About Us!

Milo the Cockapoo as a baby

Prevention Point Pittsburgh (PPP) is a nonprofit prganization dedicated to providing health empowerment services to people who use drugs.

The mission of Prevention Point Pittsburgh is to promote and advocate for the reduction of harms associated with injection and other forms of drug use, and to reduce the risk of HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis C, other blood borne infections, and overdose.

Featured Staff

Aaron Arnold

Executive Director

Aaron has worked at Prevention Point Pittsburgh (PPP) since 2015, and served as a volunteer in various capacities since 2005. During his time serving as Executive Director of PPP Aaron has focused on strengthening the organizational infrastructure, expanding the provision of direct services, and advancing opportunities to implement harm reduction initiatives across Pennsylvania through advocacy efforts. He holds a master’s degree with departmental honors from the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health.

Alice Bell

Overdose Prevention Project Coordinator

Alice is the Coordinator for PPP’s Overdose Prevention Project. She provides community training on Overdose Prevention and Harm Reduction, oversees PPP’s naloxone distribution and works to advocate for people who use drugs on the local, state and national level. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and has worked for PPP for more than 20 years.

Sarah Danforth

Harm Reduction Specialist

Sarah Danforth is a Harm Reduction Specialist at Prevention Point Pittsburgh, and she has been working with PPP for 5 years in a variety of roles.  She is an Addiction and Overdose Fellow at Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health, and in her free time, she likes to play with her toddler and make ceramics.

Alfred DiRosa

Naloxone Project Coordinator

As the PA Naloxone Project Coordinator, Alfred (he/him) works with PPP and NEXT Distro to expand access to free mail-based naloxone throughout PA, and uses program outcomes to inform advocacy for greater access to harm reduction interventions. He spent two years as an MAT counselor in his home state of Virginia before moving to Pittsburgh in 2014. Prior to joining PPP, he was the operations manager for Hazelwood Initiative, a community based non-profit focused on affordable housing, and was also the managing editor and layout artist of Hazelwood's community newspaper, The Homepage.

Julia Hilbert

Overdose Prevention Specialist

Julia Hilbert (she/her) is an Overdose Prevention Specialist at Prevention Point Pittsburgh. She distributes naloxone and provides training on overdose prevention, and can be found at several of our site locations assisting participants. Julia also serves as the Chair of the Board of Directors for Students for Sensible Drug Policy, and is the president of Pittsburgh DanceSafe.

Katie Houston

Adminstrative Coordinator

Katie (she/they) is the Administrative Coordinator, and got her start at the organization back in 2013 as a volunteer. She does a lot of the behind-the-scenes work to ensure smooth operations, and enjoys bringing her own brand of creativity to the organization. She loves thrifting, horror movies, her cats and niblings, but not necessarily in that order.

Fred Lapka

Naloxone Project Associate

Fred (he/him) is the PA Naloxone Project Associate.  He coordinates mailing naloxone out to people all across Pennsylvania.  He got started in harm reduction in Cleveland, Ohio, providing HIV testing and case management for people living with HIV/AIDS. Fred recently worked as a labor organizer in Pittsburgh and San Diego, helping workers in the restaurant, hotel, and gaming industries start unions at their jobs. Fred serves on the advisory board of Pittsburgh Restaurant Workers Aid, a mutual aid network that provides resources and community support to restaurant and hospitality workers, that grew in response to the economic crisis created by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Helen Matusick

Service Navigator

Helen is the Service Navigator, and helps folks access the services they need, such as recovery services including finding MAT (medically assisted treatment) providers, housing, healthcare, and more.  You name it, and she can help you with it!. Helen is a graduate of Pitt and has traveled around the country working with people who use drugs since January 2014. Having the opportunity to be back in Pittsburgh and work with her community to help others is her dream come true!

Ron Ready

Harm Reduction Specialist

Ron is the Harm Reduction Specialist. He organizes our volunteer program, runs several service sites, and makes sure our participants always have the supplies they need. Ron was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. He has experienced the vital need for harm reduction from all sides of the table. He has recently brought his passion for social justice, loud music, motorcycles, and cats to Pittsburgh.

