At the annual meeting of IC&RC, the Board of Directors, representing 77 certification and licensing boards from 24 countries and 45,000 professionals, re-elected Phyllis Abel Gardner, Professor of Sociology and Addiction Studies at Texarkana College, as President and Jessica Hayes, Executive Director of the Illinois Certification Board Inc. (ICB), as Treasurer. In their speeches, they both thanked delegates for their support. Both offices hold two-year terms.
As a welcome to its home state, the North Carolina Certification Board for Addiction and Prevention Professionals hosted the Honorable Martha Beddell Alexander, former Executive Director of the Charlotte Council on Alcoholism, as the meeting’s keynote speaker. As State Representative for the 106th District in North Carolina, Alexander served 10 terms, including chair of Appropriations and vice chair for Education, Health, Judiciary and Mental Health Reform. During her service, she introduced and sponsored numerous legislative bills to enhance services for substance abuse education, prevention, and treatment. In 1993, during her first year in the General Assembly, she sponsored the substance abuse certification act in 1993. Now, she serves as the vice-chair on the Board of the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence Inc.
“I’m one of your greatest advocates,” announced Alexander. She recalled how she spoke to IC&RC in the fall of 1995. Only a few months after her diagnosis of cancer, she was self-conscious about her wig. After her presentation, delegates and administrators approached Alexander to thank her for making a public appearance during chemotherapy treatment, relating stories of loved ones with similar difficulties. “Twenty years later, I want to thank you. You gave me hope. That’s what you do every day – you give people hope every day.”
Spain Joins as a Board
At the annual meeting, the Board of Directors planned for the future of the international organization. As a part of its business, the organization proudly welcomed Board of Spain Certified Addiction Counselors from Spain as a Member Board. It will offer the Alcohol & Drug Counselor credential.
An existing board, Tennessee Certification Board adopted the Certified Criminal Justice Addictions Professional, Certified Co-Occurring Disorders Professional, and Certified Co-Occurring Disorders Professional Diplomate credentials.
In an indication of the demand, three states - Maryland, Texas, and West Virginia - adopted the Peer Recovery credential.
The Board was pleased to have a large number of new delegates, including:
- Vera Butler-Smith, Retna Pullings, and Jewel Spencer-Bey, District of Columbia
- Walter Dolata, Maryland
- Balasubramaniam Fischer, Germany
- Wehme Hutto, South Carolina
- Clif Johnson and Stacey Langendoerfer, Missouri
- Susan Pajari, Georgia
- Jason Skinner, Arkansas
- Matt Sundeen, Colorado
- Robert Thacker, Iowa
- Pamela Waters, Florida
Phyllis Abel Gardner, IC&RC President, presented the Presidential Leadership Award to David Turpin, IC&RC Secretary, in recognition of his outstanding contributions to IC&RC and the prevention, substance abuse treatment, and recovery professions.
The CEO/President of Clinical Services of North Carolina, Inc., Turpin is a therapist, clinical supervisor, and administrator in the fields of substance abuse and mental health. He holds licenses as a Psychological Associate, a Clinical Addictions Specialist, and a Certified Clinical Supervisor. He serves as the North Carolina Program Consultant for the Southeast ATTC, a Senior CARF Surveyor, and a Clinical Instructor at North Carolina State University in Raleigh.
Turpin was surprised that he waited until the next day to respond: “Yesterday, I was so overwhelmed, honored, humbled that I couldn’t say anything. When I first came back to IC&RC around 1994, I made two promises to the NC board. One, I would represent North Carolina and the field. Second, I would serve as a delegate with honor, dignity, and respect. Yesterday’s award affirmed for me that over the 20 years, I kept those promises.”