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Family.   Such a simple word for such a complex concept.  It evokes many feelings and defies any single definition.

In this issue of Insights, we focus on many different types of families.  For instance, sharing the great news of recognition and introductions of ECPG “Family” –  after all, we spend a good deal of our lives together!  Congratulations to Tana Russell on her promotion to Deputy Director; and to Rob Maya in his new role as Communications Manager!  You’ll meet our newest ECPG Family members, Prevention Specialist Paulina Zyskowski; and Office Manager Bruce Clatterbuck, later in this issue.  

We welcome our family of colleagues – as presenters, student grant/scholarship award recipients, counselors, prevention specialists, and peer/recovery support service providers to our Spring Focus on the Future Conference to gather, learn, share, network, and connect.  And, we share news of awareness and advocacy efforts in the Pacific Northwest (Medicaid Coverage for Gambling Disorder and Increased Treatment Reimbursement Rates) and Nationally (the GRIT Act) that we hope will have positive impacts for those we all serve – individuals, families, and communities.

The importance of families, and serving families, is the underlying theme of this issue of Insights.  And, so, my Perspective also focuses on families. Human beings are social beings.  We want to feel accepted, validated, and connected.  If we’re blessed, we have a “family” that helps meet these needs. These family members may be biological or chosen—the family we are born into or the family we create.

What Happens When You Introduce Gambling Disorder/Substance Use Disorder into the Family?

Addictions don’t happen in silos – they happen in (and impact) relationships, families, workplaces, and communities. Throughout my life, I’ve been surrounded by loved ones impacted by addiction.  As a child, I didn’t know that family members for generations were impacted by their own addiction or that of someone they loved.  Grandparents, uncles, mothers, husbands had lived experience they couldn’t or wouldn’t share because we did not talk about such things. Unfortunately, because we felt we couldn’t talk about it and for decades didn’t have access to supports or treatment, some of our family members never found a path of recovery and, some, even took their own lives in response to feelings of hopelessness and pain.

Not a light topic, but certainly an important one.  I raise it here to shed some light on why it is so critical that our awareness, prevention, treatment, and recovery programs work to reach all family members with services.  Family members often receive mixed messages from society, healthcare providers, and even other family members – leaving them to feel they have caused or are perpetuating a cycle of addiction in their family.

Some family members may seek help for health issues first (as a child, I experienced physical abuse and, as a teen, I was being treated for stress-related issues, including bleeding ulcers).  I can tell you what went through the mind of one child/teen/adult growing up in a family impacted by addiction.  The cycle of messages went something like this:


No one else seems to notice – Am I Crazy?

How do I fix It/help them?

            When nothing works…

Am I Crazy?

Is it MY fault/am I bad?  I must do everything I can to be perfect.

Seeking help from other family/adults,

            When they seem to turn a blind eye…

Am I Crazy?

Being perfect isn’t working – should I act out?

Now I know I am Crazy.


I AM Exhausted (and sometimes Angry, Frightened, Resentful…)


As an adult, I was able to learn more through books, psychology classes and, ultimately, my own therapy (individual/group) – But none of my family members joined me.  I still was asking – Is it just me?  Am I alone?  Am I crazy?

In our field, we ask people who feel they are ready to break out of anonymity and into advocacy.  In that spirit, I ask all of our treatment providers, prevention specialists, recovery service providers, and others in our field to take an extra moment or two to ask yourselves if you are engaging and educating family members whenever possible. Do you/does your agency offer a space; a time; a safe place to focus specifically on family members? Support can look different from family member to family member – it’s a continuum for the family, too.

Family members need support and education to make the best decisions they can, in the circumstances they are in, with the resources they have available.  (We need MORE resources for families). Family members need information and support to make their own decisions – what they want to do; can do; will not do; what limits to set; and what consequences both to impose and/or to accept.

