Gateway Alcohol & Drug Treatment Introduces New Vice President of Business Development & Strategy

gateway treatment centers jodi levine

Jodi Levine
Vice President of Business Development & Strategy
Gateway Treatment Centers

Chicago-based Gateway Alcohol & Drug Treatment Centers announced today that Jodi Levine has joined the organization as its Vice President of Business Development & Strategy.

“We’re excited to have Jodi as part of the Gateway team. There are opportunities we’ve not fully explored to expand and deliver our services to more of those in need of treatment,” says Gateway President and CEO Dr. Thomas P. Britton. “Jodi has developed proven growth strategies, successfully negotiated managed care contracts and orchestrated key acquisitions. She brings the expertise Gateway needs to continue its growth, and brings the character and integrity to support and drive our mission.”

Levine has more than 20 years of experience developing and executing growth strategies for a diverse group of health care organizations. Most recently, she was the Vice President, Corporate Business Development in the Healthcare Compliance Solution division at Stericycle, a global medical waste disposal services firm based in Northbrook, IL.

Gateway Alcohol & Drug Treatment’s Approach to 12-Step Programs

1 in a Series of 4

iStock_000006386146_MediumGateway Alcohol and Drug Treatment Centers employs evidenced-based practices to create meaningful, individualized treatment programs. We believe there is more than one pathway to recovery so we expose clients to a wide array of treatment methodologies. This article series explores some of those methodologies.

12-Step Programs

A key distinguishing factor between Gateway Treatment Centers and the vast majority of treatment providers can be found in the way we employ 12-step programs. First and foremost, these types of programs comprise the core offering of most treatment providers, while they are just a portion of what we do at Gateway.

A Personal Choice

Some clients come to Gateway convinced that a 12-step program is the only thing that will work for them, while others have equally strong reservations about them. Using our exceptional implementation of the concept, we make it a priority to accommodate the needs of clients who are of either mindset.

Gradual Exposure

Our experienced, knowledgeable staff utilizes a targeted approach that provides clients with an in-depth understanding of 12-step principles. Our curriculum is designed to break down barriers to participation and “kick start” the process of attending meetings and finding a sponsor.

12-step meetings can not only be challenging for some, they also vary from site to site and meeting to meeting. In order to give clients a good idea of what to expect, Gateway provides them with exposure to 12-steps in multiple settings. We accompany clients to both on-site and off-site meetings.

For those who prefer not to use 12-step techniques, we provide on-site SMART recovery groups and linkage to other peer support options such as Dual Recovery Anonymous.

Gateway believes 12-steps and other kinds of support groups play a valuable role in substance abuse treatment, but they only comprise part of the picture. The greatest benefit can be derived from experiencing 12-step programs in conjunction with evidenced-based treatment.

Learn more about Gateway’s Experience and Expertise in Substance Abuse Treatment >

Newly Renovated Lake Villa Drug Rehab Center Inspires Recovery

Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment recently completed major cosmetic renovations to its residential substance abuse treatment center located in Lake Villa, IL. Built to last, the “Main House” of the beloved drug rehab center dates back to the 1920’s. Originally built as a private lakeside residence, the 45-acre estate also once was a retreat for Catholic nuns prior to Gateway Foundation’s acquisition in 1972.

Gateway Treatment Center in Lake Villa

Gateway Treatment Center in Lake Villa

Located approximately 50 miles northwest of downtown Chicago, the Lake Villa drug treatment center is situated along the shores of the Fox Lake. The peaceful location offers men, women and adolescent males the opportunity to pursue sobriety distraction-free, surrounded by nature.

Gateway Treatment Center Lake Villa - Residential Living

Gateway Treatment Center Lake Villa – Residential Living

“We embraced the remodeling project as an opportunity to not only revitalize the atmosphere here yet also make it as convenient as possible for individuals to focus on recovery. It’s our goal for each person to walk away confident and prepared to tackle life’s challenges without the use of alcohol or drugs,” explains Patricia Ryding, Executive Director, Lake Villa.

The renovated public spaces and corridors incorporate a soothing palette in hues of tan and green with purple and gold accents. Inviting lounge areas feature new comfortable furnishings and flat screen televisions. The updates to the guest rooms include new contemporary furnishings and linens. For easier accessibility, select guest rooms were reconfigured to make way for new areas dedicated to group counseling sessions, studies, meditation and DIY laundry.

