Daniel Abrahamson serves as senior legal advisor at the Drug Policy Alliance’s Office of Legal Affairs in Oakland, which he founded in 1996. Abrahamson is an active litigator in state and federal courts across the country, including the United States Supreme Court, and is co-author of several state and local legislative initiatives, including California’s highly successful treatment-instead-of-incarceration law, Proposition 36. He is the 2001 recipient of the Robert Wood Johnson Developing Leadership in Reducing Substance Abuse award in recognition of his efforts to expand access to drug treatment while reducing the rate and length of incarceration for drug law offenders. Abrahamson has taught courses on criminal justice and capital punishment at Yale University, Fisk University and Hastings College of the Law, and currently serves as an adjunct professor of law at the University of California Berkeley where he teaches an upper-level seminar on the social and legal implications of the war on drugs. He received his B.A. from Yale University, his M.A. from Oxford University as a Keasbey Scholar, and his J.D. from New York University School of Law where he was a Root-Tilden scholar. Upon graduating from law school, Abrahamson clerked for the Hon. Gilbert S. Merritt, United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, and for the Hon. William L. Dwyer, Western District of Washington.
Margaret Pabst Battin (nicknamed Peggy) is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy and Adjunct Professor of Internal Medicine, Division of Medical Ethics, at the University of Utah. She is a graduate of Bryn Mawr College, and holds an M.F.A. in fiction-writing and a Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of California at Irvine. The author of prize-winning short stories and recipient of the University of Utah’s Distinguished Research Award, she has authored, co-authored, edited, or co-edited some twenty books, among them a study of philosophical issues in suicide; a scholarly edition of John Donne’s Biathanatos; a collection on age-rationing of medical care; Puzzles About Art, a volume of case-puzzles in aesthetics; a text on professional ethics; Ethics in the Sanctuary, a study of ethical issues in organized religion; and a collection of her essays on end-of-life issues, The Least Worst Death. In 1997 she received the University of Utah’s Distinguished Research award, and in 2000, she received the Rosenblatt Prize, the University of Utah’s most prestigious award. She was named Distinguished Honors Professor in 2002-03. A second collection of her essays (and fiction) on end-of-life issues, entitled Ending Life, was published in spring 2005 by Oxford University Press. She is the lead author of two multiauthored projects, Drugs and Justice: Seeking a Consistent, Coherent, Comprehensive View (Oxford, 2008) and The Patient as Victim and Vector: Ethics and Infectious Disease (Oxford, 2009). She has been named one of the "Mothers of Bioethics."
Dr. Ira Byock, Fellow of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, is a leading palliative care physician, author, and public advocate for improving care through the end of life. He is Founder and Chief Medical Officer for the Institute for Human Caring of Providence St. Joseph Health, a 50 hospital health system serving communities across 7 states. Dr. Byock advances efforts to measure, monitor and improve whole-person health care systemwide. He is a practicing physician and is based in Torrance, CA. Dr. Byock is Active Professor Emeritus of Medicine and Community & Family Medicine at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth. He served as Director of Palliative Medicine at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, New Hampshire from 2003 through July 2013. Dr. Byock has been involved in hospice and palliative care since 1978, during his residency. At that time he helped found a hospice home care program for the indigent population served by the university hospital and county clinics of Fresno, California. He is a Past President (1997) of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine. During the 1990s he was a co-founder and principal investigator for the Missoula Demonstration Project, a community-based organization in Montana dedicated to the research and transformation of end-of-life experience locally, as a demonstration of what is possible nationally. From 1996 through 2006, he served as Director for Promoting Excellence in End-of-Life Care, a national grant program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Dr. Byock has authored numerous peer-reviewed academic articles on the ethics and practice of care. His research has led to conceptual frameworks for the lived experience of advanced illness, subjective quality of life measures, and simple, effective life-completion counseling. His leadership in development of groundbreaking prototypes for concurrent care of people through the end of life has been foundational to advancing patient-centered care.
