The following awards are presented annually at the AAAP Annual Meeting and Scientific Symposium.
The AAAP Founders’ Award is presented by to an outstanding member of the community who works in the field of addiction and who has contributed significantly to the science, teaching, treatment or public policy in the addictions.
Gender Differences in Substance Use Disorders: From Science to Treatment
Shelly F. Greenfield, MD, MPH is Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and the Kristine M. Trustey Endowed Chair of Psychiatry at McLean Hospital where she also serves as the Chief Academic Officer. She is the Chief of the Division of Women's Mental Health and the Director of Clinical and Health Services Research and Education in the Alcohol, Drug and Addiction Treatment Program at McLean Hospital. Dr. Greenfield is an addiction psychiatrist, clinician and researcher. Dr. Greenfield has served as Principal Investigator and Co-Investigator on federally funded research focusing on treatment for substance use disorders, gender differences in substance disorders, and health services for substance disorders. She received a National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)-funded career award in substance use disorder patient oriented research (2005-2016). Funded by grants from NIH/NIDA, she developed and tested a new manual-based group therapy for women with substance use disorders, the Women’s Recovery Group (WRG). The WRG is an evidence-based treatment and the manual for dissemination was published in 2016, Treating Women with Substance Use Disorders=: The Women’s Recovery Group Manual. She is Past President of the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry and current member and past chair of the American Psychiatric Association's Council on Addiction Psychiatry. She is immediate past Editor-in-Chief of the Harvard Review of Psychiatry, a position in which she served for 16 years (2002-2018). Dr. Greenfield was a member of the Advisory Committee on Services for Women for the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (2011-2017) and is a member of the NIH/NIDA National Advisory Council on Drug Abuse (2021-2023). She has been elected to the American College of Psychiatrists and the College on Problems of Drug Dependence, and is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. She received the R. Brinkley Smithers Distinguished Scientist Award from the American Society of Addiction Medicine, Harvard Medical School’s A. Clifford Barger Award for Excellence in Mentoring, the Stuart A. Hauser Award for Mentoring from the Department of Psychiatry, and the 2022 Dean’s Award for Community Service for the Mass General Brigham/McLean Hospital Outreach Program with Indian Health Service.
Petros Levounis, MD, MA, serves as professor and chair of the Department of Psychiatry and associate dean for professional development at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School. He is also the chief of service at University Hospital in Newark, New Jersey. Dr. Levounis came to Rutgers from Columbia University where he served as director of the Addiction Institute of New York from 2002 to 2013.
Dr. Levounis is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Stanford University where he studied chemistry and biophysics before receiving his medical education at Stanford University School of Medicine and the Medical College of Pennsylvania. During medical school, he researched the effects of social class on patient-physician relationships in Oxford, England, and received an MA degree in sociology from Stanford. In 1994, he moved to New York City to train in psychiatry at the New York State Psychiatric Institute of Columbia University. He graduated from Columbia earning the National Institute of Mental Health Outstanding Resident Award and went on to complete his fellowship in addiction psychiatry at New York University.
Dr. Levounis has written numerous articles, monographs, and book chapters; has lectured extensively on addiction topics throughout the United States and abroad; and has been interviewed by CBS, ABC, NBC, CNN, FOX, The Martha Stewart Radio Show, The New York Times, and The Washington Post, among others. Dr. Levounis has served on the boards of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) and the American Board of Addiction Medicine, and from 2005 to 2009 chaired the national Committee on Addiction Treatment of the American Psychiatric Association (APA). Dr. Levounis is a Betty Ford Scholar, a recipient of the Association of Gay and Lesbian Psychiatrists’ Distinguished Service Award and the ASAM Educator of the Year Award, and a distinguished fellow of the APA and ASAM. In 2017, he was elected as an honorary member of the World Psychiatric Association.
