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Press Releases

Child Mind Institute Announces 2017 Change Maker Award Nominees and Opens Voting

March 21, 2017

Voting for Outstanding Organization and Local Hero is Open through April 4, 2017

NEW YORK, NY, March 21, 2017 – The Child Mind Institute announced the nominees for Outstanding Organization and Local Hero, the two crowd-sourced awards that will be presented at the 2017 Change Maker Awards in May. The Change Maker Awards recognize individuals and organizations that are making positive change in children’s mental health and raising awareness of the need for early intervention to help kids lead healthy lives. Voting is open to the public from March 21 to April 4 at https://childmind.org/campaign/2017-change-maker-awards. Winners will be announced in late April.

This year’s nominees for Outstanding Organization were chosen by the Child Mind Institute review committee and exemplify a group that is committed to changing the way the world views and treats children struggling with mental health and learning disorders. This year’s nominees are:

  • Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind Sesame Street and many other initiatives to support healthy children
  • The Mighty, an online community dedicated to sharing the stories of people facing mental health and learning disorders as well as other diseases
  • JED Foundation, a national nonprofit that exists to protect emotional health and prevent suicide for teens and young adults
  • Common Sense Media, an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to helping kids thrive in a world of media and technology
  • The National Association of School Psychologists, the largest organization of school psychologists, which works to advance effective practices to improve students’ learning, behavior and mental health.

Additionally, the Child Mind Institute announced the Local Hero finalists. Earlier this year, the Child Mind Institute crowd-sourced Local Hero nominations, encouraging people across the nation to nominate their mental health heroes. Nearly 300 nominations were received and five finalists were selected by the Child Mind Institute review committee. The five finalists are remarkable individuals who are dedicating time and energy to make a difference in the lives of those struggling with mental health and learning disorders. This year’s nominees are:

  • Michelle Borgese, family advocate at the Bronx Family Resource Center
  • Michael Cummings, MD, psychiatrist and creator of Access to Psychiatry Through Intermediate Care, a mobile service to prevent unnecessary hospitalization and incarceration
  • Barbara Greene, peer support director, trainer and project coordinator for the Kentucky Family & Youth Movement at the Kentucky Partnership
  • Lori Rothman, occupational therapist who works with children who have sensory processing, neurodevelopmental and physical challenges
  • Randi Silverman, CEO of The Youth Mental Health Project, which empowers families with the resources to support the social-emotional, mental and behavioral health of children

“These individuals and organizations are doing tremendous work to change the way people think about and treat mental health and learning disorders,” said Child Mind Institute Founding President Harold S. Koplewicz, MD. “We are delighted to highlight their accomplishments.”

The Change Maker Awards are part of the Child Mind Institute’s annual signature public education campaign, Speak Up for Kids, held each May to promote children’s mental health. In its seventh year, the campaign celebrates people making change in children’s mental health and provides information to the media, families, educators and leaders that empowers them to speak up for kids.

About the Child Mind Institute

The Child Mind Institute is an independent, national nonprofit dedicated to transforming the lives of children and families struggling with mental health and learning disorders. Our teams work every day to deliver the highest standards of care, advance the science of the developing brain, and empower parents, professionals and policymakers to support children when and where they need it most. Together with our supporters, we’re helping children reach their full potential in school and in life. We share all of our resources freely and do not accept any funding from the pharmaceutical industry. Learn more at childmind.org.