April Webinar Series for SUD Counselors

Sponsored by DHCS, SAMHSA, and the DUI MAT Project • Hosted by CADTP
Register for April 19 • Dean CardinaleReturn to Webinar Page
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Dean Cardinale

Dean Cardinale, Detective

Understanding Fentanyl: Response, Investigation, and Prosecution

April 19, 2024 • Noon – 1:30 pm PST
1.5 CEUs will be issued at the successful completion of the live webinar.

This webinar will discuss the rise of Fentanyl and the distribution of counterfeit M-30 pills containing Fentanyl in the U.S. The class will review various case studies to learn how to safely respond and investigate the scene of a Fentanyl overdose (whether or not a fatality has occurred). This class will prepare you to act in an undercover roll by using social media (i.e. Snapchat) to identify and arrest the suspected distributors of M-30 Fentanyl pills or Fentanyl powder.

The webinar will review various federal charges related to drug overdoses and overdose deaths, and prepare investigators for successful prosecution related to drug overdoses and overdose deaths. Finally, this class will provide educational awareness on the dangers of Fentanyl for schools to take back to your departments. This class is beneficial for patrol officers, detectives, federal agents, federal task force officers, law enforcement supervisors, Assistant United States Attorneys, and Deputy District Attorneys.



Dean Cardinale is currently a Detective with the Fresno Police Department (FPD) and has been employed by FPD for the past 27 years. Dean has 20 years of Narcotics experience. Since 2015, Dean has been assigned as a Task Force Officer (TFO) for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in Fresno, CA. Recently, Dean has created the Fentanyl Overdose Resolution Team (FORT) which consists of Special Agents and TFO’s from DEA and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). The FORT focuses on solving fentanyl overdoses with or without a fatality, and conducting investigations involving the distribution of fentanyl in the Fresno County area. Dean and the FORT have responded and investigated over 290 fentanyl cases in the Fresno County area. Dean and the FORT have completed over 70 fentanyl related fentanyl overdoses and distribution cases for federal prosecution. Dean has testified as an expert in federal court on fentanyl related deaths. Dean has testified twice in Sacramento at the State Capitol in front of the Public Safety Committee to increase the penalty’s for Fentanyl distribution and lowering the threshold on the amount of Fentanyl needed for CA State wires. Dean has had extensive experience in undercover investigations involving social media and illegal fentanyl distributers. Dean is a drug prevention specialist educating students, teachers, parents, and recently addressed the Fresno County Superior Court Judges on the Fentanyl epidemic. Dean along with the FORT was featured in the Emmy nominated ABC30 documentary “Killer High: The Silent Crisis”. Dean teaches for the California Narcotic Officers Association (CNOA) on Fentanyl overdoses and Fentanyl overdose death investigations all over the country. Dean received the Excellence in Instruction Award from the Police Officers Standards and Training (POST) in 2013. Dean has also received the Attorney General’s Award for his work in the area of Narcotics and Gangs.

Dr. Jessica Rodriguez

Dr. Rodriguez was named the Executive Director of Gateway Corp in 2012.  Gateway Corp was developed as a non-profit, public charity and founded October 27, 2011. November 2014, she developed a clinical hub for Gateway Corp called OnSite Strategies. OnSite is also a United States Trademark.

She has held the position of CEO, Clinical Director, Lead Educator and Clinical Trainer as well as the Clinical Business Developer. She has fulfilled the roles of a clinical consultant, professional development consultant and has clinically supervised many SUD/addiction counselors, mental health professionals and addiction and family interventionists for over 12 years.

She has been active in the mental health field since 1995. She has also clinically trained throughout the US and provides clinical oversight for several organizations in California.

Dr. Rodriguez released her first book, “When the Rainbow Ends a Shadow from Heaven Appears” in 2017.” Her newest book, “The Cart, From Adversity to Collateral Beauty” is scheduled to be released in the Fall of 2022.

Dr. Rodriguez is currently a writer for Rapporteur Magazine. Her focus is about Mental Wellness also covered topics to include ACE’s, trauma, anxiety, and Systemic Racism.

Adriana Popescu, Ph.D.