Lake Villa Drug  Treatment Facility - Group Room

Lake Villa Drug Treatment Facility – Group Room

“The response to the enhancements here at the Lake Villa drug  treatment center has been extremely positive. The development team did an incredible job of creating a relaxed atmosphere with the look and feel of a stunning resort,” says Dr. Ryding.

Gateway Foundation’s Lake Villa Treatment Center offers separate comprehensive residential programs to address the specific recovery needs of each gender. Family counseling and ongoing after-care support are built-in as part of one’s treatment program. To obtain more information or take an online tour of the Lake Villa rehab center, please visit

Gateway Foundation Springfield Partners with Barnes & Noble for Upcoming Book Fair

Family-Friendly Event to Feature Face Painting, Story Reading and Presentations by Substance Abuse Counselors on March 10

Looking for a good book and a family-friendly event to help relieve the winter blues? On Sunday, March 10, 2013, customers who shop at Barnes & Noble, located at 3111 South Veterans Pkwy in Springfield, can buy their books, cards, coffee and enjoy fun activities while supporting a good cause. A portion of sales from the day will be shared with Gateway Foundation Springfield, a non-profit alcohol and drug abuse treatment provider serving the Springfield area.

Throughout the day, activities will be taking place that entertain and inform customers at Barnes & Noble in SpringfieldGateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment counselors will be on hand to answer questions about alcohol and drug abuse and treatment options available. Book fair activities are scheduled as follows:

  • 1-2 p.m. Family Hour activities will include story reading, clowns handing out balloons, face painting and a door prize drawing for Barnes & Noble gift cards.
  • 2-3 p.m. Gateway Foundation Substance Abuse Counselor Jackie Thompson will inform customers about alcohol abuse. 
  • 3-4 p.m. Family Hour activities will consist of story reading, face painting and a door prize drawing for Barnes & Noble gift cards.
  • 4-5 p.m. Gateway Foundation Substance Abuse Counselor John Dunlap will educate customers about drug trends, including synthetic drugs like K2 and bath salts.

“We are excited that Barnes & Noble is partnering with Gateway Foundation for our upcoming book fair and providing an opportunity for local residents to learn more about substance abuse and treatment options. With the donation from Barnes & Noble, we plan to create a robust reading resource center and share the joy of reading with the adults and teens in recovery,” says Gateway Foundation Executive Director Kerry Henry.

There are two ways to help Gateway Foundation Springfield enhance its reading resources, supporters should present Gateway Foundation’s unique voucher number of 11015294 when purchasing items at any Barnes & Noble store on March 10, 2013, or present the voucher number for Barnes & Noble online purchases made from March 10 to March 15, 2013.

Located at 2200 Lake Victoria Drive in Springfield, the Gateway Foundation Treatment Center offers substance abuse treatment expertise and a supportive environment for people who need substance abuse treatment and their families. Substance abuse programs are available to accommodate both adults and teens—ranging from Residential and Day Treatment to Morning and After-Work/After-School. For more information, please visit

What to Expect in Substance Abuse Treatment

substance abuse treatmentWith a reputation for clinical expertise, and unwavering compassion and care, Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment‘s team of licensed substance abuse professionals and addiction counselors will provide the guidance and support necessary for lasting recovery. Starting with your first consultation our dedicated staff will ensure your substance abuse treatment experience is always personalized and focused on helping you or your loved one reclaim a productive, healthy life.

The First Step: Free In-Depth Consultation

Gateway provides free in-depth consultations to help determine the severity of substance use and identify the appropriate level of treatment. Each individual will have different needs based on their unique history and current substance use. This confidential consultation will help you and your loved one better understand options and next steps.

Assessment: Personalized Treatment Options

The next step is an in-depth assessment which may include establishing a health history by our nursing staff and a physician review. The assessment will confirm what level of treatment is recommended such as Intensive Outpatient Treatment, Day Treatment, Residential Treatment and Aftercare. It will also determine what therapies and counseling an individual needs to give them the most effective tools for developing a sober lifestyle.

Counseling and therapy will vary based on the needs of an individual. Gateway‘s programs are developed using an evidence-based treatment model, through which our goal is to not just stop a client’s substance abuse, but to replace dangerous behaviors with new, healthier tools and coping mechanisms. Understanding what lies beneath the addictive behavior gives each individual the best possible chance of success in the treatment process and at long-term recovery.

