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Remembering Earnie Larsen

October 20, 2011
by Dennis Grantham, Editor-in-Chief
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‘Stage Two’ recovery author posthumously honored with Fr. Martin Award for Professional Excellence

In an emotion-filled ceremony at September’s National Conference on Addiction Disorders (NCAD), Paula Larsen, wife of nationally recognized recovery author and speaker Earnie Larsen (both pictured), who died in January of pancreatic cancer, received the 2011 Father Joseph C. Martin Award for Professional Excellence from the Father Martin’s Ashley Treatment Center (Havre de Grace, Md.).

A pioneer in the addiction field, Earnie Larsen was described by Steve Kendrick, COO of Father Martin’s Ashley as a man who “worked to help folks understand and find recovery for over 40 years, produced dozens of films, and developed the concept of ‘Stage Two’ Recovery—which describes the stage of recovery when people develop emotional sobriety and a maturing self.”

Often seen onstage in the company of Father Joseph C. Martin, who founded Father Martin’s Ashley in 1983, Kendrick said Larsen “used his training as a former priest, his formal education in addiction and mental health counseling and his passion for recovery to make an unforgettable impact on people from all walks of life.”

In a voice breaking with emotion, Paula Larsen accepted her husband’s award, and thanked the hundreds of addiction treatment professionals in attendance for “the remarkable work that you do every day. Larsen held an MRE in theology and education, a B.A. in counseling and accreditation in chemical dependency and family counseling. Author and consultant Dan Griffin, who was a friend and a mentee of Larson, nominated him for this award. His many books, lessons, and articles are available at and from Hazleden publishing.

To learn more about Larsen’s life, work, and legacy, view the inspiring memorial video.