Skip to main content

Executive Director

Norma Finkelstein

Norma Finkelstein, PhD, LICSW is founder and Executive Director of the Institute for Health and Recovery, a Massachusetts statewide services, policy, program development, training, and research organization. Prior to this, Dr. Finkelstein was the founder and Executive Director of the Women’s Alcoholism Program/CASPAR, Inc., a comprehensive prevention, education, and treatment program for chemically dependent women and their families. She received her MSW from the University of Michigan and her PhD from the Florence Heller School, Brandeis University.

Over the last 40 years, Dr. Finkelstein’s work has focused on substance use prevention and treatment, with specific emphasis on women, children and families; pregnancy; co-occurring disorders, including integrated care for women with substance use disorders, mental illness and histories of violence; trauma informed services; services for youth and young adults; tobacco education and cessation; and family centered care. Her expertise in designing and managing services as well as in the areas of policy, planning and research, has resulted in over 50 professional publications and curricula, including “Getting Sober, Getting Well. A Treatment Guide for Caregivers Who Work With Women’ and “The Nurturing Program for Families in Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery.”

Dr. Finkelstein served as Chair of the US Center for Substance Abuse Treatment’s Women’s TIPS, as a member of the US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s Women’s Advisory Board, and as a consensus panel member for the US Center for Substance Abuse Prevention’s FASD TIPS. She currently serves as Co-Chair of the Substance Abuse Subcommittee of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network. She also serves on the Board of Directors of the Association for Behavioral Healthcare of Massachusetts, as well as a number of other community and professional boards. She has been the principal investigator and manager of numerous health, mental health and maternal and child health grants and contracts.

Dr. Finkelstein has been the recipient of numerous awards including the Francis O’Brien Award given by the Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Association of Massachusetts (ADAA) for Outstanding Leadership in the Field of Substance Abuse; the Mayor’s Crossing Generations Award given by the City of Cambridge for support and commitment to young women’s development; the New England Chapter of the National Association for Perinatal Addiction, Research and Education’s (NAPARE) Award for dedication and commitment to service and research on behalf of alcohol and drug dependent women; the Massachusetts Chapter of the National Association of Social Work’s Most Significant Contribution to Social Work Practice Award; the Alcohol and Drug Problems Association of North America’s Outstanding Accomplishments in Alcohol and Drug Programming Award; the National Council on Alcoholism’s New Pioneer Award. Most recently, she received the National Center on Substance Abuse and Child Welfare’s National Collaborative Leadership Award, the National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome’s Erin Frey Advocacy Award, and the Women’s Service Network’s and National Association of State Alcohol and Drug Abuse Directors’ Women’s Services Champion award.