Awardee: Phil Valentine
Awardee Organization: CCAR
Awardee Title: Executive Director
Bio: Phil Valentine is the Executive Director of the Connecticut Community for Addiction Recovery (CCAR). He has been integral to this Recovery Community Organization since January 1999. As an accomplished author, facilitator, and presenter, Phil is widely recognized as a new recovery advocacy movement leader. Phil is known to carry the message of recovery through storytelling, humor, and wit. In 2006, the Johnson Institute recognized his efforts with an America Honors Recovery award. In 2008, Faces and Voices of Recovery honored CCAR with the first Joel Hernandez Voice of the Recovery Community Award as the outstanding recovery community organization in the country. In 2009, the Hartford Business Journal named him the Non-Profit Executive of the Year. He appears in the documentary “The Anonymous People,” a groundbreaking video that CCAR supported. In 2015, Phil thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail, a journey of 2,189 miles, and carried the message of recovery the entire way.
People consistently seek Phil’s experience and expertise on various topics – Recovery Coaching, Recovery Community Organization development, Recovery Community Center development, recovery support services, advocacy, and others. Numerous authors have included his perspective in their writings; for example, Bill White, Christopher Kennedy-Lawford, Dr. John Kelly, Alison Jones Webb, Bud Mikhitarian, and Melissa Killeen. He released his book, Continue: Right Click on the Appalachian Trail, in September 2022 (available on Amazon).
Early in his career, Phil spearheaded CCAR’s effort to build a statewide network of Recovery Community Centers that feature innovative recovery support services like telephone recovery support, All-Recovery meetings, volunteer management systems, and Recovery Works! employment services. Phil was instrumental in the development of the early CCAR videos. He served as CCAR’s point man for the first seven “Recovery Walks!” annual walks held for those supporting recovery from alcohol and other drug addiction. Recently, CCAR implemented the Emergency Department Recovery Coach project with dramatic, positive results. Ccar also provides recovery coaching services throughout the Connecticut Department of Correction (DOC). CCAR built on the highly-acclaimed CCAR Recovery Coach Academy© and now has several recovery coach offerings that more than 85,000 people have accessed. This past year, Phil launched the Advanced Academy for Recovery Coaches, an offering he calls the “culmination of thirty-five years of coaching recovery.” He and his wife, Sandy, co-host the popular podcast “Recovery Matters,” available on most listening platforms.
Phil established his recovery on December 28, 1987, and believes being public about his own recovery from alcohol and cocaine addiction helps eliminate the discrimination surrounding addiction and recovery. He strives to “soften the community” to recovery. A University of Connecticut graduate, he previously worked as a community counselor in a detox/residential treatment setting and in the field of prevention. He is married and has five children. His favorite hobbies are hiking, camping, surf fishing, art, and English football