Rick Doblin, Ph.D., is the founder and executive director of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS). He received his doctorate in Public Policy from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, where he wrote his dissertation on the regulation of the medical uses of psychedelics and marijuana and his Master's thesis on a survey of oncologists about smoked marijuana vs. the oral THC pill in nausea control for cancer patients. His undergraduate thesis at New College of Florida was a 25-year follow-up to the classic Good Friday Experiment, which evaluated the potential of psychedelic drugs to catalyze religious experiences. He also conducted a thirty-four year follow-up study to Timothy Leary's Concord Prison Experiment. Rick studied with Dr. Stanislav Grof and was among the first to be certified as a Holotropic Breathwork practitioner. His professional goal is to help develop legal contexts for the beneficial uses of psychedelics and marijuana, primarily as prescription medicines but also for personal growth for otherwise healthy people, and eventually to become a legally licensed psychedelic therapist. He founded MAPS in 1986, and currently resides in Boston with his wife and one of three children (two in college).
A graduate of Harvard University and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Dr. Nicholas Gideonse is medical director and associate residency director of OHSU Family Medicine at Richmond, a 50,000-visit-per-year FQHC primary care site for greater than 13,000 patients. The site has integrated behavioral health, is a certified Level 3 patient-centered primary care home, operates a walk-in clinic and is a residency training site. After residency training at OHSU, he practiced in rural Oregon, returning to OHSU in 2002. His practice interests include: buprenorphine treatment of opiate dependence (particularly in pregnancy), maternity care, end-of-life care and Oregon’s Death with Dignity law, and community standards for pain treatment. His educational interests are the same, plus patient-centered medical home implementation, and especially barrier-free access. He serves on the OHSU Family Medicine Board of Directors, the Oregon Primary Care Association Board of Directors, and as medical director to a Rural Health Clinic. In his free time, Dr. Gideonse enjoys spending time with his family, including his wife, three adult children and an Austrailian shepherd. He likes to ski (Nordic, Alpine, etc.), sail and attend musical performances.
Roger Goodman is a Democratic member of the Washington House of Representatives, representing the 45th district since 2007. He is a graduate of Dartmouth College, where he completed a Senior Fellowship in 1983. He also received his Masters in Public Administration from Harvard University, and his J.D. from the George Washington University. Rep. Goodman’s professional experience begin as an attorney for Tillinghast, Collins & Graham in Providence, RI. From there, Roger has worked as Legislative Director and Counsel for U.S. Representative Bob Wise (WV), Chief of Staff for U.S. Representative Rick Boucher (VA), Executive Director to the Washington State Sentencing Guidelines Commission, and has served on both the National Association of Sentencing Commissions Board and the Washington State Law and Justice Advisory Council. His current work includes acting as a Criminal Justice Policy Consultant to the King County Bar Association, an Appointed Member of the King County Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Administrative Board Chair, Joint Legislative Affairs and Public Advocacy Committee, King County Mental Health Advisory Board and King County Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Advisory Board. He has received awards from the Washington Association for Substance Abuse and Violence Prevention for Outstanding Legislator of the Year in 2007, the District and Municipal Court Judge’s Association’s Outstanding Legislator Award in 2008, the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries for Pacific Northwest Legislator of the Year Award and Mothers Against Drunk Driving’s Legislator of the Year Award in 2013.
Sam Kamin has emerged as an expert voice on marijuana law reform in Colorado and throughout the country. He sat on Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper’s Amendment 64 Implementation Task Force and worked with the ACLU and California Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom to formulate a set of best practices for marijuana regulation in that state. In addition, he has written more than a dozen scholarly articles on the subject of marijuana law reform and co-authors the series “Altered State: Inside Colorado’s Marijuana Economy” for Slate Magazine, chronicling the impact of Colorado’s marijuana regulations on lawmakers, businesses and consumers. In the spring of 2015 he taught the nation’s first law school course on representing marijuana clients and was named the Vicente Sederberg Professor of Marijuana Law and Policy, the first professorship of its kind in the country.
