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Gov. Doug Burgum provided welcome remarks to the more than 800 people registered to attend the Recovery Reinvented event in the Bismarck Event Center in September. Burgum also introduced the initial speaker first lady Kathryn Helgaas Burgum, who spoke of her journey with addiction. 

Gov. Doug Burgum has appointed six members to the Office of Recovery Reinvented Advisory Council, of which first lady Kathryn Helgaas Burgum is chair.

By executive order in January, Burgum established the Office of Recovery Reinvented to coordinate initiatives related to behavioral health and recovery from addiction. The advisory council includes seven members with a variety of backgrounds to serve the office's goals. Generated from an applicant pool, Burgum's appointments include: 

• Sheila Braunberger, a West Fargo mother whose child has experienced incarceration and is in recovery.

• Dr. Melissa Henke, medical director of Heartview Foundation in Bismarck.

• Jonathan Holth, who has served in leadership roles for Fargo and Grand Forks downtown associations, is co-owner of the Toasted Frog and in long-term recovery.

• Oliver County State's Attorney John Mahoney, a former state legislator who has worked with tribal judiciary. 

• Adam Martin, executive director of Fargo's F5 Project for felons' re-entry into society; also in long-term recovery.

• Dr. Monica Mayer, MHA Nation Tribal Business Council member and longtime physician.

Pamela Sagness, director of Human Services' Behavioral Health Division, and Jenny Olson, managing director of the Office of Recovery Reinvented, also will work with the council, according to a news release.

“Kathryn and I are deeply grateful for the strong interest from many qualified candidates in serving on this advisory council, which demonstrates the concern, compassion and experience North Dakotans have with the disease of addiction and those struggling in our communities,” Burgum said in a statement.

Helgaas Burgum, who is also in long-term recovery from addiction, said the council will work to "eliminate the shame and stigma of addiction."

"Part of the council’s role will be to encourage everyone to play a role in eliminating stigma by talking about the difficulties and challenges faced by those impacted by the chronic disease of addiction," she said.

Governor's spokesman Mike Nowatzki said the advisory council will meet at the call of the chair, with dates of the first and future meetings to be determined. The meetings will be open to the public, he said.

Reach Jack Dura at 701-250-8225 or


Crime and Courts Reporter