The clinical program at Jaywalker Lodge in Carbondale, Colo., emphasizes the building of skills that can nurture a full life in recovery. The male patients at the extended-care residential and outpatient program will see a role model for this journey in Jaywalker's new chief clinical officer, Stefan Bate, MA, LAC. Bate was a Jaywalker patient in 2007.
Now 36, Bate says of his return to the facility, “This is beyond 'wildest dreams' territory for sure.”
Bate's ties to Jaywalker Lodge had remained strong over the years. He had stayed in touch with a counselor who often mentioned to him that he would be an excellent addition to the field if he ever decided to go that route. When the recession placed his future success in commercial banking in jeopardy, he decided to attend graduate school and received help from Jaywalker founder Bob Ferguson in becoming manager of two Colorado recovery residences.
For the past five years, Bate has directed A New Path, a transitional-living program with operations in Carbondale and Marin County, Calif. He now returns to an organization that has evolved considerably since he was a patient there.
“The part that is so incredible is how they've expanded to fit the entire continuum of care,” Bate says.
Bate had experienced minimal success in short-stay treatmemt programs prior to becoming a patient at Jaywalker. A counselor at another program recommended that he look into Jaywalker, which Bate would proceed to do after his financial situation improved.
At the time he attended, Jaywalker featured a two-stage, four-month program. Bate says the combination of intensive therapy and transitional living helped bridge a gap for him, as he was able to resume work but maintain a strong foothold in treatment at the same time.
Today, Jaywalker's curriculum extends for about a year, in four phases. The organization is known nationally for its 12-Step work and adventure-based programming, but Bate says he wants to emphasize in his new role that the program is about much more than its scenic location. “I want to highlight how clinically sophisticated it is,” he says.
Jaywalker Lodge CEO Dirk Eldredge said this in an announcement about the appointment of Bate, who is replacing the retiring Jeff Kremer as chief clinical officer: “He brings not only a firsthand knowledge of our program, but also an infectious spirit and the abiding belief that absolutely anything is possible in recovery.”