This picture shows the 25th year celebration of our acupuncture detox organization, NADA. My friends surprised me by secretly inviting my two daughters to the New Orleans’ conference.
My eldest daughter Jessica (r) teaches French in a public junior high school in upstate New York. She has finished a 300-page novel about a girl’s fantasy crossover to a special world. In the book, Jessica uses her experience as an intern in an autistic school to explore new dimensions. Joanna (l) did archeology in Pompeii and the Crimea and worked as a legal secretary before attending NYU Law School. Now she is a Wall Street firm associate. When told that her next evaluation would be a 360 review, Joanna asked if it would include opinions from clerical and support staff. The attorney partners had never imagined such realism.
My own life has been a mixture of consistency and unusual choices – 35 years as Director of Lincoln Recovery Center (a city job in the South Bronx) and 31 years in the same Manhattan apartment. We started using ear acupuncture in a group setting in 1974. Our program has been a leader in job readiness, diversion from jail, maternal substance abuse, and developing peer counseling. Visitors, including Mike Durfee (’60), comment on the friendly atmosphere.
I’ve had a lot of special career experiences:
- Being a teacher at a large conference in Siberia – in February.
- Being mentioned in an article on the front page of the Chinese-language daily in Beijing after speaking to a medical school about using acupuncture for AIDS.
- Teaching correction officers to do acupuncture in Dartmoor prison. Now it is used in over a hundred English prisons.
- Teaching and consulting at the first drug treatment program in India. It was located on the top floor of a police station. Now there are 20 satellite programs in the Delhi area run by former clients with no funding.
- Seeing our treatment used in several hundred European psych hospitals.
- Coordinating the PSTD stress-relief treatment of hundreds of Katrina first responders and then helping to establish funded acupuncture training for dozens of New Orleans’ locals.
- Starting a peer-counseling program in a provincial capital (a stone village) in Ethiopia.
- After Roger (’60) and Gloria Flynn had their car trunk robbed while visiting our program, being able to buy back what was stolen for $20 – the local crime “supervisor” doesn’t permit robbery of program visitors.
- In a large courtroom in San Diego, having a senior judge I’d never met before wave at me from the bench as I was walking into the room.
Favorite getaway spot: The Blue Lagoon in Iceland in the winter.