C4 Recovery Foundation has a lineup you won’t find anywhere else: five national educational events, twenty days of renowned keynotes combined with 200+ sessions featuring inspiring thinkers, new voices, visionary clinicians, and leaders in the behavioral health industry.

Here’s where you come in. We’re actively recruiting subject matter experts to peer review keynote and workshop education session proposals. As a peer reviewer, you’ll help us evaluate and select the very best educational content and shape our future programs. We are seeking qualified individuals to serve as reviewers of applications C4 Foundation Events. Click the link below to begin the process!


Planning Committee Application Form


Current Planning Commitee Members

Allen Berger, PhD

Allen Berger, PhD is an internationally recognized expert in family and couples’ therapy, and in the science of addiction and recovery. He is best known for his work on integrating modern psychotherapy with the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and for his insights into emotional sobriety. He is also recognized for his outstanding work as a psychotherapist and trainer. He brings a highly unique background to his profession. His own personal journey in recovery started in 1971, on the beautiful island of Oahu, Hawaii. There he fell in love with recovery and with helping people find their way out of the abyss of addiction into the light of recovery. He overcame dropping out of high school and received a doctorate in clinical psychology from UC Davis in 1987.He was trained and mentored by two brilliant clinicians: William C. Rader, M.D. and Walter Kempler, M.D.

Dr. Berger has a reputation as being a very dynamic and engaging presenter, as well as a very practical, “no-nonsense” therapist. He has presented at IDAA Annual Meetings, the Betty Ford Awareness Hours, Cedars at Cobble Hill in Canada, Cumberland Heights in Nashville – Tennessee, The Orchard – Canada, The Refuge – Florida, the Alcohol Recovery Services at San Pedro Peninsula Hospital and South Bay Hospital. He has also presented at several national events including the U.S. Journal Conferences, Foundation Conferences, FACES Conferences, the Western Regional Conference on Addictions, and at several of the California Conferences on Alcohol Problems. His media appearances include local and national radio programs as well as The Insider, CNN Showbiz Tonight, TV Guide Channel 411 Hollywood, and The Standard on Omni Television in Canada.


Christi Cessna, MS

Christi Cessna, MS is a well-rounded business development and operational executive with over 20 years of behavioral healthcare experience. She is a proven leader who excels at building teams, operationalizing systems, and producing desired results. She has experience working with companies in different growth stages, as well as launching and sustaining capacities of de novo and acquired programs, mergers and acquisitions, and well-established programs. As an executive leader, Christi guided organizations on how incorporating best practices and progressive treatment approaches lead to program differentiation and being a treatment center of choice for professionals nationally and internationally. She has worked for several of the behavioral health industry’s most respected private programs, delivering a pivotal bottom-line outcome to those organizations in growth stages. Christi holds a master’s degree in Counseling Psychology and has experience as a practicing clinician for several years prior to expanding into the business and operational roles. She is a certified DISC trainer and is a national speaker presenting on leadership, collaboration, and ethical business practices.


Michelle Cooke, PsyD, LADC I, CADC

Michelle Cooke, PsyD, LADC I, CADC has focused on working with adults across the lifespan with co-morbid major mental illness, chronic medical illness and substance use disorders in both inpatient and outpatient settings. Although Dr. Cooke has a history of focusing on substance use disorder while working for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, she recently relocated to Charleston, South Carolina where she now focuses on geriatric long-term care services. This was her initial training focus. Dr. Cooke has facilitated long term individual and group therapy focusing on narrative therapy, substance use disorders, medication management, anxiety, mindfulness and meditation, depression and chronic pain. Currently Dr. Cooke works for LifeSource Healthcare Management services and focuses on delivering consistent therapeutic care to geriatric patients during their long-term care stay.


James Fenley, MD

James Fenley, MD and Diplomate of American Board of Addiction Medicine and member of ASAM since 1988, Chairman of Southeastern Conference on Addictive Diseases for 13 years and on planning committee for C4 solutions 14 years. Past Associate professor at Mercer Medical School in field of Addiction Medicine 1994-1998; 26 years as Director of Addiction Medicine in Private Psychiatric Hospitals, 15 years on staff at Talbott Recovery Campus for Impaired Professionals and author of “Finding a Purpose in the Pain.” Presently Director of Addictive Services for SMA Behavioral Health Care responsible for a four-county area in Central Florida and President of private practice Hard Choices LLC.


