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December 11, 2017

Recovery Month 2017 Activities

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Substance Use Disorders touch everyone’s lives; whether you are in recovery, struggle with recovery, or care about someone who has struggled with recovery you are familiar with the devastation it can cause.  Our annual event is meant to celebrate recovery and help people see they can overcome their struggles. 

The 2nd Annual Recovery Month Awards and Proclamation celebration was held at the Lincoln Auditorium at the Idaho State Capitol.  At the event

  • Rosie Andueza spoke of the Division of Behavioral Health's commitment to recovery.
  • Secretary of State Lawerence Denney presented the 2017 Recovery Month Proclamation.
  • Matt Sather, Swede Schmidt, George Moore, and Brandi Irons spoke of how substance use disorders have affected their lives.
  • People throughout the state were recognized for receiving the Regional Advocate for Recovery and Contributions of Honor awards.
  • Ross Edmunds, Administrator of the Division of Behavioral Health, presented Libertie Potts with the 2nd Annual Champion of Idaho award.
  • Libertie Potts shared her story of recovery.

Click here for the Recovery Month Poster

Click here to watch the 2017 Recovery Month Award and Proclamation celebration

Click here for the Worst Outcome Mannequin Challenge shown at the beginning of the event

Click here for the Regional Award presentation shown at the event

Click here for pictures of events around the state. To add pictures of your event, please email BHEvents@dhw.idaho.gov.


Media Coverage:

Click here for DHW Blog covering the celebration

Local Woman Awarded for Helping Others Recover from Drug Addiction

Woman Helps East Idahoans Recovery from Mental Health, Drug Issues

Select "Speakers" below for bio's and additional information about the speakers.

Select "2017 Recovery Awards" below for more information about the award recipients.

Secretary of State Lawerence Denney

Lawerence Denney was sworn in as Idaho's twenty-seventh Secretary of State on January 5, 2015.

A life-long Idahoan, Lawerence's life experiences helped him develop a strong work ethic.  Upon graduation from Midvale (Idaho) High School, Lawerence continued his education a the University of Idaho graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Economics.  Following graduation he served in the U.S Army during the Vietnam War and received the Bronze Star.

After serving his country, Lawerence worked in the timber and mining industry as well as owned and worked the family farm with his wife, Donna.  They raised four children (Toni, Jennifer, Stephanie, and Michael).  In addition, they have eight grandchildren.

While their children were growing up, he enjoyed working with young people (coaching track and boys basketball) from the communities of
Cambridge and Midvale.  During the early 1980’s, he drove the school but to the ski lodge at Hitt Mountain and taught many young people to ski.  Lawerence served as EMT and volunteer fireman for many years. 
He has been an active member of his church, serving on many of their
boards.

In 1990 Lawerence began his tenure in the Idaho House of Representatives with his election as State Representative from District 13.  Beginning in 1996, he represented District 9, until his election as Secretary of State.  In 1998 he embarked on his leadership career serving as Assistant Majority Leader in 1998 (two terms), Majority Leader in 2002 (two terms), and three terms as Speaker starting in 2006.  Following his tenure as Speaker, he served as a member of the House Resources and Conservation Committee serving as Chairman for one term (2012-2014).

 

Ross Edmunds

Ross is the Administrator for the Division of Behavioral Health at the Department of Health and Welfare.  In this role Ross oversees the outpatient mental health and substance use disorders treatment system in Idaho, as well as the operations of the two state psychiatric hospitals. 
Ross is the Administrator for the Division of Behavioral Health at the Department of Health and Welfare.  In this role Ross oversees the outpatient mental health and substance use disorders treatment system in Idaho, as well as the operations of the two state psychiatric hospitals. 

 

 

 

 

Swede Schmidt

Swede is a furniture designer.  He is also in long-term recovery, recently celebrating 15 years of sobriety.  Swede actively participates in recovery-oriented activities in several states.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Matt Sather

Matt is a husband of 26 years and a father of 2 grown children. He is a recent graduate in clinical counseling from Northwest Nazarene University. 

Matt has struggled with addiction throughout his life and has experienced the stigmatization that comes with addiction, both for the individual and the family. His belief is that although his struggle has been tragic at times, he would not be who he is today without these experiences. 

