Ashley Loeb Blassingame: An Intrepid Leader Facilitating In the Recovery Journey

Ashley Loeb Blassingame

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Entrepreneurial life requires grit and relentless persistence in the face of unending challenges. If you are a woman, it may be harder, so you will have to be better. Never give up,” says Ashley Loeb Blassingame (Co-founder/Chief People Officer at Lionrock Recovery).

Carrying the same mettle and persistence, Ashley is a passionate, dedicated, and organized women leader who is creating a difference by providing people with Substance Use Disorder a more private, accessible, and affordable way to get treatment. Ashley was raised in Silicon Valley by an entrepreneur. The entrepreneurial gene was ingrained in her from a very early age as she was taught to create her path if the default one didn’t work, and to question everything. Before the commencement of Lionrock in 2010, Ashley was trying to force herself to fit into a career path that was certain and stable. She also struggled with Substance Use Disorder for most of her childhood. Despite managing to get sober and go to college, she could not force herself to fit into a pre-planned career path.

Consequently, regardless of being skeptical and confronting challenges, Ashley believed in both her partners and the cause, thus commencing the journey of Lionrock as the third co-founder. Alongside her co-founder colleagues, Ashley has persevered to build the company. Over the last decade, she has helped grow the company from a startup with its first client, to a national provider that has served nearly 4,000 people.

Alongside being the co-founder of Lionrock, Ashley is a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counsellor-II, a Certified Relapse Prevention Specialist, and a Certified Arise Interventionist. Moreover, she is active in the Los Angeles Health Innovation community and co-directs the Healthtech Women LA Hub —a global syndicate of formidable women in health and technology. Ashley has been featured in Cosmopolitan as a young founder and has also created the ‘Recovery Tech’ column in ‘In Recovery’ magazine. Besides this, she also hosts a popular podcast, “The Courage to Change: A Recovery Podcast” that tackles issues in all types of recovery and shares stories of triumph.

Our team of Mirror Review had a fascinating conversation with Ashley about her entrepreneurial journey. Below are some quick snippets from the conversation.

  1. What propelled you to establish Lionrock Recovery?

We established Lionrock in September of 2010. We have had numerous visions while establishing the company, plenty of which did not work out. However, our ultimate vision was to offer people struggling with Substance Use Disorders a more private, accessible, and affordable way to get treatment. Our family experiences led us to the understanding that an option that would reach people much earlier in the progression of their disorder was not available. Being entrepreneurs, we decided to bridge that gap with Lionrock. We say, “We are addiction’s worst enemy and recovery’s steadfast friend,” which demonstrates the drive behind our vision.

  1. What are the prominent solutions/services provided by the company?

Lionrock has been offering Substance Use Disorder treatment online, now known as telehealth, for 10 years. We stand out as the experts at treating Substance Use Disorders online. Our programs are private, affordable, accessible, and comprehensive. The care our clients receive is often covered by insurance. Moreover, we have also started a line of coffee called “Lionshare” which gives 100% of the profits to a scholarship fund for people who need treatment but cannot afford it.

  1. Change is the only constant. So, have you altered or added any services to your repertoire?

This year, there’s a lot new at Lionrock. We have our website up and running which provides a community of life-long recovering people who can connect over 12-step meetings, online cooking classes, coaching, meditation, and other support groups. My podcast is wrapping up its second season and is attracting celebrities, authorities, podcasters, etc. Furthermore, all of these are available at no cost for people who want to get support in their recovery.

  1. Acknowledging the wake of the pandemic, how did the outbreak affect your personal and professional lives?

Personally, having 4-year old twins at home has been difficult. Living in Southern California, we are used to going into nature as much as possible. The restriction, however, has taken a toll on our home life. But I think that in these times, gratitude, self-care, and asking for help have been particularly important.

  1. As a leader has there been extra pressure due to the increasing havoc of the COVID-19 pandemic?

Fortunately, Lionrock has a warm and supportive culture that makes being a leader fun. Since the outbreak, everyone has been vocal and transparent about the difficulties caused and which have been met by understanding and accommodation. I understand the team itself is dealing with stress while handling several distressed clients. Thus, my motivation mantra has been ‘be kind and compassionate’. When I am leading from a kind and compassionate place, we always seem to get more done.

  1. Speaking of the uncalled challenges, did you meet any gender disparity issues in your career?

Gender inequality is a sad reality. I was 23 when we started Lionrock. The combination of my youth and gender were particularly difficult to navigate in the business world. Fortuitously, my mentors acted soundly when I was in over my head. However, today in my opinion the issues are more systemic. Yes, we motivate girls to get educated, enter the workforce, “shoot for the stars”, but we have no great solutions for how women can balance having children and a career.

  1. As a working mother, could you share your opinion on “working mother”?

A working mother most importantly requires support—being a working mother myself. Inequality is not as easily visible as we think. For instance, you may see your female colleague get a promotion, but you probably didn’t see all the little things, day-in, and day-out that she has had to coordinate at home to make it possible for her to work for that promotion. Likewise, you may not see the things she’s missed out on to get there.

There’s a reason it’s common to say “working mother” but you don’t hear “working father”.  It is not the same reality, but I believe it can be and I hope I live to see the change.

Ashley Loeb Blassingame

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