Registration: Annual Conference

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This year’s conference will be held on Monday, November 6, 2023 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, 701 Penn St. in Reading, PA. The theme is “Changing the Way We Think: Innovations in Prevention, Treatment & Recovery.”

Cost is $65. Payment due at time of registration.

We’re sorry! Registration is now closed!

About the Conference:

This year’s presenters and workshops offer perspectives that support the advancement of changing our approaches where necessary to embrace unique situations and challenges for individuals, families, and communities.

Please Note: Kutztown University is sponsoring Social Work CEU’s for the 2023 Conference. To receive CEU credits, the evaluation must be completed at the conclusion of the conference.


7:30 – 8:15 AM – Registration and light breakfast
8:15 – 8:30 AM – Welcome and opening remarks
8:30 – 9:20 AM – Keynote Presentation
9:30 – 10:30 AM – Panel Presentation
10:45 AM – 12 PM – Workshop A
12:00 – 1:15 PM – Lunch and Awards Presentation
1:20 – 2:35 PM – Workshop B
2:35 – 4:00 PM – Workshop C
4:00 PM – Evaluation link available


Keynote – David Loveland, Ph.D, Senior Director of Operations at the University of Pittsburgh Program Evaluation and Research Unit (PERU) within the School of Pharmacy

Dr. Loveland will discuss the advances in substance use disorders (SUD) treatment.  Participants will learn about evolving developments in the field, including the expansion of telehealth services, low-barrier treatments to improve access to services, modification of DEA rules for buprenorphine and methadone, the integration of recovery support services, and the application of measurement-based care.

Workshop Presentations

Crisis Response: Harm Reduction 101 Presented by Sarah Laurel, Savage Sisters
Harm reduction is an approach to reduce and mitigate damage and pain and offers strategies to increase and promote safety. This training provides an introduction to harm reduction for substance use and includes information about the history of harm reduction, the core principles of harm reduction, the benefits of harm reduction, and an overview of basic harm reduction tools and strategies. Participants will learn practical strategies for working with individuals and communities within a harm reduction framework.

Emerging Drugs of Abuse and Current Drug Trends Presented by Sgt. Pat Laporace, Berks County Detective
The past several years has shown increasing numbers of the use of opioids that has lead to significant overdose deaths. Illicitly manufactured fentanyl is now being used in combination with not only heroin, but cocaine, methamphetamine and other substances. This workshop will provide up-to-date information on other recent trends in drug use and drug overdose in our communities.

Addiction Recovery through Medication Assisted Treatment and Therapy Presented by David Loveland, Ph.D.
Traditional approaches to addiction recovery advocate for the abstinence of all mood-altering substances, medications and applications. Today’s advancement and knowledge regarding treatment for substance use disorders may include the use of medications as part of the individual’s treatment and road to wellness. Medications are an integral part of treatment for individuals with substance use disorders. The benefits of integrating medications within SUD treatment protocols will be reviewed, including medications for OUD, AUD and TUD (tobacco use disorder). Participants can learn about the clinical impact of these medications, including increased engagement and retention in treatment, as well as how medications can be integrated with psychosocial services.

At the Intersection of Prevention and Social Development Theory Presented by Alicia Kline, MA, CP – COCA
Resilience is the ability to bounce back from adversity and perhaps even become happier, smarter, stronger, and healthier than you were before. Setbacks in life can happen, but they do not have to be permanent. How individuals respond to those setbacks can be the difference between stagnation or moving forward. Resilience comprises a variety of skills and knowledge that can improve individuals improve the quality of their lives when used with practice and persistence.

Panel Discussion 

From Innovative Ideas to Practice – Moderated by Dr. Ramona Roberts, CCTP-II, CARON

Dr. Roberts is currently the Executive Director at Caron Outpatient Treatment Center and the former Supervisor of Trauma Services for Caron’s main residential campus. She is a level II-Certified Clinical Trauma Professional. Dr. Roberts has taught for 16 years, published 6 journal articles, and presented to academic and professional audiences at local, national, and intercontinental conferences.



2023 Conference Awards

Nominations are now closed for the 2023 Conference Awards.

The 2023 COCA Annual Conference Awards will recognize individuals and/or organizations who have exemplified the highest standards in the areas of addiction prevention, intervention, treatment and recovery services. We encourage you to nominate someone for one of the awards listed below:

Roger S. Hertz Education Award
This award is presented for the ongoing commitment to the development and/or provision of substance use prevention programs, activities, or projects in a school setting. Those eligible for this award are teachers, schools, school districts, colleges or any personnel working in a school-based setting that promotes substance use and mis-use awareness and education to students and their parents.

The Joseph “Bud” Haines Community Award
This award is presented for the ongoing commitment to the prevention of substance use and abuse in the community. Individuals, organizations and/or community groups eligible for this award include prevention specialists, human service professional, volunteer organizations and/or groups working directly in the community to promote resiliency to substance use issues and their related problems.

Francis “Fran” Drexler Public Safety Award
This award is presented for the ongoing commitment to provide public safety related services in the community by helping to prevent, combat and intervene on substance abuse related problems. Those eligible for this award are police officers, police departments, first responders, criminal justice or any personnel working in the public safety setting that help to alleviate the effects of substance abuse problems in the community.

Betty J. McDonough Treatment Award
This award is presented for the ongoing commitment to the treatment of substance use disorder. Individuals, groups and/or organizations eligible for this award include; therapists/counselors, treatment facilities, case management workers, etc. 

Algot “Al” Ecstrom Recovery Award
This award is presented to individuals, groups and/or organizations who demonstrate the ongoing commitment to the recovery from substance use disorder. Eligibility for this award, include recovery support specialists, recovery housing services, and organizations that support and encourage people in recovery. 

The George J. Vogel, Jr. President’s Award
The President’s Award is presented in recognition of the recipient’s ongoing commitment and leadership in the promotion and advocacy of substance use prevention, intervention, treatment, and recovery support services in the community.


Yvonne Stroman

Click here to email Yvonne Stroman today. You can also call
(610) 750-7550