If you are a family member experiencing the impacts of a loved one’s addiction, there is nothing wrong with Taking Care of Yourself First.  Self-Care is NOT Selfish!  When you’re exhausted, you may feel guilty about focusing the limited energy you have left on yourself.  It’s the only way you can begin to heal.  There are many roads to Recovery – the best path for you may not be exactly the same as the path of your loved one(s). 

If you grew up in a family like mine, let that elephant in the room out for some fresh air – that’s a lot of heavy weight to carry in your home, your heart, and your life.

Thank you to everyone who continues to teach me that advocating on behalf of people working toward hope, health, and recovery from addictive disorders is brave. Advocating on behalf of yourself and other family members is also not only brave, but is empowering and health-affirming.


Maureen Greeley 
Executive Director 




Focus on the Future


Registration Open for Focus on the Future 2024!

April 29-May 2


Focus on the Future is the largest and longest-standing conference on problem gambling and responsible gaming   awareness in the Pacific Northwest.  Launched in 2007, Focus on the Future brings together an incredible combination of compelling speakers – experts from across the country – and opportunities to network and learn from colleagues in the field.  It is a place where you can exchange ideas, experiences, and knowledge to become a collective voice in raising awareness and developing programs and services that have the greatest positive impact.  


Some of the featured presenters this Spring include:


Pre-conference Sessions (Monday/Tuesday)

  • Wiley Harwell, D.Min, LPC, ICGC-II, CGT offers a 6-hour Pre-conference session for anyone seeking Clinical Supervision information and continuing education.
  • Suzanne Wertheim, PhD on Using Inclusive Language to Build Trust – a Pre-conference session you don’t want to miss with this renowned expert and author.

Main Conference Sessions (Wednesday/Thursday)

  • Timothy Fong, MD will offer Keynote and Breakout sessions on Reviewing Emerging Treatment: TMS/Psilocybin/Ozempic/AI-based Therapies; and Increasing Treatment Demand: How to Get Clients to Make the First Call.
  • Deborah Haskins, PhD, LCPC, ACS, MAC, ICGC-II, CCGSO, BACC offers her personal and professional experience in our field with Say It Loud, I’m Black and I’m Proud! Empowering Healing for People Who Gamble and Cultural Communities.
  • Paul R. Hales, JD on an always timely and important topic: How to Comply with HIPAA Rules for Behavioral Health Providers.
  • And see the side box with this article on ECPG’s three Student Grant/Scholarship Recipients who will be presenting at Focus on the Future.


These, and many more presenters will provide more than 25 Continuing Education hours at Focus on the Future. 

Early Bird discounted registration deadline is April 10, 2024.  Special rates at the conference hotel – the Holiday Inn Portland - Columbia Riverfront – are available through April 14.  Full scholarship opportunities are available for Washington State gambling treatment providers, students, professors, prevention specialists, and peer/recovery coaches!  Scholarships include full registration fee, hotel stipend ($75 per night, up to three nights), and more. 

For Registration information, Scholarship application forms, and more details visit the event page. 



A limited number of Full Scholarships are available for Washington State gambling treatment providers, students, professors, prevention specialists, and peer/recovery coaches.  Scholarships include full registration fee, hotel stipend ($75 per night, up to three nights), and more.  Scholarships are available in part through funding by The Washington State Health Care Authority – Division of Behavioral Health & Recovery, Problem Gambling Program, and the Recovery Café Network.  You must be a WA state resident to receive a training scholarship.


ECPG Student Grant/Scholarship Recipients to Present at Focus on the Future


Frank Song 

Dissertation Research Grant Recipient

Fourth year PhD student in clinical psychology

University of Washington

Frank Song’s research is focused on the etiology and treatment of problem gambling in young adults. There is early indication that speculative trading behaviors entail many of the same risks/harms as traditional gambling, and perhaps to even a greater extent given the ease of accessibility and common misperception that these are wise financial investing behaviors.  Frank Song’s study serves as one of the first formal examinations of the mental health risks of speculative trading and carries salient implications for interventions.   In addition to his research experience, Frank is a DBT Therapist at the UW Marsha M. Linehan DBT Clinic, a Mental Health and Problem Gambling Counselor at Asian Counseling and Treatment Services Behavioral Health & Recovery Center, and a Teaching Assistant at UW Department of Psychology.