Philip Hemphill, PhD, LCSW

Dr. Hemphill is a thought leader in the industry and has developed premier national programs for the evaluation, treatment, and monitoring of individuals with behavioral health and addictive disorders throughout his 26 year career. As an executive leader, he has always been committed to assuring clinical efficacy. He has been the lead person for innovation and implementation for provisions of patient care services, policies and procedures, recruitment of talent, and fidelity measures. He’s pioneered some of the assessment and treatment of professionals and co-authored a book with Marty Martin, PhD in 2013 entitled Taming Disruptive Behavior published by American College of Physician Executives (ACPE.) He’s currently authoring a second book on Integrated Health in Addiction Treatment published by Central Recovery Press in July 2019. He has presented papers and workshops at national conferences and has been an adjunct professor at Tulane University School of Social Work for the past 20 years and Assistant Clinical Professor at LSU Health Sciences, Department of Psychiatry for the past 18 years. He received his master and doctoral degrees from Tulane University.


Norman Hoffmann, PhD

Norman Hoffmann, PhD as a clinical psychologist, has 40 years of experience in the area of assessment research involving behavioral health conditions. He has led the team that validated the first brief screen for substance use disorders among arrestees and that screen has been applied in various other settings. His work with colleagues has documented that not all diagnostic criteria are equal in their implications and have developed a variety of assessment tools based on the DSM-5 and ASAM Criteria.


Claudia Lewis, LMFT, EMDR Approved Consultant

Claudia Lewis is a California Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist specializing in the treatment of trauma and addiction and holds her Masters in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University. Claudia has completed multiple trainings in EMDR, is internationally certified by EMDRIA and the Parnell Institute and is an Approved Consultant for EMDRIA. Claudia is fully trained and internationally certified in Brainspotting, a cutting-edge technique for the resolution of trauma, and is the Co-Founder of Brainspotting Los Angeles. She has additional training in somatic therapies, including all levels of training in the Trauma Resiliency Model, which focuses on nervous system regulation. Claudia is also a double certified yoga/meditation teacher and is able to incorporate mindfulness and meditation techniques into treatment where appropriate. Claudia is passionate about helping others resolve trauma and flourish in recovery. She has a thriving private practice, in which she treats a range of trauma and co-occurring disorders. Her personal 12 step recovery and varied clinical experience informs her collaborative approach to supporting individuals and families in all stages of recovery.


Dee K. McGraw, MSW

Dee K. McGraw has a BS in psychology from Vanderbilt University, an MSW from Grand Valley State University, and over 25 years of experience in the substance abuse treatment & prevention field. Currently Ms. McGraw is the Executive Vice President of Education & Event Services for C4 Recovery Foundation, a non-profit organization with world-wide projects. Her primary responsibility is the Conferencing Division, which encompasses the Addiction Executives Industry Summit (AXIS), the Cape Cod Symposium on Addictive Disorders (CCSAD) , the West Coast Symposium on Addictive Disorders (WCSAD), the CORE conference, and the Evolution of Addiction Treatment. The C4 Recovery Foundation conferences are widely regarded as among the best educational events in the industry.

Ms. McGraw began her career in substance abuse as a therapist. She then coordinated prevention efforts in a six-county area for the State of Michigan, subsequently, coordinating substance abuse training state wide. She has additional experience as a trainer/consultant for CSAP’s Managed Care Section and as a reviewer of local, state and federal grant applications. For over 10 years she has been President of her local Community Action Council whose mission is to act as a catalyst to educate parents and the community concerning the illegal use of drugs and alcohol while promoting a safe, healthy environment for students.


