Wednesday, September 8, 2021 - 10:00 am

BISMARCK, N.D. – Several North Dakotans will share their personal testimonies of battling addiction, finding recovery, providing support to a loved one and their experiences with shame and stigma at the fifth annual “Recovery Reinvented.” Registration is open for the event on Oct. 25 at the Bismarck Event Center. The experience will be hosted by Gov. Doug Burgum and First Lady Kathryn Burgum and will be free for both in-person attendees and online via livestream broadcast on

The daylong event from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Bismarck Event Center will feature state and national addiction and recovery experts who will focus on reinventing recovery through sharing addiction and recovery stories, creating recovery-friendly cultures in the workplace and community, eliminating the stigma surrounding the disease of addiction and creating meaningful connections with others.

“As challenging as the past 18 months have been, we recognize the importance of lifting up the voices and experiences of North Dakotans facing addiction,” First Lady Burgum said. “Attendees will have the opportunity to connect to diverse stories from those in tribal communities, professionals in recovery, service providers on the front lines, family members and more.”

Joining the North Dakota stories will be four keynote speakers which include:

  • Dr. Joseph Lee, president and CEO of the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation. With 13 years of prior experience as a psychiatrist and as medical director for Hazelden Betty Ford’s nationally renowned youth services, Lee is one of the nation’s top addiction therapists and physicians. Having worked with countless young people and their families, he embodies the recovery values of humility, empathy, grace and love, and is committed to lifting up recovery voices to positively impact the broader society. Lee has established himself as a thought leader on all matters related to addiction, mental health and recovery, and will share his perspectives on the human condition, the needs of the human spirit, and the power of community and connection.
  • Jonathan Holth, community and client development manager for JLG Architects and co-owner of The Toasted Frog restaurants and Urban Stampede Coffee Bar. Holth is a lifelong North Dakotan, entrepreneur and consultant who wears his long-term recovery on his sleeve. After spending 28 life-changing days in treatment in 2008, Jonathan has dedicated much of his life to community service and sharing his journey with others in hopes that it will help normalize conversation around the disease of addiction and help more people find recovery. Jonathan will share his journey to sobriety and lessons he’s learned along the way. He will also speak about what those in recovery can do to help erase the stigma of addiction, and what those who are not in recovery can do to be strong recovery allies and help decrease the chances of relapse.
  • Laurie Johnson Wade, co-founder of Lost Dreams Awakening Recovery Community Organization in Pennsylvania. As a person who brings over 30 years of active, ongoing, lived-recovery experience, Johnson Wade is a staunch representative of the recovery community locally, statewide and nationally. She serves on the board of Faces and Voices of Recovery, the Association of Recovery Community Organizations’ (ARCO) Diversity, Equity, Inclusion Committee and was named the 2020 Advocate of the Year by the Pittsburgh Recovery Walk. Johnson Wade also works as an advanced implementation specialist with the Opioid Response Network at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. She will share insights on how any individual can get involved with creating and supporting a vibrant recovery culture in their home, workplace or community.
  • Dr. Valerie Earnshaw, social psychologist specializing in stigma and substance use disorders and principal investigator on the North Dakota Addressing Addiction survey. Earnshaw is an associate professor at the University of Delaware and is currently leading interventions funded by the National Institutes of Health to reduce stigma toward people with substance use disorders among clinicians and help people in recovery decide whether and how to disclose to others.  Earnshaw will discuss the research of how stigma leads to substance use and undermines recovery from addiction.

Initial results and insights from the ”North Dakota Addressing Addiction” survey will also be shared at the event. Over 2,300 people participated in the statewide survey representing areas such as health care, businesses, the justice system, law enforcement, tribal and local communities.

“Recovery Reinvented continually seeks to innovate and inspire by bringing both experts and people with lived experience of addiction to the table to talk about solutions,” Gov. Burgum said. “We have an incredible opportunity to listen and learn from North Dakotans on what they know and how they feel about addiction so we can more effectively identify the gaps and areas to enhance programs and services.”

The event will also include a Recovery Resources Expo, which will connect people to a wide variety of addiction, recovery and mental health resources from across the state. Information and resources will be available to family members to help guide conversations around addiction and recovery. Recovery Reinvented awards will honor local individuals and groups that are making a tremendous impact in the field of addiction and recovery. Opportunities to volunteer at the event are also available.

Recovery Reinvented is free and open to the public, but space is limited and registration is required. For more information or to register, visit Registrants will be asked to indicate if they will attend in-person or virtually for the day-of experience and may update their registration status at any point.

Recovery Reinvented is scheduled for Oct. 25 at the Bismarck Event Center. The North Dakota Department of Human Services’ Behavioral Health Conference will be held the following days on Oct. 26-28, also at the Bismarck Event Center. Event information is available at with additional updates being shared by the Governor, First Lady, and Recovery Reinvented’s social media on Facebook @GovernorDougBurgum@FirstLadyND and @RecoveryND and Twitter @DougBurgum@FirstLadyND@Recovery_ND.