In 2019, we issued a call for nominations for three recovery award categories:
Recovery Advocate: An individual who has worked to change policy or public opinion about addiction and recovery
Recovery Caregiver: An individual who provides outstanding direct care to people with addiction/people seeking recovery (e.g., recovery supports, counselors, case managers, medical professionals, first responders, and more)
Recovery Pathway Supporter: An individual who has worked to broaden the range of recovery pathways available in the greater Pittsburgh area (e.g., someone who has worked to promote MAT, harm reduction, alternative peer support groups, etc.)
Here are the 2019 winners.
RECOVERY ADVOCATE: KELLEY KELLEY
Kelley is the Mayor of Turtle Creek and a long-time advocate for people impacted by addiction. She was elected Mayor of Turtle Creek in 2014 and is now serving her second term. She is also a Certified Recovery Specialist.
Her husband, Kevin, is in recovery from heroin addiction and is an overdose survivor, thanks to the availability of Narcan. As an elected official, Kelley has made a point of sharing her personal experience whenever possible in hopes of changing public perception and public policy to better address this health issue. In 2014, she received the Community Partner of the Year award from the Mon Valley Initiative and Turtle Creek Development Corporation, in recognition of her outstanding recovery activism.
As Mayor, Kelley has worked with the local police force and other first responders to recognize citizens who are struggling with addiction and to respond with appropriate resources. She has organized Narcan giveaways, support groups for families, and numerous events to educate her community about addiction and recovery.
Kelley’s colleagues nominated her for this award, saying, “Kelley understands that battling addiction is a community effort.”
RECOVERY CAREGIVER: KATHY STEWART
Kathy Stewart is a Certified Recovery Specialist who has provided counseling and recovery support in our region for nearly 30 years. Most recently, she worked at POWER and this year, she celebrated her retirement!
Kathy has also worked at the Center for Spirituality and the Living Sober program UPMC Braddock, where she served people with substance use disorders.
In her role at POWER, Kathy was one of the first faces that new clients see when they arrive. She provided human connection to people at a very vulnerable place in their lives. Through the treatment process, she provided support to clients throughout the treatment process, going above and beyond to make sure that they got connected to a recovery community outside of the treatment setting.
Kathy was nominated by her colleagues at POWER, who pointed out that Kathy’s musical talents were an asset in her job. They said, “She sings for the clients, finds songs that speak to them, and teaches them to use their own voices. Her music brings an air of happiness to the POWER house.”
RECOVERY PATHWAY SUPPORTER: STEPHANIE KLIPP
Stephanie Klipp is a Certified Addictions Registered Nurse who has shown tremendous commitment to supporting her patients on their recovery pathways, whatever those pathways may be.
She began working for UPMC at the Center for Opioid Recovery in 2017 and was then recruited to for a new position with the Addiction Medicine Consult Service at UPMC Presbyterian in early 2019. At Presby, her job is to improve care for hospitalized patients with addiction.
Within the consult service, Stephanie has created new bridge programs for patients leaving the hospital and trying to connect with outpatient treatment. She has designed a program to help provide treatment for HIV and addiction at the same time. She has also created a special program that supports families whose loved ones are struggling with addiction.
Her coworkers nominated her for this award, highlighting the many ways she goes above and beyond for her patients. They wrote, “Stephanie is focused not only on providing care to patients with substance use disorders, but also empowering patients to speak up for themselves, challenge their own internal stigma, and discover their own path to recovery.”