Maryland-DC Society of Addiction
A Chapter of the American Society of Addiction Medicine

American Society of Addiction Medicine

The Maryland-DC Society of Addiction is a Chapter of the American Society of Addiction Medicine

The Maryland-DC Society of Addiction is a Chapter of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM.) ASAM, founded in 1954, is a professional medical society representing over 7,000 physicians, clinicians and associated professionals in the field of addiction medicine. ASAM is dedicated to increasing access and improving the quality of addiction treatment, educating physicians and the public, supporting research and prevention, and promoting the appropriate role of physicians in the care of patients with addiction.

ASAM is the largest leading professional society actively seeking to define and expand the field of addiction medicine.

ASAM membership offers the opportunity to develop treatment guidelines and protocol, network with peers and attend world-renowned courses in the field of addiction medicine and so much more. Besides being able to network with these doctors and share resources and best practices, there are numerous benefits of becoming a member.

Mission & Goals

To provide a medium for physicians, medical trainees, and other healthcare providers with special interests in Addiction Medicine to meet and address issues of mutual interest and concern.


The Society of Addiction Medicine exists to

  • Enable networking with colleagues in Addiction Medicine by providing a forum for sharing ideas
  • Provide closer liaison between members and the national activities of ASAM
  • Provide liaison to other physicians, physician societies, and other healthcare entities in Maryland regarding Addiction Medicine issues
  • Increase public awareness and enhance knowledge and attitudes about the existence and vitality of the specialty of Addiction Medicine and the chronic disease of addiction and its related problems
  • Serve as a vehicle for increased professionalism and sharing higher quality information on prevention, training, and treatment regarding substance use disorders and related conditions
  • Serve as a resource for state and national public policy issues that affect Addiction Medicine services and patients with addiction

MADDCSAM Board of Directors


John Dombrowski, MD
President: John Dombrowski, MD, is the Medical Director of Bayside Methadone Recovery & Tranquility Woods, as well as Director and CEO of the Washington Pain Center in Washington, D.C.

Dr. Dombrowski is the Medical Director of the Anesthesiologist Assistant Program and Clinical Assistant Professor at Case Western Reserve University, in Washington, DC as well as Clinical Associate of Georgetown University Medical School. He is also past president of the District of Columbia Society of Anesthesiologists and on the Board of Directors at the American Society of Anesthesiologists. His comments have appeared in the Washington Times and other publications, and he has often been interviewed on local television and radio programs. He also has made several appearances on NBC’s Today Show, CNN, Good Morning American and the Dr. Drew show.

Dr. Dombrowski received his medical degree from Georgetown University and completed residency training at Yale University in internal medicine and anesthesiology. He later became board certified in anesthesiology and pain medicine.


Nishant Shah, MD, MPH
President-Elect: Nishant Shah, MD, MPH, Board Certified Family Medicine and Addiction Medicine Physician.

He works at REACH Health Services, which is a Methadone OTP in Baltimore City and is the Physician Liason for the Baltimore City Health Departments Hub and Spoke Program. He also works as a consultant to the Baltimore County and Anne Arundel County Departments of Health.

Previously, Dr. Shah worked as a full spectrum Family Medicine Physician in Martinez, California, as well as having served as a Medical Director for the Contra Costa County Healthcare for the Homeless Program. He was worked as a Public Health Physician overseeing a Communicable Disease and Tuberculosis Control Program, as well as launching a Population Health initiative within the Contra Costa County Public Health Department. In addition to his work in Addiction Medicine, Dr. Shah is currently an Adjunct Instructor at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, Department of Family and Community Medicine, Chief Medical Officer for Keswick Community Health, and a Family Planning Physician at Planned Parenthood of Maryland.

Treasurer & Chair

Cat Chamberlain, MD
Treasurer & Chair, Finance Committee: Cat Chamberlain, MD is a Family Physician and Director of the Baltimore Medical System Substance Use Disorder Program.

She also serves as the Medical Director for BD Health Services and the Medical Director for the Baltimore Convention Center Field Hospital, which was set up in response to COVID-19. She attended Brown Medical School and completed her residency at the University of Maryland Medical Center.

Secretary & Chair

Sophia Purekal, MD
Secretary & Chair, Membership Committee: Dr. Sophia Purekal is an Instructor of Medicine in the Division of Addiction Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Dr. Purekal graduated from the University of Washington School of Medicine in 2011. She works in Baltimore, MD and specializes in Family Medicine.


