Dr. Tanner obtained undergraduate degrees from Pennsylvania State University and Hahnemann Medical College and Hospital (Currently Drexel University) in Philadelphia and he held a faculty appointment at Hahnemann Medical College and Hospital. After graduating from Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, he completed postdoctoral training through the Jacksonville Health Education Programs in affiliation with The University of Florida School of Medicine at 4 Jacksonville area hospitals.
He worked at an addiction/co-occurring treatment center late in 1984 and took his first position as a medical director there in March 1985. He had been medical director of addiction and co-occurring treatment facilities and psychiatric hospitals almost continuously from 1985 through 2014. He was the medical director for a 68-bed full-service gender specific psychiatric hospital in Jacksonville for 4 years until February 7, 2009. He served as the Assistant Medical Director for Physicians Recovery Network; currently Professionals Resource Network/“PRN” (Florida’s impaired health professional program for all excepting nurses) and continued to work with PRN as Clinical Associate Physician from August 1, 2001 to March 28, 2014. From 1995 to March 1, 2013 he provided forensic substance use disorder and psychiatric evaluations and treatment for health professionals and attorneys.
He has trained psychiatric and family practice residents in addiction and behavioral medicine while he was the Director of Medical Education at a psychiatric hospital, served as expert witness in addiction court cases and offered volunteer advice on addictions treatment for a homeless shelter. He enjoys frequent lecturing on addiction and psychiatric topics at local and national conferences. He has had a number of television appearances on addiction issues over the years. On October 15, 2006 the American Osteopathic Association awarded him with the Mentor Hall of Fame Award for mentoring in Addiction Medicine.
In 2008 he was one of the three principal investigators for the phase II and III clinical research trial for Suboxone Film that was eventually approved by the FDA on August 30, 2010. He had past experience as medical director for a large methadone clinic. He served as Chairman of the Department, Chief of Staff and on the Board of Directors of a local hospital, where he continues to provide occasional psychiatric and addiction consults. He had served on the Board of Directors for the Brain Health Foundation, a non-for-profit research foundation for the Jacksonville Psychiatric Society.
He is a charter member of American Osteopathic Academy of Addiction Medicine, a continuous member since December 5, 1988 and he served on their board of trustees from 1999 until 2010. He was certified by the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) in 1986 (1st year certification was offered) and recertified in 1996 and 2006. He became a Fellow of ASAM in 1998 and a Distinguished Fellow of ASAM beginning January 2016 (there are currently about 335 Distinguished Fellows). In 2009 he became an inaugural Diplomate of the American Board of Addiction Medicine. He holds a Certificate of Added Qualification in Addiction Medicine by the AOA Conjoined Boards He is a certified Medical Review Officer by MROCC and a clinically certified forensic councilor by the American College of Certified Forensic Councilors.
Currently, he is the Medical Director for the Intervention Project for Nurses; Florida’s monitoring program for nursing professionals who suffer from substance use disorders, psychiatric or psychosexual illnesses and medical disorders that may result in an inability to practice with skill and safety; currently monitoring > 1,400 nurses. He is Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry for the University of Florida (a courtesy appointment). He maintains a small outpatient addictions and behavioral health clinical practice. He is currently serving as one of the six positions for Director-at-Large for the Board of Directors of American Society of Addiction Medicine for two terms beginning in 2011 through 2019 and he is serving on the Board of Directors for the Florida Society of Addiction Medicine beginning in 2013.