We'd like to offer a very special THANKS to this wonderful group of dedicated individuals! Over the past few months, they've been meeting and providing input on the revamped design for Text, Talk, Act. Thank you for all your hard work!
Dave is currently an Arizona State Senator, having served in the House of Representatives for 8 years. He was the Chief Executive Officer of La Paloma Family Services, Inc., a nonprofit child welfare agency for over 18 years. He has been working in child welfare and mental health services for over 30 years, practicing as a licensed counselor and administrator throughout southern Arizona. He currently serves as the Chief Development Officer of La Frontera Arizona, Inc., in Tucson.
Theo has more than 30 years of experience as an organizer, administrator, facilitator and trainer for non-profit organizations that work to mobilize people on behalf of social justice, racial reconciliation, human rights and international peace. Some of the major national organizations he has worked for include: AmericaSpeaks, Amnesty International USA, Common Cause, Ground Zero and National Days of Dialogue on Race Relations. He is currently a principal with Public Engagement Associates.
My name is Kayhl. When I was in 5th grade, I found a camera, and an old computer in my basement. After filming myself running in the backyard, I was quickly introduced to the magical editing power of Windows Movie Maker. By applying a speed effect to the running footage, I could make myself look like the flash. But this wasn’t enough, I wanted to make movies. From anti-smoking PSA’s for health class to remaking The Outsiders for english, I recorded whatever I could. That’s still what I’m doing. I love telling stories, and conveying messages, and I do that in the best way I know how: with videos.
Timothy Cox is a 22-year-old journalist, web designer, marketing consultant, and entrepreneur currently residing in Louisville, KY. His many projects, which often shine a light on important social causes, have been recognized by stars such as actor Chris Colfer and recording artist Lady Gaga.
A health educator, Annie provides Mental Health and Life Skills Education and Training at the University of Vermont. She is adviser of Active Minds at UVM and co-adviser for the Black Student Union at UVM. She is also the chair of the Campus Connect: Suicide Prevention Gatekeeper Training committee and collaborates with students, staff and faculty to address the needs of the UVM community to promote safe, inclusive, socially just and supportive dialogue around health and wellness.
Adrienne has more than 20 years of social marketing, health communications and public relations experience. She provides counsel on marketing and public relations topics such as partnership development, strategic communication planning, crisis communications, message framing, media training, materials development and media relations. Much of her work for the past 15 years has focused on youth mental health, substance use and suicide prevention, including planning and executing a series of 32 Community Conversations held across Texas in 2014 and 2015 addressing those topics. She has served as a communications consultant to a mix of federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, U.S. Department of Education, U.S. Department of Defense and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. Some recent clients closer to her home of Austin, Texas include Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas and the Texas Departments of Public Safety, Insurance, Education and Transportation.
Joe DeLuca is a clinical psychology PhD student, mental health stigma researcher, and mental health advocate on his college campus in New York City.
Jillian Edelstein is currently a program coordinator at the Mental Health Association of Palm Beach County heading a behavioral health integration program across primary care settings screening adults and youth. As a mental health counselor, Jillian brings valuable information and a unique perspective from her experiences in Florida and at Boston University School of Medicine. A personal connection to the youth in a community where she grew up sparked her interest in joining Text, Talk, Act as a youth organizer in conjunction with the MHA’s local community conversation campaign.
Dr. April C. Foreman
Dr. April C. Foreman is a Licensed Psychologist serving Veterans as a Suicide Prevention Coordinator at Southeast Louisiana Veterans Health Care System. S he serves as the Social Media Chair for the American Association of Suicidology, and moderates a weekly Twitter chat on suicide prevention and social media. She is passionate about the intersection of mental health and technology, as well as serving people with Borderline Personality Disorder.
Katrina Gay is the national director of communications at NAMI. Her work history encompasses various specialties including mental health PR consultation, creative community consultation, advertising, media relations, social media, community organizing, marketing strategy, special events, VIP relations, stockholder relations, leadership development and strategic planning. In addition, she has served as the staff liaison for NAMI FaithNet, the organization’s grassroots faith outreach initiative and clearinghouse, for 10 years.
Sam Harrison is the Manager of Communications and Public Relations with the National Association of School Psychologists. He works to support school psychologists around the country in their efforts to improve student’s mental health to help them thrive both in and out of school. Originally from Pine Bluff, AR, Sam graduated from the Catholic University of America in 2013 with a degree in Political Science and began working for NASP shortly thereafter.
Michele Holt-Shannon is a co-founder and Associate Director for New Hampshire Listens. Her focus is on civic engagement and applied research practice in t he Carsey School of Public Policy at the University of New Hampshire. Michele’s public engagement work focuses on facilitator training and process design to ensure fair, inclusive, and informed outcomes for local and statewide projects. Recent projects include statewide conversations on expanded gaming, outdoor recreation, and water sustainability.
Since 2002, Michele Joel has pioneered social media marketing, developing and implementing a new social media platform before Facebook existed. Michele started her social media agency, GoldBug Group in 2005. Some notable clients include: the United Nations, The Learning Channel, Bravo TV, and Century21. In 2014, she became the VP of Digital Marketing of the public company, AudioEye, Inc. (AEYE.OB). This fall, Michele will become an Adjunct Professor teaching the Social Media Capstone for the University of Florida Master’s in Social Media.
Matt Leighninger is the Executive Director of the Deliberative Democracy Consortium (DDC), an alliance of the major organizations and leading scholars working in the field of deliberation and public engagement. His first book, The Next Form of Democracy, traces the recent shifts in the relationship between citizens and government, and examines how these trends are reshaping our democracy. Two of his main accomplishments in the last year: leading a working group that produced a model ordinance on public participation; and developing a new tool, “Text, Talk, and Act,” that combined online and face-to-face participation as part of President Obama’s National Dialogue on Mental Health.