“My interest in researching problem gambling began taking shape while working as an investment researcher before graduate school.  I wanted to better understand the psychology of money behaviors and financial risk taking, and when I made a career transition to clinical psychology, problem gambling and mental health naturally became my area of research focus.”



Joseph Lambuth

Advanced Undergraduate Academic Scholarship Recipient

University of Washington

Joseph Lambuth has been recognized on the dean’s list every academic quarter as he works toward his aspiration to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology focused on addiction and prevention of related harms. In addition to his work supporting Frank Song’s Dissertation Study, Joseph also has provided leadership and critical thinking skills since the early conceptualization stages of Project HOBS (Health Outcomes of Betting on Sports), which is a multi-year longitudinal study examining health-related correlates of sports betting in young adults. This work has earned him opportunities to co-author scholarly research papers and to lead his own first-authored paper.


Arvin Shaygan

Advanced Undergraduate Academic Scholarship Recipient

University of Washington

Arvin Shaygan has maintained placement on the Dean’s List throughout his academic career while double-majoring in psychology and biology and, at the same time, volunteering at several health care facilities as he gains experience to prepare for medical school, where he intends to become a psychiatrist focused on addictive behaviors and addiction-based psychopathology.    Through his involvement in Project HOBS (Health Outcomes of Betting on Sports), Arvin has found a passion for understanding early-stage risk factors for problem gambling and has committed the remainder of his undergraduate training to further learning in this area. 

Learn more about these students’ impressive work at Focus on the Future.

Frank Song and Joseph Lambuth will share their work on Behavioral Health Correlates of Speculative Trading in Young Adults on Wednesday, May 1.

Joseph Lambuth and Arvin Shaygan will join UW Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Scott Graupensperger on Thursday, May 2.   


Interested in a Student Scholarship/Grant Award?

Application Deadline is April 1, 2024!!

The Evergreen Council on Problem Gambling (ECPG) seeks to seed innovation through supporting student research and education in the fields of psychology, cognitive or behavioral sciences to address social issues as they apply to Gambling and Gambling/Gaming Disorders in the following priority areas:

  • Addressing Gambling and Gaming Disorders as they impact at-risk and vulnerable populations
  • Understanding the connections between addictive behaviors and health
  • Understanding and eliminating stigma/intersectional stigmas and prejudice of Gambling and Gaming Disorders as Public Health issues (e.g., culture, race, gender, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, age, disability, and socioeconomic status)
  • Special concerns of populations that have historically been underrepresented in research on Gambling and Gaming Disorders
  • Understanding connections between Gambling/Gaming Disorder and Suicide


Funding and Support is Available in Four Categories:

  • Dissertation Research Grants
  • Graduate-Level Academic Thesis Awards
  • Advanced Undergraduate (Junior/Senior) Academic Scholarships
  • Early Undergraduate (Freshman/Sophomore) Academic Scholarships

Awards range from $2,000 to $3,500 per student. Up to three awards in each category are available for the Grant Funding Cycle Deadline of April 1, 2024.

Visit our Student Research Grants and Scholarships page for more detailed application information and eligibility requirements. 



Foundations in Gaming Disorder


Gaming Disorder Prevention and Treatment Training 

The  Foundations in Gaming Disorder – Core training is offered 100% online and self-directed for up to 30 CE credits.  It is designed to provide the critical knowledge needed to address at-risk video gaming and gaming disorder, from awareness and prevention through treatment and recovery.

  • Foundational Understanding of Gaming Disorder
  • For parents, partners, prevention specialists, and providers
  • 8 CE hours
  • Preventing Gaming Problems
  • For parents, partners, prevention specialists, and providers
  • 5 CE hours
  • Treating Gaming Disorder
  • For treatment providers
  • 17 CE hours

This opportunity is brought to you by the Evergreen Council on Problem Gambling, the Massachusetts Council on Gaming and Health, world-renown subject matter experts, and many partners and volunteers.


