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May 10, 2007 - Arapahoe/Douglas Mental Health welcomes Dr. Lonise Bias

What: 6th Annual Mental Health Benefit Luncheon

Where: Inverness Hotel & Conference Center

When: Thursday, May 10, 2007

Time: 11:30 a.m.

Beneficiary: Uninsured and underinsured individuals in need of mental health and substance abuse treatment services

Honoree(s): Mary Platt (2007 Pat Echtermeyer Community Hero Award Recipient), and M. Michael Cooke (2007 ADMHN Distinguished Service Award Recipient)

EMCEE: Tom Green, news anchor from CW2

Executive Director: Scott Thoemke, M.Ed, Cac III, Executive Director/CEO

President(s): Steven Kennedy, ADHMN Board President

Speaker: Dr. Lonise Bias

Music: Peneplain Jazz Trio

Sponsors: Citywide Banks, Behavioral Healthcare Inc., Christian Living Communities, Community Reach Center, Highlands Behavioral Health System, Kaiser Permanente, Lockton Companies, Arapahoe and Douglas Counties, Arapahoe House, Aurora Mental Health, Crossroads Turning Points, Intermountain Rural Electric Association, Mercer Health and Benefits, National Alliance on Mental Illness (Arapahoe/ Douglas chapter), Signal Behavior Health Network

Quote of the evening: Lonise Bias: "No matter what we are experiencing in our family and in our realm of influence, there's someone going through something worse and making it."

Menu: Bowtie pasta tossed with chicken, asparagus, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes in a light parmesan broth

Attendance: 260

Attire: Business

Special Thanks: Nik Golosow, MD; Paul Miller; Gail Ploen

Information: Visit www.admhn.org, 303-730-8858, Arapahoe/Douglas Mental Health Network

Event Coordinator: Tiffany Radel

Board of Directors: Steve Kennedy, Gail Ploen, John Phillips, Thomas Bay, Nita Brown, Attila Denes, Thomas Flanagan, Jean Flynn, Margaret Gordon, Michael Hankinson, Kimberley Payne, Jose Reyes, Dr. Richard Spiegle, Paul Staley, Susan Beckman, Melanie Worley, Scott Thoemke

Blacktie Photos by: Mark Pauly


 William Wendt, left, CEO Scott Thoemke & Michael LaRue
William Wendt, left, CEO Scott Thoemke & Michael LaRue

May is National Health Month, and this is one reason why Arapahoe/Douglas Mental Health Network (ADMHN) chose May 10 for its fundraiser.

At each table, there were donation envelopes to help fill the monetary gap so that services can be provided to more uninsured and underinsured individuals in need of mental health and substance abuse treatment service. Along with the envelopes were packages of sunflower seeds. The growth of the sunflower seeds represent what can happen if nurtured: a strong healthy plant will emerge. In our community, as with the sunflowers, people can be healthy if properly nurtured.

Honorees this year were Mary Platt (2007 Pat Echtermeyer Community Hero Award Recipient), and M. Michael Cooke (2007 ADMHN Distinguished Service Award Recipient).

Emcee Tom Green introduced the keynote speaker, Dr. Lonise Bias. She is the mother of the late Len Bias, the best college basketball player who was drafted as the first pick of 1986 by the Boston Celtics. The world was his oyster when he died of a cocaine overdose in June of 1986. Just four years later, Lonise suffered another tragic loss when her son, Jay, was murdered in a drive-by shooting. Lonise has turned her personal tragedy into a mission of hope, community and family, advocating the building and preserving of strong community support systems that will ultimately prevent the social ills that are destroying communities throughout the USA. Dr. Bias poured out her heart and soul, not as a grieving mother, but as a unique individual who cares for the health of humanity.

Some form of mental illness affects one out of every five American families. And while mental illness is an equal opportunity disease that can happen to anyone at any time, it doesn't have to take over your life. At ADMHN, the staff is made up of caring professionals who share a passion for helping others make positive changes in their lives.

It was a special gathering for supporters of ADMHN, in the hopes that these efforts hopefully make it possible for clients to have more special days also. For more information, log on to www.admhn.org.

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