7th Annual ADACBGA Conference

Embracing & Enhancing Clinical Competence

Conference: June 19 & 21, 2019

Cobb Galleria Centre
2 Galleria Pkwy SE, Atlanta, GA 30339

Sheraton Suites Galleria Atlanta

Property Location

With a stay at Sheraton Suites Galleria-Atlanta in Atlanta (Cumberland), you'll be minutes from Cumberland Mall and close to Coca-Cola Roxy Theater. This hotel is within close proximity of SunTrust Park and Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre.


Make yourself at home in one of the 278 air-conditioned rooms featuring refrigerators and flat-screen televisions. Wireless Internet access (surcharge) is available to keep you connected. Partially open bathrooms with shower/tub combinations feature complimentary toiletries and hair dryers. Conveniences include phones, as well as safes and desks.


Enjoy a range of recreational amenities, including an outdoor pool, an indoor pool, and a 24-hour fitness center. Additional features at this hotel include complimentary wireless Internet access, concierge services, and gift shopssstands. Getting to nearby attractions is a breeze with the complimentary area shuttle that operates within 3 mi.


Enjoy a meal at a restaurant or in a coffee shop/café. Or stay in and take advantage of the hotel's room service (during limited hours). Quench your thirst with your favorite drink at a bar/lounge. Buffet breakfasts are available for a fee.

Business, Other Amenities

Featured amenities include a 24-hour business center and limo/town car service.


Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, hosting Broadway, concerts, opera, ballet, comedy, family programs and more SunTrust Park, the new home of the Atlanta Braves is connected to Cobb Galleria Centre by pedestrian bridge Anchored by SunTrust Park, The Battery Atlanta is a sports and entertainment experience unlike any other. Check out upcoming events, culinary, retail and entertainment options, and much more! Downtown attractions, including The Georgia Aquarium, the World of Coca Cola, the College Football Hall of Fame, and the Center for Civil and Human Rights


*All transactions are charged a $7.50 transaction fee*








Pre-Conference A

E-Counseling Alcohol and Drug Counselor Training

Gary K. Byrd, M.Ed., MAC, CCS, CAMS, CHS, CGS

Sunday, June 17 – Tuesday, June 19

9:00 am – 4:30 pm

*Exam Waived from January 1 - July 1, 2018*

This credential requires that the candidate already be a certified substance abuse counselor in the State of Georgia.

The widespread use of electronic forms of communication has permeated many aspects of American daily life. Use of e-mail, instant messaging, telephones, videoconferencing, and other forms of communication have, in many instances, replaced face-to-face conversations, meetings, and conferences.

Substance abuse treatment through electronic means (also known as E-therapy) is not used widely, but experts predict that its use will increase rapidly during the next several years (Mallen and Vogel, 2005; Mallen, Vogel, and Rochlen, 2005; Mallen, Vogel, Rochlen, and Day, 2005).

E-Counseling is the use of electronic media and information technologies to provide services for participants in different locations. It is used by skilled and knowledgeable professionals (e.g., counselors, therapists) to address a variety of individual, familial, and social issues.

E-Counseling can:

  1. include a range of services, including screening, assessment, primary treatment, and after care;
  2. provide more accessible modes of treatment than the traditional ones to those who actively use technology (i.e., Millennials and Baby Boomers);
  3. help people access treatment services who traditionally would not seek services because of barriers related to geography, shame and guilt, stigma, or other issues; and be provided as a sole treatment modality, or in combination with other treatment modalities, like traditional or existing treatments.

Specific Training Requirements:

  • Professional Ethics in E Counseling: 6 hours
  • Clinical Principles/Treatment Modalities in E-Counseling: 6 hours
  • Legal and Jurisdictional Implications of E-Counseling: 6 hours

Pre-Conference B

Ethics and Competency in Multicultural Counseling

Mark Sanders, LCSW, CADC

Wednesday, June 20

8:00 am - 4:45 pm

To be practice ethically, one must be culturally competent. Changing demographics require counselors and therapists to become more multiculturally competent. The continued growth in the number of individuals and families from diverse backgrounds challenges counselors' ability to meet the needs of a growing and diverse society. This growth puts more pressure on counselors to be culturally competent in their service delivery.