Dr. Levounis has published fourteen books including the self-help paperback “Sober Siblings: How to Help Your Alcoholic Brother or Sister—and Not Lose Yourself,” the textbook of “Substance Dependence and CoOccurring Psychiatric Disorders,” “Motivational Interviewing for Clinical Practice,” “The Behavioral Addictions,” “Becoming Mindful,” “LGBTQ Mental Health: The Spectrum of Gender and Sexuality,” “Office-Based Buprenorphine Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder,” now in its second edition, and “Technological Addictions.” Dr. Levounis is currently working on the first textbook of Nature Therapy, which is going to be available in early 2022. His books have been translated into French, German, Hungarian, Japanese, Portuguese, and Spanish. Dr. Levounis is married to actor Lukas Hassel and lives in New York City.
Dr. Mary Jeanne Kreek is this year’s Founders’ Award winner. AAAP is honored to be able to present Dr. Kreek with this award at the 31st AAAP Annual Meeting and Scientific Symposium this upcoming December. Dr. Kreek’s research focuses on the endogenous opioid system, which modulates stress, pain and reward, and the roles that specific opioid peptides and their receptors play in normal and abnormal circumstances. She is well known for work in developing methadone as a treatment for opioid use disorder that is used throughout the world. She has an extensive portfolio of research using preclinical models to study the roles of the μ and κ opioid receptor systems and the CRF/CRFR1 and vasopressin/V1b receptor systems in binge-like alcohol drinking models. Dr. Kreek’s team is also conducting clinical studies in cocaine- and alcohol-addicted people, and in individuals with histories of opioid use disorder in treatment receiving long-term methadone or buprenorphine-naloxone, focusing on the neurobiology components of these addictive diseases. In these studies, gene polymorphisms that may play a role in addiction or genes that may alter responses to medications (pharmacogenetics) and affect normal
physiology (physiogenetics), are identified. She is a role model and mentors to generations of substance use researchers.
About Mary Jeanne Kreek
Mary Jeanne Kreek, MD, is a graduate of Wellesley College and of the Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons. She is Professor and Head of the Laboratory of the Biology of Addictive Diseases at The Rockefeller University. Dr. Kreek went to The Rockefeller Institute in 1964 to join the late Professor Vincent P. Dole; at that same time, Dr. Dole was joined by the late Dr. Marie Nyswander. The team of three performed the initial studies of the potential use of a long-acting opioid agonist, methadone, in chronic management of heroin addiction. By molecular, cell biological, neurochemical, behavioral and basic clinical research and human genetics studies, she has documented the role of the endogenous opioid system in cocaine, alcohol, and heroin addiction, which has resulted in more than 400 scientific reports. Dr. Kreek received the AMERSA Betty Ford Award (1996), the ASAM R. Brinkley Smithers Distinguished Scientist Award (1999), the CPDD Nathan B. Eddy Memorial Award for Lifetime Excellence in Drug Abuse Research (1999), the Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons Alumni Association’s Gold Medal for Lifetime Distinguished Achievements in Academic Medicine (2004), the CPDD Marian W. Fischman Award and Lecture (2005), the International Narcotics Research Conference Founder’s Award (2005), Wellesley College Alumnae Achievement Award (2014) and the Lifetime Science Award by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (2014) – and now, the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry’s Founders’ Award (2020). Dr. Kreek was conferred with honorary doctorates from Uppsala University, Sweden (2000), the University of Tel Aviv (2007), and the University of Bologna (2010).
Kreek investigates the biological basis of addictive diseases as well as existing and novel treatments for these conditions. Her lab also researches the medical complications of drug abuse, such as hepatitis C and AIDS. In 1984, her group discovered that the second most common risk group for HIV-1/AIDS is parenteral drug users.
Kreek’s research focuses on the endogenous opioid system, which modulates stress, pain, and reward, and the roles that specific opioid peptides and their receptors play in normal and abnormal circumstances. Heroin, morphine, and oxycodone, as well as cocaine and alcohol, activate these different opiate receptors either directly or indirectly. Kreek and her colleagues are examining gene expression changes in rodents that are given a drug of abuse, or are allowed to self-administer it, to study how this exposure impacts the brain’s neurochemistry, neurobiology, and circuitry, and to identify targets for potential new treatments. The lab also studies the epigenetic, physiologic, and behavioral effects of drug self-administration on the endogenous opioid system and related signaling networks. They perform microdialysis in rats and mice for dynamic studies of neurotransmitter release and peptide processing in the brain.