Foundations in Gaming Disorder training meets the educational requirements for the Gaming Health Specialist Certificate through the Massachusetts Council on Gaming and Health (MACGH) and the International Gaming Disorder Certificate through the International Gambling Counselor Certification Board (IGCCB).  See full certification details for additional requirements and eligibility criteria.  


What you receive:

  • Video and written lessons
  • Interactive learning includes quiz and process questions, reviews of research literature, looking up latest trends and information in your area, and more.
  • Digital workbook that includes all training slides and/or outlines, places for taking notes, resource links, help resources lists, screening tools, worksheets, and additional learning resources.
  • Recommendations for corresponding YouTube videos, podcasts and more on related topics, for further optional study.


Not yet an ECPG Associate?  SIGN UP HERE 

Take advantage of our Joint ECPG Associate/NCPG Membership – join both and save!  

As an ECPG Associate, you’ll receive discounted rates on all our trainings and conferences – all of which offer Continuing Education Units from many associations and certification boards.  You do not have to be a WA State resident in order to be an ECPG Associate.   




Problem Gambling Awareness Month


Start Preparing for Problem Gambling Awareness Month

Gov. Inslee has again Proclaimed March as

Problem Gambling Awareness Month (PGAM) 2024.


ECPG continues to focus on increasing awareness and hope, while lowering barriers for help services during PGAM and all throughout the year, with a particular focus on families and under-served communities.

COMING SOON!  PGAM 2024 Awareness campaign in Washington State will run March-May.

Find all your PGAM information, videos, calendar of events, resources, and toolkits here.

Tuesday, March 12, 2024

Is Gambling Disorder Screening Day (GDSD)

Gambling Disorder Screening Day (Screening Day) is a one-day event held annually on the second Tuesday of March during Problem Gambling Awareness Month. 


Evergreen Council on Problem Gambling

GDSD Page, Resources, and Events


Cambridge Health Alliance Division on Addiction

Access the full GDSD toolkit from CHA Division on Addiction.

Access the BBGS eScreener in 22 languages.




Washington State Problem Gambling Program Updates


Increasing Access to Problem Gambling Treatment in 2024

Apple Health (Medicaid) Coverage of Problem Gambling Treatment started January 1, 2024!

As of January 1, 2024, Apple Health (Medicaid) covers problem gambling assessment and treatment for   Medicaid clients whose services are 1) billed through Managed Care Organizations (MCOs), and 2) billed directly through HCA (fee-for-service through Provider One). This coverage includes services provided by both Tribal and non-Tribal behavioral health agencies that are DOH-certified problem gambling agencies. For billing info, behavioral health agencies and MCOs can consult the newest SERI guide. The fee-for-service (non-MCO Medicaid) rates were released on 1/1/24 and emailed to FFS-contracted agencies.

January BH Provider Call – Agencies can learn more about providing problem gambling services

To bill under Apple Health (Medicaid) for problem gambling treatment services, a licensed behavioral health agency must be DOH-certified as a problem gambling agency. In order to qualify, an agency must employ or contract with one or more Certified Gambling Counselors in good standing (WAC 246-341-1200).

New Medicaid billing – Only for DOH-certified problem gambling behavioral health agencies

A major limitation is that starting in January 2024, only DOH-certified problem gambling behavioral health agencies are allowed to bill for problem gambling treatment services through Medicaid. Even though many Certified Gambling Counselors in WA State are operating on their own, sole providers will not be able to bill for problem gambling treatment services through Medicaid even if currently billing for SUD and/or MH services under Medicaid. The State Problem Gambling Program and the HCA’s Medicaid Division continue to seek a way to add sole providers as billers for problem gambling treatment services for Apple Health (Medicaid) enrollees in the future.

