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Press Release | January 22, 2019

SAFE Project Names New Executive Director

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — January 22, 2019
Contact: Sarah Camille Godfrey

ARLINGTON, VA – Brandee Izquierdo has been named SAFE Project’s Executive Director. She succeeds Rosemary Williams who served SAFE throughout 2018.

“Drug overdoses are now one of the leading causes of death in our country,” Izquierdo said. “This crisis requires all hands on deck and my goal in this new leadership role is to stay focused on solutions.  Nothing changes if nothing changes and I’m ready to be a catalyst for that change.”

Izquierdo has background in behavioral health and criminal justice with hands on experience supporting individuals with substance use disorder. She brings to SAFE a passion for serving those who have been directly and indirectly impacted by our nation’s addiction epidemic.

“We are very pleased to bring Brandee on board to lead the team,” said SAFE Project Co-Founder Admiral Sandy Winnefeld. “Her firsthand experience with substance dependence and deep knowledge of behavioral health will help SAFE fine-tune and expand its efforts to combat the opioid epidemic.”

Previously, Izquierdo was Director of Advocacy and Outreach for the Faces & Voices of Recovery. She has also worked for Baltimore’s Behavioral Health System and the State of Maryland’s Behavioral Health Administration. Izquierdo received a master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Baltimore and is currently working on her Doctorate in Public Administration.

A native of Baltimore, Izquierdo is involved in multiple organizations, including the Maryland Addiction and Behavioral-health Professionals Certification Board and the International Certification & Reciprocity Consortium.

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About SAFE Project

SAFE(Stop the Addiction Fatality Epidemic) Project is a nonprofit organization that is committed to contributing in a tangible way to overcoming the epidemic of opioid addiction in the United States. The organization uses an action-oriented, fact-based, non-partisan approach to substantial progress through six interdependent lines of operation that address public awareness, full-spectrum prevention, prescription medicine, law enforcement and medical response, treatment and recovery and family outreach and support. The organization was founded in November 2017 by retired Navy Admiral and former ninth vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff James Winnefeld and his wife Mary Winnefeld, after they lost their 19-year-old son, Jonathan, to an accidental opioid overdose. For more information, please visit