NJ.com - Freedom House to host 15th annual Distinguished Citizens award banquet


Hunterdon County DemocratBy Hunterdon County Democrat 
on December 02, 2014 at 4:19 PM, updated December 02, 2014 at 4:20 PM

Freedom House in Clinton will host the 15th Distinguished Citizens Award Banquet on Dec. 8 at Fiddler’s Elbow Country Club in Bedminster.

Proceeds from the event will benefit the Family Save-A-Life Scholarship Program, which supplements every resident’s stay at Freedom House and The Family Afterward and provides a full scholarship for indigent clients.

This year’s banquet will honor former Freedom House CEO Frederick T. Reihl. Reihl was appointed to the position of Executive Director of Freedom House in November 1990 and became Freedom House’s first CEO in 1997. Fred has been an indispensable leader, overseeing Freedom House’s major developments, including the establishment of the Foundation and the introduction of The Family Afterward Program, a unique program that seeks to reunify recovering women with their children and families.

“It has been a great honor to work with an organization that is at the forefront of combating the pressing drug and alcohol issues in New Jersey,” Reihl said. “I am confident that Freedom House will continue to do great work and serve as a critical resource for many more decades to come.”

In addition to honoring Fred, parallel goals of the evening are to highlight the successes of recent Freedom House graduates and, in particular this year, to raise awareness of the growing heroin problem in the state, especially in suburban areas.

Donna DeStefano, a New Jersey mother devastated by her daughters own heroin addiction in 2010, will be the keynote speaker. DeStefano was featured in the video Mom Knows Best: A Crucial Message for Parents, produced by Partnership for a Drug-Free NJ in cooperation with the Governor’s Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse and the NJ Department of Human Services. Lead sponsors of the event include Chubb & Son Insurance, Preferred Concepts, LLC, Commercial Mortgage Capital, KRE Group, Navigators Management Company, Inc., The Cavanaugh Family Foundation, and C.R. Bard, Inc.

Reihl has been celebrated for his impact both at Freedom House and on addiction services in the State of New Jersey. Reihl was appointed by Governor Whitman as the first member of the State of NJ New Alcohol and Drug Counselors Licensing Committee. He is a faculty member of The Rutgers Summer School of Alcohol Studies. In 2003, Reihl was honored by Sunrise House for his outstanding contribution to the field. In 2004, he was one of the first counselors to become a Licensed Clinical Alcohol and Drug Counselor in New Jersey.

Prior to his appointment at Freedom House, Reihl served as Director of a detox center run by the Bergen County Department of Health. Previously, he was employed as Director of Addiction Services for King James Care Centers. Reihl developed and administrated an outpatient program for a major hospital, served as Executive Director of an affiliate office of the National Council on Alcoholism, created an alcohol detoxification unit for the City of Newark and established the Law Enforcement Alcoholism Program for police officers. Reihl attended Seton Hall University, graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education. He earned a Master’s Degree in Public School Administration at Newark State College (now Kean University). He has served as the Chairman of the National Halfway House Association Convention and was a member of the Board of Trustees of Little Hill Alina Lodge.

Freedom House, a New Jersey-based nonprofit statewide organization with facilities in Hunterdon, Mercer, Morris and Warren counties, is a national leader and an international model for the long term treatment of adult men and women with alcohol and drug addiction. Freedom House acts as not only a long-term and outpatient treatment center, but also serves a critical role as a halfway house, providing residents with substance abuse treatment services, as well as room and board, life skills training, and job search assistance. Celebrating its 28th anniversary, Freedom House was the first halfway house in New Jersey to achieve national accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF), and in 2005 became the first halfway house in New Jersey to be accredited as a Drug Court Treatment Facility. Forty-five percent of those admitted graduate from Freedom House, and of those forty-five percent 90 percent remain drug-free (Freedom House Annual Survey), a remarkable success rate. The Freedom House model, a highly disciplined, highly structured program, has been replicated in Denmark, Sweden, Romania, and South Africa.

Past Recipients of this Award

2013 Vincent C. Tizzio, President & CEO, Navigators Management Company, Inc.
2012 Timothy M. Ring, Chief Executive Officer, C.R. Bard, Inc.
2011 Christopher R. Carroll, Esq., Partner, Carroll, McNulty & Kull, LLC & Congressman Leonard Lance
2010 Dr. Walter F. Guarino, President & Managing Partner, Insight|SGW and
Dave Anderson, Pulitzer Prize-Winning Sports Writer, New York Times
2009 John J. Degnan, Vice Chairman and COO, The Chubb Corporation
2008 Bob Franks, President, HealthCare Institute of New Jersey
2006 New York Jets Organization and The 1968 Super Bowl New York Jets
2004 Roger E. Egan, President, Marsh Inc.
2002 Fred D. Hafer, Chairman, President and CEO, FirstEnergy Inc.
2000 William H. Longfield, Chairman and CEO, C.R. Bard, Inc.
1998 Dean R. O’Hare, Chairman and CEO, The Chubb Corporation
1996 James R. Leva, Chairman and CEO, General Public Utilities Corporation
1994 Irwin Lerner, Chairman, Governor’s Council for a Drug-Free Workplace, Inc.
1992 James E. Burke, Chairman, Partnership for a Drug-Free America