He feels fortunate to have been given the opportunity to work with others who struggle with addiction, and in some small way, counter the message that addiction defines those that it touches.  

 

 

 

 

George Moore

George Moore is a Native American with the Nevada Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe.  George works the the Four Directions Treatment Center representing the Shoshone Bannock Tribes.  In August 2017 George has been sober for 2 years and 3 months.

Alcohol was his killer.  At rock bottom George lost his job of 23 years, his Dodge Avenger, and many other material items.  Things turned around when he was lucky enough to get treatment.  From there he made a choice to recover from alcoholism and to get back on his feet, standing tall.  

George is currently training to be a Certified Idaho Recovery Coach.  George often says, "Life is one choice away from changing to a better life."

 

 

Brandi Irons

I was born and raised in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. I started doing drugs when I was 13. From there had a long journey of opiate addiction starting at age 15, including the occasional rehab, jails and eventually I was sent to South Women’s Boise Correctional Center.

After making many horrible decisions, I found myself in Kootenai County Jail yet again, pregnant and expecting to go to prison. God had other plans for me and I wound up getting into Mental Health Drug Court. The program was tough at first but it ultimately lead me to the Kootenai Recovery Community Center. I started volunteering there on a regular basis in the beginning, it kept me out of trouble and helped me complete what was required by my judge. 

Then, I was asked to be on a panel at the Kroc Center for Teenage Drug Addiction. I was on the panel with 3 other guests, Executive Director of Idaho Drug Free Youth Corey Crownhart, Program Manager at the Idaho Youth Ranch Greg Orlando and The First Lady of Idaho, Lori Otter. It was an amazing experience and at the end of the conference I was given an opportunity to go back to College, fully paid for by The First Lady. 

Doors started opening up, I was invited to be on the “My Choice” panel by the juvenile probation officers in Kootenai County to speak to juveniles on probation, and was also invited to be on a panel at North Idaho College for addiction. 

I now have a full-time job at the Kootenai Recovery Community Center and have a beautiful 2-year-old son. I would not have any of this without my Recovery and support from those who are closest to me.

On September 1, 2017, the artwork in the links below was displayed in the Idaho State Capitol in Boise and moved to the lobby of the Health and Welfare office located at 450 W State Street in Boise for the remainder of September.  Both art displays are open to the public.  

Click here for Art Display

Click here for Art Display with featured Artist Justin Abel

If you would like information on submitting artwork for future displays, please contact Crystal Campbell at crystal.campbell@dhw.idaho.gov.

 

The Division of Behavioral Health is recognizing the following recipients of the 2017 Recovery Awards.  Each of the recipients are pillars in the community and have worked hard to reduce stigma around behavioral health as well as working in the community to inspire hope, recovery, and resiliency.  Congratulations to all of our winners!

Idaho Champion of Recovery

Libertie Potts, Idaho Falls

"Her ability to identify and motivate new persons in recovery is unique and rare.  Her presence on our team provides hope amongst the professional staff as well as a visible example of success to new participants in our program."

Division of Behavioral Health Administrator Ross Edmunds will present Libertie with her award on September 1 at the Idaho State Capitol.  See information above for details to attend.

 

Regional Advocate of Recovery Awards

Carl Glover, Pocatello

"His life shows the possibilities for what life can be for those new in recovery.  He works as a motivator for those who have been in recovery but may currently be struggling."

Carl will receive his award at the Region 6 Behavioral Health Board meeting on September 19.

 

 

 


Dawn Nutting, Twin Falls

"The most valuable resource is Dawn sharing her own personal recovery story of what it was like, what happened, and what her life is like now.  In one word, 'HOPE.'"

Dawn will receive her award at the Region 5 Behavioral Health Board meeting on September 13.




Jennifer Harlan, Caldwell

"Jen continues to go the extra mile helping clients obtain housing vouchers and helping them search for landlords who are willing to "take a chance" on housing people with a felony."

Jennifer will receiver her award at the Region 3 Behavioral Health Board meeting on September 27.




Keith Sutherland, Coeur d'Alene

"Keith is described as a giver, compassionate, understanding, and someone that wants to serve the recovery community."

Keith will receive his award at the Region 1 Behavioral Health Board meeting on September 6.





