Syntero announces retirement of CEO


After 15 years of dedicated service, Julie Erwin-Rinaldi, CEO of Syntero, Inc. has announced her retirement from the nonprofit, Syntero, Inc., effective August 2024. Erwin-Rinaldi’s departure marks the end of an era characterized by significant growth, innovation and community impact.

Erwin-Rinaldi began her tenure with Syntero in August 2009 as the executive director of Dublin Counseling Center in Franklin County. Her visionary leadership played a pivotal role in the merger of Dublin Counseling Center with Northwest Counseling in 2013, forming Syntero, Inc., where she assumed the role of CEO. With 22 years of prior experience in public service within the behavioral health field, including leadership positions with Franklin County Alcohol, Drug and Mental Health Board, Summit County Alcohol and Mental Health Board and Kent State University, Erwin-Rinaldi brought invaluable expertise to the role.

In 2017, Syntero became a contract agency of the Delaware/Morrow County Mental Health and Recovery Board which added a broader geographical footprint and variety of new programming in schools and community-based settings in both counties.

Reflecting on her decision to retire, Erwin-Rinaldi stated, “I believe this is the right time to transition, not only for me to have more time with my family, but also to provide Syntero with a fresh perspective and reenergized team to envision the agency’s future as they continue to seek ways to support the community in caring, creative and thoughtful ways.”

A selection committee appointed by Syntero’s board of directors will conduct an extensive executive search beginning in April, with the aim of appointing a new CEO by the end of July. Erwin-Rinaldi will collaborate closely with the board and the incoming CEO to ensure a smooth transition.

Erwin-Rinaldi’s contributions to Syntero over the past 15 years have been profound and far-reaching:

• Financial growth: The agency’s budget grew from $2.2 million in 2009 when it was Dublin Counseling Center to $10.5 million today, reflecting substantial expansion and development.

• Increased funding: Erwin-Rinaldi spearheaded efforts to secure funding from various sources including Franklin County ADAMH Board, Delaware-Morrow County Mental Health & Recovery Services Board, Columbus Foundation grants and support from organizations such as the Ohio University’s Osteopathic Heritage Foundation and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The Delaware/Morrow County Mental Health and Recovery Board’s contract, which included adding Syntero outpatient offices in Lewis Center and Mt. Gilead, has contributed to continued programmatic growth in the two counties they serve.

• Leadership & recognition: Erwin-Rinaldi’s leadership has earned Syntero recognition as a Top Workplace by Columbus CEO for six consecutive years. She enhanced employee benefits, facilitated six successful national CARF accreditation surveys, oversaw consistently clean financial audits and expanded school-based prevention programs from one school district in 2009 to 12 in 2024.

• Community partnerships: Erwin-Rinaldi forged numerous partnerships with organizations including all eight school districts in Delaware and Morrow Counties, Columbus State Community College-Delaware Campus, SourcePoint, Strengthening Families, and the Delaware Juvenile Court. Syntero has a long history of partnering with the local police departments, sheriff’s departments and fire and EMS, resulting in enhanced partnerships and programming for first responders.

• Program expansion and innovation: Under Erwin-Rinaldi’s guidance, Syntero expanded its programming to support diverse communities, including initiatives focused on suicide prevention, LGBTQ+, older adults, first responders and more. She led the implementation of an agency-wide electronic health records system and oversaw the expansion of office spaces to provide the opportunity to receive outpatient treatment in Lewis Center and Mt. Gilead.

“Julie’s legacy of kindness and compassionate leadership has transformed Syntero into a pillar of support within our community,” stated Krista Stock, Syntero’s board chair. “Her dedication to our mission and values has created a lasting impact, and we are grateful for her vision and guidance.”

Erwin-Rinaldi expressed her gratitude saying, “It has been my honor and privilege to lead Syntero for 15 years. I am immensely proud of what we have accomplished together, and I am confident that Syntero will continue to thrive under new leadership.” She continued, stating, “The Delaware/Morrow Mental Health and Recovery Services Board has been an amazingly supportive funder and has fostered the growth of many community-based program options for children, adolescents, families, adult and older adults that were not in place beforehand. We have also had support from private donors, community leaders and businesses that, in turn, has helped support our important work with those in need of our professional support. This is an amazing community to work in, and I feel so blessed to have had this opportunity.”

Syntero, Inc. is a leading nonprofit provider of behavioral health services in central Ohio, serving Franklin, Delaware and Morrow counties and beyond. Dedicated to promoting mental health and wellness in the communities it serves, Syntero is committed to its core values of integrity, empowerment, innovation and inclusiveness. Syntero is nationally accredited by Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) and certified by the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. For more information, visit

Submitted by Syntero.

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