Mental Health Professionals Treated to Performance by Legendary Guitarist Wayne Kramer at PRA Summit

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Wayne Kramer celebrated the meaningful impact of music at Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association’s Recovery Workforce Summit

Wayne Kramer

Wayne Kramer

Wayne inspires all of us in the psychiatric rehabilitation workforce to use our experience and talent to advance recovery.

The Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association (PRA) welcomed legendary guitarist and songwriter Wayne Kramer to the Recovery Workforce Summit: 2014 PRA Annual Conference on June 23rd in Baltimore, Maryland. To celebrate the recovery workforce and the work they do, Kramer performed a concert, playing songs from his latest album, LEXINGTON (Released April 2014), which debuted at #6 on the traditional Jazz Chart.

“Art is anger management,” said Kramer. “As the recovery workforce, we need to ensure offenders improve while in the system – it’s on us to prepare those incarcerated to return to society once released.”

The evening began with the film, The Beauty and the Angel. Attendees got a glimpse into Wayne’s life as a long time drug and alcohol addict who was incarcerated in his 20s for selling cocaine. Immediate Past Chair of PRA and Chair of the Psychiatric Rehabilitation Foundation, Lisa Razzano, PhD, CPRP, then delved deeper into Wayne’s lived experience in a “Behind the Rock Star” interview. Wayne was then honored by the PRA Board of Directors with an Award of Distinction for his founding role and ongoing leadership in Jail Guitar Doors USA, as well as his lifelong commitment to rehabilitation and recovery. Kramer played an acoustic set followed by an electric set with Brendan Canty of Fugazi on drums and Mark Cisneros of Deathfix on bass. The evening was sponsored by the Illinois Chapter of PRA, PAPRS, and the Michigan Chapter of PRA.

“One of the highlights of the recent PRA Recovery Workforce Summit was our evening with Wayne Kramer,” said Razzano. “His work through the Jail Guitar Doors program provides instruments and lessons to individual in prisons and jails. Many of those detained are individuals in recovery. Wayne inspires all of us in the psychiatric rehabilitation workforce to use our experience and talent to advance recovery. I look forward not only to following his work with Jail Guitar Doors but also his music."

Kramer is a film and television songwriter as well as a guitarist, who is often recognized as a vigorous social activist. Along with wife Margaret Saadi Kramer and British singer Billy Bragg, Kramer founded Jail Guitar Doors USA, a Los Angeles based non-profit organization that provides guitars for prisoner rehabilitation. Known as “the loudest charity planet earth,” JGD-USA launched a Sing Sing Prison in 2009 and has since intervened in over 25 adult and juvenile facilities.

The Recovery Workforce Summit: 2014 PRA Annual Conference, June 22-25 at the Renaissance Harborplace Hotel in Baltimore, Maryland is the key training, education, and networking event for the entire psychiatric rehabilitation workforce; including agency executives, educators and researchers, practitioners, and peer support providers.

About the Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association (PRA): As the nonprofit organization focused on growing and training the recovery workforce, the Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association, is the preeminent association for the development, support, and dissemination of information about the practice of psychiatric rehabilitation and recovery. PRA believes that the practice of psychiatric rehabilitation leads to recovery, and thus is committed to the growth of psychiatric rehabilitation in both quantity and quality, and to the universal availability of state-of-the-art psychiatric rehabilitation services for all individuals with mental illness who seek such services. For more information, visit

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Diana Cummins
Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association
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