Malcolm Visnich

Overdose Prevention Specialist

Malcolm "Mossy Bones" Visnich (he/him) is an Overdose Prevention Specialist with PPP. He distributes naloxone and provides training on overdose prevention, and can be found at several of our site locations assisting participants. After living all over the country, Malcolm is happy to have returned to his hometown of Pittsburgh. Aside from slangin' Narcan, he enjoys playing banjo for his plants and riding his beloved bike, "James".

Gabby Warner

Harm Reduction Services Coordinator

Born a "Hoosier", Gabby (She/They) works at PPP as the Harm Reduction Services Coordinator. Gabby works alongside PPP's Community Health Advocates who save lives distributing Naloxone in their communities! You can also catch Gabby rolling chore at sites throughout the week. Outside of work Gabby enjoys crafts, (trying) to grow things, and hanging out with their cat roommates, Ino and Robocop.

Our Board

Jean FitzGibbons

President of the Board

Jean was a longtime Prevention Point volunteer and has been a member of PPP’s board since July 2015. Since November 2018, Jean has worked as a nurse practitioner with the Perinatal Hope Program, AHN’s maternal addiction program. Immediately prior to her current role, Jean worked as a labor and delivery nurse at West Penn Hospital. Following the completion of her undergraduate work, Jean was employed by Planned Parenthood of Western Pennsylvania, leaving the organization as the director of patient services after over seven years with the non-profit. Jean is interested in harm reduction, maternal health, and reproductive justice. Jean completed a BA at the University of Pittsburgh in 2008 and later returned to the same institution completing an accelerated BSN program in 2015. Jean obtained her nurse practitioner certification from The Ohio State University in 2018. Jean lives in Swissvale with her partner, Mike, and their two dogs, Moose and Rizzo.

Kyle Harder

Vice President

Kyle Harder has been involved in the social service field in the Pittsburgh area for 25 years, working direct care and administrative positions with children, youth and their families, as well as for a local addiction rehabilitation facility.  Kyle received his BS in Social Anthropology from the University of Michigan and his MBA from the University of Pittsburgh Katz School of Business.  Kyle is in long-term recovery from an addiction to alcohol.  Reducing stigma and providing harm reduction services to those who use drugs is a passion and mission for him.  It is an immense honor to serve on the board of Prevention Point Pittsburgh, alongside those devoted, hard-working employees who are literally saving lives on a daily basis.

Mary Gallagher

Board Treasurer

Mary has a long employment history managing federal, state and county governmental funding for various non-profit profit medical and social service providers in Pennsylvania. Before retiring, Mary was a project manager for the Center for Inclusion Health, Allegheny Health Network that focuses on Hepatitis C, HIV screening and care, transgender person healthcare and other work to improve the healthcare of marginalized populations. Mary has served on and chaired several non-profit Boards and currently also serves on the board of The Open Door, Inc.

Julia Och

Board Secretary

Julia works with the Jewish Healthcare Foundation as the project manager for AIDS Free Pittsburgh, a collaborative public health movement to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Allegheny County. Prior to joining the Jewish Healthcare Foundation, she worked as a policy specialist with Allegheny HealthChoices, Inc. and as an assistant planner at Gateway Rehab. Julia earned her bachelor’s in international development and social change and a master’s in community development and planning from Clark University.

Laura Drogowski

Board Member

Laura is the Critical Communities Manager in Mayor Peduto's Office of Equity. She serves and supports individuals and communities affected by homelessness, substance use, and mental health issues. Laura’s work includes advocacy for veterans, older adults, and people who are differently abled, to promote connectedness and wellbeing. Previously, Laura worked in research management in collaboration with corporate and academic partners to negotiate and support clearance of medical devices through the FDA. Laura began volunteering with Prevention Point in 2006 and has been a member of PPP's board since 2009, serving as secretary, vice president, and president. Laura graduated from Carnegie Mellon and lives in Uptown.

