Dr. Bunt graduated medical school in 1983 from NYU School of Medicine, and completed his residency in Psychiatry at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in 1987.
He was among the first to complete the Fellowship in Addiction Psychiatry at NYU School of Medicine (1989), and has since been on the NYU Medical School Faculty in the Division of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, currently as an Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry. He is a diplomat of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology with Special Added Qualifications in Addiction Psychiatry.
Dr. Bunt is the Immediate Past President of the New York Society of Addiction Medicine and currently the President of the International Society of Addiction Medicine. He has been the Medical Director for Daytop Village and Daytop International for 25 years. He has authored over a dozen publications and speaks nationally and internationally about addiction medicine and therapeutic communities.
Hamed Ekhtiari, MD, PhD, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioural Sciences, University of Minnesota Medical School, USA.
Dr. Ekhtiari’s research at Department of Psychiatry & Behavioural Sciences, University of Minnesota is focused to reshape the future of addiction medicine using brain imaging in combination with brain stimulation technologies and cognitive rehabilitation. Dr. Ekhtiari is director of the international network of tES/TMS trials for addiction medicine (INTAM). INTAM with over 50 lab members promotes international collaborations to increase research quality and implementation of non-invasive brain stimulation technologies in addiction medicine. Dr Ekhtiari was born and raised in Iran and received his MD and then PhD in neuroimaging from Tehran University and his post-doctoral fellowship in computational psychiatry from Laureate Institute for Brain Research, Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA.
Dre Achab Sophia is psychiatrist with medical doctorate achieved in 2009 and a PhD in Life sciences completed in 2014, both in France. She has a practice in addiction medicine since 2007 and completed the recently created Swiss degree in Psychiatry and psychotherapy in addiction medicine in 2017.
She is senior lecturer at Faculty of Medicine of Geneva University, teaches in several European countries, and supports early career professionals in addiction medicine worldwide.
She is medical Director of the Swiss pioneering clinic specialized in addictive behaviors (Gambling, gaming, shopping, work..) at University Hospitals of Geneva in Switzerland.
She developed a unique fit between clinical practice, research, teaching and public health mandates in this emergent medical field, advocating for a balance between opportunities and health risks of tech.
She has been part since 2013 of several technical advisory groups (TAGs) for
international and Swiss policy making and public health entities in the field of addiction medicine. She is co-Head of Geneva WHO Collaborating Centre for training and research in Mental Health and holds a certificate in Improving Global Health : Focusing on Quality and Safety delivered by Harvard Global Health Institute in 2020.
She is co-chair of the executive committee of ISAM-NeXT and advisory board member elect of International Society for the Study of Addictive Behaviors (ISSBA), with a specific focus on gender and international cooperation as core factors shaping the future of addiction medicine
Dr. Atul Ambekar (MD) is a Professor, at the National Drug Dependence Treatment Centre (NDDTC) and Department of Psychiatry, All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi, India. He is the founding Secretary General of the Addiction Psychiatry Society of India (APSI). He has been a member of many international and national expert bodies in the field of drug addiction including the Expert Advisory Panel on Drug Dependence (WHO, Geneva), Strategic Advisory Group on IDU and HIV (United Nations), and the National Consultative Committee on Drug Demand Reduction and Rehabilitation (Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Govt. of India). He has published several research papers, practice guidelines and training manuals in the field of addiction psychiatry.
Currently he is a professor at the National Drug Dependence Treatment Centre, All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) with main activities in teaching, training, patient care, research and public health programming.
Dr. Nady el-Guebaly MD, FRCPC, DPH, DPsych, DABAM, CISAM, DFASAM, DFAAAP, EFACP, DFCPA
Dr. el-Guebaly’s introduction to mental health and addiction medicine dates back to 1969 during initial psychiatric training in the United Kingdom, followed by training in Canada and the United States
Addiction related work includes being the current Professor and Head of Division of Addiction, Department of Psychiatry at the University of Calgary, and the founding past Medical Director of the Calgary Health Region Addiction Centre and Program. Dr. el-Guebaly was the Founding Past President of the International Society of Addiction Medicine, its Executive Medical Director for another 6 years, and currently Chief Examiner of the International Certification Examination and Senior Editor of the recent Textbook of Addiction Treatment: International Perspectives (Springer 2015).
