To build a philanthropic pool that supports organizations providing services to people in recovery from SUD.


A world where all people in recovery from substance use disorders (SUD) have access to the services and support they need.



GRI works with leading substance use disorder experts to advance research that identifies the most urgent needs in the recovery community and raise funds to address them.

Partnerships & Initiatives

GRI partners with public, private and pop culture leaders and organizations to help advance national and local recovery initiatives.

One of GRI’s primary initiatives, being launched in partnership with AmeriCorps, the Federal national service network, is to deploy 1,000 Recovery Corps members across the U.S. to deliver peer support services to people in early recovery.

The initiative, which has shown strong success in its pilot program, pairs full time staff with existing, local non-profit organizations to deliver 1:1 recovery coaching, housing assistance, job training, continuing education and other needs as those in early recovery navigate re-entry into their families, work and communities.

Our initial goal is to engage corporate, foundation and individual major donors to raise $15 million dollars to match the public support it will take to deploy the first 1000 Recovery Corps members.


GRI supports organizations providing evidence-based programs that have demonstrated success in lowering reuse rates, and supports projects and initiatives that reduce the stigma around substance use disorders and provide access to opportunities that further enrich the lives of those in recovery.


We convene opinion leaders in science, health policy, business, the media and non-profit arenas to find and fund the best solutions for people in early recovery.


Cathie Harnett, Executive Director
Cathie is an entrepreneur and nonprofit executive management consultant in strategic planning, leadership transition and philanthropy. She served on the Board and as CEO of GRI’s legacy organization, The National Youth Recovery Foundation.

Caitlin Carroll, Chief Operating Officer
Caitlin is a 15-year strategic communications leader who has worked with U.S. Members of Congress, Fortune 500 brands such as Dell and GE, and non-profits to develop multi-stakeholder campaigns and initiatives.

Gail Wasserman, Sr. Advisor, Funding Partnerships & Strategy
Gail is 25-year communications and branding veteran. She spent the majority of her career at American Express where she helped manage their reputation during a dynamic time for brands, media and popular culture.

Jan M. Brown, Sr. Coalition Advisor
Jan is the founding/Executive Director of SpiritWorks, Chairperson of the Board of Directors of Faces and Voices of Recovery, a former taskforce member of the VA Governor’s Task Force on Prescription Drug and Heroin Abuse, and a person in long-term recovery.

Kevin Cevasco, Sr. Advisor, Research and Funding Partnerships
Kevin is a 35-year leader in health information technology, serving in Vice President and Design Architect roles at global technology companies like IBM and Dell.

John Aguirre, Chief Financial Officer
John is a finance and accounting management professional with over 40 years of experience in a wide array of industries.


Alex Cameron – VP of Partnerships, iHeart Radio
Allen Kovac – President, Better Noise Music; Producer of Heroin Diaries
Bill Hurlock – Montclair Township 1st Ward Councilor; Managing Partner of Mueller Law
Cathie Hartnett – GRI Executive Director
Joe Schrank – Founder of “the Fix”, Co-founder of Rebound Brooklyn
Matt Escoubas – Director of FMG SERV, Fors Marsh Group
Molly McKaughan – Former senior officer of program reporting at Robert Wood Johnson Foundation; writer and editor
Nikki Sixx – Mötley Crüe Bassist and Songwriter; author of The New York Times bestseller, The Heroin Diaries
Pam Cytron – President, Pendo Systems


Founded 20 years ago, the Global Recovery Initiatives Foundation originally started as the Sobriety High Foundation, which established the country’s first recovery high schools based in Minnesota. The success of the schools inspired the growth of collegiate recovery programs, of which there are now more than 300 across the country today.

The Sobriety High Foundation became the National Youth Recovery Foundation, which engaged young people in designing programs and housed Young People in Recovery—now an independent organization.

Over the last five years, the Foundation began a collaboration with Christopher Kennedy Lawford, a leading recovery advocate, who merged his vision of a national effort to bring together public and private initiatives with the support of pop culture leaders, for people who were already in recovery and needed support to sustain their new lives.

The current organization, the Global Recovery Initiatives Foundation, was codified in 2019 with a new and expanded board of directors holding extensive experience in the public sector, science, business and entertainment arenas.