Grieving Out Loud with Angela Kennecke

Wife of ND governor shares her own battle with addiction to end stigma

Shortly after her husband, Doug, was elected governor of North Dakota in 2016, Kathryn Burgum decided to share her personal story. Burgum is in recovery for substance use disorder after battling alcohol addiction for 20 years. Her platform as First Lady of North Dakota is to end the shame and stigma surrounding the disease of addiction. 

Kathryn’s Recovery Reinvented event is coming up on November 3rd, and you can participate. In this episode of Grieving Out Loud, she shares what keeps her in recovery and what she’s doing to change attitudes and get people help in North Dakota.

  • Governor Doug Burgum & First Lady Kathryn Burgum
  • Kathryn Burgum speaking
  • First Lady Kathryn Burgum & Governor Doug Burgum
  • Kathryn speaking at Recovery Reinvented
  • First Lady Kathryn Burgum & Governor Doug Burgum
  • National Drug Control Policy

In long-term recovery for 20 years, she shares her personal experience and encourages others to do the same to normalize the conversation around the disease of addiction. She is spreading the word that addiction is a chronic disease, not a character flaw.

Kathryn plays an active role in supporting the Office of Recovery Reinvented as the chair of the Advisory Council. Her advocacy work has enabled her to partner with advocates, experts in the field, and stakeholders nationwide, including the White House, Faces and Voices of Recovery, the Addiction Policy Forum, and the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation where she serves on the board of trustees.