Keynote Speakers

David Atkinson, M.D., is the medical director of the Teen Recovery Program in Dallas at Children’s Health. Dr. Atkinson is from Minnesota and trained at Mayo Clinic and at UT-Southwestern.  He is faculty at UTSW currently as an Assistant Professor.  He has given many talks nationally, and internationally, and chaired many conferences. Last year he organized a conference in Prizzi, Province of Palermo, Sicily, Italy to tackle substance use problems among youth of that region and he chaired symposia at AACAP and AAAP’s annual meetings on ADHD and Substance Use Disorders. Dr. Atkinson is very enthusiastic about sharing the message of substance use treatment to everyone in the community, nationally and internationally, and is very enthusiastic about prevention and early treatment.  His scientific interests are in substance use disorders and comorbidities. 

Andy Finch, Ph.D., is Assistant Professor of the Practice and School Counseling Coordinator for the Human Development Counseling Program in the Department of Human and Organizational Development at Vanderbilt University. Dr. Finch is a leader in the development and research of recovery high schools in the United States, and he is a co-founder of the Association of Recovery Schools.  Among his published works are Starting a Recovery School and Approaches to Substance Abuse and Addiction in Educational Communities: A Guide to Practices that Support Recovery in Adolescents and Young Adults, on which he was a co-editor. He serves as lead investigator on the first rigorous outcome study of recovery high schools, a project funded by the National Institutes of Health. He served as a Co-Principal Investigator on the first national, multisite research study of recovery high schools, Recovery High Schools as Continuing Care for Drug Abuse, funded by NIDA. For nine years, Dr. Finch worked for Community High School in Nashville, one of the early schools for teens recovering from alcohol and other drug addictions and a school he helped design. Dr. Finch is a National Certified Counselor and a licensed professional school counselor in Tennessee. Dr. Finch’s research interests include the role of schools as continuing care for substance use disorders, counseling and human development, and the ecology of schools.

Open Book:  An Evening with Justin Furstenfeld of Blue October
Justin Furstenfeld is a record producer, artist, author, and the lead singer, guitarist, and lyricist of the rock band Blue October. As a person in long term recovery, Justin will present a spoken word/solo show offering the audience a chance to connect and explore through poetry, music, and conversation.

Margaret K. Glenn, Ed.D., CRC is a professor and coordinator of the clinical rehabilitation and mental health counseling program at West Virginia University. While living in the Washington, DC area, Dr. Glenn served as Principal Investigator and director of programs such as the Resource Center on Substance Abuse and Disability; a CSAP funded training program for rehabilitation counselors; and substance abuse prevention programs. She was a vocational rehabilitation counselor for people with substance use disorders in Virginia and coordinator of homeless services for Fairfax County Alcohol and Drug Services. In 2012 she was awarded a Switzer Distinguished Rehabilitation Research Fellowship by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research. Dr. Glenn’s current research interests include integrative and alternative healthcare practices in an effort to expand her knowledge of how these might better serve people with disabilities, in particular those with a substance use disorder. She has served on the Board of the Alliance for Addiction Solutions and was a founding member and president of the West Virginia Council on Problem Gambling.

Dr. Kelly is the Elizabeth R. Spallin Associate Professor of Psychiatry in Addiction Medicine at Harvard Medical School-the first endowed professor in addiction medicine at Harvard. He is also the founder and Director of the Recovery Research Institute at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), the Program Director of the Addiction Recovery Management Service (ARMS) and the Associate Director of the Center for Addiction Medicine at MGH. Dr. Kelly is a former President of the American Psychological Association (APA) Society of Addiction Psychology, and is also a Fellow of the APA and a diplomate of the American Board of Professional Psychology. He has served as a consultant to U.S. federal agencies and non-Federal institutions, and foreign governments. His clinical and research work has focused on addiction treatment and the recovery process, mechanisms of behavior change, and in reducing stigma and discrimination among individuals suffering from addiction.

Noah Levine is a Founding Teacher, author of Dharma Punx, Against the Stream, The Heart of the Revolution and Refuge Recovery, is a Buddhist teacher, and counselor. He has created a Buddhist approach to addiction recovery called Refuge Recovery that includes peer lead meetings as well as a professional treatment center. He is also the founding teacher of Against the Stream Buddhist Meditation Society, with centers in Los Angeles and San Francisco and over 20 affiliated groups around North America. He teaches meditation classes, workshops and retreats internationally. Noah holds a Masters degree in counseling psychology and lives in Los Angeles.

Bill Maher, CIP, CADC, ACI, BRI II,  has more than 27 years experience in the addiction, behavioral and process disorder fields and is one of the founding fathers of the Family Centered Approach™ to Intervention and Systemic After Care Coaching™. He is a highly successful and innovative Interventionist specializing in the Gentle, Respectful, Invitational Model™ and the Action Intervention Model™ both of which address the effects of addiction on the whole family. Maher has provided intervention services, facilitating over 3,000 interventions nationally with a very high success rate for placing the addicted individual into treatment. He is a preferred interventionist for a number of the country’s top treatment centers.  In the last few years he has witnessed the developing heroin and opiate epidemic from the front lines. He is passionate about identifying and implementing solutions to stop the widespread loss.

Trent Shelton was born in Little Rock, Arkansas and raised in Fort Worth, Texas. As a child, all Trent wanted to be when he grew up was a professional football player. While he achieved his childhood dream, the former NFL player’s career was a shaky one where he felt incomplete while constantly chasing after worldly things to temporarily fulfill the voids in his life. It wasn’t until Trent hit his lowest point, after being released from multiple NFL teams along with the birth of his son that he decided to work on becoming the best person he could be. In March of 2009, Trent picked up his iPhone and started sharing two-minute videos of his progress as a means of helping him stay accountable while bettering his life. He ended each of his videos with “It’s RehabTime.” A couple years later, those two-minute videos evolved into RehabTime Organization, a 501(c)3 nonprofit with a mission to promote change for the better by uplifting, empowering, and demonstrating that "change starts with you," from the inside out, through the development of faith, self, fitness, relationships and leadership. Today, on average, Trent reaches over 35 million people a week through his daily messages and videos. The motivational speaker has over 3 million Facebook fans, over 350k Instagram followers, and over 200k Twitter followers.