Joseph A. Adams, MD
Chair, Public Policy Committee: Joseph A. Adams, MD is a graduate of the University of Maryland School of Medicine, and completed an Internal Medicine Residency and Faculty Development Fellowship at the Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center.

He is board certified in internal medicine and addiction medicine. Dr. Adams serves as the Medical Director of several opioid treatment programs: A Helping Hand (Woodlawn, MD), Genesis Treatment Services (Westminster MD and Frederick MD), and Veni Vidi Vici Treatment Services (Bel Air, MD). Prior to practicing addiction medicine, he practiced primary care internal medicine in private practice and in Federally Qualified Health Centers. As a member of the ASAM Public Policy Committee, he participated in writing ASAM's policy on Cannabis in 2020, and was the Chair of the ASAM Committee that completed the ASAM policy on the Regulation of the Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder with Methadone in 2021. Dr. Adams' professional interests include brief counseling for anxiety and for unhealthy use of benzodiazepines. As a member of the Opioid Treatment Program Medical Directors Workgroup, convened by the Maryland Behavioral Health Administration, he participated in developing Best Practices for Opioid Treatment Programs in Maryland. Dr. Adams volunteered with the Smoke Free Maryland coalition for 15 years, serving as President in 1997. The coalition successfully advocated for an increase in state tobacco taxes and for smoke free public places in Maryland.


Darius Rastegar, MD
Chair, Education & Program Committee: Darius Rastegar, MD is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.

He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Addiction Medicine and has had over 20 years of clinical experience treating patients with substance use disorders. He is the medical director of the Addiction Medicine Unit at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center and the Program Director for the Addiction Medicine Fellowship at Johns Hopkins. He is also co-author of American Society of Addiction Medicine Handbook on Addiction Medicine. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania Medical School and completed his training in internal medicine at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center.


J. Gregory Hobelmann, MD

Fellow Appointee

Lea Selitsky, MD, MPH
Fellow Appointee: Lea Selitsky, MD, MPH is a fellow in Addiction Medicine at Johns Hopkins.

She earned her medical degree at Wayne State University before completing her residency in Internal Medicine at the Johns Hopkins Hospital. As a member of ASAM, she served on the national Covid-19 Task Force. She is passionate about harm reduction and expanding access to addiction treatment in primary care.

MADDCSAM Past Presidents

Immediate Past President

Steve Daviss, MD, DFAPA, DABPM
Immediate Past President: Steve Daviss, MD, DFAPA, DABPM, is a Medical Director for Optum, which manages specialty behavioral health for Maryland Medicaid.

He is also a volunteer member for URAC's Accreditation Committee and for the board of directors for Baltimore City Medical Society. He previously served as Lead Psychiatrist for Mindoula's Collaborative Care Program, and before that served as Senior Medical Advisor to the Office of the Chief Medical Officer and Medical Director of the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, where he focused on various aspects of the opioid crisis. He served on a number of related task forces and councils, including the HHS Pain Management Task Force, CDC/HRSA Advisory Committee on HIV and Hepatitis, and the Federal Health IT Coordinating Council. He is board-certified in Psychiatry and in Addiction Medicine, with expertise in the intersection of psychiatry, primary care, health information technology, and healthcare policy. Prior to beginning his service to HHS, he served in numerous leadership positions in clinical, policy, and medical informatics areas, including clinical assistant professor of Psychiatry at University of Maryland, chair of the Department of Psychiatry at University of Maryland Baltimore Washington Medical Center, founding president at Fuse Health Strategies, Chief Medical Informatics Officer at M3 Information, chair of the Parity Accreditation Committee of ClearHealth Quality Institute, and election to Recorder of the Assembly at the American Psychiatric Association in 2017.

Other past advocacy and leadership roles include president of the Maryland Psychiatric Society, chair of the APA Committee on Mental Health Information Technology, chair of the Public Policy Committee and Board of Directors member for the Maryland-DC Society of Addiction Medicine, and APA Assembly Representative for MPS for eight years. In Maryland, he has served on the Health Care Commission’s Health Information Exchange Policy Board, Health Services and Cost Review Commission’s Performance Measurement committee, and Medicaid Pharmacy & Therapeutics Committee. Work on national standards organizations include URAC’s Health Standards Committee for ten years and co-chair of CCHIT’s Workgroup on Behavioral Health Electronic Health Records. Dr. Daviss is co-author of the 2011 book from Johns Hopkins University Press, “Shrink Rap: Three Psychiatrists Explain Their Work.” @HITshrink on Twitter.

