About Us

William F. Haning, III, MD, DFAPA, DFASAM


Biography and Statement

William F. Haning, III, MD, DFAPA, DFASAM

1. How would your election benefit ASAM and the field of addiction medicine?

I bring four objectives to the job. They are not so much original, as they are likely to be shared by most of you reading this:

  1. Assuring the survival of the field and of the membership’s privilege to practice in it (Society stewardship)
  2. Collaboration across agencies, societies, and nations (making friends)
  3. Accelerating our role in education (we are a schoolroom for all healthcare professionals)
  4. Assisting recovery organizations (amplifying the voices of our patients)

I have been trying to find ways to give back to addiction medicine and to ASAM since Terry Schultz advised me to join what was then AMSAODD in 1988, and since Max Schneider impulsively approved my certification application in 1989. That approaches three decades. Service requires qualifications as much as it does good will, so have accrued these: a tenured professorship in this field; active ABAM and ABPN certifications; immediate past direction of the M.D. Programs of the University of Hawaii’s John A. Burns School of Medicine and direction of the General Psychiatry Residency Program; direction of Hawai`i’s Addiction Psychiatry/Medicine Fellowships since 1998; and neurosciences medical student curriculum director for the University of Hawai`i.

One result is that our medical school has a clear emphasis on substance use disorder diagnosis and treatment practices. This work has been acknowledged by my receiving: the APA’s Nancy C.A. Roeske Award for excellence in teaching, the University of Hawai’i Regents’ Award for Excellence in Teaching, the John M. Hardman Award for Mentorship in Medical Education, the Andy Anderson Award for Advocacy in Addictions, the Leonard Tow Award for Humanism in Medicine, the Judge James S. Burns Award for Community Service, and the Hawai`i Medical Association’s designation as Hawai`i Physician of the Year (2014). That summates to a career emphasis on education: conveying the messages. I’m not bad at it. I would continue to make that emphasis the first basis of my contributions to the Society.

On diligence: I am retiring from the bulk of my compensated positions, explicitly to be able to work for ASAM. A job of the President-Elect in the first two years of what amounts to a 6-year post, is to become a master of Rules of Order; the President chairs the Board, and 7 years have shown me that it is not a task for amateurs. The Presidency particularly calls for someone who has qualities of patience and skill in mediation; as well as the ability to suddenly and without warning pick up the gavel and continue the Board’s mission. A reading of my biography will reveal that I have spent a lifetime being everybody’s utility infielder. I will continue to inform the editorial policy and content of the products of the Publications Council of the will, interests, wisdom, and knowledge of the Board members. They are an incredibly bright, varied, hard-working and amiable lot of people; working with them has been one of the highest points of my life. after marrying Libby.

2. What are your greatest contributions to ASAM and the field of addiction medicine?

I’ve advanced training, research, and clinical practice quality for addictions in Hawai’i, in the military, and nationally. I had the sort of spotty career shared by many in the Society, until 1985, when I began reliably following instructions and showing up sober; candor in this is obligatory. I’ve tried to keep busy since. If I do this right, acting consistent with my ethical core, working hard, and making enduring partnerships, then I will continue to enlarge our scope of practice and ensure the Society’s growth.

Service (Institutional): I am a founder of the Hawai’i Society of Addiction Medicine and its Past President. My first term as ASAM At-large Director follows two terms as Region VIII Director. I have reliably represented the needs of our constituencies, practitioners and patients, to both the Chapters Council and the Board of Directors. Service within ASAM has most recently included Public Policy Committee, various task forces and writing groups, and Publications Council (Chair). Except for intervals of recall to military duty, I have annually chaired a joint effort between the Hawai`i Society of Addiction Medicine and the University of Hawai`i, the Hawai`i Addiction Conference, since 1999.

Service (Clinical): Following 12 years in emergency medicine and occupational health, a year in an addiction medicine fellowship, and 3 years in addiction medicine, I entered a psychiatry residency at age 43. My subsequent care of patients has been in several roles: as program director of a general psychiatric residency training program; as Chief of Staff of a state psychiatric hospital; as project director of the State’s DWI Court; in several military roles that ranged from Medical Officer of a destroyer squadron to Division Psychiatrist, 4th Marine Division; and pro bono to impaired or disabled physicians. I served as medical director of two addiction treatment facilities, military and civilian, for 4 years each.

