The Max Baker Foundation

When Max died, his family established the Max Baker Foundation for Addiction Recovery, a nonprofit entity with the goals of providing prevention through education and family support for people at risk, identifying effective treatment of opioid addiction, and advocacy for public policies that can build meaningful change.

“You need to keep going and care for others.”

Maxwell F. Baker died on December 28, 2016, at the age of 23. As an adolescent, he had battled the disease of addiction, but through courage and profound determination, he had found sobriety during the last two years of his life. Until the time of his death, Max was deeply in love, full of energy, recording new music, and building his future. However, he was severely injured in a car accident shortly after Thanksgiving, and following surgery he relapsed in search of relief from his pain. Max was in his third year of college when he died, and had recently changed his major to pre-med studies with the goal of becoming a physician specializing in addiction therapy.

Even while Max was still addicted, he was open and honest with his father. He knew he might die one day from his illness and said “That could happen, Dad. If it does, you have to go on—you need to take care of the other kids and take care of your patients. You need to keep going and care for others.”

Donations from caring citizens help support development of treatment options, and Max’s family members continue to work with individuals seeking help, families troubled with addiction in a loved one, and coalitions determined to help find answers. Dr. James Baker provides education at schools, community events, and conferences both locally and across the country. He and other family members continue to work with legislators at the state and national level to share what they’ve learned from Max’s journey through addiction, recovery, and his death following a relapse after surgery. The Foundation’s mission is to save lives and keep families together.

This nonprofit foundation was formed in Max’s memory and is dedicated to fulfill Max’s dream of helping people with substance use disorders in finding acceptance, guidance, and support as they seek recovery.


A Call to Action

  • EDUCATE THE PUBLIC that addiction is a public health problem that deserves compassion
  • GUIDE SUBSTANCE USERS to medical treatment referral options and supportive care near them
  • TRAIN THE MEDICAL COMMUNITY to recognize and treat persons with a substance use disorder
  • PROVIDE NALOXONE to shelters, schools, first responders and opioid users and their families
  • SUPPORT RECOVERING SUBSTANCE USERS with treatment, clothing, food, and work opportunities
  • HELP FAMILIES to find professional care and support for themselves and their loved ones
  • ESTABLISH A VOLUNTEER “HOTLINE” for 24-hour support and treatment referral