Michael King’s life looked inspiring on paper. He was a democratic executive, working on projects he was passionate about. But he led a double life. On the other side, he was addicted to alcohol and gambling. His problem became so out of control that he began embezzling money from work, eventually leading to an embarrassing public arrest that landed him on the front page of the local paper.

Today, Michael is the Director and Creator of The Communities Project. With his background in social justice, he felt it was his responsibility to help the people he met when he was incarcerated. Advocating for addiction is part of his long-term recovery.

In this episode, Michael talks about the power of a group with a common bond and how to step up in your community as a leader in the fight against addiction!

“Embrace your greatness. You are a leader. You don’t need to be taught. Own your results.”—Michael King

Michael King

Michael King is the Director and Creator of The Communities Project and is the former Director of Outreach & Engagement for Facing Addiction with NCADD.

Prior to working in the addiction and recovery world, he spent over a decade in the political arena, working on Presidential, Gubernatorial, U.S. Senate and local campaigns. He is a past Campaign Director, Field Director, and Communications Director for the Washington State Democratic Party, and the former Executive Director of the Washington State Senate Democratic Campaign Committee.

Michael has worked to organize numerous constituencies, including organized labor, veterans and young people. He is the co-founder of a Washington state based not for profit organization aimed at empowering young people and a past Public Policy Committee Co-Chair for Faces & Voices of Recovery.

As a formerly incarcerated person, he is also a 2018 alumni of JustLeadershipUSA’s Leading with Conviction program, a program dedicated to furthering the leadership capabilities of formerly incarcerated citizens. Michael’s passion lies in empowering individuals to find their full potential to bring about social change. He is the proud father of two young children, and a person in long term recovery.

The Communities Project

The Communities Project is a national initiative with the mission of saving a million lives from substance use related deaths over the next two decades. We save lives by investing in the community leadership of people with lived experience and individuals who lead key addiction focused initiatives.

Investments in community leadership, through training and coaching, amplify programmatic accomplishments, expand collective efforts, and dramatically escalate opportunities to save lives.


The Community Organizing training covers the ins and outs of sound community organizing practices. The Communities Project emphasizes personal self- knowledge and listening to your community, how to achieve alignment within your community, and provide a roadmap for developing goals and strategies to realize change.


The Communities Project’s Leadership Training focuses on the leader that exists within all of us, and will offer tools for those with lived experience to break out of their box and thrive in every environment. The training will focus on the need to lead responsibly, to closely examine our own actions and seek feedback, and to invest in the leader within all who surround us.


After attending a training, all individuals may seek free individual leadership coaching by The Communities Project team. The Communities Project’s personalized coaching aids individuals in attaining the goals they seek in their communities, and to make an ongoing investment in everyone dedicated to bringing about change in their community.



Michael King’s Facebook

Communities Project Facebook Group

Related Episodes

Mobilize Recovery with Ryan Hampton

SRC Guest Spotlight—Recovery Advocacy with Jesse Heffernan

Thriving in Long-Term Recovery with Tom Coderre

Click Below to Join the SRC or Get 1 on 1 Coaching with Omar

Join the SHAIR Recovery Community

Get 1 on 1 Coaching with Omar Pinto

Like the show? Support The SHAIR Podcast



If you would like to Donate to The SHAIR Podcast you can do so using PayPal! The entire amount of your donation will go towards maintaining and growing the show.

To Donate now click on the Donate Button below!

HP Baby!