Opportunities for sole provider Certified Gambling Counselors

Certified Gambling Counselors operating as sole providers are encouraged to contact behavioral health agencies that accept Medicaid but don’t currently offer problem gambling treatment about an option to contract to provide these services on a consulting basis.  In this case, the contract agreement would be between the sole provider and the licensed behavioral health agency (including the agreed-upon rates and payments to the sole provider). If you’d like info on how to approach this process, please contact Tana Russell at ECPG (trussell@evergreencpg.org).

Apply to contract for reimbursement funding for problem gambling treatment services.

In January 2024, the State Problem Gambling Program began accepting applications for new funding contracts with current DOH-certified problem gambling agencies and Certified Gambling Counselors (sole providers). This new funding will be available through June 2025, with the likely opportunity to renew for the following contract period (7/1/25-6/30/27). Please contact Roxane Waldron for more info: roxane.waldron@hca.wa.gov.


Will the State Problem Gambling Program continue to provide no-cost treatment options?

Yes, the State Program will continue serving clients who are not enrolled in Apple Health (Medicaid). During the implementation of Medicaid coverage, the State Problem Gambling Program will be allowing contracted treatment agencies to bill for services for both Medicaid and non-Medicaid clients through March 2024. Please direct individuals seeking help to the Problem Gambling Helpline (1-800-547-6133), the Evergreen Council on Problem Gambling’s interactive service directory, or the State Problem Gambling Program.

Workforce Development & Enhanced Scholarships

ECPG is now offering enhanced scholarships to clinicians seeking training to become Certified Gambling Counselors who work in regions of the state and/or within communities that are unserved or underserved. The scholarships are also available to agencies to train existing SUD and/or licensed mental health clinicians to become Certified Gambling Counselors.  For more information, please contact Tana Russell at trussell@evergreencpg.org. 



Treatment Support for Individuals and Families


Families Deserve Help, Too

Gambling-related harms have a far-reaching impact across families and a variety of close relationships.  Whether someone is a parent, spouse, non-married partner, or even just a close friend, the “family” treatment support is extended to both the family that’s given, and the family that’s chosen. 

Many recovery services are available for individuals in recovery from gambling. There are far fewer resources for the loved ones who have been living with fear, anxiety, and frustration often for years.  But there’s great news, help is available for family, friends, significant others, and other close relationships who have dealt with negative impacts of gambling of their loved one.  

What does “family” treatment look like for gambling support?

  • The gambling loved one never even has to show up, the person who is seeking help is the person who can get help.
  • A Certified Gambling Counselor can tailor treatment around the client’s own goals for their well-being, and around whether or not the gambling inside their home is continuing or stopped.
  • Counseling sessions can help family members figuring out how to protect financial health, plan for their future, improve communication, improve mental health, set meaningful boundaries, offer helpful support to the loved one while finding the necessary and much deserved support for themselves, and more.  
  • Healing emotionally, mentally, physically, and spiritually is possible, even if the change hoped for in their loved one never occurs, or if it just looks different than envisioned. 
  • Sessions might include one or more other members of the family or close relationships. 
  • The loved one with a Gambling Disorder can get help for themselves as well, when they are ready. 


Family support resources:


Other great news for providers

  • Medicaid is now covering (in limited capacity) gambling treatment services.  See more from HCA’s article above or check out the new Medicaid SERI billing guide.
  • ECPG is raising their outpatient gambling treatment reimbursement rates, including reimbursement for supervision for the practice hours needed to obtain WSCGC-I/II.  
  • ECPG’s residential gambling treatment reimbursement program also includes a family treatment component for loved ones to be able to attend family treatment sessions during their loved one’s stay.
    • If you are a Certified Gambling Counselor and have a client in need of residential gambling treatment and without funds to be able to access this level of care, contact ECPG for information on residential treatment support (contact Tana Russell, trussell@evergreencpg.org.)



