What are the correlates of substance abuse treatment counselor salaries?

Todd A. Olmstead, J. Aaron Johnson, Paul M. Roman, Jody L. Sindelar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


This article identifies and measures the key correlates of substance abuse treatment (SAT) counselor salaries. The data come from the 2002-2003 wave of the National Treatment Center Study that consists of approximately 1,500 full-time counselors from nationally representative samples of public and private SAT facilities. We used interval regression models to estimate the relationship between annual salary and numerous counselor and organizational characteristics. We found that counselor characteristics associated with annual salary include education, tenure in the SAT field, licensure, race, recovery status, and administrative responsibilities above and beyond duties as a full-time counselor. Organizational characteristics associated with counselor salary include accreditation status, hospital ownership, and the population density of the county where the facility is located. Taken together, these factors explain approximately 50% of the total variation in SAT counselor salaries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)181-189
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Substance Abuse Treatment
Issue number3
StatePublished - Oct 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Annual salary
  • Education
  • Substance abuse treatment counselors
  • Tenure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Phychiatric Mental Health
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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