Counseling, Therapies and Activities May Include:

  • Individual and Family Counseling
  • Group Therapy
  • Substance Abuse Education
  •  12-Step Facilitation and 12-Step Recovery
  • Medication-Assisted Treatment
  • Dual Diagnosed/Co-Occurring Mental Health & Substance Abuse Treatment
  • Therapies to explore and manage emotions in a positive way, including: art therapy, music therapy, guided imagery and journaling
  • Physical fitness activities to build strong bodies, minds and a sense of teamwork. Activities may include yoga, Pilates or recreation such as basketball, softball or volleyball

Because each person, program and Gateway Treatment Center has its unique characteristics, the counseling, therapies and activities an individual receives will be unique as well.

Family Video Counseling Aids in Substance Abuse Treatment

Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment Offers Long Distance Support For Lasting Recovery

substance abuse treatmentCHICAGO, January 30, 2012—When the best substance abuse treatment for a person’s drug abuse or drug addiction isn’t close to home, it makes it difficult for family members to participate in the treatment of a loved one. Recognizing family involvement is an integral aspect that provides both immediate and long-term benefits to individuals in recovery, Gateway Foundation Lake Villa has added a valuable service to its Family Program to assist families that live at a distance through online video counseling.

“At Gateway Foundation, we know substance abuse treatment that engages family members in the treatment process is helpful. We know that a positive and supportive recovery environment helps improve and maintain recovery. That is why we are integrating video technology to make family involvement as convenient as possible,” explains Gateway Foundation Clinical Director Dr. Phil Welches.

Currently available for families of individuals in Residential Treatment at Gateway Foundation Lake Villa with broadband Internet access and a computer, Gateway Foundation’s Family Video Counseling sessions are conducted via a secure video conferencing software application that is fully compliant with federal health regulations to ensure privacy. During the sessions, family situations related to substance abuse issues are discussed in an open and respectful manner. In addition, family members can learn coping skills, increase understanding of how to support a chemically dependent individual and gain insight into what to expect in recovery.

“Based on the encouraging results and positive feedback from families who participate in video counseling sessions, we plan to roll out Family Video Counseling to other Gateway Foundation residential substance abuse treatment centers this year,” says Dr. Welches.

Located approximately 50 miles northwest of Chicago, Gateway Foundation Lake Villa is situated on a beautiful 43-acre campus on the shores of the Fox Lake. For more information about alcohol and drug abuse treatment for adults and adolescents at the Lake Villa center, please visit

About Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment

Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment is Illinois’ largest provider of substance abuse treatment, providing services for adults and adolescents at treatment centers throughout the state. Gateway is licensed by the state of Illinois and accredited by The Joint Commission, the leading accrediting organization for hospitals and behavioral healthcare organizations. Each year, Gateway Foundation helps thousands of individual’s successfully complete treatment.

To learn more about Gateway Foundation’s free and confidential consultation, call 877-505-HOPE (4673).

Enlightening Communities about Substance Abuse

substance abuse educationAt Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment, we believe knowledge is power—that is why we offer educational resources and workshops to help communities learn about substance abuse. As the largest provider of substance abuse treatment in Illinois, Gateway Foundation is your community resource when it comes to substance abuse prevention efforts.

Gateway Foundation offers a variety of educational materials to help members of your community or organization better understand the effects of drug and alcohol abuse and the options for treatment. Gateway Foundation will travel to your location and make available expert speakers and revealing presentations on important topics that affect many in your community, such as:

  • Signs and symptoms of substance abuse
  • How to talk to someone who may need drug or alcohol treatment
  • How to cope with someone who has a substance abuse problem
  • Effects of substance abuse on the brain
  • Emerging drug trends

If you want to make a difference in your community or organization, please contact an Outreach Coordinator at any Gateway location or email to obtain educational materials or arrange a substance abuse awareness event.

Gateway Foundation Alumni Support Others in Early Recovery

Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment

Gateway Foundation Chicago West

At Gateway Foundation Chicago West, three dedicated Alumni women are bonding with others in early recovery on a regular basis. The threesome takes turns, visiting Gateway Foundation support groups every week to share their stories and connect with women in treatment.

“I keep going to the support groups to give back to where I came from—my foundation,” says Kelli, an Alumnus who volunteers at Gateway Foundation Chicago West. “I am showing newcomers that they can do it no matter what. I encourage them to give themselves a chance and to stay strong.”

“I believe it is particularly powerful when Alumni come to talk to others in treatment. The Alumni have walked the walk. They have worked with our counselors, followed the rules and lived with 15 other women (not easy to do),” explains Gabriela Raijer, Clinical Supervisor at the Chicago West Treatment Center. “Their experience is validated by the Alumni and they can see that early recovery can lead to long-term recovery.”

