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Conference Speakers


Kelly Prado


Kelly Prado is bicultural/bilingual in Spanish. She is board certified as a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner with prescriptive authority with more than 8 years of experience in direct patient care. She completed her Psychiatric Family Mental Health Nurse Practitioner program at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus. She also completed a fellowship in integrative (holistic) psychiatry at the Integrative Psychiatry Institute and has a certification as a Integrative Psychiatric Provider (CIPP).


Christy Kazmeroff


Christy graduated from Colorado State University-Pueblo in 2011 as a Family and Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, and her post-master certificate of Psychiatric Mental Health NP in 2012.   Shifting from an insanely busy family practice/urgent care setting, she jumped into the world of psychiatric private practice, and into the self-discovery journey of the challenges and rewards of having a strong entrepreneurial spirit.  She is the owner and solo practitioner of Cornerstone Psychiatry in Parker, Colorado.  Through much trial and error through her journey, the practice is productive and profitable. She wants to share the journey, victories and setbacks, and help to inspire more nurse practitioner entrepreneurs to start their own journey.

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Sadaf Carrillo


Sadaf Carrillo is a board-certified psychiatric nurse practitioner who works in a community health center in Denver, Colorado treating underserved populations who struggle with mental illness and/or addiction. Sadaf was originally born and raised in Iran for the first twelve years of her life. In Iran, Sadaf observed how lack of religious, individual, financial, and educational freedoms can affect emotional well-being. Noticing how illicit substances are used by many people to cope with socioeconomic stressors, this inspired Sadaf to help individuals with both mental health disorders and addiction. Sadaf believes that no single approach is the right one for every individual, and that’s why it’s important to incorporate different modalities when it comes to the treatment of mental illness and addiction. By providing knowledge about drug use in society, she can influence the medical community to take part in the development and implementation of evidence-based preemptive programs. Sadaf also takes part in being a mentor to nurse practitioner students, working in a crisis center, and treating patients in a suboxone clinic. Sadaf's educational background includes a bachelor of science in nursing from the University of Texas at El Paso and a doctorate in psychiatric nursing practice from the University of Arizona. Sadaf currently lives in Denver, Colorado with her husband and her dog.


Melanie F. Kempf-Sandoval


Melanie F. Kempf-Sandoval, PhD, MSN, MS, AGACNP-BC, PMHNP-BC, APN-Colorado, RN-USA, is a native to Southern Colorado.  Melanie completed her PhD at The University of Virginia (Charlottesville, Virginia) in 2013.  Her dissertation used a mixed-methods approach to increase our understanding of how and what safety behaviors are used by Mexican-American Women in relationships with intimate partner violence.  Dr. Sandoval returned to Colorado and continued as a principal investigator and research nurse scientist for inpatient and outpatient perioperative services at The University of Colorado at Anschutz Medical Campus.  In collaboration with colleagues from the University of Denver, School of Medicine, Dr. Sandoval tested, identified, and implemented surgical site infection prevention bundles as an evidence-based standard of practice across orthopedic, neurosurgical, colo-rectal, and ENT Service Lines.   
Her clinical interests include understanding, identifying, and delivering excellent advanced nursing care to vulnerable persons and populations.  She is the founder of a practice that evolved into a community-charity in Colorado Springs and is employed at the practice as a geriatric-psychiatric nurse practitioner.  Dr. Sandoval has written multiple peer-reviewed articles and in 2017 co-authored a pivotal article highlighting the complexities of identifying an episode of care for the patient undergoing a planned knee arthroplasty amongst each phase of care using the CMS proposed joint-reimbursement structure.  In her free time, Melanie enjoys strenuous activities including swimming, cycling, and running.  Her favorite time is spent exploring the world with one or all three of her children, Caitlyn, Luca, and Ava.  She also enjoys activities in the community and attending and participating in philanthropical missions with her local faith community at St. Patrick (Colorado Springs).

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Eve Mitchell


Eve Mitchell, RN, MS is a graduate of the Regis University Master of Science program in Leadership in Healthcare Systems and Education Emphases, where she graduated with honors.  She is a committed nurse leader with 16 years of professional experience. Eve was a poster presenter at the APNA Conference in October of 2020, Practice for Partnership in Psychiatric Emergencies: Implementation of a Mock Behavioral Assistance Resource Team Simulation Program.

Eve has has many roles in leadership and education. She serves a an associate faculty for the Regis University Loretto Heights School of Nursing as well as the University of Norther Colorado. She has worked for many years with Children's Hospital Colorado, where her most recent role has been Associate Clinical Manager of the Psychiatric Emergency Department. In her current role she manages the psychiatric Emergency Department by implementing and maintaining specific policies, procedures, and guidelines; leading team members in providing direct patient care by demonstrating expert clinical knowledge; ensuring compliance with quality and safety initiatives and practices; and partnering with a multidisciplinary team in meeting the clinical needs of patients and families

Eve has a passion for the mental health and wellbeing of healthcare professionals and has frontline experience on the effects of the pandemic on both patients and healthcare professionals. 

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Carissa Westerfield


In 2004, Carissa graduated from Colorado State University with her Master of Social Work (MSW) degree. She completed the required clinical hours, supervision, and exams to become a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) in 2006.  Carissa has worked in a variety of treatment settings within the mental health field, including Inpatient Psychiatry, Mental Health Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOPs), and Outpatient Clinics with individuals & groups.  She has worked with adolescent, adult, and geriatric clients.  Currently, Carissa works as the lead Behavioral Health Intake Therapist and Clinical Coordinator for the Behavioral Health IOP programs at Porter Adventist Hospital.  She also has a private practice specializing in treating young adult clients with individual and group therapy.  
Coordination of care has been a significant and effective part of the way Carissa practices. She also uses an integrative framework, incorporating a variety of evidence-based therapy modalities and theories to provide the most effective treatment for the client.  This framework includes Systems Approach/Theory, Strengths Perspective, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and Psychodynamic Theory. Carissa has found that using a Systems Approach by integrating the different systems of the client provides the most effective, sustainable treatment results.

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