Therapeutic Justice


Gambling Treatment Diversion Court Saves Families – Saves Lives

Excerpts from articles by the Honorable Cheryl Moss, Senior Judge and Former Gambling Treatment Diversion Court Judge, Las Vegas, Nevada

The Gambling Treatment Diversion Program is designed to help persons who have found themselves in trouble with the law, and most of them are first time offenders who have never had a criminal history.  These individuals come from all walks of life.  Gambling disorder does not discriminate.  The persons who have appeared before a criminal court judge are young adults, grandmothers, casino workers, military veterans, unemployed, mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, and business executives to name a few.  They come from diverse ethnic backgrounds as well.

One of the aspects of the gambling program is to encourage the participant’s family members to attend court sessions.  Having family support is reassuring and beneficial to the participant’s recovery journey.  As a gambling court judge, I have seen a mother be able to continue to raise her young daughter.  I have seen a man in his 50s continue to have a relationship with his significant other, and she is very supportive.

Understanding if there is a problem gambling condition in the family is important. For individuals with serious problems, outpatient treatment, intensive outpatient treatment with continuing care, or even residential treatment may be the most appropriate options.  When the issue of problem gambling is brought forth before a family court judge, the judge should be considering directives such as placing the non-gambling spouse in charge of all the family finances, referring the family member with the conditionto counseling, referring the non-gambling family members to Gam-Anon meetings and counseling for themselves, and monitoring the progress of treatment through scheduled status checks.

When I saw my gambling treatment court participants, I saw persons, not defendants.  I saw individuals who had children, parents, siblings, spouses, and significant others. These are the same stories that are universal throughout the world, but seeing each one of them in my courtroom for up to three years, each had their story to tell.  The judge, the lawyers, and the court staff were witness to their amazing recovery journey.

It was not a typical courtroom setting.  It was a gathering of support, respect, and finding good in the individual.  It was up to the individual to make good choices, though not easy at times.  We were with them each step of the way.  Gambling treatment courts save lives.


To access the full articles by Judge Moss here

Resource: Visit Judge Moss' educational website at gamblingcourts.us


Representative Chris Stearns Leads Support to Create a

Gambling Treatment Diversion Court Pilot Program in Washington State


The original HOUSE BILL 2055 was introduced in the House and referred to the Civil Rights and Judiciary Committee in January, during the State of Washington 68th Legislature 2024 Regular Session.  The Bill, originally sponsored by Representatives Stearns, Orwall, Ramel, Simmons, Reed, Ormsby, Goodman, Doglio, Reeves, and Davis, seeks to approve:

An ACT Relating to the creation of a gambling treatment diversion court pilot program to be conducted by the administrative office of the courts.

The Civil Rights & Judiciary Committee voted to pass the 1st substitute bill, which has been referred to Appropriations. (View 1st Substitute here)


Please take time to review the Bill language and send a comment on the Bill to your legislator.




Groundbreaking GRIT Act

Gambling addiction Recovery, Investment, and Treatment (GRIT) Act Proposed Federal Legislation


The first dedicated federal funding for programs to prevent, treat, and study gambling addiction would provide vital support to state health agencies and nonprofit organizations to address gambling problems.


What the GRIT Act Would Do:

  • This legislation would set aside 50% of the federal sports excise tax revenue for gambling addiction treatment and research.
    • 75% will be distributed to the states for gambling addiction prevention and treatment through the existing Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant program.
    • 25% will go to the National Institute of Drug Abuse to fund grants for research into gambling addiction.
  • The legislation would authorize spending for 10 years and require the Secretary of Health and Human Services to submit a report to Congress on the effectiveness of the program within three years of passage.


For more information about the GRIT Act, copies of the Bill Language, and information on how you can support this legislation as an Advocate go to:

GRIT Act - National Council on Problem Gambling (ncpgambling.org)



Puyallup Outreach and Awareness Campaign


Take a Break, Take a Breath, and Reconnect


The Puyallup Tribe of Indians and the Evergreen Council on Problem Gambling just completed an important Fall/Winter 2023/2024 collaborative outreach and awareness campaign to offer Washingtonians healthy choices around gambling that offer Hope and Help.  ECPG is honored to work together with the Puyallup Tribe of Indians, their staff and leadership teams, to increase awareness of problem and responsible gambling and to assist the Tribe in their mission of building a harmonious community through connection and healthy choices. 

