Robert W. Harelson PSY.D, SAP, Logo
(925) 951-0176
3411 Mt. Diablo Boulevard, Suite C, Lafayette, CA 94549
A Certified Addiction Specialist

Robert W. Harelson Psy.D, SAP

About Robert W. Harelson Psy.D, SAP

For supportive assistance when it comes to substance abuse, turn to Robert W. Harelson Psy.D, SAP. He is a qualified Substance Abuse Professional serving the Lafayette, California area.

Career History

Dr. Harelson entered the field of Marriage and Family Therapy in 1970. While in college, he was a YMCA™ youth counselor and director. He completed a post-graduate internship under Dr. David Fisher at the Sausalito Behavioral Institute, where the focus was on treating substance abuse issues using behavioral modification techniques.

A.R.I. Program

One of his early mentors was David Brown, founder of Bi-Bett Corporation and the Diablo Valley Ranch, an adult alcohol treatment facility. Mr. Brown was an innovator in the treatment of alcoholism using a social model and encouraged Dr. Harelson to design a treatment program for adolescents. After much consultation, he launched the A.R.I. Adolescent Day Treatment Program in 1974. For the next ten years, he provided treatment for more than 300 adolescents.

A major component of this program was conducting substance abuse evaluations upon intake, and designing treatment plans to help adolescents. When the program ended in 1984, he continued to treat individuals in his private practice, started providing substance abuse evaluations for custody disputes, and began acting as an expert witness in criminal cases.

Memberships & Associations

In 1990, he was nominated by a fellow professional in the American Academy of Health Care Providers in the Addictive Disorders and was awarded the designation of Certified Addiction Specialist (CAS) in the areas of alcohol and drugs. In 1991, he was elected President of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) for the State of California, and in 1992 he was appointed to the ethics board of the International Association of Marriage and Family Therapy.

Forensic Substance Abuse

His experience in the area of forensic substance abuse began when a client was mistakenly charged with being under the influence of a controlled substance. The individual was undergoing treatment for Adult ADD issues and during a domestic dispute at his home, the police misinterpreted his behavior as being indicative of substance abuse issue rather than stemming from his ADD. He testified at his trial and brought important insight into the unfortunate event.

SAP Designation

In 2007, Harelson became aware of the fact that the Department of Transportation was requiring individuals to go through a substance abuse evaluation process when they had failed drug tests. This sounded very similar to the work that he had done in the adolescent program, so he completed the Substance Abuse Professional designation.

To date, he has performed  hundreds of substance abuse evaluations for DOT and Non-DOT violations. He has also conducted over fifty evaluations for individuals who have received out-of-state DUI’s and more than fifty evaluations for custody disputes.

Contact Dr. Harelson, Substance Abuse Professional, for all of your legal needs.