Kirstie Smith, Lewiston

"Starting as a peer volunteer, Kirstie has been involved int eh Lewiston recovery community for several years...Kirstie is also responsible for creating and running a large (300+) recovery event called Breaking the Stigma."

Kirstie will receive her award at the Region 2 Behavioral Health Board meeting on September 14.



Penny Layne, Boise

Penny has worked very hard to get where she is today and plans to continue to do so, "making positive changes within the minds of alcoholics and drug users and people that have trauma's, helping them remove the barriers that cause them to relapse."

Penny will receive her award at the Region 4 Behavioral Health Board meeting on October 12.



Stephanie Taylor Silva, Idaho Falls

"Stephanie wholeheartedly believes that it is her calling in life to show others that recovery and success are not only possible, they are attainable with hard work, and perseverance."

Stephanie will receive her award at the Region 7 Behavioral Health Board meeting on September 8.




Regional Contributions of Honor Award

Bill Patterson, Twin Falls

"He is always willing to help in any way that he can, and willing to share his story to inspire and support others."

Bill will receive his award at the Region 5 Behavioral Health Board meeting on September 13.





Jodi Phillips, Pocatello

"She motivates and encourages clients to look at their strengths, to look at their support system already in place and then she encourages them to be thinking outside the box for other possible solutions."

Jodi will receive her award at the Region 6 Behavioral Health Board meeting on September 8.




Katie Schmeer, Coeur d'Alene

"The positive influence Katie has shown through her own dealings with recovery have helped others to find hope and work toward a more positive life."

Katie will receive her award at the Region 1 Behavioral Health Board meeting on September 6.





Kristi Springstead, Boise

"As other women in recovery talk with Kristi and see her success and perseverance, they are greatly encouraged to not give up.  We have all benefited from working with her and getting to be a part of her life.  When a person experiences a relationship with someone like Kristi, he or she is encouraged to move through obstacles because of all Kristi has overcome."

Kristie will receive her award at the Region 4 Behavioral Health Board meeting on October 12.




Rebekah Joe "RJ" Carter, Moscow

"(RJ's) group has provided almost 1000 coaching sessions for people dealing with addictions and/or mental heatlh issues."

RJ will receive her award at the Region 2 Behavioral Health Board meeting on September 14.





Trinity Bailey, Caldwell

"She took on the tasks of recovery coaching and further developed her clientele through her ongoing work with Canyon County Jail and prison inmates."

Trinity will receive her award at the Region 3 Behavioral Health Board meeting on September 27.







Behavioral Health Events Calendar

NOTE: Please use the form below the calendar to submit any Behavioral Health events in your area for consideration for addition to our calendar.
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Use the form below to submit an event for consideration for addition to the calendar. All events will be evaluated before addition to the calendar. To be added, events must be related to behavioral health and take place in the state of Idaho. Events that are not deemed to be appropriate for the calendar will not be added.


















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Past Events

 

Mental Health Awareness Month - May 2017 Activities

The Mental Health Awareness event on May 11, 2017 was held in the Lincoln Auditorium at the Idaho State Capitol.  At the event:

  • Lt. Governor Brad Little signed and presented the 2017 Mental Health Awareness Month Proclamation.
  • Eric Walton, Melissa Freese, and Will Browning discussed how mental health and suicide has affected their lives. 
  • Ross Edmunds, Administrator of the Division of Behavioral Health presented Lisa Koller with the first ever Voice of Idaho award.  
  • Lisa Koller spoke of her path to becoming the 2017 Voice of Idaho.

Select "Speakers" below to see bio's and additional information about the speakers.

Click here to watch the recorded event. 


Click here for coverage by the Idaho Statesman.​


Click here to see the Regional Award presentation.

Lieutenant Governor Brad Little


Brad Little is Idaho’s 37th Lieutenant Governor.  

A native of Emmett in Gem County, Little is a third-generation Idahoan.  He has dedicated his life and career to continuing both his family’s ranching interests and its history of service to the people of Idaho.  

Little’s personal philosophy has been consistent throughout his career: to ensure the lightest possible hand of government in the lives of citizens and businesses alike.  A successful businessman himself as the head of Little Enterprises, Inc. (a diversified farming and cattle operation), Little is a former chairman of the Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry (IACI), the Idaho Wool Growers Association, and former vice-chairman of the Idaho Community Foundation.  He currently serves on the board of directors Performance Design Incorporated -- a small Boise-based manufacturing company.  