Research: I am founding Principal Investigator of the Pacific Addiction Research Center, Honolulu, with 8 clinical trials for treatment of methamphetamine dependence in collaboration with our colleagues Drs. Richard Rawson and Frank Vocci; several community service grants (SBIRT, Prison Inmate SUD & Mental Health Assessment, DWI Court establishment); and am the original Hawai`i Site Principal Investigator (2001) for the Infant Development Education and Lifestyle (IDEAL) study of children born to methamphetamine-dependent mothers. Among my publications are 6 book chapters/monographs and 44 peer-reviewed journal articles.

Education/Training: I was included among the original members of the ASAM Medical Specialty Action Group (MSAG) and of the ABAM Training Committee, have provided a comprehensive model for a successful Addiction Medicine fellowship, and have happily trained both program directors and clinicians, including 3 Army Surgeon-General’s Addiction Consultants. With encouragement from the Society and support from Dr. Jon Streltzer of my medical school department, I established the first Addiction Psychiatry and Addiction Medicine fellowships west of the Mississippi in 1998 & 1999, respectively. In 2003, I was appointed to the Examination Committee, Addiction Psychiatry, of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology; and served as Acting Chair 2012-2014 and then Chair in 2014. The Committee writes and assembles the examinations in Certification and Maintenance of Certification for Addiction Psychiatry. Beginning in January, 2015, I have been interim Editor-in-Chief and then Editor-in-Chief of the ASAM Weekly, circulation 44,000, while maintaining my role as Chair of ASAM’s Publications Council. The Council oversees publication of the three ASAM journals and multiple texts, inclusive of Principles of Addiction Medicine and the ASAM Patient Placement Criteria. With Senior Editors Drs. Karen Miotto and Nicholas Athanasiou, the role of the ASAM Weekly has expanded to include fellows in reviewing articles and contributing guest editorials. I’ve instructed at the ASAM Pain and Addictions Course and am currently sharing in editing The ASAM Textbook on Pain and Addiction.

I believe that I have proven a useful and hopefully amusing colleague to the staff at ASAM, who are the true instruments of the Society’s effectiveness.

Biographical Sketch

William F. Haning, III, M.D., DFASAM, DFAPA (“Bill”) : Bill Haning is a tenured Professor of Psychiatry at the John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawai’i, who served as the Director of M.D. Programs for the medical school until his recent partial retirement; he is Director of Addiction Psychiatry/Addiction Medicine Residency Training Programs and the Deputy for General Psychiatry, and Director of the medical students’ neurosciences curriculum (2nd year).

Bill is Principal Investigator for the Pacific Addiction Research Center (PARC®). A Director of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) and the Editor-in-Chief of the ASAM Weekly, he also serves as Chair of the Examination Committee for Addiction Psychiatry, American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.

He received his A.B. (Philosophy) from Princeton University and M.D. from the University of Hawai`i at Manoa. He is a Member of the American College of Psychiatrists, a Distinguished Fellow of the American Society of Addiction Medicine and a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. Bill has been very fortunate. He is certified in Psychiatry, Addiction Psychiatry, and Addiction Medicine; has received teaching awards inclusive of the APA’s Nancy C.A. Roeske Certificate, the John M. Hardman Award for Mentorship from the John A. Burns School of Medicine of the University of Hawai`i, the Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award, and the University of Hawai`i Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Teaching.

In 2014, the Hawai`i Medical Association designated him Hawai`i’s Physician of the Year. The Force Surgeon (2001-2007) for both U.S. Marine Forces Pacific and for Marine Forces Central Command in Operation Iraqi Freedom, Bill served subsequently as the Division Psychiatrist, 4th Marine Division; his awards include the Legion of Merit. He spends a lot of time trying to defeat age through exercise, which seems only to wear him out; and an equal amount of time trying to understand humanity by reading history, which only raises more questions. He lives in Manoa Valley in Honolulu where he is the undeserving spouse of the remarkable Dr. Libby Char, Assistant Clinical Professor of Surgery (Emergency Medicine).