Herbert D. Kleber, M.D.

Dr. Herbert Kleber is Professor of Psychiatry and Director of the Division on Substance Abuse at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and the New York State Psychiatric Institute.

Before coming to Columbia University in 1991, Dr. Kleber served for two and a half years as the Deputy Director for Demand Reduction at the Office of National Drug Control Policy in the White House. His office was responsible for the portion of the National Drug Control Strategy concerned with reducing the demand for illegal drugs, including prevention, education, treatment, and research. Prior to assuming the government position, Dr. Kleber was Professor of Psychiatry at Yale University School of Medicine (1966-89) where he founded and directed both the Substance Abuse Treatment Unit at the Connecticut Mental Health Center, and the APT Foundation.

Between 1992-2001, he was also Executive Vice-President and Medical Director of the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA), a policy center he and Joseph Califano founded in 1992. He served half-time at Columbia and half at CASA.

Since his arrival at Columbia in 1991 and founding the Division on Substance Abuse with his late colleague, Dr. Marian Fischman, the Division has become one of the leading substance abuse research centers in the country. Dr. Kleber heads a number of projects including a Medication Development Center where research is carried out on new medications to treat individuals with cocaine, heroin, prescription opioids, or marijuana problems.

Dr. Kleber has been a pioneer in the research and treatment of substance abuse for over forty years. He and his colleagues have helped develop and improve both medications currently used to treat substance abuse and the psychosocial approaches that accompany them. He received his undergraduate education at Dartmouth College, his medical training at Thomas Jefferson Medical School, and his psychiatric residency at Yale University School of Medicine. Following his residency, he spent two years at the U.S. Public Health Service Hospital in Lexington, Kentucky, the primary locus for narcotics addiction treatment and research for many decades. He then returned to Yale where he began the Drug Dependence Unit in 1968.

Dr. Kleber is the author or co-author of more than 250 papers, chapters, and books dealing with all aspects of substance abuse, and the co-editor of the American Psychiatric Press Textbook of Substance Abuse Treatment, now in its fourth edition. He has received numerous awards, two honorary degrees, is listed as one of the Best Doctors in America and Best Doctors in New York, is on the editorial board of six scientific journals, and was elected in 1996 to be a member of The Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Science. He serves on the Boards of the Treatment Research Institute, the Partnership for a Drug Free America, and the Betty Ford Institute. He was recently elected to the council of American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP), and has served for many years as the Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board for DARE America.

He is a Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, ACNP, the American College of Psychiatrists, the New York Academy of Medicine, College on Problems of Drug Dependence, and the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry. He has served on three Institute of Medicine Committees, numerous governmental panels, and chairs or serves on eight national boards in the areas of prevention, epidemiology, treatment, and policy.


Recent Publications