Past President

Paul M. Katz, DO, FACA
Past President: Paul M. Katz, DO, FACA, received his doctorate in Osteopathic Medicine from Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine and training in anesthesiology at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center.

He is board certified in addiction medicine, anesthesiology and family practice. He holds degrees in both chemistry and biology from Youngstown University. Dr. Katz has served as an advisor for AMPRO, Adirondack-Hudson-Mohawk Medical Peer Review Organization Inc. He also served within the New York State Society of Anesthesia on the government legal and economic affairs committee as well as the Committee of Ambulatory Surgery. Dr. Katz currently offers full service family practice in a rural setting with a special emphasis on addiction medicine.

Past President

Anika Alvanzo, MD, MS
Past President: Anika Alvanzo, MD, MS is the Eastern Region Medical Director for Pyramid Healthcare, Inc.

She is also a physician consultant to the Behavioral Health Administration in the Maryland Department of Health and the Managing Partner of Uzima Consulting Group, LLC, which provides addiction-related consultation, training, and expert witness testimony. Dr. Alvanzo is a graduate of the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences and holds a master’s degree in biostatistics from Virginia Commonwealth University. She is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Addiction Medicine. Dr. Alvanzo is a Distinguished Fellow of ASAM, a Past President of the Maryland-DC Society of Addiction Medicine, and currently serves as Chair of the ASAM Annual Conference Program Planning Committee and Region V Director for the ASAM Board of Directors.

At Pyramid Healthcare, Inc., Dr. Alvanzo’s role is to optimize and standardize medical care, with emphasis on substance withdrawal management and pharmacotherapy, in the residential and outpatient addiction treatment programs in Eastern Pennsylvania and Maryland. Prior to this, Dr. Alvanzo spent twelve years as faculty in the Divisions of General Internal Medicine and Addiction Medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine where she held a variety of clinical leadership roles, including Associate Medical Director of Addiction Treatment Services and the Center for Addiction and Pregnancy and Medical Director of the Broadway Center for Addiction, comprehensive, opioid treatment programs. From 2011 to 2018, Dr. Alvanzo directed the Substance Use Disorders Consultation Service, a multidisciplinary inpatient addiction consultation service serving the Johns Hopkins Hospital Department of Medicine.

Dr. Alvanzo has served as an expert on National Institutes of Health, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine, National Quality Forum, and PEW Research Center panels regarding opioids and integration of recovery-oriented care in various settings.

Past President

Dr. George Kolodner
Past President: Dr. George Kolodner is a board certified addiction psychiatrist who has specialized in the outpatient treatment of addictions since 1973.

He received his M.D. from the University of Rochester in 1967, and completed his psychiatric training at Yale University in 1971. He is currently the Chief Clinical Officer of the Kolmac Outpatient Recovery Centers, which he co-founded in 1973. Dr. Kolodner is the originator of an outpatient rehabilitation model using a 3 hour a day treatment unit, which led to a new level of care known as intensive outpatient or “IOP.” (ASAM Level 2.1). Preceding IOP with ambulatory withdrawal management and following it up with continuing care created an accessible, comprehensive, integrated treatment approach to addictions as an alternative to the traditional, more fragmented treatment strategy. He is active in teaching medical students and residents at Georgetown University Medical School, where he is a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry. He also teaches psychiatric residents at the University of Maryland, where he also is Clinical Professor of Psychiatry.

Past President

Yngvild Olsen, MD, MPH, DFASAM
Past President: Yngvild Olsen, MD, MPH, DFASAM currently serves as Medical Director of the Institutes for Behavior Resources Inc/REACH Health Services, a comprehensive outpatient Opioid Treatment Program in Baltimore City.

She completed her medical training at Harvard Medical School, and internal medicine residency with a year as Primary Care Chief Resident at the Boston Medical Center. She received a Master’s in Public Health from the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health as part of a fellowship in General Internal Medicine at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. She has previously served as the Vice President of Clinical Affairs for the Baltimore Substance Abuse Systems, as the Deputy Health Officer for the Harford County Health Department, and as the Medical Director for the Johns Hopkins Hospital’s outpatient substance use treatment services. Dr. Olsen’s advocacy work serving as the President of the Maryland Society of Addiction Medicine (MDSAM), as the President of the Maryland Association for the Treatment of Opioid Dependence (MATOD), and as a member of several boards and councils, including the Maryland Overdose Prevention Advisory Council, the Journey Home Board, Baltimore’s effort to end homelessness, and the National Council on Alcoholism and Other Drug Dependence-Maryland chapter board. She will also proudly serve as a recently elected Vice President to the ASAM Board of Directors.

