Eileen McGrath Receives The 2010 Nathaniel Hakim Askia Award

Brookline-based National Library of Addictions Presents Lifetime Achievement Award to Executive Vice President and CEO of the American Society of Addiction Medicine.

Eileen McGrath, the Executive Vice President and CEO of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM), was honored by the National Library of Addictions (NLA) for her commitment to addiction treatment. The annual ceremony was held at the Back Bay Hotel on June 25 where McGrath was presented with the Nathaniel Hakim Askia award. NLA Founder Punyamurtula Kishore, MD MPH FASAM presented the award to McGrath along with ASAM board member John Femino, MD FASAM.

"Eileen has worked tirelessly to help ASAM become a vibrant organization and more importantly, she helped charter, the American Board of Addiction Medicine (ABAM) whose mission is to examine and certify diplomats in Addiction Medicine," said Dr. Kishore.

The event was graced by prominent Bostonians with a deep interest in addiction medicine. The attendees included professors from Harvard, Brown, Tufts and other industry organizations. The invocation was given by Pastor Luz Thomas, from Light of Restoration Ministries. The award was initiated in 2002 and Dr. Kishore spoke about how addiction treatment in general and treatment providers in particular are traditionally cloaked in anonymity. Hence, many a time the advocates of addiction treatment go unrecognized. The Nathaniel Hakim Askia award is a way to acknowledge the unspoken heroes.

Vernard Wade, the brother of late Nathaniel Askia spoke about his brother's life and the challenges faced by him that led to the founding of the FIRST Academy, a therapeutic community for recovering addicts in Roxbury, Massachusetts. Dr. Femino, a well-known addiction specialist in Rhode Island addressed Ms. MGrath's persistence and unwavering commitment to the development of ASAM and the founding of ABAM.

The highlight of the program is the acceptance speech by Eileen McGrath. In her address, she talked about leadership in challenging times. In her role as Executive Vice President and CEO of the American Society of Addiction Medicine, Ms. McGrath led ASAM's successful efforts to expand the Society's role in advocacy and public policy particularly parity for addiction treatment in health insurance and inclusion of addiction treatment in health care reform. She increased the scope of ASAM's medical education efforts and mentoring programs.

The Berklee School of Music provided a violin quartet and the event was choreographed and emceed by Kevin Duffy, Director of Community Outreach for Preventive Medicine Associates, Inc.

About the National Library of Addictions
Founded in 1993 by Dr. P.S. Kishore, the National Library of Addiction is a non-profit, intellectual gathering place for health care professional and community members who are working to overcome the effects of addictions. The Library serves as a research facility, continuing medical educational institute, and a place for professionals to exchange ideas and develop treatment methodologies. For additional information visit the National Library of Addictions at www.nationallibraryofaddictions.com.

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