The Puyallup Tribe of Indians chose three key themes for a broader connection through public service announcements that would resonate with individuals, families, and communities in Washington.  The Puyallup Tribe has a legacy of being strong stewards of the environment, culture, language, and holistic health, supporting many programs and services to keep Washington communities healthy.  This campaign follows that tradition, recognizing holistic prevention and treatment are best to support those making choices about gambling for fun and entertainment and supporting treatment to help those who may need it.   The Campaign’s Message from Puyallup Tribe of Indians Chairman, Bill Sterud, best sums up that support and commitment:


Things don’t always go our way.  But we do what we can to bounce back.

Gambling can be fun, but when it’s not… Take a break, take a breath, and reconnect.

The Puyallup Tribe of Indians stands strong for family and community.

We strive to build a culture of connection and healthy choices

If you or a loved one is experiencing difficulty with gambling, call or text the 24-hour Helpline or chat online with a live Problem Gambling Helpline Specialist.


Learn more by visiting the campagn website: pausebreathereconnect.org

Click below to view the three-campaign theme Public Service Announcements:




Black Community Advisory Committee


Recruiting volunteers for ECPG's Black Community Advisory Committee


ECPG is excited to launch a project long in the works – the new Black Community Advisory Committee! We are seeking volunteers to help guide our efforts toward gambling disorder recovery equity for all.


What are Community Advisory Committees?

Our mission at ECPG thrives on empowering people to achieve a state of well-being and health. We understand that everyone’s journey is incredibly diverse and that our work requires sensitivity in representing these varied experiences. Our Advisory Committee volunteers share experiences, insights, and knowledge that are vital to helping ECPG offer and enhance programs that meet the needs of diverse communities. Our existing Community Advisory Committees include:

  • Asian and Pacific Islander
  • Latinx
  • Native American/Indigenous
  • Recovery Community (all populations welcome)
  • More to come in 2024-2025 (including Black Community and Military/Veteran Community)


This year we are welcoming a Black Community Advisory Committee. We are seeking people who:

  • Are leaders in black communities and specialize in behavioral health equity, health outreach/awareness/prevention, and/or public health.
  • Who have knowledge in gambling or video gaming disorders (desired but not a requirement.)
  • Are able and willing to meet virtually a few times a year (generally quarterly) or as needed to contribute thoughts.
  • May be able to assist in hands-on work depending on desired projects and objectives of the committee.
  • Are familiar with the Pacific Northwest (desired but not a requirement.)
  • Are eager to collaborate with like-minded individuals to make progress for equitable access to care, resources, and awareness.

Please use this list as a guideline, not as strict conditions.



How to Join

Interested applicants can fill out a short online application found at the bottom of our Culture and Community page. Spots may be open on other advisory committees, so we encourage you to apply to the group to which you feel most connected!




ECPG Family


Welcome Prevention Specialist Paulina Zyskowski

Paulina Zyskowski describes herself as “Optimistic.”  That’s the perfect quality for a Prevention and Community Engagement Specialist for a nonprofit organization that strives to encourage in and provide for those we serve both Hope and Help.

It’s also an important quality for a young professional who has traveled across the country from New Jersey to accept a new role with a small nonprofit organization in a relatively small city in Washington State.  Paulina graduated with a Master’s Degree in Public Health this past year and most recently worked as a public health consultant for a firm specializing in conducting Community Health/Needs Assessments in New Jersey.  The company worked with community leaders to identify gaps in health equity and develop plans to address them.

So, what inspired Paulina to move across the country to join our Evergreen Council on Problem Gambling family? 

