Announcing new Division Leadership

The Division is pleased to announce an exciting change in leadership. On February 28, 2019 Howard J. Shaffer, PhD, CAS retired from his role as Director of the Division. Dr. Shaffer will remain active at the Division as a Distinguished Faculty member and in his role on the Harvard Medical School faculty as the Morris E. Chafetz Associate Professor of Psychiatry in the Field of Behavioral Sciences. He will focus on the academic and clinical activities he has always enjoyed.

Recently, a Cambridge Health Alliance faculty committee selected Debi A. LaPlante, PhD to serve as the Division’s next Director. Drs. Shaffer and LaPlante have worked together for 19 years. Most recently Dr. LaPlante served as Director of Research and Academic Affairs for the last eight years. Drs. LaPlante and Shaffer are looking forward to continuing their work together, but in different roles.

In the coming years, Dr. LaPlante is looking forward to helping the Division’s faculty and staff advance the Division’s existing areas of contribution, such as its work about DUI and psychiatric comorbidity, internet gambling, and understanding the etiology of addiction. She also looks forward to advancing new opportunities, including open science methods, participatory research related to tribal health, online gaming, and developing new public outreach activities and resources.

Together with our friends and colleagues, we are excited to embark on this new chapter with Dr. LaPlante. We also recognize that we are extremely fortunate to be able to see Dr. Shaffer’s work continue. During his time as Director, Dr. Shaffer led the Division with excellence, producing cutting edge science related to addiction, providing one-of-a-kind mentoring, and always advancing with compassion for those who struggle with addiction. We look forward to these coming years and to continuing to produce the type of influential and important work for which the Division is known worldwide.

Please join us and congratulate Dr. Debi LaPlante as she embarks on her journey as the Director of the Division on Addiction.