From the August 2005 magazine.

A Talk with Leonard Blumenthal

The new chair of AA's General Service Board

How did you get involved in AA in the first place?

I was hired as a junior counselor at a local counseling center in 1966, and the staff suggested I go to an AA meeting here in Edmonton, Alberta. "Just come and see what happens," they said. Like every meeting in those days, it was held in a church basement, there was smoke from the floor to the ceiling, and there was the worst coffee in the world. And I thought, How can this help anyone? I went to more meetings, and I became more intrigued. And I came across clients at meetings who had stopped seeing me who said they had found what they needed in AA. I still go to that first group; they've made me an honorary member.

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