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A Seat at the Table: Leadership to Unlock the Potential of Recovery Community

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Date December 1, 2022
Time 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm EST

What if the values and principles that guide the Recovery Advocacy Movement were integrated throughout society? In such a world, mutual supportive relationships based on trust and authenticity would proliferate throughout a society that recognizes universal vulnerability. Such a society is not only possible, it is necessary.

The new Faces and Voices paper, Unlocking the Potential of Recovery Community Organizations and Peer Recovery Support Services, is a call to action for recovery leadership to collaborate with pioneers of emerging systems and ally with other social movements to transform communities and society and as we transform individual lives. This webinar will provide a summary of the report’s purpose, key findings, and recommendations.

A panel of leaders will provide perspective on the role of the new recovery advocacy movement in:

(1) Implementing a strategy of transformative systems change

(2) Engaging with health systems and cross-sector coalitions

(3) Building the capacity of recovery community organizations to be effective change agents.

This webinar will end with a facilitated Q&A session that will enable participants to engage with White Paper authors and panel guests.

Session goers will walk away able to:

  • Discuss key findings and recommendations from the Faces and Voices white paper.
  • Recognize the importance of collaborative leadership in bringing about transformative systems change.
  • Identify key players, organizations, and coalitions working towards delivery system reform and addressing social determinants of health.
  • Analyze the capacities recovery community organizations require for effective cross-sector and health system collaboration.
  • Reflect on the commercialization of recovery support services and the importance of fidelity to recovery principles
  • Recognize the value of services ARCO and CAPRSS certified programs offer and the need to better brand those services.

Time and Date: Tuesday, December, 1st, 2022 from 3:00 – 4:30 pm


Welcoming Remarks:

Dr Dietra Hawkins

Owner & Lead Consultant, Both/And Partners, Inc.
Assistant Clinical Professor, Yale University School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry
Dr Dietra Hawkins is a licensed Clinical Psychologist who holds a faculty appointment as an Assistant Clinical Professor at Yale University School of Medicine, Program for Recovery and Community Health. She has spent nearly two decades helping individuals, communities, and organizations apply research-based approaches to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Dr. Hawkins is a published author and frequent speaker for workshops addressing Appreciative approaches toward system change, Recovery Oriented Systems of Care (ROSC), Asset-Based Community Development and Inclusion, and the Healing of Racism. 

Full Bio


Dr Kenneth Smith

Kenneth D. Smith, PhD

Assistant Professor of Public Health, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Kenneth D. Smith, PhD is a health economist and public health practitioner. He received his doctorate from The Johns Hopkins University, Bloomberg School of Public Health, where he studied economic demography and health economics. His post graduate research focused on risk adjustment, healthcare financing, pharmacoeconomic evaluation, provider practice behavior, health professional supply and demand, and the evaluation of large national healthcare demonstration projects for persons with chronic disease.

Full Bio

Robin L. Peyson

Owner & Lead Consultant, RLP Consulting
Robin has spent her professional career developing, managing, advocating for, and integrating public health, mental health, and substance use programs and policy, focusing on peer recovery support services. In 2019, she co-founded the Recovery Coalition of Texas, a statewide RCO, and served as the Executive Director until January 2022. She is the former Executive Director of Communities for Recovery, a community-based non-profit that provides peer recovery services and supports to individuals in recovery from substance use or substance use and mental illness. Robin also serves as an adjunct faculty member for the Faces & Voices of Recovery’s National Recovery Institute.

Full Bio


Mary Jo McMillen

Our Staff

Executive Director, Utah Support Advocates for Recovery Awareness (USARA) 

With almost thirty years of service as a Licensed Substance Abuse Counselor, Mary Jo is a charismatic leader and tireless advocate for people in recovery in the State of Utah. USARA’s entire staff collaboratively works with local community leaders, government entities, treatment providers, healthcare clinics, hospitals, public health, courts, jails and probation services, homeless shelters, and others to help individuals and family members connect with resources they need to support recovery from addiction. There is a saying she learned in early recovery that holds true for her and others today, “What we can’t do alone, we can do together.”


Michael Askew

Former Director, Recovery Advocacy for Connecticut Community for Addiction Recovery
Michael Askew is National Recovery Advocate who is currently the Project Director for Center for African American Recovery Development.  He previously served as the Director of Recovery Advocacy for Connecticut Community for Addiction Recovery since July 2017.  He served as the Manager of the Bridgeport Recovery Community Center (BRCC) since its inception in 2006.  In recovery since May 28 1989, Michael has helped many people get into recovery and maintain their recovery.  He believes his position with CCAR has been an opportunity to “give back what was so freely given to him.”

Full Bio

Tonya Wheeler

Executive Director, Advocates for Recovery Colorado
Tonya is a founding board member of Advocates for Recovery Colorado and has been the Executive Director of the organization since 2009. She is a Certified Peer & Family Specialist and Certified Addictions Counselor – Level III in Colorado. Tonya has been in long-term recovery since 1990, and her passion for helping others has remained evident in her work in recovery, advocacy and treatment. She works diligently in her community to share the message that recovery is a positive, attainable goal and she is an example that recovery does happen!

Full Bio