David Szarka, MA, LCADC
Director of Mental Health Services
David has been with Footprints to Recovery since 2016. As Executive Director, he is responsible for all operations at our New Jersey location, including staff, clients, and the overall environment of care. David earned a master’s degree in organizational psychology from Columbia University and a bachelor’s degree in human resource management from Rider University. He is a licensed clinical alcohol and drug counselor (LCADC). David began at Footprints as a primary counselor before transitioning into the executive director role. Prior to joining Footprints, he worked as a primary counselor for New Hope Foundation.
David transitioned from a long career in finance to behavioral health work in 2014. He was drawn to the field after being personally affected by addiction. David says watching clients grow and seeing that “light” back in their eyes is what he finds most fulfilling about his work. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his family and dogs, seeing live music, and reading.
“Royal life center saved my life! If it wasn’t for this place I would probably not be alive. The staff is amazing the facilitators are what made me come back for more! I was there about 2 years ago and I still come talk at detox to share my experience strength and hope ! I enjoy sharing my story in hopes that it will help others! I love you Royal! Forever in my heart! 10/10 recommend ! Thank you Royal!”
– MELISSA J.
PATIENT AT ROYAL LIFE CENTERS