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Melinda Dorn

Industry Peer Support and Outreach Coordinator

Melinda Dorn

Recovery Support

Culinary Hospitality Outreach and Wellness



Restaurants and Recoverees

Workers in the Hospitality Industry are reported to experience higher rates of substance use than worker sin any other trade. In order for recovery coaches to support someone working in hospitality/foodservices effectively, it's necessary to consider the vocationally specific risk factors that lead to this staggering statistic; including but not limited to mental health, trauma, stigma, and economic barriers


Melinda Dorn worked in restaurants for nearly 30 years. While food trends came and went, she noticed a few things never changed. Addictions, poor mental health, and the side effects of a "more, more, more! Now, now, now!" culture remained threats to industry workers. As a Colorado Certified Peer and Family Specialist working for Denver nonprofit Culinary Hospitality Outreach and Wellness (, Melinda and a team of other industry vets strive to create a safe place for folks to come share their lived experience, hear new ideas, and create a healthier hospitality community. CHOW hosts support groups, a restaurant-specific mental health training, social activities, and connects recoverees with additional community based resources.

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