magnify glass of history


Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health (C&A) is a non-profit, full service, trauma-informed mental health organization specializing in the emotional and behavioral needs of children, adolescents, young adults and their families.

Founded in 1976, the agency continues to change and evolve to meet the needs and challenges of youth for the past 48 years.

The Stark County Community Mental Health Board appointed a children’s committee to develop and coordinate comprehensive mental health services for children in 1973. It is this initiative which would become Child & Adolescent Behavioral Health.

The agency opened on June, 30, 1976 as Child and Adolescent Service Center (CASC). CASC formed as representatives from education, family court and the Department of Jobs and Family Services (DJFS) decided to create a separate, private, non-profit agency to provide mental health services to Stark County Children.

The following year (1977), the Stark County Juvenile Center appointed agency staff to conduct comprehensive evaluations and develop service plans for youth referred by the court system.

Young girl blowing bubbles outdoors on her own sitting down

Nineteen eighty saw the agency expand in two ways. First, CASC opened the Alliance office, the agency’s second office. The first Alliance office was located in Glamorgan Castle. Our current location is on West State Street in the Chase Bank building. During that same year, the Day Treatment program launches after merging with United Cerebral Palsy Preschool Day Treatment program at the Shipley School. This program was funded through United Way and the agency has received United Way funding ever since.

In 1981, Mike Johnson was named chief executive officer (CEO) and served the agency for 34 years. He retired Dec. 31, 2014.

The agency took another giant step in 1985 and was nationally endorsed by the Council on Accreditation of Services for families and children. The agency remains accredited along with the official recognition from the American Psychological Association, the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services and the Ohio Awards for Excellence.

In 1993, CASC receives a large federal wrap around grant creating a number of new programs. An example of a new program is case management. These types of programs allowed the agency to do “whatever it takes” to keep kids and their families together in the community.

The agency formed a partnership with Family Court in 1996 and offered a new program – Sexually Inappropriate Behaviors Remediation (SIBR).

CASC opened its third location in Belden Village in 1997 marking record growth for the agency. The agency refers to this location as the Belden office.

The agency entered in to new partnerships and established an endowment fund to close out the century in 1999. These partnerships included:

  • Boys to Men as an independent living home for boys who were in the custody of DJFS and would be aging out of the system.
  • Canton City Schools and the Blended Avenue Needed by Kids (BANK) program launched providing education to high school students needing more hands-on learning. This program grew in 2007 to service all Stark County school districts.
  • The Mike Flood Endowment Fund is established on Nov. 30 through his generosity and commitment to health, hope and happiness of Stark County’s children.

The annual Let Your Light Shine community awareness event and fundraiser for C&A was started in 2006 by Nancy Pryce and the board of directors. This annual event supports and celebrates the agency’s work and impact on the community. The event continues to grow each year.

In 2003, C&A’s administrative team moved into the Shipley Building. The administrative team continues to operate from this location.

Child and Adolescent Service Center changed its name to Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health (C & A) on May 15, 2008 to more accurately reflect the agency and its mission.

C&A continues to refine and remodels its programs and services to include Parent Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) treatment in 2011.

Boy blowing bubbles at the park

Joe French succeeds Johnson as CEO on Jan. 5, 2015.

At the close of 2016, C & A served nearly 4,400 families, the most in the agency’s history.

C&A opened their Plain Community office, the agency’s fourth location, in September of 2018 located at GlenOak High School. In addition, C&A added the following programs: Multi-systemic Therapy and Multi-Systemic Therapy for Problem Sexual Behavior and became a certified Substance Use Disorder through Ohio Mental Health Addiction and Services.

The agency provided telehealth services in 2020 to address mental health needs during the pandemic.

C&A's Sandy Vaughn retired in 2021 as Chief Operating Officer. She worked at C&A for 45 years.