Reducing the Impact of Alcohol on States and Local Governments

The Law & Mental Health Conference brings together expert speakers with legal, clinical, and lived experience to discuss the conflict between law and mental illness.

This year’s Conference took place July 19 & 20, 2021. It is available online for review to registrants until August 19. The subject is Reducing the Impact of Alcohol on States and Local Governments.

Expert Sessions on

  • Federal and State Taxation
  • State and Local Regulation
  • Industry Marketing
  • Recent State Legislation
  • Education & Prevention
  • Treatment and Recovery

The 2021 conference will offer continuing education credit.

  • For clinicians through the National Association of Social Workers of Oregon
  • For peer workers through the Mental Health & Addiction Certification Board of Oregon
  • For attorneys through the Oregon State Bar Association
  • For law enforcement through the Oregon State Department of Public Safety Standards And Training

Keynote by Author & Historian Susan Cheever

Susan Cheever
Susan Cheever

Susan Cheever is the author of many books on American History, including Drinking in America: Our Secret History and My Name is Bill – Bill Wilson: His Life and the Creation of Alcoholics Anonymous. She teaches at Bennington College and The New School in their MFA programs. She is in open recovery.

Drinking in America: Our Secret History
Cheever chronicles our national love affair with liquor, taking a long, thoughtful look at the way alcohol has changed our nation’s history. This is the often-overlooked story of how alcohol has shaped American events and the American character from the seventeenth to the twentieth century.

My Name Is Bill: Bill Wilson–His Life and the Creation of Alcoholics Anonymous
In this definitive and groundbreaking biography, Cheever offers a remarkably human portrait of a man whose life and work both influenced and saved the lives of millions of people. Drawing from personal letters, diaries, AA archives, interviews — and Cheever’s own experiences with alcoholism — My Name Is Bill is the first fully documented, deeply felt account of Bill Wilson and Alcoholics Anonymous.

More about Susan Cheever

Keynote by David H. Jernigan PhD, Professor

David Jernigan, PhD
David H. Jernigan, PhD

Boston University School of Public Health Department of Health Law, Policy & Management

Dr. Jernigan is best known for his action-research approach to the issue of alcohol advertising, marketing, and promotion and its influence on young people. His work has led to better advertising regulations and a clearer understanding of the evolving structure of the alcohol industry. His work is policy relevant and scientifically rigorous.

Dr. Jernigan has been very active in translating research findings into policy and practice. He testifies regularly at city, state, and national levels around alcohol advertising and youth, alcohol availability, and taxation. He also trains advocates around the world using the best evidence.

More about David Jernigan.

Welcome and Special Comments by Suzanne Bonamici

Suzanne Bonamici
Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici

Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici represents the First Congressional District of Oregon. She serves on the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, she is a senior member of the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology and a leader on the Subcommittee on the Environment and the Subcommittee on Energy. She is co-chair of the House Oceans Caucus and Congressional Estuary Caucus, she is working to draw attention to issues that affect coastal communities.

In Congress, Suzanne has helped working families get ahead and to build an economy that gives everyone the opportunity to succeed. She is a strong advocate for retirement security. In addition to protecting and strengthening Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, Suzanne also advocates for policies that help workers save for retirement. Suzanne also supports paid family leave, raising the federal minimum wage, making sure workers have a voice on the job, and workforce development programs. Suzanne is vigilant about making sure that women have access to a full range of family planning services, including abortion.

During college and law school, Suzanne worked at Lane County Legal Aid. After law school, Suzanne was an attorney at the Federal Trade Commission in Washington, D.C., where she was in the Credit Practices Division of the Bureau of Consumer Protection. She then practiced law in Portland, where she represented individuals and small businesses. Suzanne has brought her commitment to consumer protection and access to justice to her work in Congress.

Welcome and Special Comments by Tom Coderre

Tom Coderre
Tom Coderre

Tom Coderre is the Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and the first person in open recovery to lead a federal administration.

As SAMHSA’s Region 1 Administrator, Mr. Coderre led the prioritization of prevention, treatment and recovery services under the strain of COVID-19. He reconvened the Federal Interagency Workgroup on Opioids and as overdoses spiked throughout 2020, he brought the region together to identify programmatic and policy solutions to respond.

Coderre led the team that produced Facing Addiction in America: The Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health. He built strong relationships with Capitol Hill and the behavioral health stakeholder community and worked on the 21st Century Cures Act, which reauthorized SAMHSA, contained important mental health reform provisions, and included a $1 billion expansion for treatment to stem the opioid crisis and overdose epidemic.

