Board of Directors
My name is Vanessa Baumann. I value this opportunity to run for the President-Elect position with RAP-WI. I desire for RAP-WI to continue evolving and thriving by strengthening the addictions professional community in Wisconsin through solid leadership, education, and advocacy. I have been working in the recovery and addiction field since 2017. In this time, I have worked for both women’s and men’s specific facilities in direct service positions as a counselor and recently for Washington County Human Services Department, providing oversight of SUD subcontracts and educating various internal departments and community stakeholders regarding best practices within SUD treatment. It has been an honor to work at the County level to help enhance the systems of care and formulate a coordinator position that did not exist in Washington County until November of 2020.
I am a firm believer in promoting scientific research and clinical practices that benefit the people I serve. I accomplish this by staying up-to-date on industry news, attending conferences, and bringing that knowledge back collaboratively either to workgroups I am involved in or out in the community I serve wherever and whenever there is a need. I do this to enrich healing for the people living with substance use disorder and the families impacted by their loved ones’ challenges with SUD. I joyfully seek out opportunities to discuss harm reduction respectfully to those with varying philosophies while demanding equal treatment for persons who use drugs, regardless of where they are at in their recovery journey.
Another way I have been supporting recovery and addiction professionals in my current role is by advocating for the appropriate allocation of federal and state funds, supporting the entire continuum of care in addiction treatment. It has been highly fulfilling to speak up in this regard while working for one of the most conservative counties in Wisconsin; to know my voice has had an impact is humbling and something I do not now, nor will I ever, take for granted. I believe it is our ethical and professional responsibility as addiction professionals to advocate for all people to be treated justly and to treat those with substance use issues as people with problems, not as problems themselves.
Christopher earned his degree in finance while working in the banking industry. He held various positions in retail banking for several years, including branch management and business development. After experiencing a challenging time in his life with alcoholism, he decided to make a career change and go into the human services field. While working he completed his certificate in AODA and worked at a residential treatment facility for people with substance abuse disorders. Here he was a substance abuse counselor and also obtained his certification in recovery coaching. He become familiar with running groups and individual sessions. Also, he created various tools to assist individuals with creating a stronger aftercare plan. In March of 2018 he received his certification for recovery coaching.
Recently he has been working in the medication assisted treatment field and has obtained great knowledge on how to manage a program. He is in long term recovery and understands the challenges and barriers that people face in substance abuse recovery. Through his own path’s traveled, observing others, and conducting research, he has created a program that is designed to get people into long term recovery. He enjoys being outdoors, staying active, and growing in his faith. He has served on committees for nonprofits in his area. Spending quality time with his wife and children is very important to him.