Dr. el-Guebaly completed three 3-year terms as Board Chair of the Alberta Gaming Research Institute, and is now the Alberta Gambling Research Institute’s current Research Director as well as Editor in Chief of the Canadian Journal of Addiction for the last 4 years. These interests have resulted in 260 peer-reviewed papers, 80 chapters, 568 presentations, and 60 past and current grants totaling $7 million.
He is a member, of Alberta’s Responsible Gambling Advisory Committee, the Royal College Addiction Medicine Specialty Committee, the Provincial Addiction Curricula and Experiential Skills Training for Alberta Health Services, and the CSAM Conference committee.
Marc Galanter, M.D. is a Professor of Psychiatry at NYU. He has served as a Clinical Associate at the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health; as President of the Association for Medical Education and Research in Substance Abuse, the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry, and the American Society of Addiction Medicine; and as Chief Editor of the International Society of Addiction Medicine.
He founded the Division of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse at NYU and the journal “Substance Abuse;” is co-editor of the American Psychiatric Association’s “Textbook of Substance Abuse Treatment,” and has published over 200 peer-reviewed articles, addressing pharmacologic and psychosocial treatment for addiction, and the psychology of Twelve-Step recovery.
He has received the Gold Achievement Award for innovation in treatment and the Seymour Vestermark Award for psychiatric education from the American Psychiatric Association; the Smithers Distinguished Scientist Award from ASAM; and New York State’s Award for Psychiatric Research.
Prof. Gawad is currently holding positions as Director of Treatment and Rehabilitation at the National rehabilitation centre of Abu Dhabi UAE. He is Professor of Psychiatry, Cairo University, Cairo Egypt.
He was graduated in 1981 from Faculty of Medicine Cairo University where he received his M.B. BCh ; Master degree in Psychological Medicine and Neurology (1985) ; MD Psychiatry (1991) and Diploma in Addiction Behaviour – Institute of Psychiatry, London University (1987) .
Since his graduation he was appointed as staff member at the department of Psychiatry Faculty of Medicine Cairo university where he is still holding his position as professor since 2001.
He served as the Past President of the International Society of Addiction Medicine (ISAM), the past Chair of the World Psychiatric Association Section of Addiction Psychiatry (WPA).
He participated and published numerous research covering most of psychiatric subjects notably in addiction. His primarily interested in comorbidy studies and developing addiction psychiatric services. He is the Co-PI of the Fogarty grant od Addiction Research between Cairo university and UCLA since 2012.
His goal is to achieve well-established scientifically-based centres in Drug Addiction with a suitable network both nationally and internationally.
President of ArSam (Argentinian Society of Addiction Medicine).
Founding Member of ISAM (International Society of Addiction Medicine)
Helena Hansen, an MD, Ph.D
psychiatrist-anthropologist, is Professor and Chair of Research Theme in Translational Social Science and Health Equity, as well as Associate Director of the Center for Social Medicine at UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine. She has published widely in clinical and social science journals ranging from JAMA and NEJM to Social Science and Medicine and Medical Anthropology, on faith healing of addiction in Puerto Rico, psychiatric disability under welfare reform, opioids and race, ethnic marketing of pharmaceuticals, and structural competency. Her first book, Addicted to Christ: Remaking Men in Puerto Rican Pentecostal Drug Ministries was published by University of California Press in 2018, and her second book, Structural Competency in Medicine and Mental Health: A Case-Based Approach to Treating the Social Determinants of Health, with co-editor Jonathan Metzl, was published by Springer Press in 2019. Her third book, Whiteout: How Racial Capitalism Changed the Color of Heroin in America, is forthcoming from UC Press. She has received major funding from NIDA, the Mellon Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Open Society Foundation.
