A gap between public understanding, cutting edge brain science and the practice of addiction treatment has created hardship for those suffering. New perspective replaces the term addiction with the new concept of a continuum of substance use. Substance Use Disorder (SUD) is now regarded as a manifestation of Reward Deficiency Syndrome (RDS), which contributes to a spectrum of disorders related to genetic polymorphisms, especially in regard to impulsive, addictive and compulsive behaviors. The new brain science of addiction requires neurological medical intervention and novel treatment with nutraceuticals, the building blocks of neurotransmission. Innovative alternative holistic and wellness therapies are proving to be beneficial in helping the sufferer thrive despite chronic neurological challenge.
Elizabeth Dale Gilley earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Wake Forest University, in 1983, while lettering in Women’s Varsity Tennis. She also holds a paralegal degree in corporate law, with a bankruptcy specialty. After serving as Assistant to the Chairman her father, James Gilley, she left his tutelage to incorporate The Elle Foundation, in 1995, in Dallas, Texas. The original mission statement was to help stop the generational cycle of addiction.
After years of studying the financials of treatment centers and psychiatric hospitals, she established the Elle Foundation Award of Excellence, in 2000, to showcase innovation and novel contributions of those who are raising the bar above the 1950’s Minnesota Model industry standard. This award is still given today, not for the scientists or doctors, but for those who are still suffering to offer hope that solutions are forthcoming.
She returned to academia in her 50’s earning a Masters in General Psychology (2017) and a Post Masters Specialty in Addictions from North Central University (2019), both with a GPA higher than Magna Cum Laude. She is presently a Ph.D candidate at National University, where her focus is upon the neuroscience and neurobiology of addiction. She has created psychological applications: therapy and psychoeducation for the new Reward Dysfunction Syndrome paradigm, and the RDS Severity of Symptom measurement tool, which may prove to be a behavioral marker for recovery and/or reinstatement.
In 2004, she unincorporated the Elle Foundation, making it a private nonprofit, and considers it her personal altruism. She as created two new divisions, Elle Research and Elle Resource. While still conducting longitudinal research from the 100s series, Elle Research is developing its 200s series: Qualitative Exploratory Multiple Case Study to investigate the experiences of dually diagnosed patients, in the substance use disorder/ psychological/psychiatric industry which services one size fits all treatment, with pharmaceutical trial and error. The 200s series will also include quantitative study of the same participates to investigate the effectiveness of Psychiatric/Psychological Genomics, RDS solution focused brief therapy and the RDS SOS.
Elle Resource will deliver these therapeutic advancements to the public, both locally and internationally through teletherapy, focusing upon psychological genomics for patients with dopaminergic RDS mental health clusters. The Elle Foundation’s Dragon Slayer and Bridge Builder Ministry is reopening, in the fall of 2024, in Palm Beach Country to provide children’s and family services, introducing the new RDS paradigm, in a psychoeducation art therapy format.
She has published consistently in peer review for the past 7 years and has presented at the past 3 global conferences on addiction medicine, behavioral health and psychiatry. She also serves as a global conference scientific committee member.