2022 Annual Meeting

For the 8th Annual Meeting, we gathered in person at the Hyatt Regency Newport Beach as well as offered on-line access.

February 24-27, 2022

Our Program

Our program included preconference retreats–one for women and one for men –each with a separate fee.  Registration for each is limited to 20.

Men’s Retreat:  Mindfulness Skills  
Mark D. Levine, MD Founder and Director, Mind to Mindful Training Institute                What is mindfulness? What is Stress? Can we change our negative thoughts and emotions? How does mindfulness practice reduce stress, depression, anxiety, and other forms of suffering? What happens in the brain and body when we suffer? How does the quality of our attention and awareness influence the mental conditions in which thoughts and emotions interact and evolve? How might a training in attention and awareness teach us skills to work with negative thoughts and emotions? How might mindfulness training enhance our understanding of addiction?
Retreat sessions: Thursday, February 24, from 1:30 pm to 5:00 pm, with optional session after dinner, and Friday, February 25, from 8:30 am to 12:00 noon.
Women’s Retreat: Open Mindedness and Open Heartedness
Tracy Zemansky, PhD and Ginger Metcalf, MS, RN Tracy Zemansky, PhD, is a Clinical Psychologist, licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, and Clinical Sex Addiction Therapist – Supervisor, with a private practice in Santa Monica, California since 1994.  She is one of the founders of Pacific Assistance Group.   Ginger Metcalf, MS, RN worked in nursing for twenty years and spent another twenty years as a psychotherapist in Spokane, Washington, where she and her husband Mike raised their blended family.  Before retirement, Mike and Ginger worked with IDAA.   Aligned with the WDR Conference theme of “Open Mindedness as an Essential of Recovery”, our sessions will explore the connection between open mindedness and open heartedness. We will use The Change Triangle ® as a model for deepening self-awareness with short teachings and experiential exercises in both small and large group discussions. We will use Authentic Movement, mindfulness meditation, journaling, and the creative arts. Together we hope to help each other live in a more genuine and integrated manner, congruent with 12 Step recovery goals of increased self-acceptance and self-compassion, personal freedom, and serenity. 
Retreat sessions: Thursday, February 24, from 1:30 pm to 5:00 pm, with optional session after dinner, and Friday, February 25, from 8:30 am to 12:00 noon.  

Friday, February 25, 2022 — 1:30 pm to 5:35 pm

1:30 pmWelcome and Opening Session
1:40The Opposite of Addiction is Connection: The Intersection of Attachment Theory, Nervous System Regulation, and Emotional Sobriety Andrew Susskind, LCSW Recovery and Life Transition Coach, Private practice of psychotherapy, Los Angeles
2:45Recovery in the Time of COVID-19 Steve G.
3:45Threat versus Safety Theory in Chronic Illness, Disease, Pain and Suffering  David R. Clawson, MD Rehabilitation and Performance Medicine Consulting, Swedish Medical Center, Seattle; Eisenhower Health, Rancho Mirage
4:50Open Mindedness as an Essential for Marriage Kee and Susan P.
5:35Adjourn – Free time before dinner
6:30Friday Dinner — The Other Side of the Story Bobbi S.
8:00AA and Al-Anon evening meetings

Saturday, February 26    — 8:00 am to 12:30 pm

6:30 amContinental breakfast
7:00Morning AA and Al-Anon meetings
8:00Morning opening
8:05Effectiveness of 12-Step Mutual Help Groups: The Latest Scientific Evidence Keith Humphreys, PhD Department of Psychiatry, Stanford University School of Medicine
9:10Finally Accepting How Strong and Brave I Am Amy J.
9:55Behavioral Addictions in 2022:  Where to Draw the Lines?   Tim Fong, MD Director, UCLA Addiction Psychiatry Fellowship; Co-Director, UCLA Gambling Studies Program
11:20Acupuncture –A talk and a demonstration Michael O’Malley, MB, MCh Medical Acupuncture, Medical Evaluations, Mental Health and Addiction, Prince George, BC, Canada
12:30Adjourn — Free time Saturday afternoon to explore Newport Beach
6:30Saturday Dinner—Openmindedness Even at My Age Johanna O. 
8:00AA and Al-Anon evening meetings

Sunday, February 27       8:30 am to 10:30 am

7:00 amContinental breakfast 
7:30Morning AA meeting
8:35Isn’t One Program Enough?  — The Difficulties in Transferring from AA To OA, And A Discussion of All Recovery Programs Treating Obsessional Behaviors.  Judi Hollis, PhD Author of Fat is a Family Affair
9:40From ‘Not me!’ to ‘Yes, please!’ Katie H.


Send questions to WesternDrs@gmail.com.

Hyatt Regency Newport Beach

 Hyatt Regency Newport Beach, 1107 Jamboree Road, is 5 miles from John Wayne Orange County Airport. 

For more about Newport Beach: https://www.visitnewportbeach.com/

Newport Beach invites you to slow down and enjoy our sunny Southern California coastal oasis. With all the appeal of a small coastal town and the polish of hospitality done right, our 10-distinct neighborhoods are waiting for you to discover their unique charm, history, and local flavor. Thanks to a culture centered around our beautiful harbor, pristine beaches, and Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve, your options for relaxing or active outdoor experiences are endless.

Hyatt Regency Newport Beach, located near the picturesque Back Bay, will be an iconic experience in and of itself. Nestled among 26 acres, this sprawling resort features a landscape with hundreds of palms and a succulent courtyard: a nod to the California desert experience. Whether you are drawn to dive into one of the three unique pools or catch a quick game on the executive golf course, you’ll feel refreshed and inspired to make the most of your day. And thanks to a layout that makes the most of natural light, indoor-outdoor experiences, and easy access to the idyllic SoCal climate, Hyatt Regency Newport Beach is the perfect spot to focus on reconnecting with your group in a safe environment.