Michael Leach is a Certified Clinical Medical Assistant, CCMA, who has been working in the field of addiction for the past seven years. He was the Director of Rehabilitation at the New Life Retreat in Louisiana before starting his journey with DRS three years ago. Michael spent most of his career training under the board-certified Addictionologist Dr. Rohit Adi. His experience includes working with families during their loved one’s stay in treatment, helping those with substance abuse issues find treatment, and teaching life skills to patients in a recovery atmosphere.
Michael’s ability to help stems from his own struggle with addiction; As a former addict, he understood what his patients were going through. He could relate with them and get them through their difficult times. His personal and professional experience in dealing with addiction allows him to connect with both medical professionals and those struggling with drug and alcohol dependency.
The early part of his career was spent working one-on-one with patients actively withdrawing from drugs. Withdrawal and the fear of going through it is one of the biggest reasons an addict continues to use and can be the most challenging part of the rehabilitation process. His experience in the withdrawal atmosphere has taught him that regardless of what approach a person takes to get off drugs, mental and emotional obstacles always need to be overcome. In his experience, having someone there to help a person through these obstacles can make all the difference during the withdrawal process. He also believes this help can be more impactful if the person getting you through can relate through personal experience.
After working with patients directly for over two years, Michael moved into an administrative role that gave him intimate knowledge of how a drug rehab operates. As the Director of Rehabilitation at the New Life Retreat, he understood what it takes to deliver a drug rehab program properly. Cultivating highly trained staff, adhering to strict state guidelines, and maintaining the safety and security of the clients and staff, are just a few things Michael was responsible for. He realized that making a quality drug rehab center goes far beyond what many people realize. He uses this knowledge to assist DRS in creating its extensive directory of services.
Michael also received his bachelor’s degree from Rutgers University in 2010.
Short interview with Michael Leach
What motivates you to help people with substance use?
As an individual, I went through my own recovery journey. During this time, I went to many treatment facilities that failed. I learned that recovering from substance use disorder is unique to every individual. I realized that all drug rehabs are not the same, and finding an approach that resonates with the individual is key to long-term sobriety. This was something I didn’t know in the beginning stages of my recovery and want to share with those who are suffering from substance use disorder.
I did not succeed with recovery until my fourth attempt, and if I had given up, my future would have been entirely different. This motivates me to help others find drug rehab services that can make a difference.
Why should individuals listen to what you have to say about recovery?
It comes down to experience. I’m in a unique situation where I have close to 10 years of experience as both a substance user and an addiction professional. Not only do I know what it is like to suffer from addiction, but I also know how to treat it clinically. My history in both aspects of recovery allows me to speak about drug rehabilitation from firsthand personal and professional experience.
- Withdrawal Specialist 2015-2017
- Director of Rehabilitation 2017-2019
- Certified Nursing Assistant 2016-2018
- Certified Clinical Medical Assistant 2019-Present