Dr. Susumu Higuchi, Japan
Susumu Higuchi, MD, PhD, is the director of the National Hospital Organization Kurihama Medical and Addiction Center, the director of the National Center for Addiction Services Administration, and a director of the WHO Collaborating Centre on Research and Training on Substance Use and Addictive Behaviours. He has written more than 290 peer-reviewed scientific papers, published in established international journals, and more than 650 papers in domestic journals.
National and international positions held:
– Past president: International Society for Biomedical Research on Alcoholism (congress
– Congress president in 2014: International Society of Addiction Medicine
– Director: International Society for the Study of Behavioral Addiction (congress president in 2019)
– Director and secretary: Asia-Pacific Society for Alcohol and Addiction Research
– President: Japanese Society of Alcohol-Related Problems
For several decades he has worked on alcohol and gambling policy and programs, and has served as chair or committee member on many initiatives of the Japanese government. He has also closely collaborated with WHO in the field of disorders due to substance use and addictive behaviour.
Clinically, he has been a leading psychiatrist in the field of alcohol dependence and behavioral addiction, particularly in relation to gaming and gambling disorders in Japan.
Prof. Solomon Tshimong Rataemane
(President: African Association of Psychiatrists and Allied Professions 2014 – 2017)
Prof Rataemane is the past president of the African Association of Psychiatrists. He was HOD of Psychiatry at the UFS (1998-2003) and Medunsa (2003-2019). He has specific interest in addiction psychiatry and child & adolescent psychiatry. He was the deputy chairperson of the Central Drug Authority of SA 1995 – 2000 and then chairperson 2000 – 2005. He represented SA at AU activities relating to substance abuse. This included meetings of the INCB (International Narcotics Control Board in Vienna). He has participated in various activities on substance abuse planned by DSD and he continues to teach and provide support in this area. He is a past member of the Health Committee of the HPCSA that provides support to health practitioners affected by use of substances such as alcohol and drugs (and other issues that may lead to impairment). He holds numerous portfolios including the following
- Chairperson of the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Mental Health in South Africa 2015- 2020
- International Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association
- Past Chair of International Relations Division of South African Association of Psychiatrists
- Secretary General of World Association for Psycho-social Rehabilitation from 2015 to 2021
- Past Deputy chair of MRC of South Africa 2007 – 2010
- WPA (world psychiatric association) Zone 14 Representative and Board Member (2008 – 2014)
- Chair of Conflict Management and Conflict Resolution Section of WPA (2011 – 2017)
- Chairperson: Medical and Dental Board (MDB) of HPCSA 2020 – 2025
I have extensive experience and expertise in studying the neurobiology of addictions. Over the past 20 years, I have investigated addictive behaviors and disorders from translational and interdisciplinary perspectives. I have investigated how a neurobiological understanding of addictive processes may be used to advance treatments for drug addictions. I was amongst the first to describe adolescence as a neurodevelopmental period of addiction vulnerability and have published extensively on adolescent risk behaviors including substance misuse. I have studied motivational and emotional processing in addictions. I have served as PI on multiple NIH (NIDA, NIAAA) R01 grants (continuous support for more than a decade) and have been PI on multiple center grants. I have established ongoing research collaborations in multiple countries including China, South Korea, Hungary, Spain, Italy and elsewhere. My international research includes multiple methodologies including brain imaging, genetics, clinical trials and epidemiological surveys. I consult on a regular basis to the World Health Organization on matters of addiction and am thus familiar with cultural and jurisdictional considerations in studying and understanding addictions. I have mentored over 100 individuals in the area of addiction research. I am currently a PI on a NIDA K12 grant that supports training of junior faculty to develop into the next generation of clinical researchers developing new and more effective treatments for people with addictions. I have also recently been designated a High Level Foreign Talent for collaborative work in China. I am currently a mentor to five individuals with K01 support.