State honors Kaskutas for contributions to substance abuse research

On August 21, the California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs (ADP) awarded the 2012 Director’s Award for Innovative and Effective Approaches to Research to Lee Ann Kaskutas, adjunct associate professor at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health and senior scientist and director of training at the Alcohol Research Group at the Public Health Institute. The ADP Director’s Awards, presented at ADP’s statewide training conference, recognize valuable contributions by individuals and organizations to the substance abuse prevention, treatment, research, and recovery fields.

“Substance abuse prevention, treatment and recovery techniques are more effective because of Lee Ann’s research in the field,” said ADP Acting Director Michael Cunningham.

With an overarching interest in the social model of recovery, Kaskutas conducted clinical trials that compared the costs and outcomes of clinical and social model treatment programs, and currently is studying the effectiveness of Alcoholics Anonymous over time. She developed a computer-based assessment and intervention for prenatal clinics to help pregnant women understand how much they are drinking, and also developed a manual-guided, 12-step facilitation intervention that helps prepare clients for transition into the culture of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Kaskutas has received numerous awards for her research and contributions to the field of addiction, including the “Distinguished Academic Partner Award” from UC Berkeley School of Public Health; the R. Brinkley Smithers “Distinguished Scientist Award” from American Society of Addiction Medicine; and the “Young Investigator Award” from Research Society on Alcoholism.