Credentials for Addiction & Recovery Professionals

Obtain your credential as an addiction and/or recovery professional from the Georgia IC&RC Affiliate Board!

Becoming a Credentialed Professional

The Alcohol & Drug Abuse Certification Board of Georgia (ADACBGA) is the Georgia Statewide IC&RC Affiliate Board for Addiction & Recovery Professionals.

IC&RC credentials represent the worldwide gold standard in addiction and recovery credentials, allowing for direct reciprocity to more than 40 U.S. states, 11 foreign countries, and all branches of the U.S. military. 

Obtaining a core credential from the ADACBGA as an Alcohol & Drug Counselor (also known as an “addiction counselor”) or a Peer Recovery Coach (also known as a “peer recovery specialist) represents a level of professional achievement and a demonstrated knowledge of core professional competencies and practice standards. Just as important, achieving a credential from the ADACBGA demonstrates proficiency as an addiction and/or recovery professional. 

Obtaining one of the gold standard, internationally reciprocal credentials from the ADACBGA reflects a deep personal commitment and sense of accountability that inspires credibility and confidence in your professional knowledge. It also shows your dedication to high standards of care in the treatment and/or recovery support of individuals with substance use and/or other process disorders.

The CADC-I, CADC-II, and CAADC credentials issued by the ADACBGA grant a legal scope of practice under Georgia Law (Georgia Code § 43-10A-7-15 and 15.1) that allows an individual to represent oneself and practice as an Alcohol & Drug Counselor in the State of Georgia. Both the CADC-II and CAADC grant independent scopes of practice.

The ADACBGA currently credentials more than 3,200 addiction and recovery professionals across the State of Georgia.

Certified Alcohol & Drug Counselor Levels I & II (CADC I & II)

Certifications and Recertifications are completed through your Certemy account, the ADACBGA credential application and management system.

A Credential That Changes Lives & Your Career

“Counselors who treat people with substance use disorders do life-changing work on a daily basis. The diversity of backgrounds and types of preparation can be a strength, provided there is a common foundation from which counselors work. Workforce development is essential to the field of substance use disorder treatment.”

– U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Created in 1981, the Certified Alcohol & Drug Counselor (CADC) is the largest credential in the field of addiction-related behavioral health care – totaling over 20,000 professionals worldwide. There are now more than 63 countries, U.S. states, and territories that offer a reciprocal CADC credential.

The CADC is recognized worldwide as the gold standard for competency in the field. It is written into U.S. state and national practice regulations and insurance legislation.

In its Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has named substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors as one of the fastest growing professions. The number of substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors across the country is expected to grow by 21 percent by 2018. The career is attractive, due to stable salaries and prospects for advancement. The government report especially mentions the value of certification: “Becoming certified is voluntary, but having certification may enhance one’s job prospects.”

The Certified Alcohol & Drug Counselor credential is the foundation for working in diverse professional settings where addiction services are provided. A thorough understanding of addiction and the latest evidence-based practices for treatment is the hallmark of a qualified professional. The Alcohol & Drug Counselor credential requires professionals to demonstrate competency through experience, education, supervision, and the passing of a rigorous examination.

Certified Advanced Alcohol & Drug Counselor (CAADC)

Advancing the Profession & Your Career

Adopted in 1999, the Certified Advanced Alcohol & Drug Counselor (CAADC) is one of the largest credentials in the field of addiction-related behavioral health care – totaling over 5,000 professionals worldwide. There are now 26 countries, U.S. states, and territories that offer a reciprocal CAADC credential.

In its Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has named substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors as one of the fastest growing professions. The number of substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors across the country is expected to grow by 21 percent by 2018. The career is attractive, due to stable salaries and prospects for advancement. The government report especially mentions the value of certification: “Becoming certified is voluntary, but having certification may enhance one’s job prospects.”

As the profession grows, the need for Certified Advanced Alcohol & Drug Counselors will keep pace. Certified Advanced Alcohol & Drug Counselors hold a Master’s degree or higher in a behavioral health field. They have a thorough understanding of not only substance use disorders but also co-occurring mental health disorders. CAADCs are expected to be able to use the latest evidence-based practice for treating both substance use disorders and co-occurring mental health disorders in tandem.

The Certified Advanced Alcohol & Drug Counselor credential requires professionals to demonstrate competency through experience, education, supervision, and the passing of a rigorous examination.

Certified Clinical Supervisor (CCS)

Guiding the Future of the Profession & Your Career

Adopted in 1992, the Certified Clinical Supervisor (CCS) is one of the fastest growing credentials in the field of addiction-related behavioral health care. There are now 40 countries, U.S. states, and territories that offer a reciprocal CCS credential.