The lab studies the roles of the μ and κ opioid receptor systems and the CRF/CRFR1 and vasopressin/V1b receptor systems in “binge”-like alcohol drinking models using rats and inbred strains, and genetically modified mice. Since illicit oxycodone use has become a major public health problem, the lab is investigating behavioral and neurobiological changes in adolescent versus adult mice during and after self-administration of oxycodone. The researchers are also working on the synthesis and study of new chemicals, primarily κ opioid receptor ligands, which could become new treatments for specific addictive diseases and co-occurring depression.
Kreek’s team is also conducting clinical studies in cocaine- and alcohol-addicted people, and persons with former heroin addiction in treatment receiving long-term methadone or buprenorphine-naloxone, focusing on the neurobiology components of these addictive diseases. In these studies, gene polymorphisms that may play a role in addiction, or genes that may alter responses to medications (pharmacogenetics) and affect normal physiology (physiogenetics), are identified. For example, Kreek identified and characterized a functional single-nucleotide polymorphism (A118G) in the μ opioid receptor that increases vulnerability to developing opioid and alcohol addictions and significantly alters stress responsiveness in healthy humans; a mouse model of this variant is currently used in studies.
Kreek is well known for her pioneering 1960s work developing methadone maintenance therapy for opioid addiction. The therapy has been documented to be the most effective treatment for any addiction, and is now commonly used to treat opiate addiction throughout the world, with 1.4 million people in daily treatment. Kreek was also one of the first to document, in 1985, that illicit drugs significantly alter the expression of specific genes in certain brain regions, resulting in neurochemical and behavioral changes.
Our 2019 AAAP Founders' Award recipient is Dr. Laurence Westreich. His keynote presentation took place on Friday, December 6, 2019 at 8:00 am. This award is given in recognition of his steadfast support of education, treatment and policies supporting those with substance use disorders and co-occurring mental disorders. His passion, relentless championing, and fearless advocacy for equity in the prevention, treatment and commitment of care has had far-reaching benefit for patients, their families and communities across the nation.
About Dr. Westreich
Dr. Westreich is a board-certified addiction psychiatrist who specializes in the forensic evaluation of addicted persons. After graduating from Northwestern University with a degree in English Literature, he received his medical degree from the University of Minnesota School Of Medicine. Following an internship in Internal Medicine at the Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Dr. Westreich completed a residency in General Psychiatry at New York’s Beth Israel Medical Center, and a fellowship in Addiction Psychiatry at the New York University School of Medicine/Bellevue Hospital. He is board certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in general psychiatry, addiction psychiatry, and forensic psychiatry. Dr. Westreich is Associate Professor of Clinical Psychiatry in the Division of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, Department of Psychiatry, New York University School of Medicine and serves as Consultant on Behavioral Health and Addiction to the Commissioner of Major League Baseball. He is licensed as a Medical Review Officer (M.R.O.), and is the author of Helping the Addict You Love (Simon and Schuster), and A Parents Guide to Teen Addiction (Skyhorse Publishing.)
In recognition of his steadfast support of those with addictions and the policies that bring to the forefront the issues related to evidence-based treatment of substance use disorders, the Honorable Patrick Kennedy was given the Founders' Award on December 6, 2018 by AAAP President Shelly F. Greenfield, MD, MPH at AAAP’s 29th Annual Meeting and Scientific Symposium. His passion, relentless championing, and fearless advocacy for equity in treating substance use disorders and co-occurring mental disorders has had far-reaching effects for the medical, political, and private sectors.
Watch his entire presentation now!