In his personal life, Little married Weiser native Teresa Soulen in May 1978.  They have two sons and daughters-in-law, Adam and Angela, David and Kelsey, and five grandchildren. 




Ross Edmunds


Ross is the Administrator for the Division of Behavioral Health at the Department of Health and Welfare.  In this role Ross oversees the outpatient mental health and substance use disorders treatment system in Idaho, as well as the operations of the two state psychiatric hospitals. 




Eric Walton


Eric Walton is a seventeen-year-old student at Sage International School of Boise. He enjoys reading books, writing books, watching television, playing games, volunteering and spending time with his friends. He values honesty, compassion and joyfulness. He also has Bipolar Disorder, a neurological condition that, when untreated, causes him to go from mania to depression rather quickly. When treated, he’s like any other normal teenager—other than what he calls his “incredibly nerdy tendencies.” He’s a major fan of Star Trek, Dr. Who, Star Wars—you get the picture. His favorite books include Dune, Lord of the Rings, Ender’s Game, and of course his own. He is currently the Chair of Youth MOVE (Motivating Others Through Voices of Experience) Boise, a group dedicated to reducing stigma and providing support to youth with mental illness.

See Eric's TEDx here.





Melissa Freese


Melissa is a 1994 graduate of Boise State University where she earned her teaching degree.  Melissa worked for the Meridian School District for 5 years until she decided to stay home with her four children.  She has recently started teaching again.  

Melissa lost her beautiful daughter Camille to suicide in 2014.  Melissa says she “has a heart for teens who struggle with mental illness and self-harm.” 

She enjoys spending time at the YMCA, going on dates with her husband of 23 years, spending holidays with her family, decorating cakes, leading groups with her husband, and walking her goldendoodle.




Will Browning


Will Browning grew up in Westchester County, north of New York City. He played the piano from an early age, and still enjoys tickling the ivories with friends. Will attended Dartmouth College in New Hampshire for his B.A. degree, specializing in history and languages, and spending a tremendously rewarding spring term in France.

He went on to earn an M.A. in Teaching French and ESL from the School for International Training in Vermont, and then a Doctor of Modern Languages degree in French and Spanish from Middlebury College in Vermont. He spent nine months in Madrid, Spain, studying Spanish language, literature, and culture, and then nine months in Paris, France, focusing on French language, literature, and culture, both via Middlebury's Language Schools Abroad.

In 1994, Will arrived in Boise to teach languages for a year as a lecturer at Boise State University and a year at the College of Idaho. From 1996 to 2011, he taught Spanish and French at BSU, becoming a full professor responsible for teaching, researc​h, and service. Will published three French-English literary translations of novels from Québec, Canada, during his tenure at BSU. He still teaches Conversational Spanish annually in BSU’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. 

Will now primarily works as a Spanish and French interpreter in the Treasure Valley at many medical clinics, and in community mental health services with All Together Now of Boise. 

Will has two children, a son age 24 and a daughter age 17. Both are interested in music, languages, and teaching, among many things.

Ryan

Ryan is a young adult with a Bachelor's degree from Boise State University. He currently works part-time and pursues his creative passions in music and writing. Ryan received his first mental health diagnosis at the age of 7, and has experienced many trials to get to where he is today. Ryan likens recovery to backpacking in the wilderness and never knowing what the journey has in store for him. For Ryan, personal growth means learning to accept life's unpredictability.

 

The Division of Behavioral Health is recognizing the following recipients of the 2017 Mental Health Awareness Awards.  Each of the recipients are pillars in the community and have worked hard to reduce stigma around behavioral health as well as working in the community to inspire hope, recovery, and resiliency.  Congratulations to all of our winners!

Voice of Idaho Award

Lisa Koller, Idaho Falls

"Lisa is truly an example of living generously and selflessy.  To say that she is an advocate would be an understatement."

Division of Behavioral Health Administrator Ross Edmunds will present Lisa with her award on May 11 at the Idaho State Capitol. See information above for details to attend.

Lisa will also be recognized for her award at the Region 7 Behavioral Health Board meeting on May 19, 2017.

Click here to read Lisa's story in the DHW blog.

