John D. Damon, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer

John Damon

John’s clinical and executive leadership experience spans more than 25 years. He joined the Canopy family in 1993 and has served as CEO of Mississippi’s largest and most comprehensive behavioral health, education and social service solution organization since 2013. John’s primary stewardship responsibility is to create an organizational culture that empowers children and families to thrive. As the primary public figure for the organization, John works closely with all three branches of government, business thought leaders, and community stakeholders to develop public policy, clinical best practices, and catalytic partnerships around the country aimed at helping every child and family reach their full potential.

John has served as President of the National Association for Children’s Behavioral Health, President of the Behavioral Health Society of the Mississippi Hospital Association, and President of the Mississippi Association of Child Caring Agencies. He has been appointed by the Mississippi Legislature to serve on the Mississippi Autism Advisory Committee, by the Mississippi Supreme Court to serve on the Children’s Justice Commission, and by the Department of Mental Health to serve on the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Governor’s Challenge to Prevent Suicide among Service Members, Veterans, and their Families. John has also served on other appointed task forces, including the Governor’s Healthcare Task Force (chair, Mental Health), the Mississippi’s Children’s Mental Health Task Force, and the Governor’s Human Trafficking Taskforce.

John is also a board member of the Mississippi Business Group on Health, the National Association for Children’s Behavioral Health, and Children’s Home Society of America and also serves on the Mississippi Early Childhood Investment Council. He was selected as a Top CEO by the Mississippi Business Journal.

John has served as adjunct faculty in undergraduate and graduate academic institutions, and has served as the keynote presenter at many state and national conferences as well as international presentations for the Aspen Institute’s Aspen Global Leadership Network, Empower Conference sponsored by Microsoft, and Microsoft’s Worldwide Social and Human Service Community. In addition to many invited presentations to the Mississippi Legislature, John has also been invited to present to the US Senate Caucus Committee on foster care, mental health, and substance abuse. He has co-authored book chapters and Congressional white papers on best practices in children’s behavioral health and has published in multiple peer reviewed journals.

John’s undergraduate degree is in psychology, he has a master’s in marriage and family therapy, and his PhD is in clinical psychology. He completed his residency in Child Psychology at University of Mississippi Medical Center.

He and his wife, Helaina, are the proud parents of five children and live in Madison, Mississippi.