Champions in Recovery to be crowned next Friday

Fifth annual Seven Counties’ conference is the setting for recognition of community mental health award winners

Seven Counties Services’ fifth annual celebration of the promise of recovery from serious mental illness – Stand Up!For Recovery – will honor three Champions of Recovery – organizations or individuals who help create a recovery environment for adults with severe mental illness throughout Louisville and surrounding counties.

Renee Murphy, WHAS TV reporter and anchor, a former award winner herself, will emcee the award presentation at the conference on Friday, July 20 at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Louisville. This year’s winners are:

  • Beth Hedges, Executive Director of Choices, Inc., an organization providing transitional housing and support services to homeless women and families, will receive the Champion of Service in Recovery Award. Ms. Hedges is a strong advocate, who led efforts to create and sustain Norma’s House, where women who are homeless receive transitional housing, support services, counseling and more to help them achieve recovery.
  • Molly Clouse, arguably the leading peer advocate for individuals with mental illness in the state of Kentucky, will receive the Champion of Life in Recovery Award. Ms. Clouse possesses an enthusiasm for recovery, exemplifies the positive spirit of recovery, takes initiative and is proactive in her own recovery. She encourages and trains others throughout the state to find their own paths to recovery.
  • Wellspring – Living Solutions for Mental Health Recovery, Louisville’s leading provider of supported housing for persons with mental illness, will receive the Champion of Community in Recovery Award. Since its inception in 1982, Wellspring has promoted community integration through a dedication to creating and supporting community living and recovery environments for individuals with mental illnesses.

The award ceremony, which is slated for 10:30 a.m. at the Hyatt’s Grand Ballroom, is part of the daylong conference. The keynote speaker for the afternoon’s session is David Granirer, the founder of Stand Up for Mental Health, a program that works with individuals with mental illnesses to create and perform stand-up comedy routines about their illness and recovery experience. The conference is from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Mr. Granirer will be joined on stage by several Louisville-area residents in recovery who will have trained with him, via Skype, email and telephone, over a six-week period in preparation for their comedic debut.

David’s work is featured in media across North America and in the Voice Award winning documentary Cracking Up. He is the author of The Happy Neurotic: How Fear and Angst Can Lead to Happiness and Success.

Mr. Granirer will perform his own stand-up routine – I’m Okay but You Need Professional Help –  and preview a few of the Friday performers at an event open to the public on Wednesday evening, July 18 at the Improv Comedy Club at 4th Street Live. The show, which runs from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., is open to the public. A $10 donation to Seven Counties Services, our region’s leading nonprofit provider of mental health services, is suggested, but all are welcome.

Persons wishing to attend the Friday event should contact Marsha Wilson at Seven Counties at 589-8926 or  Thanks to the generosity of sponsors, the event is free of charge, but registration is required.

The conference is made possible by the support and generosity of many sponsors. In addition to Seven Counties, this year’s conference sponsors are the KY Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities, TEVA Pharmaceuticals USA,  Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Our Lady of Peace, a service of Jewish Hospital & St. Mary’s HealthCare, Bridgehaven Mental Health Services, the KY Olmstead Coalition, Medical News, QoL Meds, Passport Health Plan, Kentucky Protection and Advocacy, the KY Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association, Volunteers of America KY, NAMI-Louisville, the Klusman Family and Wellspring-Living Solutions for Mental Health Recovery.


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