Patricia C. Kuszler joined the faculty of the School of Law at the University of Washington in 1994 and is currently the Vice Dean of the School of Law and the Charles I Stone Professor of Law. In her capacity as Vice Dean, she oversees all of the Law School's academic programs, including JD, graduate, joint, and interdisciplinary curricula; all academic centers/institutes; and development of all new academic programs. She also serves as faculty director of the School of Law's Center for Law, Science and Global Health. In addition to her law faculty appointment, Professor Kuszler is an Adjunct Professor in the UW School of Medicine (Department of Bioethics and Humanities), the School of Public Health, and core faculty in the University's Institute for Public Health Genetics. Professor Kuszler 's teaching and research interests include the impact of law and regulation on health care delivery, health care finance, research standards and misconduct, health and human rights, disability law, public health law in the age of bioterrorism, global and comparative health law, and the legal, ethical and policy issues presented by genetic information and the biotechnology industry.
Don Lattin is an award‐winning author and journalist. His most recent book, Changing our Minds -- Psychedelic Sacraments and the New Psychotherapy, includes two chapters that profile research subjects and therapists involved in clinical trials of psilocybin-assisted and MDMA-assisted therapy for life-threatened patients. Lattin's previously published books include The Harvard Psychedelic Club, a national bestseller that was awarded the California Book Award, Silver Medal, for nonfiction. His feature articles have been published in dozens of leading magazines and newspapers, including the New York Times and San Francisco Chronicle, where Lattin worked as a staff writer for twenty years. He has taught as an adjunct faculty member at the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California at Berkeley, where Don earned a degree in sociology.
Lynn Whipkey Mehler is a partner in multinational firm, Hogan Lovells, Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology practice. She advises clients on a range of FDA and DEA regulatory matters. She has worked extensively on the approval processes for new drugs and biologics; on safety issues that include Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies (REMS); and on unique regulatory issues raised during the development and marketing of controlled substances. Drawing on her 12 years with the FDA's Office of the Chief Counsel, Lynn has a deep understanding of the FDA. Her experience as the primary attorney handling all FDA issues related to controlled substances provides her with unique insights into both the FDA's and DEA's regulatory processes for controlled substances. She advised the agency on drug safety matters, including at approval and those leading to labeling changes, REMS, and even product withdrawal, and she applies that understanding to help clients create effective solutions for FDA regulatory matters. Lynn has worked with a range of clients, getting their products approved, developing and modifying REMS, and negotiating shared REMS with generic applicants. Having counseled the FDA on the Prescription Drug User Fee Act, she now guides clients in the submission of user fee waiver requests and helps them understand the agency's administrative management of drug. She is a recipient of the FDA Commissioner's Award of Excellence, FDA Commissioner's Award of Merit, and the FDA Outstanding Service Award.
Ethan Nadelmann is the founder of the Drug Policy Alliance, the nation's leading organization promoting drug policies that are grounded in science, compassion, health and human rights. Described by Rolling Stone as "the point man" for drug policy reform efforts and “the real drug czar,” Nadelmann is widely regarded as the outstanding proponent of drug policy reform both in the United States and abroad. Ethan was born in New York City and received his BA, JD, and PhD from Harvard, and a master’s degree in international relations from the London School of Economics. He then taught politics and public affairs at Princeton University from 1987 to 1994, where his speaking and writings on drug policy attracted international attention. He has authored two books on the internationalization of criminal law enforcement – Cops Across Borders and (with Peter Andreas) Policing The Globe – and his writings have appeared in most major media outlets in the U.S. as well as top academic journals (e.g., Science, International Organization), policy journals (Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, Washington Quarterly, Public Interest) and political publications from the right (National Review) to the left (The Nation). In 1994, Ethan founded the Lindesmith Center, a drug policy institute created with the philanthropic support of George Soros. A year later, he co-founded the Open Society Institute’s International Harm Reduction Development (IHRD) program. In 2000, the growing Center merged with the Drug Policy Foundation to form the Drug Policy Alliance. Ethan currently serves on the advisory board of the Open Society Foundation’s Global Drug Policy Project (GDPP) and as an advisor to the Global Commission on Drug Policy. He has played a key role as drug policy advisor to George Soros and other prominent philanthropists as well as elected officials ranging from mayors, governors and state and federal legislators in the U.S. to presidents and cabinet ministers outside the U.S.