 

 

 

 

Regional Empowerment Awards

Bert Fiskum, Caldwell

Bert shares "...his poetic gift by giving hand written notes of encouragement or verbal expression he passes on to others...to ease their day to day struggle of mental illness and giving them hope."

Bert will receive his award at the Region 3 Behavioral Health Board meeting on May 24, 2017.

 

 

 

Beth Patzer, Lewiston

"She demonstrates a life filled with service to the citizens of Idaho."

Beth will receive her award at the Region 2 Behavioral Health Board Meeting on May 11, 2017.

 

 

 

 

 

Desirae Dade, Twin Falls

"Her hard work and dedication...enables people to find their path to recovery with fewer stumbling blocks."

Desirae will receive her award at the Region 5 Behavioral Health Board meeting on May 10, 2017.

 

 

 

 

 

Logan Zuck, Idaho Falls

"Logan began breaking the stigma of mental illness when he was still in high school.  He is a tireless representative of those with mental illness in our communities and his message has changed the perspective of mental illness for many citizens in Idaho."

Logan will receive his award at the Region 7 Behavioral Health Board meeting on May 19, 2017.

 

Michelle McMillan, Boise

"Michelle has been very active in advocating for people living with mental illness and co-occurring substance use disorders in the local Boise community."

Michelle will receive her award at the Region 4 Behavioral Health Board Meeting on May 11, 2017.






Mindy Leager, Coeur d'Alene

"She inspires hope, recovery and, most of all, resiliency in respect to what she does for her community."

Mindy will receive her award at the Region 1 Behavioral Health Board Meeting on May 3, 2017.

 

 

 

 

 

Honorable Mention

Curtis O'Daniel, Boise

"Curtis is an influencing force for courage, hope, inspiration, and resiliency for those he works with."

Curtis will receive his award at the Region 4 Behavioral Health Board Meeting on May 11, 2017.

 

Eve Pike, Caldwell

Eve is working with the Division of Behavioral Health in "...assisting and developing the content, structure, and frequency" of groups for people with mental health challenges.

Eve will receive her award at the Region 3 Behavioral Health Board meeting on May 24, 2017.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Joy Fryman, Coeur d'Alene

"Joy is an inspiration to all of us.  She works with the Kootenai Recovery Center, offering encouragement and support to all that enter."

Joy will receive her award at the Region 1 Behavioral Health Board Meeting on May 3, 2017.

Click the links below for a message from Joy:

Part 1  Part 2

 

 

 

 

2016 National Recovery Month Events

Darrell Keim was selected as this years Idaho Champion of Recovery.  Darrell is the Director of the Latah Recovery Center and has been a valuable asset to the community.  Darrell was nominated by the Region 2 Behavioral Health Board, who said Darrell has been, "...the force behind the development, formation and realization of the Latah Recovery Center."

Darrell has been a key player since the concept of the Latah recovery center was developed and has been the "face of the recovery community in our rural college community."  To gain support, Darrell organized a panel including individuals in recovery, a district judge, and organizational leaders from the community.  After the Latah Recovery Center opened in September 2015, Darrell became the Director.  He has built relationships throughout the community and is active in recruiting and training volunteers.  

Darrell has also been successful in using Quality of Life, Assessment of Recovery, and Wellness Self-Assessment tools as ways to manage the success of the center.  

According to the Region 2 Behavioral Health Board, "Darrell works tirelessly on the Recovery process.  As a result of his efforts the Latah Recovery Center is a well respected member of the community in Moscow."

 

September is Recovery Awareness month and great activities will be happening across the country.  This year’s theme is “Our Families, Our Stories, Our Recovery!” Please join us on September 8 at 10:30 at the Idaho State Capitol as Lt. Governor Brad Little presents a proclamation declaring September as recovery awareness month. There will be a recovery-oriented art display and people speaking about recovery. We will be presenting an award to Idaho’s very first Champion of Recovery and recognize seven Advocates for Recovery from across the state. 

This event will be held in the Lincoln Auditorium at the Idaho State Capitol.  Presentations begin at 10:30 am (MT).  For more information please contact Crystal Campbell at campbelc@dhw.idaho.gov.

For streaming of the event, please click here and select the Lincoln Auditorium.

Invitation