NAMICon 2021 Virtual Event Honors Mental Health Leaders | NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness

NAMICon 2021 Virtual Event Honors Mental Health Leaders

Posted on July 29, 2021

Arlington, VA — The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has honored and presented awards for exemplary national, state and local leadership as part of “NAMICon 2021, Bringing People Together for Mental Health — The Time is Now,” one of the nation’s largest gatherings of leaders and advocates across the mental health community.

Their combined efforts are a force for positive change to improve the lives of people living with mental illness and their families. The following is a list with details about the awards and recipients:

Lionel Aldridge Champions Award: This award recognizes an individual with mental illness who demonstrates courage, leadership and service in their work to promote recovery and ensure that all people with mental illness live full lives in their communities. NAMI’s highest peer award is given in the spirit of our organization’s ongoing commitment and devotion to supporting a movement and community that is inclusive of people with mental illness, their family members and friends.

  • Nadine Lewis, Chair, Service Members, Veterans and Their Families, NAMI Oklahoma

Multicultural Outreach Award: This award honors effective efforts to ensure that diversity and inclusion are high priorities within NAMI.

  • NAMI Contra Costa County (California)

Richard and Betsy Greer Advocacy Award: This award honors NAMI advocates whose leadership and vision have advanced policy and advocacy efforts that impact individuals living with mental illness and their families.

  • Ken Norton, Executive Director, NAMI New Hampshire

Rona and Ken Purdy Award to End Discrimination: This award recognizes the sustained contributions of an individual or organization to raise public awareness, reduce stigma and advance our mission to build better lives for people with mental illness and their families.

  • D. Brian Hufford, Partner, Zuckerman Spaeder, LLP

Sam Cochran Criminal Justice Award: This award recognizes an exemplary individual whose work in the criminal justice system has improved the fair and humane treatment of people with mental illness.

  • Dan Eisenstein, Retired Mental Health Court Judge

Young Leader Award: This award recognizes young adults who exemplify exceptional leadership among their peers to foster a culture of recovery and resiliency that helps young people with mental illness live full lives in their communities.

  • Annie Vitti, NAMI DuPage (Illinois)

Joyce Burland Inspirational Award: This award recognizes a NAMI staff member or volunteer who has demonstrated creativity, dedication, and resourcefulness to offer or expand NAMI’s national education programs, and who has served as an inspiration to families, individuals with a mental health condition or the public through their work with NAMI programs.

  • Karen (Kari) Kepic, NAMI Greater Cleveland (Ohio)

Outstanding NAMI State Organization: This award recognizes the exemplary efforts to carry out the NAMI mission.

  • NAMI Georgia

Outstanding NAMI Affiliate: This award is bestowed upon a NAMI Affiliate that demonstrates exceptional leadership, strong community presence, outreach to diverse communities and exemplary stewardship of the NAMI mission.

  • NAMI Bucks County PA (Pennsylvania)
  • NAMI St. Tammany (Louisiana)

Exemplary Psychiatrist Awards: This award honors psychiatrists who have made exceptional contributions to improve the lives of people living with mental health conditions.

  • Jacqueline Feldman, M.D., DLFAPA, Birmingham, Ala.
  • Bruce C. Gage, M.D., Lakewood, Wash.
  • Joseph Guillory, M.D., Dallas, Texas
  • Sherifa Iqbal, M.D., MPH, MBA, DFAPA, FASAM, St. Louis, Mo.
  • Isabel Norian, M.D., Amherst, N.H.
  • Ruth S. Shim, M.D., MPH, Sacramento, Calif.


Email: [email protected]


For all other marketing and communications needs and requests, please contact [email protected]

NAMI HelpLine is available M-F, 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. ET. Call 800-950-6264,
text “helpline” to 62640, or chat online. In a crisis, call or text 988 (24/7).