Dr. Leanna Standish is a professor for the School of Naturopathic Medicine at Bastyr, a clinical professor for the School of Public Health at the University of Washington, and affiliate research professor in the University of Washington's School of Medicine's radiology department. She is also the medical director of the Bastyr Integrative Oncology Research Center (BIORC) and a professor at the Bastyr University Research Institute. She has served as principal investigator on several National Institutes of Health (NIH) research grants since 1994. Dr. Standish's research over the last 15 years has been focused on HIV/AIDS, cancer, hepatitis C and functional brain-imaging cancer. She has collaborated with investigators at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and Children's Hospital in the study of CAM use among cancer patients in Washington state and also has directed research at Bastyr University to identify and describe the treatments used for breast cancer by naturopathic physicians in North America. Currently her research is focused on the Asian medicinal mushroom Trametes versicolor in the treatment of breast and prostate cancer; functional brain imaging in the treatment of brain cancer; and the development of integrative oncology outcomes studies. She has provided adjunctive naturopathic medical care to hundreds of cancer patients, and has worked collaboratively with Seattle area oncologists to provide integrated conventional/CAM care.
Dr. Tom Strouse is Professor of Clinical Psychiatry and the inaugural holder of the Maddie Katz Chair in Palliative Care Research and Education. He is also the Medical Director of Stewart and Lynda Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital at UCLA and Vice-Chair for Clinical Affairs in the David Geffen UCLA School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry. Early in his career he was director of the UCLA Consultation/Liaison Psychiatry Service and worked closely with the UCLA Liver Transplant Program for more than a decade. He served from 1994-2007 as director of Cancer Pain Management and Supportive Oncology Services at the Outpatient Cancer Center at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center where he developed additional interest and skills in palliative medicine. Along with his current efforts to promote palliative care clinical research within the UCLA Health System, Dr. Strouse continues to attend on the RRMC-UCLA Palliative Care Consultation Service and is actively engaged with UCLA’s Operation Mend, a program for wounded US servicemen and women. In 2003 he received the Robert T. Angarola Award, the highest honor bestowed by the Southern California Cancer Pain Initiative to the individual most allied with improving quality of life for persons with cancer in a given year. He has also been recognized by psychiatry residents with a Top Course Director Award and is repeatedly named in Castle and Connolly’s “America’s Top Doctors for Cancer” and “Southern California Super Doctors” listings. Dr. Strouse is a Fellow of the Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine and an American Psychiatric Association Distinguished Fellow and member of the American College of Psychiatrists. In July 2014 assumed the role of Chair of the American Board of Internal Medicine Test Committee responsible for writing the certifying exam for all North American physician candidates for the ABMS subspecialty of Hospice and Palliative Medicine. In 2010 he was appointed Associate Editor of the Journal of Supportive Oncology and is now Editor, the Journal of Community and Supportive Oncology; in 2011 he became a Section Editor for PC- FACS, a monthly publication of the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management. He lectures throughout the country on topics related to pain, palliative care, psycho-oncology, and psychiatric aspects of medical illness.