Ethics in multicultural counseling is ever-changing. Joined within the considerations for diverse cultural elements may be issues of power, privilege, and oppression to which counselors must attend. Responsible ethical practice, then, demands responsible multicultural and advocacy sensibilities. These process and procedural efforts require a deliberate and focused use of the counselor’s time, effort, and skills. Counselors who are versed in the fundamental multicultural competencies prepare themselves to take on ethical issues in a multicultural context.

Keynote Speaker

Tom Balistrieri, Ed.D.

Tom Balistrieri, Ed.D. is a licensed mental health counselor in Massachusetts, currently working as an adjunct professor in psychology and global studies at WPI. In his long career he has served as a management development consultant in big business, an NCAA I track and cross country coach, a therapist in private practice, a director of counseling at three universities, a dean of students and an assistant vice-president for student affairs at two universities and has served as an adjunct faculty member at the graduate and undergraduate level at six universities. Tom is a scholar in male initiation practices. He has lived with and worked with elders from indigenous cultures around the world and the United States. He has researched, designed and implemented an initiation process called Passage that has been a key component in three doctoral studies (University of GA, Princeton and Minnesota University of Psychology) and has been referenced in textbooks and peer reviewed articles. Tom has presented over a dozen keynote addresses at universities and counseling conferences including American College Counseling Association (ACCA) and the Southeastern College Counseling Conference Professionals (SCCCP). He has also presented programs numerous times at The Creativity and Madness Conference in New Mexico.

Tom also has a second life that has been a vital part of his work as a therapist, director of counseling, professor and presenter. Tom has not only participated in many indigenous healing ceremonies with elders and medicine people from many indigenous nations and countries but 15 years ago he was initiated by two indigenous nations as healer. Healers from over a dozen different indigenous nations here and around the world recognize Tom as a healer. What that simply means is that Tom, although a licensed mental health counselor (in three States), is also recognized as someone who can assist wounded people spiritually. Not religiously, per se, but in finding a spiritual piece of themselves that has gone missing. Just like when a piece of the mind shuts down when we disassociate due to trauma or violence, a piece of our spirit can shut down as well. As therapists work holistically with clients this is a missing piece, a vital missing piece. Even the United States Army is realizing that soldiers suffering from PTSD can benefit from this kind of spiritual work.

That is what Tom will talk about today in the keynote. Topics will include how spirituality impacts Compassion Fatigue. How to bring spirituality into our counseling. How to discern the difference between depression and acedia. And how all of this work, if only undertaken preventatively (PASSAGE), could save us from the depth and breadth of emotional and mental illness, the violence, we are experiencing in our clients and culture…especially among the youth. This will be a VERY different keynote. You aren’t asked to believe a thing. But at least be willing to be open to possibility.

2018 Post-Conference

June 23, 2018

9:00 am – 4:30 pm

Medication Assisted Treatment Specialist Training Program

6 hour Live Training

This Cohort begins on Saturday, June 23, 2018. This program is a comprehensive training program that provides 40 hours of training on using medications during the recovery process. At the conclusion of the program, participants are awarded 40 CE hours and a Medication Assisted Treatment Specialist Certificate. The program details are as follows:
Participants then work through 8 self-study modules that start Monday, June 25, 2018. These modules are completed online within assigned time periods.
Information covered in the program includes:

  1. Science of Addiction
  2. Eliminating Barriers to Medication Assisted Treatment
  3. Medication Assisted Treatment and Mutual Support Groups
  4. Know Your Rights
  5. ASAM Guidelines for MAT
  6. And More!