“Really the people.  I didn’t know anything about ECPG or Olympia when I first applied for the position, but it didn’t take long for me to see that this would be a good fit,” says Paulina.  “During my first interview, it was obvious that Maureen and Tana have a deep passion for this work and that it brings a lot of fulfillment.  I had been searching for that for myself, and it certainly helped that Olympia is a cute town in a beautiful state.”

Paulina recently completed her first multi-day comprehensive training in our field – the Gambling Counselor Core Training (Basic 30-hour course).  She is also working on completing the Foundations in Gaming Disorder self-directed online training.  She says she is looking forward to attending ECPG’s Spring Focus on the Future Conference, and all this training is helping her identify ways to develop prevention programs – with a particular interest in youth engagement.

“I see ECPG as bridging gaps between treatment professionals, students, loved ones affected by problem gambling, people with gambling disorder, and even the gambling industry,"  said Paulina.  “The partnerships that ECPG has are built on trust and serve to support the work of the many passionate people in this field.”

Paulina is still exploring Washington and getting involved in her new community in a big way.  In her brief time here, she has become involved as a volunteer at several other nonprofit organizations, including the Puget Sound Estuarian, Capitol Land Trust, Black Dawg Animal Sanctuary, Nisqually Stream Stewards, and is completing an application with Big Brothers Big Sisters.   If there is time beyond those commitments, Paulina enjoys reading, drawing, painting, knitting, antiquing, and anything outdoors.

When asked who has inspired Paulina in her life and work, she shared:

“I had a really great professor in my Master’s program.  She was very soft spoken, but would give such passionate advice that you felt uplifted for weeks after. She helped me realize my passions in public health when I doubted myself and stayed as a mentor long after I graduated.”


Meet ECPG’s Office Manager – Bruce Clatterbuck

An Office Manager must be a reliable, confident, trustworthy, organized problem-solver, with good communications skills, a strong understanding of the organization’s Mission and Values, and the ability to multitask.  An Office Manager is often the first “face” or “voice” of the organization that anyone meets.

Meet the Evergreen Council on Problem Gambling’s new Office Manager, Bruce Clatterbuck.  The very qualities that inspire Bruce in people around him are the qualities so needed in our field:

“Those who lead by example as opposed to decree.  Those with compassion and humility.  Those who can laugh at the world (and especially themselves).”

They are also mirrored in the qualities of ECPG that inspired Bruce to join our team:

“ECPG seems to be having a huge impact, both in advocacy/awareness of the far-reaching effects of problem gambling, not only on the individual but on their extended family and community, as well as being a catalyst to connect professionals and advocates all over the country to lend their expertise to specific issues,” Bruce said. "The fact that the staff is so cohesive and supportive is a huge plus.”

Bruce has had a long career working in non-profit administration, accounting, and budgeting.  “That type of work is ‘what I do,’ have been most successful at doing, and it’s my way of providing the best benefit as a staff member to the organizations I have served,” said Bruce.  His most recent non-profit position was with a Seattle-based organization that owned and operated group homes for senior adults with developmental disabilities. 

As dedicated as Bruce is to his work, he describes himself as “easy-going,” and that both he and his partner are “homebodies.”  They enjoy sharing time at home cooking, watching a movie, gardening, or just “hanging out” – with their 13-year-old Shi-poo Molly.  They also enjoy exploring parks and being outdoors in general and are looking forward to exploring coastal towns in Washington and Oregon.

Bruce has also been an avid collector of music and movie memorabilia for years.  So, what are his favorite movies?

The Artist was a surprising favorite,” said Bruce.  I remember sitting in the movie theatre, marveling at the beauty and magical presentation of the movie.  Also, I must admit that Young Frankenstein is a big favorite as well.  Having seen the movie several times, I still find references and subtle humor that I hadn’t noticed before.”

I wonder if Bruce likes Ovaltine?!



Evergreen Council on Problem Gambling
1821 4th Ave. E,  | Olympia, Washington  98506
360-352-6133 | info@evergreencpg.org

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