2023 Annual Letter

kathleen Madden


Greetings Friends, Family, and All Who Support FAR,

How many have seen the Apple TV series, “Ted Lasso”? The lead character is a “fish out of water” who is on a quest to cope with a failing marriage and forge a successful and happy new life in an entirely new culture. “Fish out of water” is a familiar trope because it is a universal experience – most of us have found ourselves in discombobulating circumstances at various times in our lives. Ted is the kind of character who is continuously underestimated due to his sincere, folksy, kind, positive, and all-around genuine nice-guy persona. That’s rather sad, isn’t it? Challenged by the main antagonist to a game of darts, this opponent thinks he’s got the drop on Ted. This is when Ted relates one of his folksy anecdotes and recalls seeing graffiti of a quote he wrongly attributes to the venerable Walt Whitman, “Be curious, not judgmental.”

It’s a common human foible – to make snap judgments about others based on superficial observations … and this leads me to comment on what I think is one major reason that Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) is so difficult to detect and treat. Someone with AUD knows they must conceal this disease from significant others to avoid the judgments and often they become an expert at that – until AUD has progressed so far that the ruse becomes impossible. Some commonly held beliefs that need myth-busting:

  • AUD is a character flaw. In fact, it is a biopsychosocial disease recognized by the DSM. (NIH)
  • One only needs to exercise will power to quit imbibing alcohol. In fact, the profound changes to brain chemistry significantly impair judgment and make that almost impossible. (NIH)
  • Only certain types of alcohol are addictive; dependence not possible with drinking just beer or wine. In fact, although the volume of alcohol is significantly higher in one serving of spirits compared to beer or wine, if alcohol intake is excessive and predisposing factors are present, one has the potential to develop AUD. (NIH)
  • AUD is not as serious as other drug addictions. In fact, AUD is a causal factor for development of many life-threatening diseases, and its legal and widespread availability serve to seriously hinder recovery. (NIH)
  • Someone with AUD cannot possibly hold a job. In fact, many who have AUD continue to function well in their professional lives; 62% of Functional Alcoholics work full-time. (SAMHA)

What would Ted do with these sobering facts? Despite his mild manners, Ted is a dynamic, gregarious, and resourceful character who finds his way back home and triumphs in the season finale. Ever the optimist, I think he would say that it is very possible to intervene in the arc of someone’s struggle with AUD. For starters, strive to “Be curious, not judgmental.” The experts suggest planning ahead before you have a conversation or stage an intervention, and be sure to focus on coming from a place of love and concern. Use I-statements. Do your research and be prepared to offer options. Most importantly — be prepared to listen with an open mind and heart.

And of course, more research is needed to better identify, treat, cure, and prevent AUD. Please donate to FAR and continue to help us award promising university biomed research study grants focused on AUD. In a few days, I am excited to be meeting with one of our research teams, whose work is concluding. I will be amending this letter to include an update on their data, their conclusions and plans for next steps. FAR’s next steps include releasing invitations for proposals, as we begin the search for more promising research studies to support. Your donations allow us to do so. Thank you for doing your part to improve the tragic landscape for those suffering with AUD.

Wishing you wonderful health, success, and happiness for the coming holiday season and for the New Year 2024!

Kathleen Madden, President and Corresponding Secretary, FAR



Our Mission

To raise and distribute funds to perform research in the following areas: causes, identification, detection, prevention, treatment, and cure of/for Alcoholism. It is not to provide funds for rehabilitation, detoxification, counseling, or any personal aid to people with this disease.

FAR is a fully-qualified IRS 501(c) 3 public charity.

What is FAR – and Why?

FAR is concerned about the disease of alcoholism, not the beverage. FAR is the only public charity supporting research to find better solutions for those afflicted. The funding for such research has been small compared to other diseases, yet it is the 3rd most prevalent disease in the US.  Read more…

FAR Public Service Announcement

Join the Foundation for Alcoholism Research (FAR) on its mission to fund research into effective medical treatments for Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD), one of America’s most prevalent and most destructive diseases. FAR is an all-volunteer 501 (c) 3 public charity and 100% of your donation goes to research. The most recent 2 grants were awarded earlier this year to Virginia Commonwealth University and the University of Vermont-Burlington to fund seminal research which will consist of collecting and organizing data to better understand and improve the causes, identification, diagnosis, and treatment of AUD. FAR is the only public charity solely addressing research for alcohol addiction. Be part of the solution – donate today!

Memorial Funds


  • Bill Young
  • Mary Williamson
  • Kevin Baer
  • Joseph Deitch
  • Brett Hilgendorf
  • Paul Wittenburg
  • Michael Jones
  • Diane Clodfelter
  • Anonymous Mr. W.
  • Rita Kaye Byler
  • Mark Ferguson
  • Darick Sarley
  • Tammy Resko
  • Alexander AlbertoDuno
  • Michelle Lewis
  • Meg McKennon
  • Harry C. Moreland III
  • Walker Neuhaus
  • Marcy Lape
  • Nicolas Michael Marquez
  • Bob Morse
  • David Galli
  • Kenneth L. Hadsock
  • Jim Patterson
  • Anne Buckingham
  • Vannoy Thompson
  • Amy Grabina
  • Bryan Beaman
  • Diane Maye
  • Laura Jean Malay Murphy
  • Eric G. Madden
  • Walter Mercado
  • Edward Truan
  • Grant Zacher
  • Bruce Moran
  • Jason Meilike
  • Thomas Baran
  • Robert W. Doria
  • JoAnn (Bootsie) Jean Derer
  • Carter Roland Tague
  • Brian D. White
  • Gerard (Jerry) Saville
  • Jane McKillop Steingberg
  • Wes Holler
  • Kenneth Bronson Grimsley
  • Brandon Shane Dobbs
  • Ryan J. Bierman
  • Tricia Noble
  • Sean Robert Carney


High-Dose Baclofen Supports Abstinence in Alcoholism

From Athens Greece: High doses of baclofen (multiple brands), a drug normally used to treat spasticity, supports alcohol-dependent patients in maintaining abstinence from alcohol and is reasonably well tolerated, new research indicates. Read More


Huge New Penn Study: Red Wine Not So Good For Your Heart After All

Uh, guys? I think the entire health community might soon take back everything good it’s ever said about red wine and heart health: A huge new study out of Penn Medicine, published today on BMJ.com, found absolutely no cardiovascular benefits to drinking even moderate amounts of alcohol, including red wine. Read more


Chilean Researchers Working on Alcoholism Vaccine

Researchers in Chile say that if their venture is successful, a shot a month could help alcoholics kick their habit.

A team of researchers in Chile are working to come up with a vaccine against alcoholism. If successful, the patient will get a shot a month and not crave alcohol anymore. Read more

In the News

Is Alcoholics Anonymous Irrational?

BBC | March 23, 2015

(BBC) Alcoholics Anonymous is a standard part of alcohol therapy in America. It was established 80 years ago and it’s famous 12 step philosophy says that in order to be cured an alcoholic must never drink a single drop again… Read More


A Cure for Alcoholism?

The Doctors | 2015

(The Doctors) Todd’s binge drinking has cost him his job and his family. He agrees to try a new medical treatment for alcoholism, a time-released implant that claims to curb alcohol cravings. Find out if the implant has any effect on this father. Plus, what advice does former child star and recovering alcoholic, Jeremy Miller, have for Todd?… Read More