NAADAC Celebrates National Addiction Professional Day by Announcing 2018 Award Winners

Join NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals, in taking time on September 20, 2018, to celebrate National Addiction Professionals Day and recognize and celebrate vital players of the health system and continuum of care - addiction professionals.

Started by NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals in 1992, the day was established to commemorate the hard work that addiction professionals do on a daily basis. NAADAC is the largest membership organization for addiction-focused healthcare professionals and represents the professional interests of more than 100,000 addiction counselors, educators and other addiction-focused health care professionals in the United States, Canada and abroad.

As part of its National Addiction Professionals Day celebration, NAADAC honors its 2018 Award Winners. This year NAADAC will present awards to five outstanding individuals and one outstanding organization for their extraordinary service and contributions to the addiction profession.

“We are honored to be awarding such deserving and dedicated addiction professionals this year,” said Cynthia Moreno Tuohy, BSW, NCAC II, CDC III, SAP, NAADAC Executive Director. “The important work that these awardees do every day saves lives, families, and communities.”

 
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Lifetime Honorary Membership Award: Ralph Edward Jones, Sr., PhD, LCDC, LPC
The Lifetime Honorary Membership Award recognizes an individual who has established outstanding service through a lifetime of consistent contributions to the advancement of NAADAC, the addiction profession and its professionals.

This year’s recipient of the Lifetime Honorary Membership Award, Ralph Edward Jones, Sr., PhD, LCDC, LPC, is a dedicated and active advocate for persons with substance use disorders. His passion for serving the recovery community extends to his willingness to guide, mentor, educate, and make lifelong friends with other professionals in the addiction field. Jones is a long-time member of NAADAC and the Texas Association of Addiction Professionals (TAAP), a founding member of the Valley Association of Addiction Professionals, and Vice Chairman of the Governor’s Texas State Independent Living Council (SILC).

 
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Medical Professional of the Year (Posthumous): Davida Coady, MD, PhD
The NAADAC Medical Professional of the Year Award is presented to a medical professional who has made an outstanding contribution to the addiction profession.

NAADAC is honored to posthumously award this year’s Medical Professional of the Year Award to Davida Coady, MD, PhD. Coady devoted her life to doing the greatest good for the greatest number of people and serving those who needed it the most. After spending decades linking hands-on medical care with public health and being a first responder to humanitarian crises in Biafra, Bangladesh, Cambodia, India and Central America, Coady returned to California and opened Options Recovery Services, an addiction treatment provider that provides, among other things, treatment to individuals in the California prison system and training to inmates to become state-certified addiction treatment counselors.

 
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Mel Schulstad Professional of the Year: Shelly Dutch, CSAS, ICS
This award recognizes an individual who has made outstanding and sustained contributions to the advancement of the addiction counseling profession.

Shelly Dutch, CSAC, ICS, this year’s recipient of the Mel Schulstad Professional of the Year award, has demonstrated a lifelong commitment to successfully enhance opportunities for individuals with substance use disorder. She has been an innovator in creating successful group dynamics, personal connectivity, and methods for recovering individuals to give back to stay actively engaged in recovery and multiply their own recovery gift. Dutch was an early pioneer of mentorship in the outpatient setting and is the founder, owner, and director of Connections Counseling, LLC a Madison, WI, outpatient clinic for substance use and mental health disorders.

 
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Addiction Educator of the Year: Donald P. Osborn, PhD, LCSW, LMFT, LCAC, MAC
The Addiction Educator of the Year Award is presented to the educator who has made an outstanding contribution to addiction education.

This year’s recipient of the Addiction Educator of the Year Award, Donald P. Osborn, PhD, LCSW, LMFT, LCAC, MAC, is a kind, compassionate, and generous educator with over 26 years of experience guiding students along the path to education and employment in the addiction profession. Osborn has worked diligently to support the addiction profession and to create an academic career ladder for aspiring and existing addictions counselors in Indiana and nationally. As a mentor to many, he is affectionately known as “Dr. O” by his students. Students who graduate from Osborn’s programs emerge ready to lead the profession, not merely to work in it.

 
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Lora Roe Memorial Addiction Counselor of the Year: Robert L. Nutt, MSW, LICSW, CADAC, LADAC, SAP, CAS, BCD, EMDRIA
This award, renamed for Lora Roe in 1988, is presented to a counselor who has made an outstanding contribution to the profession of addiction counseling.

Robert L. Nutt, MSW, LICSW, CADAC, LADAC, SAP, CAS, BCD, EMDRIA, the recipient of this year’s Lora Roe Memorial Addiction Counselor of the Year award, is a committed, caring, and skilled counselor. He has made valuable contributions to the treatment of addiction and has consistently and diligently worked to provide his clients with specialized and cutting-edge evidence-based treatment to treat their substance use and mental health disorders. Nutt has a reputation for being both compassionate and frank, and for being highly skilled in treating clients from all walks of life. He is held in high esteem by peers and clients alike, and is known for forming caring and meaningful relationships with his clients.

 
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Organizational Achievement Award: Tung Wah Group of Hospitals
The NAADAC Organizational Achievement Award is presented to organizations that have demonstrated a strong commitment to the addiction profession and particularly strong support for the individual addiction professional.

The Tung Wah Group of Hospitals (TWGH), located in Hong Kong and this years’ recipient of the Organizational Achievement Award, has demonstrated a strong commitment to the direct services of addiction prevention and treatment, as well as to the development of the addiction profession. The effort and diligence put forth by the staff and leadership at TWGH has improved and increased the treatment available to individuals with substance use disorder and co-occurring disorders in Hong Kong. TWGH has demonstrated great commitment to the training of and knowledge sharing among local helping professionals that greatly benefits the community and will continue to do so in years to come.

These dedicated addiction professionals will be honored during the President’s Awards Luncheon at the 2018 NAADAC Annual Conference taking place on October 5-9, 2018 in Houston, TX. The winners will also be celebrated in the Fall Issue of NAADAC’s magazine, Advances in Addiction and Recovery.

National Addiction Professionals Day is held in September as a part of National Recovery Month. Sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), National Recovery Month aims to increase awareness and understanding of mental health and substance use disorders and celebrate the people who recovery.

For more information on Recovery Month, please visit www.recoverymonth.gov.

______________________
Media Contact
Kristin Hamilton
khamilton@naadac.org
703.741.7686 x 131

NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals, represents the professional interests of more than 100,000 addiction counselors, educators and other addiction-focused healthcare professionals in the United States, Canada, and abroad. NAADAC’s members are addiction counselors, educators, and other addiction-focused health care professionals, who specialize in addiction prevention, treatment, recovery support, and education. An important part of the healthcare continuum, NAADAC members, and its 47 state affiliates work to create healthier individuals, families and communities through prevention, intervention, quality treatment and recovery support.