- 2017: John Renner, Jr., MD
- 2016: David Lewis, MD
- 2015: Frances Levin, MD
- 2014: George Koob, MD, PhD
- 2013: Michael Gendel, MD
- 2012: Stephen Scheiber, MD
- 2011: Joseph Westermeyer, MD
- 2010: Kathleen Brady, MD, PhD
- 2009: Thomas McClellan, PhD
- 2008: Richard Rosenthal, MD
- 2007: Thomas Kosten, MD
- 2006: Bertha Madras, PhD
- 2005: Nora Volkow, MD
- 2004: Marc Galanter, MD
- 2003: Alan Leshner, PhD
- 2002: Sheldon Miller, MD
- 2001: Richard J. Frances, MD
- 2000: Edward J. Khantzian, MD
- 1999: Steven Mirin, MD, APA
- 1998: Alan I Leshner, Ph.D. and Charles P. O’Brien, MD, Ph.D.
- 1997: General Barry McCaffrey and Garnet F. Coleman
- 1995: Carolyn Robinowitz, MD
- 1991: Melvin Sabshin
- 1990: Jack Mendelson, MD
- 1989: E. Mansell Pattison, MD
- 1988: Steny Hoyer and Jerome Jaffe, MD
- 1986: John Ewing, MD and Nancy Reagan
Arts and Advocacy Award
The AAAP Arts and Advocacy Award is presented to an outstanding member of the community who has made significant contributions to the public’s understanding of substance use disorders and co-occurring psychiatric disorders through their work in politics, advocacy or the arts. These contributions have a great impact on educating the public about substance use, its influence on society and health, and the efficacy of treatment. Additionally, such works reduce stigma and barriers to care.
Holding the Door Open: Building the Addiction Policy Workforce
Regina LaBelle, JD is a Distinguished Scholar and Director of the Addiction and Public Policy Initiative at the O’Neill Institute at Georgetown University Law Center. Ms LaBelle also founded, directs, and is a professor in the Master of Science in Addiction Policy and Practice program at Georgetown University’s Graduate School of Arts & Sciences. Regina brings decades of public service to her work at Georgetown University. Most recently, she was appointed by the Biden-Harris administration to the position of Acting Director in the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP). There, Ms LaBelle developed the Biden-Harris Administration’s drug policy priorities, which included a historic focus on harm reduction services. Regina previously served in the Obama Administration as ONDCP Chief of Staff where she oversaw the agency’s overdose response and implementation of the National Drug Control Strategy. Prior to her work in federal government, Regina served as Legal Counsel to Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels, providing legal and policy advice to the Mayor. From 1998 to 2005, Ms LaBelle was an adjunct professor of policy and ethics at the Seattle University Institute for Policy Studies. Regina is an active member of the Washington State Bar and serves on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s Independent Ethics Board. A graduate of Boston College, Regina received her law degree from Georgetown University Law Center.
Kenneth Paul Rosenberg, MD, specializes in addiction psychiatry in New York City with an emphasis on behavioral addictions such as sexual compulsivity and substance use disorders. Dr. Rosenberg is a producer and director of films about mental health issues for PBS and HBO. His first HBO f ilm that he directed, Why Am I Gay?: Stories of Coming Out in America, was on the Oscar shortlist (top 10 films) of the Documentary Branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 1995 and his HBO film on which he was an executive producer, Cancer: Evolution to Revolution, won a Peabody Award in 2000. His most recent film, the PBS documentary Bedlam, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2019 and won a duPont Columbia Award in Journalism in 2021. He is a Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the Weill Cornell Medical College and New York Presbyterian Hospital, and a member of the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry and a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association.
AAAP is honored to present Dr. Patrice Harris with this award at the 31st AAAP Annual Meeting and Scientific Symposium this upcoming December. Dr. Harris is an advocate for practitioners and patients confronting substance use disorders with co-occurring psychiatric disorders. She has been a champion for providing patients with access to affordable, non-opioid pain care and is a leading force in combatting the stigma experienced by those with substance use disorders. She is a role model and mentor to early career physicians and an advocate for improved mental health care delivery for children and adults. Her diverse contributions to the medical field are unparalleled.
About Patrice A. Harris
Patrice A. Harris, MD, MA, a psychiatrist from Atlanta, was the 174th president of the American Medical Association and the organization’s first African-American woman to hold this position. Dr. Harris has diverse experience as a private practicing physician, public health administrator, patient advocate and medical society lobbyist.
