Heavner Basic Science Lectureship

The James Heavner Basic Science Lectureship Award is an annual award created by the Texas Pain Society to honor the memory and efforts of TPS Board Member, Dr. James Heavner.

This award will be presented to an individual each year during the TPS Annual Meeting.

The Board of Directors will select the person to receive the award based on the individual’s research and academic achievements, professional contributions to pain management as well as patient care and advocacy among other factors.


 2018 8th Annual James Heavner Basic Science Lectureship Award: Carl Erickson, PhD 

CARLTON (CARL) K. ERICKSON, a research scientist, has been studying the effects of alcohol on the brain for over 45 years. Carl received his Bachelor’s degree from Ferris State College in 1961 and his Ph.D. degree in pharmacology from Purdue University in 1965. He has held tenured teaching and research positions at The University of Kansas (1965-1977) and The University of Texas (1978-present). He presently is Pfizer Centennial Professor of Pharmacology and Toxicology, and holds the titles of Special Assistant to the Dean and Director of the Addiction Science Research and Education Center in the College of Pharmacy at the University of Texas at Austin. He holds memberships in the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics (ASPET), the Research Society on Alcoholism (RSA), the College on Problems of Drug Dependence (CPDD), and the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM). He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Texas Research Society on Alcoholism, and a member of the Science Advisory Panel and the Board of Governors of the Graduate Program of Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation in Center City, Minnesota.

Carl is broadly knowledgeable about the neurobiology of alcohol and other drugs, since he is an active scientist and publisher of over 300 scientific and professional articles. He is also co-editor of the book, Addiction Potential of Abused Drugs and Drug Classes (Haworth Press, 1990), and co-author of Your Brain on Drugs (Hazelden, 1996). He is the author of The Science of Addiction: From Neurobiology to Treatment (W.W. Norton, 2007), which won a University of Texas Hamilton Book Award in 2008; Addiction Essentials: The Go-to Guide for Clinicians and Patients (W.W. Norton, 2011); and co-author of Drugs, The Brain, and Behavior (Routledge, 2013).   He is a Field Editor and Highlights Editor of the scientific journal Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research. He has participated in the Professionals in Residence program at the Betty Ford Center in Rancho Mirage, CA and is a recipient of the Betty Ford Center Visionary Award (2000). He is also the recipient of the 2003 Pat Fields SECAD Award, the 2004 Fred French Award for Educational Achievement, the Nelson J. Bradley Award for Lifetime Achievement (2007), the John P. McGovern Award for Excellence in Medical Education (2009), and the Annual Award from the American Society of Addiction Medicine (2013). (The last award was given “for expanding the frontiers of the field of addiction medicine and broadening our understanding of the addiction process, through research and innovation.”)

Carl has 25 years of biomedical research experience as an active pharmacologist and neuroscientist and almost 25 years of educational research, all in academic settings. As a non-recovering person, Carl has tried to learn about addictive disease by attending Twelve Step meetings and becoming knowledgeable about addiction treatment methods. He presents approximately 8-10 lectures annually to health professionals, is a frequent keynote speaker at major conferences in the U.S. and internationally, and has presented Grand Rounds at health science centers to update pharmacy, nursing, social work, and medical faculty and students about the latest neurobiological research on chemical dependence/addiction. As an addiction science educator, it is estimated that Carl has spoken to approximately 88,000 health professionals and people in recovery since 1978. He has taught over 6,000 undergraduate, professional, and graduate students about addiction science; and he has positively influenced the lives of thousands of people who have read his books and publications. This is because public and professional education about the evidence for severe substance use disorder (“addiction”) as a treatable medical disease is critical for reducing the stigma surrounding this disease.


October 2017
October 2016 

October 2015 
October 2014 
October 2013 
October 2012 
November 2011

Hemmo Bosscher MD, PhD
Srinivasa Raja, MD
Arthur G. Lipman, PHARM D, FASHP
LiYen Mae Huang, PhD
Volker Neugebauer, MD
Howard Gutstein, MD
James Heavner, DVM, PhD