College of Education and Human Development

Family Social Science

Alumni appointed to state board

Damir Utržan has been appointed to a four-year term on the State Advisory Council on Mental Health (MH) by Minnesota Governor Tim Walz. He is a 2017 alumni of the Family Social Science PhD specialization in Couple and Family Therapy and is currently Chief Compliance and Strategic Development Officer at Horowitz Health (HH) that provides a variety of services in residential addiction treatment.

a CEHD alumni.
Damir Utržan


The State Advisory Council on MH plays a crucial role in shaping policies, programs, and services related to mental health in Minnesota. As a member of this council, Utržan will have the opportunity to make recommendations to the Governor, Legislature, and state departments, with the aim of improving mental health outcomes and ensuring access to quality care for all.

“I am deeply committed to advocating for and working towards creating a more inclusive and supportive system for individuals and families facing MH challenges,” says Utržan. “This appointment allows me to contribute directly to the important work of enhancing mental health services and raising awareness about mental well-being.”

He hopes the Council can break down barriers, reduce stigma, and promote a society that prioritizes mental health and wellness for everyone.

According to the state’s website, the State Advisory Council on Mental Health was established in 1987 and is charged with making recommendations to the governor, Legislature and state departments on mental health policies, programs and services. Members consider current social, cultural, whole family, and person-centered needs when developing these important recommendations.