SSPHA Officers

James E. Smith

James E. Smith , President

James E. (Jim) Smith has worked in Texas' public mental health system for over forty years. He has previously served as CEO / Superintendent of both the Vernon State Hospital and the Wichita Falls State Hospital, ultimately overseeing their consolidation as North Texas State Hospital (NTSH) - Texas' largest psychiatric hospital with approximately 2100 employees and 562 inpatient beds and a wide variety of programs on its civil and forensic campuses. Included in its operation is a 32-bed Adolescent Forensic Program. Jim is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and Diplomate in Clinical Social Work (DCSW). In addition to being the NTSH Superintendent, Jim has served in a leadership capacity in numerous state and national mental health organizations. He currently serves as President of the Board of Directors for the Southern States Psychiatric Hospital Association, as a member of the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors (NASMHPD) National Research Institute Technical Workgroup, as an Executive Committee member of the Wichita County Healthcare Coalition, Trustee for the Patel Family Charitable Trust, President of the Vernon Area Texas Tech University Alumni Association, and past member of Joint Committee on Access and Forensic Services and a past member of the Joint Commission Expert Panel for Suicide Risk Reduction. He is a past Chairperson of the NASMHPD Forensic Division and has served on many special committees focused on forensic mental health issues and consulted at a number of forensic psychiatric hospitals in other states on a variety of forensic mental health issues.


Allen McEniry , Vice President

Mr. McEniry has served as CEO for Patrick B. Harris Psychiatric Hospital since the summer of 2016. Prior to that, he was the chief operating officer at Harris for eight years. Harris Hospital is a 200-bed acute care inpatient adult psychiatric facility located just outside of Anderson, within the upstate region of South Carolina, and is part of the SC Department of Mental Health. Before transitioning into the behavioral health career field, he held various positions in higher education administration for over ten years, in both the university and technical college environments. He retired from the U.S. Army with specialization in operations and logistics prior to moving into the private sector.
Mr. McEniry has a strong burden for those with persistent mental illness. His mother worked at the Emory University Psychiatric Clinic during his formative years in high school and college. He lost his older brother to the effects of mental illness in 2016. Allen is honored and privileged to work with a tremendous multi-discipline team of professionals striving each day to bring life to the Harris Hospital motto, “Helping People Heal.”
Mr. McEniry holds a BS in Industrial Management from the Georgia Institute of Technology and an MBA from Palm Beach Atlantic University.

Paul Callens

Paul Callens , Secretary

Dr. Paul A. Callens has served the state of Mississippi in mental health programs for the past 28 years. In that time he has been exposed to every aspect of mental health and the related fields serviced by the Mississippi Department of Mental Health. Working early in his career in clinical services, Callens soon advanced to a variety of administrative positions before becoming the director of North Mississippi State Hospital located in Tupelo, MS. He has served this hospital as its director since shortly after its opening in 1999. Dr. Callens is a graduate of Delta State University where he earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in General Business and Management. He also received both his Master of Education and Ph.D. from Mississippi State University in the area of Educational Psychology. He is also a graduate of State Executive Development Institute of the Stennis Institute of Government at Mississippi State University. Dr. Callens is also licensed by the state of Mississippi as a Nursing Home Administrator and holds various certifications from the Mississippi Department of Mental Health and the Mississippi State Personnel Board. He is married to Renea Callens and has four children ranging in ages from 22 to 10. Dr. Callens also serves as an adjunct instructor for both Itawamba Community College and the University of Mississippi.

David A. Sofferin

David A. Sofferin , Treasurer

David A. Sofferin currently serves as the Director of the Office of Public Affairs for the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities in Atlanta. David has previously served as the Chief Executive officer of Behavioral Health Services of South Georgia, Assistant Secretary for Substance Abuse & Mental Health for the Florida Department of Children & Families, Deputy Commissioner for Mental Health for the new Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities, Acting Director of Regional Operations for the Georgia Department of Human Resources, Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Addictive Diseases, Region 4 Coordinator (included Albany, Columbus, Macon, & Thomasville), and Chief Executive Officer of Southwestern State Hospital in Thomasville. David has also served as the Chief Executive Officer of a large state psychiatric hospital in Florida and Kansas and the Chief Operating Officer of a large state psychiatric hospital in Florida. In addition, he served as the Chairperson of the Chief Executive Officer special interest group for the Georgia Community Service Board Association for two years and is a founding member of the Southern States Psychiatric Hospital Association where he has served as the treasurer since 2002. David has a Master's Degree from the University of West Florida and a Bachelors degree from the Florida State University.