Woody Geissmann and Peter Simon on the weekly radio show, "Recovery Road." Photo courtesy of Peter Simon
Woody Geissmann (left), a substance abuse counselor, joins Islander Peter Simon on the new weekly radio show, "Recovery Road." Photo courtesy of Peter Simon

Peter Simon on recovery, on air

Posted February 2, 2006

Peter Simon of Chilmark shares his experiences as a recovering alcoholic on-air in a new show, "Recovery Road," which premiered on Boston's WRKO AM 680 Jan. 22. The show will air every Sunday from 4 to 5 pm. According to a press release issued by Regan Communication, "Recovery Road" is the first East Coast major market show on the subject of substance abuse and recovery.

The weekly program features Mr. Simon's experiences along with the clinical knowledge of licensed abuse counselor Woody Giessmann, and input from callers.

"Recovery Road" will highlight a wide range of topics, including drug and alcohol use and other addictions such as cigarette smoking, and food and eating disorders. The show will feature experts in abuse and recovery, and also high-profile guests who have experienced substance abuse in their lives.

Although Mr. Simon is best known on the Vineyard as a professional photographer, he also has extensive radio experience. He has hosted music shows on the Island, in the Boston area, and Rhode Island. Mr. Simon sought treatment for alcoholism in 2004 and continues his recovery.

"This show is going to be entertaining, helpful, informative, and funny," said Mr. Simon in the press release. "A lot of it will be sad, a lot will be urgent, but it won't be dull. There's just so much joy in knowing there so much life on the other side. My sister Carly, who is very helpful in my recovery process, wrote the most amazing song on the subject I have ever heard, 'Waiting at the Gate.'"

According to the press release, Mr. Giessmann was the drummer for the rock band Del Fuegos and other national acts. In 1993, he started Right Turn, an outpatient substance-abuse program for artists in New England. A licensed addictions specialist, Mr. Giessmann has a master's degree in human services management and is a member of the Advisory Board of the Massachusetts Bureau of Substance Abuse.

"This show is going to provide a wonderful service to the community, and supply a plethora of information on addictions and living," Mr. Giessmann said. "I toured around the country for 15 years, and I saw a lot of amazing talent wasted because people did not know treatment was available."

Said WRKO Operations Director Brian Whittemore, "This is a unique show that is breaking new ground in talk radio, but importantly is creating a new outlet for positive, important discussion on substance abuse."