Dr. Harris currently spearheads the AMA’s efforts to end the opioid epidemic and has been chair of the AMA Opioid Task Force since its inception in 2014. Dr. Harris continues to lead the task force as it works across every state to eliminate barriers to treatment, provide patients with access to affordable, non-opioid pain care, and fight the stigma faced by those with substance use disorders.
Having served on the AMA Board of Trustees since 2011, and as chair from 2016 to 2017, she has long been a mentor, role model and an advocate. Prior to serving on the board, Dr. Harris honed her broad knowledge and deep understanding of healthcare issues through various leadership roles. At the AMA these included having served for many years on the AMA Council on Legislation, including a term as chair, and on multiple AMA task forces on topics such as health information technology, payment and delivery reform, and private contracting. Beyond the AMA she has held positions of leadership with the American Psychiatric Association, the Georgia Psychiatric Physicians Association, the Medical Association of Georgia, and The Big Cities Health Coalition, where she chaired this forum composed of leaders from America’s largest metropolitan health departments.
Growing up in Bluefield, West Virginia, Dr. Harris dreamt of entering medicine at a time when few women of color were encouraged to become physicians. Dr. Harris spent her formative years at West Virginia University, earning a BA in psychology, an MA in counseling psychology and, ultimately, a medical degree in 1992. It was during this time that her passion for helping children emerged, and she completed her psychiatry residency and fellowships in child and adolescent psychiatry and forensic psychiatry at the Emory University School of Medicine.
Two themes that govern Dr. Harris’s professional life are a passion to improve the lives of children and service to others. A recognized expert in children’s mental health and childhood trauma, Dr. Harris has led efforts on both local and national levels to integrate public health, behavioral health and primary care services with supports for employment, housing and education.
A fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, Dr. Harris continues in private practice and currently consults with both public and private organizations on health service delivery and emerging trends in practice and health policy. She is an adjunct assistant professor in the Emory Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and an adjunct clinical assistant professor in psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Morehouse School of Medicine.
Mr. David Sheff, author of the well-known book, Beautiful Boy, which became an award-winning movie in 2018.This award was given in recognition for his contributions as an author and advocate in the field of substance use disorders and cooccurring mental disorders. His passion and relentless activism have focused attention on addiction and brought hope to innumerable sufferers and their families.
The following awards are given to multiple recipients each year. To see the most recent awardees, visit the Annual Meeting pages. We list all recipients for the most recent past Annual Meeting. We post awardees for the upcoming Annual Meeting in the Fall.
AAAP John Renner Award
This award is given to medical students, residents, and fellows who are interested in learning about substance use disorders and co-occurring psychiatric disorders.
Regional and International Award
This award is given to residents or fellows who have an interest in Addiction Psychiatry, demonstrate leadership in the field, and are enrolled in an ACGME or another accredited psychiatry residency program. Awardees host an educational activity in their area after the annual meeting.
Early Career Addiction Psychiatrist Award
This award is given to residents, fellows or early career psychiatrists. Awardees are chosen based on the quality of original research in the field of substance use disorders and co-occurring psychiatric disorders. The awardee will present their work at the annual meeting.
Sheldon Miller Early Career Award
This award is given to PGY3 residents enrolled in programs related to the treatment of substance use disorders and co-occurring psychiatric disorders. All awardees were formally nominated by their residency directors.
The AAAP Award for Medical Student Education (AMSE)
The AAAP AMSE recognizes an Addiction Psychiatrist in clinical practice who demonstrates a sustained record of outstanding contributions to medical student education in Addiction Psychiatry.
AAAP Award for Residency Education (ARE)
The AAAP ARE recognizes an Addiction Psychiatrist in clinical practice who demonstrates a sustained record of outstanding contributions to psychiatry residency education in Addiction Psychiatry. *This award does not apply to fellowship training and specifically recognizes education of general psychiatry residents.
Underrepresented Minority Scholarship
This scholarship is given to trainees who identify as a member of an underrepresented minority racial and ethnic category. The trainee must have a strong interest in addictions and be ready to take an active role in AAAP.