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Child Mind Institute’s Child Advocacy Award Dinner Raises $7.2 Million to Support Innovative Clinical Care and Groundbreaking Research

November 17, 2021

Olympic Gymnast Simone Biles and The Beauty Health Company Executive Chairman Brent Saunders Honored for Their Commitment to Improving the Lives of Children With Mental Health and Learning Disorders

New York, NY – The Child Mind Institute hosted its annual Child Advocacy Award Dinner last night at Cipriani 42nd Street in Manhattan.  New York Governor Kathy Hochul was in attendance to honor and celebrate individuals committed to helping children overcome mental health and learning disorders. Olympic gymnast Simone Biles was presented virtually with the inaugural Trailblazer Award, and The Beauty Health Company Executive Chairman, Brent Saunders, was presented with the 2021 Child Advocacy Award. Both individuals are outspoken advocates for children struggling with mental health disorders.

“Simone Biles bravely showed children and the entire world this year that mental health and wellbeing should be made a priority and a foundation for everything else we do in life,” said Harold S. Koplewicz, MD, president and medical director of the Child Mind Institute. “The Child Mind Institute is pleased to present her with the inaugural Trailblazer Award for her courageousness and strength in using her global platform to tell young people that it’s critical to speak up and get help.”

Biles said she hoped her influence would offer “a voice for the voiceless” and that people in their every day lives should “not give up and move forward and keep pushing.”  Sharing that she keeps in close contact with her own therapist, Biles added, “I don’t think I’m a hero but I definitely believe that we are getting talk of mental health to the forefront and we’re starting conversations that have been long overdue.”

“As the first mom Governor of the State of New York, this is personal to me,” said New York Governor Kathy Hochul. “What the Child Mind Institute has been doing for years is more important now than ever before because we can’t afford to lose this generation of pandemic kids who have suffered so much.”

Brooke Garber Neidich, Co-Founder of the Child Mind Institute and recipient of the 2019 Child Advocacy Award, presented Saunders with this year’s Child Advocacy Award. A humbled Saunders said, “so many people have helped me along the way, and I am thrilled to be here tonight to support the Child Mind Institute to make sure that more children receive the care and support they need to live their fullest lives.” 

An impressive $7.2 million was raised to support the Child Mind Institute’s efforts to improve the mental health of children and families through clinical care, science and public education. Actress, author and comedian Ali Wentworth served as the host for the event.

Photos from the evening are available here and by contacting Kamela Kettles at Rubenstein (

To learn more about the Child Mind Institute please visit

Tagged with: Child Mind Institute News