The Canadian Society of Addiction Medicine was founded as the Canadian Medical Society on Alcohol and Other Drugs in 1989 when a group consisting of a psychiatrist, family physicians, occupational health physicians, an internist and one PhD researcher/administrator gathered in Ottawa with the common goal of forming an association which would represent the medical profession in the area of Substance-related Use Disorders. Our current membership presently consists of full physician members and non-physician associate members from various other regulated disciplines. It is a national organization of medical professionals, allied health workers and other scientists interested in the field of Substance Use Disorders and Addictive Behavior.

Vision & Goals

Amended May 2009

To advance the education of health professionals in the field of addiction medicine by developing and providing courses and conferences, conducting research and establishing clinical standards

To educate the public about the assessment, treatment and prevention of addiction by collecting, and disseminating information on that topic.

HONORARY Membership is an honor bestowed on members of the Society who have demonstrated distinguished service to the Society and the field of Addiction Medicine. Honorary Members include:

1989: Dr. Gordon Bell of Toronto, ON

1996: Dr. Joseph MacMillan of Toronto, ON

1997: Dr. Sheldon Cameron of Summerside, PEI; Dr. Anna-Mary Burditt of Moncton, NB (formerly of Halifax NS)

1999: Dr. Maurice Dongier of Montreal, QC; Dr. Jim Rankin of Suffolk Park, NSW Australia (formerly of Toronto, ON); Dr. Douglas Talbott of Atlanta, GA

2001: Dr. Nady el-Guebaly of Calgary, AB; Dr. Leonard Blumenthal of Saskatoon, SK

2004: Dr. Graeme Cunningham of Guelph, ON

2005: Dr. Raju Hajela of Kingston, ON

2006: Dr. Bhushan Kapur of Oakville, ON

2008: Dr. Meldon Kahan of Toronto, ON

2014: Dr. William Campbell of Calgary, AB



The Board of Directors, elected by the membership within each province and territory as well as members at large, governs the Society and its mandate is carried out with the support of several committees. The President of the Society is elected from the Board of Directors and the usual term of office is for a period of two years.

Presidents’ History

1989 – 1991: Dr. Jim Rankin of Toronto, ON
1991 – 1993: Dr. Juan Negrete of Montreal, QC
1993 – 1995: Dr. Bill Jacyk of Winnipeg, MB
1995 – 1997: Dr. Nady el-Guebaly of Calgary, AB
1997 – 2000: Dr. Raju Hajela of Kingston, ON
2000 – 2002: Dr. Bill Campbell of Calgary, AB
2002 – 2004: Dr. Peter Mezciems of Guleph, ON
2004 – 2006: Dr. David Marsh of Vancouver, BC
2006 – 2008: Dr. Frank Evans of Toronto, ON
2008 – 2010: Dr. Don Ling of Charlottetown, PEI
2010 – 2013: Dr. Brian Fern of Saskatoon, SK
2013 – 2015: Dr. Ron Lim of Calgary, AB
2015 – 2018: Dr. Paul Sobey of New Westminster, BC
2018 – 2020: Dr. Melanie Willows of Ottawa, ON

History of Annual Meetings

1989: Calgary, AB
1990: Montreal, QC
1991: Toronto, ON
1992: Vancouver, BC
1993: Winnipeg, MB
1994: Ottawa, ON
1995: Banff, AB
1996: Toronto, ON
1997: Halifax, NS
1998: Victoria, BC
1999: Montreal, QC
2000: Ottawa, ON
2001: Banff, AB
2002: Montreal, QC jointly with the World Forum – Drugs, Dependencies Impacts & Responses

2003: Halifax, NS
2004: Toronto, ON
2005: Vancouver, BC
2006: Saskatoon, SK
2007: Ottawa, ON
2008: Vancouver, BC
2009: Calgary, AB jointly with ISAM- International Society of Addiction Medicine
2010: Charlottetown, PEI
2011: Vancouver, BC
2012: Toronto, ON
2013: Vancouver, BC
2014: Ottawa, ON
2015: Banff, AB
2016: Montreal, QC jointly with ISAM-International Society of Addiction Medicine
2017: Niagara Falls, ON
2018: Vancouver, BC


Committees have been formed to address ongoing issues such as Education, the Annual Conference, Bylaws, Standards, the CJA, among others.

CSAM Certification

The Board of CSAM began awarding the status of Certificant of the Canadian Society of Addiction Medicine (CCSAM) in 2000.
As of October 2018, 114 physicians have received CSAM-SMCA certification.

CSAM Certification Criteria