Supporting others is a great way for people in recovery to enhance their own recovery efforts as well. Ms. Raijer points out that assisting others keeps individuals in recovery grounded and creates an opportunity to reconnect with counselors if needed. What’s more, visiting Gateway Foundation acts as a reminder of where they came from and how challenging it was when they were first getting into recovery.

“It is dangerous to disconnect. I have to give it, for me to keep it,” states Novi, an Alumnus who is active in leading recovery groups at Gateway Foundation Chicago West.

“About a month ago, one of our clients was walking out the door, dragging her clothes with her. Novi, a Gateway Foundation Alumnus, happened to be waiting to start the Saturday monthly Alumni meeting in the lobby when she noticed the woman leaving. Novi pulled the client to the side, told her to ‘hold on’ and next thing we know, Novi convinced the woman to stay. Novi was in the right place at the right time and I was grateful to have her here,” explains Ms. Raijer.

Rejuvenation through Nutrition

nutrients and substance abuse recoveryDid you know that alcohol and drug abuse prevents the body from properly absorbing and breaking down nutrients and expelling toxins?

Consequently, people in recovery have a special need for foods that are high in nutrients to rebuild damaged tissues, organs and regain appropriate functioning of the various systems, including the nervous and gastrointestinal systems.

For example, substance abuse prevents the body from processing essential nutrients, such as amino acids like tyrosine and tryptophan. These amino acids are important for production of serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine, three neurotransmitters responsible for emotional stability and mental clarity.

Substance abuse also inhibits the absorption of vitamins, such as B vitamins and vitamin C. The benefits of B vitamins are many. They bring your body into balance and help with stress, energy levels and disease prevention. Vitamin C is a vital nutrient required by the human body for the growth and repair of tissues and is an antioxidant.

Savor A Healthier Lifestyle One Bite at a Time

A fresh new year is here. Now is the time to start anew and recommit your efforts to be the best version of you. As you know, the essence of recovery is changing negative behaviors into positive ones to reach a sense of overall well-being. Good nutrition, relaxation and exercise all play an important role in effective change to support lasting recovery.

Few things will impact how you feel as much as your diet. While the reasons to eat a nutritious diet are many, it is especially important for people in recovery. That’s because eating the right foods can actually ease cravings for alcohol and drugs as well as repair tissue and organ damage caused by substance abuse.

But, what are the right foods?

The Recovery Diet

For optimal health, Dietitian Charlyn Fargo-Ware at the Springfield Treatment Center, recommends a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, complex carbohydrates and lean protein.

Fruits and vegetables: leafy green vegetables, carrots, broccoli, green beans, beets, potatoes, tomatoes, oranges, bananas, strawberries and apples. Eat five to six servings of fruits and vegetables a day; however depending on your size, you may need up to nine to ten servings.

Whole grains that are complex carbohydrates: whole wheat bread, whole wheat pasta, oatmeal, fortified cereal, brown rice, flax seeds and low fat granola.

Lean protein: chicken, fish, beef tenderloin, pork tenderloin, eggs and low fat yogurt.

“Here’s an easy way to think about including the right proportions of healthy food into your diet. Picture a round plate and fill half of it with fruits and/or vegetables, a fourth with whole grains and a fourth with protein,” explains Ms. Fargo-Ware. “Also consider how the food is prepared. Resist fried foods and cream sauces or soups. Instead, opt for grilled or broiled chicken, red sauce on whole wheat pasta and broth-based soups.”

And, don’t forget to hydrate. Proper hydration is necessary for the body to function well and flush out toxins. At a minimum, drink eight 8-ounce glasses of fluids each day.

Mindful Moderation

For optimal health, you should limit your intake of foods high in sugar and fat as well as unhealthy snacks. Also, too much caffeine can hurt your recovery. That’s because excessive caffeine consumption inhibits the absorption of nutrients. It also speeds up everything, which isn’t conducive to achieving a state of emotional well-being.

“You don’t want to fall into the trap of substituting sweets or junk food for alcohol or drugs. When it is time to indulge, practice mindful eating. Fully engage all of your senses, eat slowly and savor the flavor,” says Ms. Fargo-Ware.

New Year, New You!

The good news is you should start to notice a difference in how you feel—such as more energy,  improved focus, better sleep—when you consistently eat a healthy diet for 6-8 weeks. And by this time, you will have developed positive eating habits that enhance your health. A diet rich in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, complex carbohydrates and good quality protein can take your recovery to the next level!

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