Dr. Adriana Popescu is a licensed clinical psychologist and empowerment coach with over 25 years of experience in the mental health field. She specializes in treating addictions and trauma, and has directed a number of treatment programs in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is the Founder and CEO of Firebird Healing, a trauma healing program, and the Clinical Director at Avery Lane, an innovative and holistic treatment program for women with co-occurring addiction and mental health disorders and trauma.

Adriana has contributed to a number of books, including TJ Woodward’s Conscious Being Workbook, the Conscious Recovery for Addiction and Conscious Recovery for Mental Health Workbooks, and the Conscious Creation Workbook, all of which she co-authored with him.

She has a private practice in San Francisco and travels around the world speaking, coaching, and facilitating transformational and empowering workshops. She also hosts a fascinating podcast called Kaleidoscope of Possibilities – Alternative Perspectives on Mental Health.

Adriana loves to bring the most innovative and effective tools to her work, empowering people to overcome their imagined limitations, release their self-judgments, and discover the brilliance within – creating a life of infinite possibilities.

Her first book, “What If You’re Not as F*cked Up As You Think”, was released in October.

Aven Armstrong-Sutton, Ph.D(c), RSW

Clinical Services Manager at Kinark Child and Family Services

Aven L. Armstrong-Sutton has been a practicing licensed social worker for over a decade. With diverse experience in settings such as health promotion, foster care, youth homelessness, outpatient mental health & addictions, and student support services, Aven currently serves as a Clinical Services Manager at Kinark Child and Family Services, managing a Live-In-Treatment Program and three outpatient treatment programs. Maintaining a part-time private practice, Aven’s multidisciplinary and integrative approach focuses on trauma and resilience among under-served communities.

June Price Tangney, Ph.D

Dr. Tangney received her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from UCLA. She is currently University Professor and Professor of Psychology at George Mason. She is a Recipient of International Society for Self and Identity’s Distinguished Lifetime Career Award and Fellow of the Association of Psychological Science and of APA’s Division of Personality and Social Psychology.

Dr. Tangney is coauthor (with Ronda Dearing) of Shame and Guilt, coeditor (with Ronda Dearing) of Shame in the Therapy Hour, coeditor (with Jess Tracy and Richard Robins) of The self-conscious emotions: Theory and research, and coeditor (with Mark Leary) of the Handbook of Self and Identity. She has served as Associate Editor for Self and Identity, Consulting Editor for Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, Psychological Assessment, Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, and Journal of Personality, and is currently Associate Editor of American Psychologist.

Her research on the development and implications of moral emotions has been funded by NIDA, NICHD, NSF, and the John Templeton Foundation. Currently, her work focuses on moral emotions among incarcerated offenders. She draws on theory and research in psychology and criminology to develop novel interventions that leverage inmates’ moral emotions and prosocial values. A recipient of GMU’s Teaching Excellence Award, Dr. Tangney strives to integrate service, teaching and clinically-relevant research in both the classroom and her lab.

Christina Veselak, MS, LMFT, CN

Founder and Director of the Academy for Addiction and Mental Health Nutrition

Christina T. Veselak, MS, LMFT, CN, is the founder and director of the Academy for Addiction and Mental Health Nutrition, which teaches practitioners around the world how to use diet, along with amino acid and nutrient therapy, to help prevent cravings and recurrent drug use. She has been a licensed psychotherapist working in the SUD treatment field since 1985 and a certified nutritionist specializing in mental health and addiction recovery since 1993.

Sean Bezdek, LMFT, MBA

Sean is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with over 25 years of experience working in mental health and substance abuse settings, in inpatient, PHP, and private practice. He holds b a master’s degree in Marital and Family Therapy from Philips Institute and an MBA from Baker College.

Sean’s clinical practice has specialized in working with Personality Disorders, Couples, Adolescents, and individual suffering from chronic mental illness. As a clinician Sean enjoys working with clients who can be resistant to traditional treatment and believes in the philosophy of “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make them drink. BUT you can feed them saltines to make them thirsty!”

Sean is the Program Director for Akua Mind Body’s Sacramento inpatient mental health program. His prior leadership experience includes oversight of acute inpatient, utilization management, hospice/palliative care, home health and skilled nursing. Sean’s approach to management is to ensure the work that needs to get done gets done. “Our job is patient care. This include everything from making coffee to running groups. There is not one person who is more important that the other when it comes to providing exceptional care to the clients we serve.”