Sarah Papperman

Board Member

Sarah has been volunteering at PPP's exchange site since 2009 and has been on the Board of Directors since 2015. Outside of PPP, Sarah works at Wesley Family Services as a Manager with the In Service of Seniors: Pittsburgh and APPRISE programs, which engage volunteers across Allegheny County to support older adults in accessing insurance, medical care, healthy foods, and social opportunities. Sarah is originally from central New York and has an MPH from the University of Pittsburgh.

Mary Sligh 

Board Member

Mary is a Street Medicine Nurse Navigator at the AHN Center for Inclusion Health. Her professional interests include homeless medicine, addiction medicine, and women's health. Mary has been a wound care volunteer with Prevention Point since 2015, and has served on the board since 2018. She lives at home in Swissvale with her two cats Olive and Harriet.

Kell Wilkinson, MPA, MSW (they/them)

Board Member

Kell is a public policy and non-profit management professional. As former intern and volunteer, Kell has been involved with PPP for over a decade and joined the Board of Directors in June of 2019.  Kell holds a Master of Public Administration and Master of Social Work from the University of Pittsburgh.

Sean DeYoung, LSCW

Board Member

Sean serves as the Chief Executive Officer for Allies for Health + Wellbeing, formerly Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force (PATF), southwestern Pennsylvania’s oldest and largest HIV/AIDS service organization. Sean has over 25 years of experience working in social services and holds a bachelor’s degree from Saint Francis University and a Master of Social Work degree from Florida International University. In addition to his work at Allies, Sean currently serves as a Board Member of the Ryan White Clinics for 340B Access, the Pittsburgh Commission on Human Relation’s Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Task Force, Prevention Point Pittsburgh, Hep C Free Allegheny Advisory Board and as Vice Chair of AIDS Free Pittsburgh Executive Committee and Advisory Board.

Jane Liebschutz, MD, MPH, FACP

Board Member

Dr. Liebschutz is a primary care and addiction medicine physician, substance use researcher, educator, and administrator. She is Professor of Medicine, Chief of the Division of General Internal Medicine and UPMC Endowed Chair for Translational Medicine and Research at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and UPMC. Her research agenda focuses on prevention and treatment of opioid use disorders, including safe opioid prescribing for pain and disseminating treatments for opioid use disorders in non-specialty medical settings. She is a national lecturer and educator on opioid prescribing. She has been a certified buprenorphine prescriber since 2006, managing an active panel of opioid-dependent patients within her primary care practice and serving as inpatient addiction medicine consultant. She also is a national expert on physician wellness.

Paul Cooley

Board Member

Paul is an Emergency Department Registered Nurse. He started volunteering at PPP in 2010.  He is also involved in his Union SEIU, the campaign for Safe Nurse Patient Ratios, and is in school to become a Nurse Practitioner.  He lives in the Northside with his wife Kate and two young children.  He is a long suffering Pittsburgh Pirates fan, and hopes for a World Series win and is optimistic about supervised injection sites in Western PA. 

Dan Palka

Board Member


Support Us

We could not do the important work of providing essential harm and risk reduction services without the generosity of people like you. Your contribution allows us to continue working to reduce the rates of Hepatitis C, HIV, and overdose fatalities in our region.

There are several ways you can support us

DONATE NOW

You can donate directly to Prevention Point Pittsburgh by clicking the "Donate Now" button

You can also support us when you buy from Amazon. If you click the on the Amazon Smile logo above and make a purchase, PPP will receive a small portion of your purchase as a donation.

Corporate Matching

Remember, many companies that match their employee’s charitable gift-giving.  This is a great way to double your donation!

Volunteer

If you would like more information about volunteering with Prevention Point, please fill out our Volunteer Form or send email with your interest and contact information to rready@pppgh.org. You may also call our office (412) 247-3404 and leave your contact information

Contact Us

Prevention Point Pittsburgh
460 Melwood Ave Suite 205
Pittsburgh, PA 15213

Phone: 412-247-3404

Email us