Press Releases: 'Changemakers' Recognized At Mental Health and Addictions Conference National Council?s 2011 Awards of Excellence
To speak with award recipients or national experts on mental health and addiction disorders, contact Meena Dayak at 301.602.8474 or MeenaD@thenationalcouncil.org.
San Diego, CA, May 3, 2011 — Some of the nation’s best and brightest in mental health and addictions services are being honored with Awards of Excellence today at the 41st National Council Mental Health and Addictions Conference in San Diego, CA. Presented by National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare (National Council), the awards recognize outstanding leaders and healthcare organizations as well as those who have shown extraordinary courage and determination to triumph over mental illnesses and addiction disorders.
“These awards recognize people and programs for being the change — for promoting recovery and having a lasting impact on children, adults, and families,” said Linda Rosenberg, the National Council’s president and CEO. “The awardees have all made a difference in the lives of the most vulnerable in our society.”
Awards of Excellence Honorees
Rep. David Obey (D-WI, retired) is the recipient of the Excellence in Public Service award
for being a consistent, long-time champion of America’s mental health and addiction treatment programs. Rep. Obey fought for the most vulnerable members of our communities by initiating the children’s Systems of Care program and providing start-up funding for the Primary Care/Behavioral Health Integration program to benefit low-income persons with severe mental illnesses.
The Mental Health Center of Denver in Denver, CO is the recipient of the Excellence in Service Innovation award for its Integrating Care Through Court to Community Program. The innovative program diverts persons with serious and chronic mental illness and substance abuse from jail and offers psychiatric and primary care as well as community supports. The program helps save $2.50 for every dollar spent on treatment.
Crossroads Behavioral Healthcare in Elkin, NC is the recipient of the Excellence in Health Information Technology award for helping youth in the juvenile justice system dealing with co-occurring mental health and addiction disorders realize their potential. Healthcare providers work with the families of youth and community partners to offer evidence-based treatment. In the past four years, JJTC has served more than 1,600 young people with an overall 85% success rate.
Burrell Behavioral Health in Springfield, MO is recipient of the Excellence in Behavioral Healthcare Management for its Evidence-Informed Risk Management Program, which helps clients, staff, and management function at their best. Burrell invests in data collection and analysis to monitor risk-related events from across the organization. Burrell’s critical incident reporting system is the “lifeblood” of its risk management efforts.
Sherri Rushman, Consumer Education Specialist at Oakland County Community Mental Health Authority in Auburn Hills, MI is the recipient of the Excellence in Consumer Advocacy award for her signature presentation based on her life experiences: “Hope Givers, Hope Receivers, and Hope Stealers.” After an inpatient hospitalization, Sherri was referred to the public mental health system in Oakland County, where she built relationships and received services for fourteen years. Today she is a consumer education specialist who shares her story and experiences to help others in their own journey towards recovery.
Christina Hendrix, Regional Family Leadership Program Coordinator at WellSpring Resources in Alton, IL is recipient of the Excellence in Family Advocacy award for being a passionate advocate for children and families experiencing emotional disturbances and helping them improve their lives. Christina is one of three people in Illinois chosen to develop regional family leadership and support programs.
Jorge Wong, PhD, Director of Behavioral Health Services, Asian Americans for Community Involvement in San Jose, CA, is recipient of the Up & Coming Leadership award. He is committed to nurturing meaningful relationships with staff, patients and the community. His fluency in four languages helps him better serve low-income immigrants and refugees.
Recipients of the Visionary Leadership award:
- Nelson Burns, President and CEO of Coleman Professional Services in Kent, OH, has been described as a dynamic, visionary, effective and innovative leader. He has strived to diversify funding sources and expand to various lines of business to make his organization financially strong; growing Coleman from an operating budget of $1 million to $26 million in 25 years.
- Peter Campanelli, President and CEO, Institute for Community Living, Inc., in New York, NY, has, throughout his 30-year career as a behavioral health services administrator and psychologist, focused on serving underserved, low-income consumers through community programs. He created some of the country’s first residential programs for homeless people with co-occurring serious mental illnesses and addiction disorders.
- Leon Evans, President and CEO, Center for Health Care Services, San Antonio, TX, founded the Bexar County Jail Diversion Program to give persons with severe mental illness access to proper treatment instead of sending them into emergency rooms, jails, and prisons. Considered one of the nation’s most successful jail diversion efforts, the program offers crisis care and training for law enforcement officers.
- Arnold Gould, Member, Board of Directors, Central Nassau Guidance and Counseling Services, Inc., Hicksville, NY, is a champion for those struggling against the stigma surrounding mental illnesses and substance use disorders. In 1980, he co-founded the Queens/Nassau Chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness. For more than three decades, Gould has been a strong voice and powerful advocate for improved access and services in mental health care for Long Island’s most vulnerable citizens.
- Mary Jane Gross, Founder, Stars Behavioral Health Group, Oakland, CA has a 40-year track record of shining light into the darkness by serving high-risk children and families with comfortable and compassionate care. Under her guidance, Stars operates an extensive network of residential, school, and home-based mental health and wraparound programs for children with serious emotional issues throughout California.
- Derald Walker, CEO, Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare, Portland, OR, brought financial stability to his organization and helped to build a culture of clinical quality, compliance and improved productivity. Today, Cascadia ranks as one of the most innovative service providers in Oregon, employing more than 800 people and providing quality care and housing to thousands of individuals with mental health and substance use disorders.
The National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare is a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) association of 1,800 behavioral healthcare organizations that provide treatment and rehabilitation for mental illnesses and addictions disorders to nearly six million adults, children and families in communities across the country. The National Council and its members bear testimony to the fact that medical, social, psychological, and rehabilitation services offered in community settings help people with mental illnesses and addiction disorders recover and lead productive lives.