As Senior Advisor to Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo, Mr. Coderre co-chaired a task force that coordinated a multi-layered strategy to address the opioid crisis. Under his guidance, the state built more treatment capacity, reduced prescribing, scaled prevention efforts, expanded resources for recovery support services as well as harm reduction programs, and broadened access to medication-assisted treatment and naloxone. He helped increase street-based outreach, community support, and linkages between critical services.

Mr. Coderre is the former National Field Director of Faces & Voices of Recovery and appeared in the documentary film The Anonymous People. He managed Recovery Voices Count, a non-partisan civic engagement campaign to mobilize the recovery community in 12 targeted states.

Other scheduled session speakers include –

  • Joel Ainsworth & Andrew Dyke, PhD – ECONorthwest
  • Linda L. Chezem, Judge(ret) – Indiana Court of Appeals, Purdue University & Indiana University School of Medicine
  • Don Coyhis – White Bison, Inc. & the Wellbriety Movement
  • Paul A. Gilbert PhD, Assistant Professor – Department of Community and Behavioral Health, University of Iowa College of Public Health
  • Tiffany Hall – Recover Alaska & US Alcohol Policy Alliance
  • Bruce Lee Livingston, MPP – Alcohol Justice
  • Mike Marshall – Oregon Recovers
  • Dr. Nandita Murukutla & Rebecca Perl – Vital Strategies
  • Timothy S. Naimi MD, MPH – Canadian Institute for Substance Use Research & Department of Public Health and Social Policy, University of Victoria
  • Alicia Sparks PhD, MPH – Alcohol Policy Alliance
  • Mike Tobias – Michigan Coalition to Reduce Underage Drinking
  • Cassandra Tourre, MPA – National Alcohol Beverage Control Association

The Law & Mental Health Conference is designed for attorneys and law enforcement, public and private clinicians; public healthcare and hospital administrators, social workers, policy designers and legislators, and organizations and individuals involved with the care and welfare of people with mental illness, addiction, and alcoholism.


Conference Sponsors for 2020

Multnomah County and their Mental Health & Addictions Division, Oregon Health Authority – Oregon State Hospital, Psychiatric Security Review Board, Kaiser Permanente, Oregon Health Science University – Department of Psychiatry, Providence Health & Services, Association of Community Mental Health Providers, Bridgeway Recovery, Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare, Central City Concern, Clackamas County Behavioral Health Division, Health Share of Oregon, Oregon Council for Behavioral Health, Oregon Department of Public Safety Standards and Training, Oregon Public Health Division, Washington County & Washington County District Attorney

Conference Sponsors for 2019
Association of Oregon Community Mental Health Programs, Bridgeway Recovery Services, CareOregon, Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare, Cedar Hills Hospital, Central City Concern, Clackamas County Behavioral Health Division, Clackamas County District Attorney’s Office, Multnomah County Public Health Department & Mental Health & Addictions Service Division, Native American Rehabilitation Association NW, the Oregon Department of Public Safety Standards and Training, the Oregon Health Authority and the Oregon State Hospital, the Oregon Public Health Department, Oregon State Sheriff’s Association, Oregon Aging & People with Disabilities, Northwest Forensic Institute LLC, Psychiatric Security Review Board, Telecare, Washington County District Attorney’s Office.

Conference Sponsors for 2018
Cedar Hills Hospital, Psychiatric Security Review Board, Association of Oregon Community Mental Health Programs, Multnomah County Mental Health and Addiction Services Division (MHASD), Northwest Health Foundation, Columbia Community Mental Health, Mental Health Association of Portland, Central City Concern, Bridgeway Recovery Services, Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare, Clackamas County Behavioral Health Division, Kaiser Permanente Behavioral Health Services, Oregon Public Health Division, Northwest Forensic Institute, LLC, Multnomah County District Attorney, Oregon Department of Human Services Aging and People with Disabilities, The Oregon Center on Behavioral Health and Justice Integration, Serenity Lane, Ainsworth United Church of Christ, Teras Intervention and Counseling, Sequoia Mental Health Services, Disability Rights Oregon, Mental Health Association of Oregon, Northwest Housing Alternatives, Unity Center and Legacy Health, Harris Matarazzo, JD, Philip Shapiro, MD, Clackamas County District Attorney, Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, Oregon State Sheriff’s Association, Washington Count District Attorney

Conference Sponsors for 2017
American Psychiatric Nurses Association – Oregon Chapter, Association of Community Mental Health Programs, Cedar Hills Hospital, Central City Concern, Mental Health Association of Portland, Mid-Valley Behavioral Care Network, Multnomah County District Attorney, Multnomah County Mental Health & Addiction Services Division, NW Forensic Institute, LLC, Oregon DHS – Seniors and People with Disabilities, OHSU Department of Psychiatry, Providence Health, Psychiatric Security Review Board, Unity Center for Behavioral Health

Law & Mental Health Conference