Steven L. Proctor, PhD

Dr. Steven Proctor is a licensed clinical psychologist and founder of PRO Health Group, a research and outcomes monitoring solutions company based in Miami, Florida. He also currently serves as the Senior Health Outcomes Advisor at Thriving Mind South Florida, and Chief Research Officer at AiRCare Health, and previously held a faculty appointment at the rank of Senior Research Professor at a private university in Miami. He specializes in the evaluation of behavioral health care treatment systems with a particular focus on addictions treatment outcomes and has published extensively in this area. He frequently collaborates with national and local agencies to improve their treatment systems through research, training, surveillance efforts, technical assistance, and program evaluation. He has worked with treatment programs in the United States as well as abroad, and he has provided consultation to a number of agencies ranging from individual treatment centers to national health care organizations. He regularly serves as a reviewer for many top-tier scientific journals and national behavioral health/addictions conferences, and has been invited to serve on grant review panels for several organizations including the Office of Minority Health of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the Ohio Opioid Technology Challenge. He is a Fellow of Yale University’s NIDA-supported ‘Innovation to Impact’ entrepreneurship training program for addictions researchers, and was named a ‘Rising Star’ by the Association for Psychological Science for his contributions in the area of addictions treatment outcomes. Dr. Proctor earned his PhD in clinical psychology from Louisiana State University (APA-accredited). He completed his pre-doctoral clinical internship with the federal Bureau of Prisons system in Los Angeles, California, and his postdoctoral fellowship at the VA Medical Center in Jackson, Mississippi, where he received specialized training in the Addictive Disorders Treatment Program.


Louise Stanger, Ed.d, LCSW, CDWF, CIP

Dr. Louise is a nationally recognized expert in interventions – the mental health and addiction field. She is also an expert in Sudden Death, grief and loss and had the distinction of working with the Widows and Widowers of 911. A former lecturer and administrator at San Diego State University, School of Social Work and the Director of Alcohol and Other Drug Services , University of San Diego . She has been the PI or Co-PI on over 4 million public NIH- NIAA or US Dept of Education grants related to alcohol prevention

A Published author, Falling Up-A Memoir of Renewal, The Definitive Guide to Addiction Intervention-A Collective Strategy her articles appear in Counselor Magazine, Journal of Alcohol Studies, The Sober World, Huffington Post, DB Resources and Thrive Global to name a few. Dr. Louise was recognized by the San Diego Business Journal as a “Women who Means Business” .the 2016 Joseph L.Galleta Spirit of Recovery honoree (Hemet, Ca.) , 2017 DB Resources Journalist of the Year (London, England) the 2018 Plus Awardfor the Forgiving For Living Foundation and 2018 Excellence in Service Award from The Peggy Albrecht Friendly House.


Shelia Thomas, LMSW

Shelia Thomas is an LMSW that currently works for Jackson Public School District as a Behavior Specialist. She develops behavior plans, interventions and provides resources to families. She has over 16 years of direct practice with with adults, children and families. She has run a program for juvenile delinquents that had dual diagnosis. Her greatest joy is seeing people realize their full potential. She spends her leisure time is spent traveling, painting and watching black and white movies.


Donna White, RN, PhD, CNS, CADAC, LADC I, CARN

Donna White, RN, PhD, CNS, CADAC, LADC I, CARN is a Board Certified Fellow at the American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress and is a Green Cross Foundation Certified Educator in Compassion Fatigue. In 2007, she was the first recipient of the Fong-Bressler Award for Outstanding Preceptorship from the Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions. Dr. White is the statewide Chairperson of the Massachusetts Nurses Association Addictions Council and completed her doctoral studies in Human Behavior with her dissertation in Compassion Fatigue and Vicarious Traumatization in Healthcare Professionals. She is a designated ASAP responder for traumatic events in her facility. She has lectured at many facilities and agencies nationwide and is a recognized leader in the field of Addictions, Impaired Practice and Peer Assistance, as well as Healthcare Professional stress.


C4 Planning Committee Staff

Susan Benvenuti

Katie Myvett

Tara Smith

Leah Smith

  • Great job C4 staff. Enjoyable and beneficial conference.

  • Great job – great conference. Very professionally done.

  • Attendance was nice. What a great group of organizers! Thanks again! We love EVOLUTION!

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