The treatment profession is changing as advances in Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) are made. Certified counselors who are on the cutting edge of new technologies to treat addiction are in high demand. ADACBGA's Medication Assisted Treatment Specialist designation documents your competency, understanding, and value to the varying treatment modalities. Obtaining this specialty can set you apart in the rapidly changing AOD counseling profession. For those who may work in drug courts, community supervision, educators and more, this training and certification will give you a better understanding of what MAT does. Whether you are interested in enhancing your counseling knowledge as MAT Specialist, or would like to further your knowledge of new treatment therapies, participate in the ADACBGA training and certification program.

As part of a comprehensive treatment program, MAT has been shown to: improve survival, increase retention in treatment, decrease illicit opiate use, decrease hepatitis and HIV sero-conversion, decrease criminal activities, increase employment, and improve birth outcomes with women struggling with perinatal addiction. The MATS credential requires professionals to demonstrate competency through experience, education, supervision, and successful completion of the module examinations.

A Medication Assisted Treatment Specialist is a practitioner who has demonstrated their knowledge and skills in the 4 MATS performance domains identified in the MATS Job Task Analysis (JTA) & CCB MATS Candidate Guide (2008). In order to become MATS certified, a practitioner must possess a basic familiarity with the entire range of the 4 Performance Domains of a Medication Assisted Treatment Specialist.

Although the MATS credential is intended as a board specialty for certified and licensed behavioral health professionals, the credential is available to those that are not currently certified and licensed. However, it is important to note that this credential provides no permission to practice and does not afford the practitioner a scope of practice they are not already entitled to under their existing credentials. If an individual chooses to pursue the MATS credential without any other professional credentials, certifications or licenses, the MATS credential simply indicates the practitioner has met basic eligibility requirements and demonstrated their competency and basic knowledge of the subject by completing MAT-specific education and testing.

This is an ADACBGA credential, valid only in the state of Georgia with no reciprocal rights.

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Awards and Scholarship Applications

Organization Award Nomination Form

Jack Furtner Memorial Scholarship Application

Jane Furtner Professional Development Scholarship Application

Individual Award Nomination Form

7th Annual ADACBGA Conference
Embracing and Enhancing Clinical Competencies
June 19-21, 2019
Cobb Galleria Centre
Call for Presentation Proposals
To Submit a Program Proposal:   Complete the requirements below and submit to ADACBGA via email (conference@adacbga.org), mail (PO Box 250449, Atlanta, GA 30325) or fax (770-790-0018). For questions regarding proposals, please email the Kelly Moselle, Executive Director, at Conference@adacbga.org.
Application Requirements (Must be typed):
1.       Your Name and your credentials related to the field of Substance Abuse/Recovery/Counseling
2.      The Name (s) of any co-presenters.
3.      100 words or less biographical sketch for each presenter - if selected, this info is in the Conference Program
4.      50 words or less description of the program - if selected, this description will be the Conference Program
5.      Title of Workshop
6.      A/V Requirements - Each room will be setup with an LCD Projector and Screen.
Flipcharts are not provided by the venue. You must provide your own. ADACBGA will not provide nor pay for flipcharts.
7.       Three learning objectives of the program - for continuing education CE approval
8.      If your program is selected, we will send you a W-9 to complete in order to process payment.
9.      Each workshop should be a minimum 3 hours in length to a maximum of 6 hours.
SUBMISSION DEADLINE:  November 2, 2018
Please contact us at 770-825-0481 or email at conference@ADACBGA.org with any questions or comments.
Topic Suggestions:
  • Opioid Treatment/Opioid Crisis
  • Trauma Informed Care
  • Telemental Health and Ethics
  • Multicultural Competencies
  • Ethics
  • Holistic Care/Holistic Modalities
  • Medically Assisted Treatment
  • Clinical Supervision
  • Evidence-Based Practices
SUBMISSION DEADLINE:  November 2, 2018

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