Keris Jän Myrick is the Director of the Office of Consumer Affairs at the Center for Mental Health Services, SAMHSA. She is a national mental health leader and former non-profit executive, known for her innovative and inclusive approach to mental health reform and the public disclosure of her personal story of lived experience with serious mental illness. Most recently, she was President and CEO of Project Return Peer Support Network, a Los Angeles-based, peer-run nonprofit, which manages over 100 self-help groups in Los Angeles County, a peer-staffed Warm Line, a Spanish language community peer and family center and Peer Run Crises Respite Home. In addition, she has been the President of National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and an advisor to the American Psychiatric Association (APA) Office of Diversity and Health Equity providing assistance with the psychiatry component of the SAMHSA/CMHS Recovery to Practice project.
Rodrigo Olivares is the Chief Operating Officer at the Crisis Response Network, Inc. Mr. Olivares has over 12 years of experience in crisis, child welfare, and youth programs. Mr. Olivares has provided leadership and oversight to several clinical and crisis programs, including a 24 hour-crisis hotline, mobile crisis response program, children’s crisis response programs, trauma healing services, peer navigator services, as well as general adult outpatient and substance abuse services. Mr. Olivares obtained a Master of Science in Social Work degree from the University of Texas Pan American, with major concentration in family-focused practice with Latino individuals and families. Mr. Olivares is a nationally nominated member of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Suicide Prevention Lifeline’s esteemed Standards, Training, and Practices National Committee. Rodrigo was accepted as a board member to Arizona Bridge to Independent Living, in September of 2014.
Rebecca Reyes is the Communications Manager at Everyday Democracy. She manages the website, social media, e-newsletter, and develops online outreach strategies. She has been involved with the National Mental Health Dialogues, Creating Community Solutions, and Text, Talk, and Act since the planning stages.
Krystal Roach is a senior studying applied psychology at Coppin State University. She is the President of Active Minds on her campus and involved in many outreach and recreational student activities. Krystal is interested in researching stigma and plans to pursue Social Psychology in graduate school.
Michael L. Smith
Michael L. Smith is the President of OneCounts, Inc., which provides integrated interactive technologies in meetings to make sure that “everyone counts.” He has worked extensively with Fortune 500 corporations with an emphasis on continuing medical education and pharmaceutical practice/research, along with other sectors such as banking, finance, and consulting to better communicate and collaborate. Michael was a Senior Associate of AmericaSpeaks and his company was a technology partner for AmericaSpeaks and for Global Voices.
Dr. Susan M. Swearer
Dr. Susan M. Swearer is the Willa Cather Professor of Educational Psychology and a Professor of School Psychology at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln (UNL). She is the co-director of the Bullying Research Network (http://brnet.unl.edu); Director of the Empowerment Initiative (http://empowerment.unl.edu); and Chair of the Research Advisory Board for Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation (www.bornthiswayfoundation.org
Tracey Todd is the Social Media Associate for the National Institute for Civil Discourse, having joined the Institute in February 2014. He handles the Institute’s social media channels while also working to implement emerging social media platforms that assist with the overall communications strategy. He came from Gannett Digital and USA Today where he worked in Advertising Operations and collaborated on social media initiatives. He has experience in digital communications and social media management with The Hill Newspaper and USA Today. Tracey holds a B.A. in Mass Communication from Fayetteville State University in Fayetteville, North Carolina.
Tracey came to the National Institute for Civil Discourse to help build a social media environment where Americans could connect to have civil dialogue about the issues that affect us all. Tracey utilizes social media and emergent technologies to help strengthen the quality and effectiveness of conversation in the online spaces today.
As an educator, Quyen is particularly interested in the ways in which art can create spaces for meaningful discourse. Quyen is also passionate about grassroots advocacy, community organizing, and mental health research. Currently, she works as the Review & Evaluation Coordinator with the North Central Regional Mental Health Board to ensure that citizens are involved in determining and monitoring the mental health services provided by the State of Connecticut.
TK is a recent graduate from UCLA with a degree in psychology and a minor in film and television. She is currently pursuing her MSW at UC Berkeley with an emphasis on community mental health. She has been involved with Active Minds since her sophomore year of college and is currently the president of the Active Minds Student Advisory Committee and is the student voice on the Active Minds Board of Directors. Her chapter at UCLA participated in Text, Talk, Act in the spring, which inspired great conversation.
Basant Virdee works with Creating Community Solutions in managing the social media, website, and e-newsletter for partner organizations. She studied public health at the University of Arizona and takes a special interest in mental health, public health advocacy, and in fostering communal living attitudes and environments.
Victoria Webb, MEd is as an independent contractor working as a facilitator, trainer, curriculum specialist and consultant. One of her major areas of concentration includes mental health advocacy and education. Furthermore, at the state and local level, Ms. Webb serves on committees, councils and boards in efforts to transform communities at all levels by promoting social justice for individuals who have been traditionally disenfranchised and devalued due to stigma and discrimination.
Jennifer Wilding likes to get people talking. She is director of Consensus, the nonprofit that puts the “public” in “public policy.” She works on behalf of the community and for clients in metro Kansas City and around the U.S. Jennifer is project director for the Kansas City site of Creating Community Solutions. She has worked with national groups like AmericaSpeaks, the U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution, MacNeil/Lehrer Productions and the Kettering Foundation, and directed extensive strategic planning projects for libraries in Iowa, Oregon, Washington and Indiana.