News Column

'Sober Minders' Help CEOs Stay Off Booze, Drugs

June 12, 2013

The "work hard, play hard" mantra of Wall Street has resulted in a rapidly growing number of "sober minders," whose sole responsibility is to help top executives steer clear of their vices.

The elite team of advisers work undercover, often around the clock, as personal assistants, bodyguards, researchers and potential investors, "so the Masters of the Universe can get help for their addictions -- while saving face as they rule the world," the New York Post reported.

One such minder, Chuck Kanner, told the New York Post how he tried to keep a multi-millionaire client on the straight and narrow.

"He'd be sitting there [meeting] with people like Bill Clinton, Rudolph Giuliani and Mario Cuomo, spaced out, and I'd be saying: 'Dude, this is not OK!'" he said.

The medical community has reported an explosion in the number of white-collar workers addicted to alcohol and prescription drugs. In March, psychologists in New York City reported a 35 percent increase in the number of referrals of Wall Street employees, the New York Post said.

"These people tend to be adrenaline junkies who are highly functional and competitive," said Patty Powers, a sober minder who lives in the East Village.

The use of sober minders, first adopted by celebrities like Lindsay Lohan and Charlie Sheen, has been popularized in TV shows such as ABC's Nashville, where Hayden Panettiere's character hired a coach for her alcoholic mother, the New York Post reported.

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Source: Copyright Washington Times (DC) 2013