In its Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has named substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors as one of the fastest growing professions. The number of substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors across the country is expected to grow by 21 percent by 2018. The career is attractive, due to stable salaries and prospects for advancement. The government report especially mentions the value of certification: “Becoming certified is voluntary, but having certification may enhance one’s job prospects.”

As more and more new counselors enter the field, the need for competent, trained, and ethical Certified Clinical Supervisors will grow significantly. An essential part of quality clinical programs, CCSs teach, coach, mentor, and evaluate practitioners to assure appropriate and effective service delivery of substance use disorder services. Effective clinical supervision is fundamental to having an effective counseling workforce.

A thorough understanding of addiction and the latest evidence-based practices for treatment is the hallmark of a qualified professional. The Certified Clinical Supervisor credential requires professionals to demonstrate competency through experience, education, supervision, and the passing of a rigorous examination.

Certified Criminal Justice Addictions Professional (CCJP)

A Credential That Changes Lives & Your Career

Drug offenders account for more than one-third of the growth in state prison population since 1985. Addiction counseling with individuals in the criminal justice system is complex and complicated, and it requires specialized training. Substance abuse or mental health training alone doesn’t really prepare professionals for dealing with the interaction of addictive and criminal thinking.

In addition to addiction counseling skills and theoretical understanding, Criminal Justice Addictions Professionals (CCJP) need an understanding of the criminal justice system and criminal thought patterns. The CCJP credential requires professionals to demonstrate competency through experience, education, supervision, and the passing of a rigorous examination.

Adopted in 2002, the Certified Criminal Justice Addictions Professional is one of the fastest growing credentials in the field of addiction-related behavioral health care. There are now 27 U.S. states and territories that offer a reciprocal CCJP credential. This credential is recognized as the gold standard for competency in the field and has been endorsed by the International Community Corrections Association (ICCA).

Certified Peer Recovery Coach (CPRC)

Recovery Changes Lives

“Many recovery community organizations have established recovery community centers where educational; advocacy and sober social activities are organized. Peer recovery support services are also offered in churches and other faith based institutions, recovery homes/sober housing. “

– U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Treatment 2008 Report

Peer recovery is experiencing rapid growth, whether it is provided by a peer recovery coach, peer recovery support specialist, or peer recovery mentor. Peer support services – advocating, mentoring, educating, and navigating systems – are becoming an important component in recovery oriented systems of care. Sharing recovery experience is deeply rooted in the addiction field, but it is a newer concept in mental health.

Inclusion of peers with practical experience on teams with degreed clinicians is increasingly being emphasized by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) – in both addiction and mental health settings. Outcomes include decreases in morbidity and mortality, as well as empowerment of service recipients.

Credentialing provides much-needed standardization to the rapidly growing profession of peer recovery support. Becoming credentialed demonstrates competency, by having professional expertise and qualifications verified by an independent evaluator. It recognizes achievement of a standard of ethics, education, and experience necessary to provide quality recovery support services.

The Peer Recovery (CPRC) credential is designed for individuals with personal, lived experience in their own recovery from addiction, mental illness, or co-occurring substance and mental disorders.

Certified Gambling Addiction Counselor (CGAC)

Certified Gambling Addiction Counselors fill a unique role among health and human services professionals in providing quality care to consumers. The Alcohol and Drug Abuse Certification Board of Georgia (ADACBGA) has designed a credentialing system that will evaluate each applicant’s competency and grant recognition to those professionals who meet the specified minimum standards. In creating this process, the ADACBGA examined credentialing systems of other states, gathered input from state and national groups, and incorporated the most appropriate elements to form the basis of this system. The ADACBGA recognizes that Certified Gambling Addiction Counselors work in a wide range of disciplines and have diverse educational and experiential backgrounds.

The ADACBGA’s certification process identifies and defines the core functions, responsibilities, knowledge, and skill areas required of Certified Gambling Addiction Counselors regardless of work setting, approach, and educational or professional training. This process does not endorse any one particular philosophy, treatment modality or service delivery approach. The ADACBGA encourages and requires the development of professional skills and competencies for all Certified Gambling Addiction Counselors.

Certified Recovery Residence Administrator (CRRA)

A Certified Recovery Residence Administrator (CRRA) is the person responsible for the overall management of the Recovery Residence; supervision of residents and paid or volunteer staff; ensuring appropriate response to resident needs and maintenance of the residence. The CRRA accomplishes these goals being accountable for implementation of and compliance with the National Alliance of Recovery Residences (NARR) Quality Standards and Code of Ethics for Level 1 – 4 Recovery Residences, or equivalent nationally recognized standards and code of ethics