive changes for the betterment of their life. He's neither sweet nor crude in his conversational manner, but he will tell you like it is.
Workplace Solutions, LLC
A Smart Partner for Smart Business
Hal M. Nevitt
HIGHLIGHTS OF QUALIFICATIONS
~ National Certification as an Employee Assistance Specialist
~ State Licensed as a Social Worker
~ State Licensed as an Independent Substance Abuse Counselor
~ Certified Instructor: Non-violent Crisis Intervention; Crisis Prevention Institute
~ Department of Transportation Substance Abuse Professional
~ Extensive presentation/training experience
~ Fifteen years direct service experience with adolescents and families
~ Fifteen years direct service experience with dually diagnosed adults
~ Critical Incident Debriefing experience including World Trade Center Personnel, Hurricanes Katrina, and Rita
~ Strong commitment to personal and professional growth
~ Twelve years program development/staff training experience
~ Workplace Violence/Employee Mediation Consultant
~ Bilingual English/Spanish
February 2004 to Present: State Bar of Arizona -- Director, Member Assistance Program Responsibilities and duties include:
- Perform initial assessments for mental health issues for members and employees of the State Bar
- Perform all follow-up visits, if required on all clients requiring initial assessments.
- Prepare reports following initial assessment and any follow-up visits, providing summary, analysis and recommendations for clients’ therapeutic concerns.
- Review proposed contracts and/or memoranda of understanding for appropriate content and treatment recommendations.
- Handle crisis-line phone calls (after-hours and weekend).
- Respond to "tip-line" calls concerning members who may be in need of assistance.
- Speaking engagements/CLE's providing education to members on MAP and other clinical issues
- State wide training of peers, monitors, and supervisors
- Consultation with Chief Bar Counsel on behavioral health issues
- Consultant to the State Supreme Court Character and Fitness
- Evaluation and referral to behavioral health systems
July 2003 to Present: GS Monitoring--Therapist/Counselor
- Provide Group Therapy to impaired professionals
- Provide Case Management services to impaired professionals
July 2003 - July 2004: Daisy Mountain Fire District -- Employee Relations Consultant
Responsibilities and duties include:
- Director of Public Programs
- Supervision of Company Officers training
- Monitor, evaluate, and respond to employee satisfaction issues
- Develop and coordinate activities and programs to enhance employee morale.
- Mediate Labor and Management issues
- Administer community programs throughout the Fire District
- Facilitate resolution of employee conflict
- Supervisory training for performance management
- Referral source for employee assistance
- Consultant to other Fire Districts as dictated
- Provide CISD services/consultation as needed
- Design and implement staff development, training, and testing to include:
- Stress Management, Sexual Harassment, Drug/Alcohol Awareness, Employee Relations, and Supervisory Training
- Identify the presence of workplace issues, recommend and implement specific program and/or interventions.
- Other duties as assigned by the Fire Board and Fire Chief
September 2002 - July 2003: Valle Del Sol -- Clinical Supervisor RTC Services
- Responsible for overall clinical services for RTC
- Quality assurance of clinical services
- Staff training on ethics and therapeutic issues
- Collaboration with Supervisors/directors for program consistency
- Communication of directives from administration to line staff
- Management of employee work flow/productivity
- Monitor Master’s Level Therapist caseloads, and service delivery
- Lead weekly case staffings with multi-disciplinary team
- Interview and hire therapists, counselors, and other staff
- Coordination, management and implementation of Chemical dependency, and Wilderness recreation program
- Participate in program development and evaluation.
- Assist counseling staff in treatment planning/intake review.
- Supervision of intern training
- Outreach activities with local area schools/funding sources
- Utilization review with funding sources
June 2001 - Sept 2002: APS Healthcare -- Employee Assistance Specialist
- Direct counseling services to individuals, families, and groups
- Whole person assessments
- Referral to contract providers/specialists
- Follow up consultation services
- Employee Assistance/Supervisory Consultations.
- Promotional and training activities for client companies
- SAP Evaluations/Training
- Sales Team Presentations
- Substance Abuse Evaluation/referral
- Supervisory training for client companies
- Critical Incident Debriefings
- Coordination of Debriefing Teams for Public Safety Agencies
- Drug Free Workplace Training.
- Workplace Violence Consultations/presentations
- Composition of Newsletter Articles as requested
- Maintain relationships and coordinate services for Public Safety Agencies
- Review utilization trends, and assess program delivery for client companies
May 1998 - May 2001: St. Luke's Behavioral Health -- Employee Assistance Specialist
- Supervisory training for client companies
- Assist client companies in implementing personnel policy
- Assist in implementing and monitoring Drug Free Workplace Policy
- Participation in annual marketing plan development
- EAP Service Presentations in English/Spanish
- Conduct Critical Incident Stress Debriefing/Defusing
- Critical Incident Stress Debriefing Training Seminars
- Coordination of Debriefing Teams for Public Service Agencies
- Hospital wide In-Service Training as required
- Challenge Course Facilitation/Team Building
- Supervision/training of Employee Assistance Specialists
January 1996 - March 1998: Mobile Crisis Assessment Specialist
- Mobile Crisis Team assessments as needed
- Case consultation with Psychiatrists/Psychologists
- Participation in Program Development and Training
- Supervision/training of Mobile Crisis Team Members
August 1994 - May 1998: Primary Therapist: Adult Partial Program
- Provide individual, group, and family therapy to dually diagnosed clients
- Provide case management services
- Develop and maintain individual treatment plans
- Participation in program planning and development
- Participation in utilization review with managed care
- Case consultations with other professionals
- Challenge Course Facilitation for clients and staff
- Provide Hospital wide In-Service training as needed
- Provide training to Nursing, Medical, Counseling, and Social Work Interns
- Participate in on-going program evaluation/training
Oct 1999 - present: Grand Canyon College -- Instructor -
Sociology, Instructor/Course Development - Public Safety Administration
- Curriculum Development and presentation
- Development Implementation and delivery of on-line Curriculum
- Student recruitment, follow up, and degree planning
Arizona State University, School of Social Work Graduated MSW Program: May 1996
Arizona State University, School of Social Work Graduated BSW Program: December 1992
Scottsdale Community College A.A. in Administration of Justice, May 1977
- National Certification as an Employee Assistance Professional
- State Licensed Substance Abuse Counselor #LISAC-0837
- State Licensed Clinical Social Worker #LCSW-3406
- Level I & II Corporate Crisis Intervention Certifications
- Extensive Public presentations/training as needed - topics vary
- Consultant to Arizona Attorney General’s Office to include testimony as an
- Expert Witness, on behavioral health issues
- Honorable discharge from U.S. Marine Corps; Vietnam Era Veteran
- Served as Police Officer for eight years
- Life Saving Award, City of Phoenix, in December, 1989
- Motivational Speaker: City of Phoenix, Franciscan Sisters of Chicago, State Bar of Arizona,
City Court of Tempe, Arizona, Adult Probation Department
Below: Photograph of Howard "Hal" Murray Nevitt