Longtime Faces & Voices of Recovery board member Patty McCarthy Metcalf has been named executive director of the prominent national recovery advocacy organization, bringing to the role a diverse background in public policy work, community mobilization and peer service development. The organization's Dec. 12 announcement ends a lengthy search for a replacement for Pat Taylor, who left Faces & Voices in February.
A news release from the national organization states that Metcalf “has long-term working relationships with many key stakeholders and her presence reinforces our commitment to the recovery community and the future of Faces & Voices of Recovery.” Faces & Voices is in the process of merging with the group Young People in Recovery, and some field leaders in recent months have expressed concern over whether Faces & Voices will maintain what has been a historically strong national advocacy presence on issues such as insurance parity and funding for services.
Metcalf has served since the summer of 2013 as the Center for Social Innovation's deputy director of the federally supported Bringing Recovery Supports to Scale Technical Assistance Center Strategy (BRSS TACS) initiative. Prior to that, she served for 10 years as director of Faces of Recovery Vermont, an organization that saw significant growth in a sparsely populated state where the ranks of a recovery movement would be expected to grow incrementally.
In an Addiction Professional profile published in 2008, Metcalf indicated that local and national recovery advocacy organizations should never lose sight of their important role of communicating recovery stories to the public, even as they become immersed in significant policy initiatives. “I don't think Faces & Voices will ever stray very far from that,” she said at the time. “There's still that sense of celebrating and honoring recovery.”
Metcalf's other experience includes work as a substance abuse prevention specialist at the Vermont Department of Health and as a child and family clinician in a community mental health setting.
Faces & Voices leaders say her thorough knowledge of the national organization's operations from her service on the board will allow her to step in immediately on administrative tasks. Metcalf has been in recovery since 1989.