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6/12/2014

Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs Secretary Gary Tennis Receives National Award

News for Immediate Release

June 12, 2014

Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs Secretary Gary Tennis Receives National Award

Harrisburg – Pennsylvania Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs Secretary Gary Tennis received the Exceptional Leadership and Support of Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment award last week from the National Association of State Alcohol/Drug Abuse Directors (NASADAD).

Secretary Tennis received the award in recognition for his leadership in convening an Overdose Rapid Response Task Force in response to the growing opioid crisis in Pennsylvania. The task force enhances cross-system collaboration among law enforcement and healthcare organizations with a goal of reducing overdose deaths. 

“I was honored and humbled to receive this prestigious award from NASADAD,” Secretary Tennis said. “Through the support of Governor Corbett and the creation of the department, I’ve been able to work with my team and the broader community to focus on finding evidence-based strategies that will address the heroin and prescription opioid crisis. But we still have much work to do.”

“Secretary Tennis has worked effectively and tirelessly to elevate the urgency of this problem, to identify creative and effective strategies and to rally local and state officials and substance abuse leaders to take steps to reduce the death toll of this scourge,” NASADAD Executive Director Robert Morrison said. “The efforts underway in Pennsylvania have been noticed by other states and serves as an outstanding example of how the public sector can empower towns and cities, first responders, public health officials and law enforcement to save lives.”

The award also recognized the secretary’s efforts to help improve re-entry services for individuals in recovery transitioning back into society, as well as efforts to enhance diversion programming to reduce recidivism rates and support for treatment with clinical integrity.

For more information about DDAP, visit www.ddap.pa.gov or call 717-783-8200.

Media contact: Carey Miller, 717-547-3314

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