Kathryn L. Tucker is Executive Director of the End of Life Liberty Project (ELLP), which she founded during her tenure as Executive Director of the Disability Rights Legal Center (DRLC), the nation’s oldest disability rights advocacy organization. Previously Tucker served two decades as Director of Advocacy and Legal Affairs for Compassion & Choices, working to improve care and expand choice at the end of life. Prior to that, Ms. Tucker practiced law with Perkins Coie. She has held faculty appointments as Associate Professor of Law at Loyola Law School, Los Angeles and as Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Washington, Seattle University and Lewis & Clark Schools of Law, teaching in the areas of law, medicine and ethics, with a focus on the end of life. Ms. Tucker served as lead counsel in two landmark federal cases decided by the United States Supreme Court, Washington v. Glucksberg and Vacco v. Quill, asserting that mentally competent terminally ill patients have a constitutional right to choose aid in dying. These cases are widely acknowledged to have prompted nationwide effort and much-needed attention to improving care of the dying, and to have established a federal constitutional right to aggressive pain management. Ms. Tucker played a key role in successfully defending the Oregon Death with Dignity Act from attack by the United States Department of Justice in Oregon v. Gonzales, representing the patient plaintiff intervenors through proceedings before the Federal District Court, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court of the United States. Ms. Tucker has also been involved in the development of, and successful campaigns to pass, the Washington Death with Dignity Act (2008) and Vermont’s Patient Choice at the End of Life Act (2013). Ms. Tucker is listed in the prestigious directory Who’s Who in American Law and was recognized as Lawyer of the Year, Runner-Up by the National Law Journal. She appears frequently on television and radio discussing end-of- life care, decision-making and physician assisted dying.
Ingrid Walker is Associate Professor of American Studies in the School of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences at the University of Washington, Tacoma. Her scholarship and teaching focus on the political dynamics of contemporary U.S. culture. Her upcoming book, High: Drugs, Desire, and a Nation of Users, traces how drug prohibition and the rapid development of the pharmaceutical industry have created disparate and uninformed cultural norms and policy regarding the use of licit and illicit psychoactive drugs. Ingrid is a member of the Editorial Board for NANO Crit, New American Notes Online, a peer-reviewed journal. She also consults with the ACLU and research organizations with regard to the legalization of marijuana in WA state.
Hope Wechkin, MD has been the medical director of Evergreen Health’s Hospice and Palliative Care programs since 2007. A graduate of Yale University and the University of Washington School of Medicine, Dr. Wechkin is a frequent guest speaker on clinical, ethical, and programmatic aspects of providing care to patients with serious illness. She is a member of the clinical faculty of the University of Washington School of Medicine, and is active as a member of the Steering Committee of the Washington State Medical Association’s End of Life Coalition. In 2015, she was the first palliative care physician to be featured as one of Seattle Magazine’s “Top Docs.” A recipient of EvergreenHealth’s Physician Innovation and Leadership award, Dr. Wechkin sees patients and families at EvergreenHealth’s Palliative Medicine clinic in Kirkland, Washington.
Phil Wolfson, M.D., is Principal Investigator for a Phase 2, FDA approved 18-person study of MDMA Assisted Psychotherapy for individuals with significant anxiety due to life threatening illnesses. His clinical practice with ketamine has informed his leadership role in the development of Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy. Phil’s book The Ketamine Papers has been published by MAPS and is the seminal work in the burgeoning ketamine arena. Phil is a sixties activist, psychiatrist/psychotherapist, writer, practicing Buddhist and psychonaut who has lived in the Bay Area for 38 years. He is the author of Noe – A Father/Son Song of Love, Life, Illness and Death (2011, North Atlantic Books). In the 1980s, he participated in clinical research with MDMA (Ecstasy). He has been awarded five patents for unique herbal medicines. He is a journalist and author of numerous articles on politics, transformation, psychedelics, consciousness and spirit, and was a founding member of the Heffter Research Institute. Phil has taught in the graduate psychology programs at JFK University, CIIS and the UCSF School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry.