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The Start of a New Chapter

MACMH Welcomes Brandon Jones as Next Executive Director

Brandon succeeds Deborah Saxhaug, who is retiring in June after leading MACMH for 30 years

May 24, 2021

We’re thrilled to announce that Brandon Jones has been appointed as the new Executive Director for the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health (MACMH). He succeeds Deborah Saxhaug, who is retiring in June following 30 years at the helm of the organization.

A psychotherapist, professor and behavioral health consultant, Brandon joins MACMH after serving most recently as Director of Learning at Alia Innovations and as Integrated Services Manager and NorthPoint Health and Wellness Center. Previously, he worked as a school-based mental health counselor with the City of Minneapolis and as a therapist with Kente Circle, LLC and 180 Degrees. He has also taught graduate and undergraduate studies at multiple local colleges and universities.

Throughout his career, Brandon has been a passionate advocate for children and families, leading with expertise in the areas of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), historical and intergenerational trauma, social/emotional intelligence and youth justice to help build a more culturally-responsive mental health system.

“I was drawn to this opportunity because of MACMH’s mission to promote positive mental health for all infants, children, adolescents and their families. This has been my focus throughout my career,” Brandon shared. “MACMH is a leader in providing education and resources related to children’s mental health. The importance of this work has been underscored by the trauma and grief families are experiencing due to COVID-19 and ongoing social and racial injustices. I’m honored to be able to lead an organization that is at the forefront of this work and is making an impact.”

Among his many achievements, Brandon was selected in 2013 as a Bush Foundation Leadership Fellow. Through that grant, he designed and implemented comprehensive curriculum to advance the social and emotional intelligence of individuals from communities of color.

In recent years, he received the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office Award for Leadership in Serving Justice, the U.S. Attorney’s Award for Excellence in the Pursuit of Justice and the Shaking Things Up Award from the African American Babies Coalition.

Brandon holds a BA in Sociology from the University of Minnesota, an MA in Community Psychology from Metropolitan State University, and an MA in Psychotherapy (MFT) from Adler Graduate School.

“Brandon brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to MACMH. He has the vision and skills to build upon the foundation Deborah put in place and to move the organization forward as the landscape changes to continue meeting the needs of children’s mental health in Minnesota and beyond,” says Danny Porter, MACMH Board President.

Outgoing Executive Director Deborah Saxhaug will be staying on into June to support a smooth transition as Brandon starts his new role. His first day is June 14.

Please join us in welcoming Brandon to MACMH – we’re thrilled to have him aboard as our new Executive Director.


In case you missed it, read our announcement celebrating outgoing Executive Director Deborah Saxhaug’s retirement and her 40-year career promoting positive mental health for children and families.