August 13, 2012

SAMHSA to honor Metta World Peace and Shonda Rhimes

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) will honor Metta World Peace of the Los Angeles Lakers and screenwriter and producer Shonda Rhimes Wednesday, Aug. 22, during the 2012 Voice Awards. World Peace is being honored with a Special Recognition Award for his work to raise awareness about mental health issues and for his financial support of charities that provide mental health awareness and treatment services for children. Rhimes will be honored with a Career Achievement Award for her ongoing efforts to educate television audiences about the real experiences of people with behavioral health problems and those impacted by trauma.

The 2012 Voice Awards will be at 7 p.m. PDT at Paramount Studios in Hollywood, Calif.

Since 2005, the Voice Awards has brought together representatives from the entertainment industry and the behavioral health community for an evening of educational awareness building about mental health and substance-use disorders and the power of recovery.

This year, SAMHSA will highlight stories of mental illness and substance abuse, as well as the behavioral health challenges of athletes, including their resilience and paths to recovery.

The awards program recognizes the achievements of consumer/peer leaders who are sharing their stories of recovery and working to promote the social inclusion of people with behavioral health problems throughout the Nation.

William (Bill) White of Bloomington–Normal, Ill., will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award for his leadership, research and advocacy to promote recovery from addictions. Consumer/Peer Leadership Awards will be presented to behavioral health advocates and community leaders Henry Acosta, of Plainsboro, N.J., and Shery Mead, of Plainfield, N.H., as well as advocates and athletes Chris Herren; Chamique Holdsclaw; and Brandon Marshall. The Young Adult Leadership Award will be presented to Brittany Holt of Greensboro, N.C.

The Voice Awards also honors writers and producers who incorporate dignified, respectful and accurate portrayals of people with behavioral health challenges into film and television productions. Finalists include “Take Shelter” (Sony); “Castle” (ABC); “Glee” (FOX); “Homeland” (Showtime); “Necessary Roughness” (USA); “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” (NBC); and “Parenthood” (NBC).

To attend the event, contact Scott Rieder at 202–248–5476.

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