Past President

Gerald Marti, MD, PhD
Past President: Gerald Marti, MD, PhD is a physician scientist (hematologist) who spent the last 30+ years in the US PHS at the NIH and FDA studying hematological malignancy.

As part of his recovery program, he was directed to become a member of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM). As a member of the Maryland ASAM chapter, he has primarily focused his efforts in the area of continuing medical education. Currently as past-president of the Maryland ASAM chapter, he team teaches the FDA mandated risk evaluation and mitigation strategy (REMS) for the use of extended release and long acting opioids: safe use while improving patient care. His other interests include smoking cessation, screening, brief intervention and referral treatment (SBIRT), the use of naltrexone for extended-release injectable suspension for the treatment of alcoholism, the scientific basis for 12-step programs and medical student education in the field of alcoholism and addiction. He is also interested in the natural history of alcoholism. Dr. Marti went to Ghana for14 days in May 2014 and met with Ghanaian professionals regarding the addiction, treatment and rehabilitations. Dr. Marti is on the Recovery Africa Advisory Council and is also board member for the Arise and Flourish Foundation.

Past President

J Ramsay Farah, MD, MPH
Past President: J Ramsay Farah, MD, MPH, earned his B.Sc. and M.D. from the American University of Beirut. He completed his Residency and Fellowship in pediatrics at the University of Maryland in Baltimore.

He holds a Master’s in Public Health from the John Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health where he also completed his Residency in general preventative medicine, epidemiology. Dr. Farah commands 38 years of distinguished clinical practice and executive administrative leadership and is the recipient of over 50 awards at the state, national and international levels. Currently, he is Regional Medical Director, United Healthcare Clinical Services, NE, and Chief Medical Officer at Phoenix of Health and Phoenix Health Center, L.L.C located in Hagerstown, MD.

Past President

Marc Fishman MD
Past President: Marc Fishman MD is an addiction psychiatrist and leads Maryland Treatment Centers, a regional behavioral healthcare provider, which offers programs for residential and outpatient treatment for SUDs and co-occurring disorders, for adolescents and adults

He is a member of the faculty of the Department of Psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He writes and lectures widely on a variety of topics including youth treatment, placement and treatment matching strategies, medication treatments for addiction and others. His research work has focused particularly on opioid addiction treatment for youth, and more broadly on pharmacotherapies for addiction, as well as models of care and treatment outcomes for youth SUDs. Dr. Fishman served as a co-editor for the most recent editions of ASAM’s Patient Placement Criteria (PPC 3 and PPC2-R), and was the chief editor for the ASAM PPC Supplement on Pharmacotherapies for Alcohol Use Disorders. He is the Chair of the ASAM Adolescent Workgroup. He served as a Past President (2010-12) of the Maryland Society of Addiction Medicine.

Past President

Devang Gandhi, MB, BS, MD, FRCPsych, DFASAM, DFAPA
Past President: Devang Gandhi, MB, BS, MD, FRCPsych, DFASAM, DFAPA. Dr. Gandhi earned his medical degree and a doctoral degree in psychiatry from India and his membership of the Royal College of Psychiatrists in the United Kingdom.

He completed a residency in psychiatry and a fellowship in addiction psychiatry at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. He is board-certified in psychiatry, addiction psychiatry and addiction medicine. After many years serving as a full-time faculty, he remains active in academics as Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Director of the Addiction Psychiatry and Addiction Medicine Fellowship Programs at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. He has previously served as the Medical Director of the Addiction Service Line at the University of Maryland Medical Center, the Substance Abuse Treatment Programs at the VA Maryland Health Care System, and the Bureau of Behavioral Health at the Howard County Health Department. Currently, he serves as the Medical Director of the Sinai Hospital Addiction Recovery Program and is a Staff Psychiatrist at the Baltimore VA Medical Center. His research has focused on the treatment of opioid dependence and co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders. He is a former editor of The Maryland Psychiatrist and serves as an Assistant Editor of Addiction.