Today we honor our beloved friend and founder, Mark Houston. His vision and dream of providing a safe place for those seeking recovery from addiction is fulfilled every day by our wonderful community. Thank you Mark, you are truly missed!

Mark Houston

To commemorate the fourth anniversary of Mark Houston’s passing, this is the first of a five part blog series, titled “The BRC Recovery Culture”, written by Marsha Stone, CEO of BRC Recovery.

I have often been asked questions about BRC Recovery and the “way it works.” Some people are confused and even skeptical about the ability of a recovery center, non-licensed by design and by choice, to deliver safe and effective rehabilitation for the adult alcoholic or addict.

To explain the BRC Recovery program honestly and thoroughly, a bit of a history lesson is a prerequisite. BRC Recovery was originally Mark Houston Recovery and was founded by Mark Houston, a true visionary, and a pioneer in the recovery field. In 2006, when MHR first opened its doors, the terms “recovery residence” and “recovery-oriented-system-of-care (ROSC)” were new concepts yet to be developed.

Mark Houston had worked in the treatment field for some twenty years at two of the finest treatment centers in the country. He was also an internationally known speaker and workshop facilitator in the 12 Step community. Through his personal and professional experience Mark believed that conventional wisdom about treating chronic alcoholics and addicts was backwards. He dared to proclaim that first and foremost the 12 Steps should be worked and worked thoroughly with a qualified mentor. Following the spiritual awakening that results from working all 12 Steps, the client would then be connected with various outside professionals and community services as their particular needs required.

Out of this idea came the dream for a recovery center that would do just that. The mission statement then, and now is….

“Our belief is that alcoholism and drug addiction are chronic, progressive diseases which demand a lifelong set of practices as a way of living if we are to experience permanent recovery. Our commitment to our residents is that we will provide a set of life skills and spiritual practices which will be incorporated and assimilated into their minds and hearts and allow them to recreate and reclaim their lives.”

On day two or three of my employment at MHR, Mark gave me a piece of advice that I have found to be invaluable. He said that the magic to a truly successful recovery center was the culture. I will never forget his words to me…

“Establish your culture, Marsha, and the community will run itself.”

BRC Recovery is more than brick and mortar, daily schedules and groups. And certainly more than beds and Big Books. It is a culture of recovery, hearts and minds joined with a primary purpose to help the still suffering alcoholic and addict. Thank you, Mark, for your ideas, courage, grit and determination. And thank you to our teams, past and present, for giving it your all. It really does take a village… but man oh man is this a powerful village and I’m so grateful I found my tribe!

Marsha Stone, CEO
BRC Recovery