Carey McKee, a McKinley Hall board member, speaks to the crowd about her family’s experience with addiction at the sixth annual Recovery Works banquet in 2017 at the Courtyard by Marriott in downtown Springfield. MICHAEL COOPER/STAFF

A large Clark County group that battles substance abuse has a new, full-time director

A coalition of area organizations devoted to battling substance abuse in Clark County has a new director to coordinate the group’s efforts.

Carey McKee, already a member of the Clark County Substance Abuse Coalition, will now serve as its director. The coalition is made up of 62 members including law enforcement, area religious groups, social service entities and others that work together to reduce substance abuse and improve services available to residents in Clark County.

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The position is important because it provides a single person who can coordinate and lead the group’s efforts and follow up on previous efforts, said Wendy Doolittle, CEO of McKinkley Hall, a substance abuse treatment center in Springfield. Doolittle has also served as chair of the coalition, but it’s on a part-time, volunteer basis. Having a full-time director will allow the Substance Abuse Coalition to be more effective and efficient, Doolittle said.

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The position was created with funding provided by Cardinal Health and the Mental Health and Recovery Board of Clark, Greene and Madison Counties.

“This position is huge,” Doolittle said. “We expect the coalition to really pick up.”

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McKee joined the coalition a couple years ago, so she knows the organization’s goals and how it operates, Doolittle said. She also noted McKee is organized and has experience working with a family member who has battled substance abuse.

“She has a lot of great qualities that will make her a great fit and move this community forward,” Doolittle said.

The coalition’s goal is to reduce the stigma surrounding addiction, provide prevention, treatment, support, and other resources for addicts and their families.

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