AspenPointe accepting nominations for annual 'Hero of Mental Health'

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Last year’s Hero of Mental Health Award is presented to School Teacher Brittni Darras by Dr. Mick Pattinson, President and CEO of AspenPointe - COURTESY ASPENPOINTE
  • Courtesy AspenPointe
  • Last year’s Hero of Mental Health Award is presented to School Teacher Brittni Darras by Dr. Mick Pattinson, President and CEO of AspenPointe

AspenPointe, the region’s behavioral health and substance abuse center, is currently accepting nominations for its annual Hero of Mental Health award.

The honor, previously awarded to Brittni Darras, Guy and Jane Bennett, Alan Pocock, Jeannie Ritter, and Mark and Carol Graham, recognizes contributions to the community in the realm of mental health and substance abuse “through either awareness efforts, investment of personal time, financial contributions, or all the above.”

Though the recipient will be announced on Oct. 16, a formal celebration will be held Nov. 2 at the Heroes of Mental Health Luncheon, featuring SNL comedian Darrel Hammond as keynote speaker.

In order to nominate a local hero of mental health, you can fill out the online form or email sue.geagley@aspenpointe.org with a 100-500 word explanation of the nominee’s qualifications. Nomination ends on Oct. 1.

See the full press release below for more information on the award and the luncheon.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Everyday heroes, who accomplish great feats on behalf of others or sometimes entire communities, live among us. We want to know about them and their great deeds. AspenPointe is seeking nominations for its annual Heroes of Mental Health Award, which will be presented during the Heroes of Mental Health Luncheon on Nov. 2 at the Broadmoor.

AspenPointe’s annual Heroes of Mental Health Luncheon recognizes individuals in the Pikes Peak Region who champion mental health and wellness. They can be a driving force in efforts to reduce stigma or a key player in the growth of community programs that treat and fund mental illness and/or substance misuse.

Nominees for the Heroes of Mental Health Award should be residents of, or work in, the Pikes Peak Region and have made significant contributions toward advancing mental health treatment and substance abuse care and/or other forms of wellness through either awareness efforts, investment of personal time, financial contributions, or all the above.

To nominate, please complete our online nomination form at www.AspenPointe.org/nominate, or email sue.geagley@aspenpointe.org. Explain in 100-500 words the nominee’s contributions to mental health and substance abuse. The nomination process ends close Oct. 1. This year’s hero will be announced Oct. 16.

Last year’s recipient, Brittni Darras, is a school teacher at Rampart High School. Darras helped a student who had a plan to complete suicide by writing a personal note to the student. Later, she wrote 139 other notes to her other students. The notes quickly spread awareness of kindness and received national and international media attention. She also received the Colorado Springs Mayor’s Young Leader Award as well as a Denver TedTALK public speaking invite.

Previous award winners include Guy and Jane Bennett, suicide prevention advocates, Alan Pocock, the special education chair and Learning and Educating About Disabilities (LEAD) program coordinator at Cheyenne Mountain High School, Former Colorado First Lady Jeannie Ritter, and former Fort Carson Commander Retired Maj. Gen. Mark Graham and his wife, Carol.

Tickets are now available for the luncheon which will feature SNL Darrell Hammond as keynote speaker. Hammond is famous for his impressions of Bill Clinton, Sean Connery and Donald Trump, but his personal story of overcoming child abuse and substance misuse is less known. Hammond will share his difficult journey of drug abuse, self-harm and other life challenges.


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