Michael Walsh, who helped to move the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers (NAATP) past a turbulent period in its history and articulated a strong voice for high-quality, ethical treatment services, will be leaving the association representing treatment centers by the end of the year.
NAATP board chairman Ken Gregoire, president and CEO of Valley Hope Association, said in a statement released on the afternoon of Nov. 7, “During a recent discussion between Michael Walsh and board members, it was mutually decided that this was an appropriate time for both Michael and the organization to move in other directions.”
The news release goes on to state that a committee has been formed to launch an immediate search for a new NAATP president and CEO, “with the aim of focusing NAATP more specifically on public policy efforts, including the enforcement of the Parity Act and ensuring adequate treatment for chemical dependency as the [Affordable Care Act] continues to roll out.”
In the news release, Gregoire credits Walsh for leading NAATP through a period of growth in membership and in partnerships with other organizations. He lists several other accomplishments in the association during this period, including the emergence of NAATP's parity survey, its success in establishing a conversation around ethics issues, and its creation of a voice for like-minded physicians speaking out on treatment and policy topics. “We are excited to continue on this positive trajectory,” Gregoire said.
Walsh, an interventionist and former director of development at Hanley Center in Florida with two decades of field experience, was hired as NAATP president and CEO in the summer of 2012. The previous CEO of the association, former New York state substance abuse agency director Karen Carpenter-Palumbo, served only briefly in that role following the 2010 dismissal of longtime CEO Ronald J. Hunsicker following a state of Pennsylvania investigation into financial issues at the then-Pennsylvania based association.
Continue to look to Behavioral Healthcare for analysis of and reaction to this latest announcement.