The Regional Mental Health Coalition of Northeast Indiana Celebrates its First Year!

On March 31, 2016, The Lutheran Foundation, along with Fort Wayne mayor Tom Henry, launched the Regional Mental Health Coalition of Northeast Indiana.   This Coalition was created based upon a recommendation stemming from a needs assessment The Lutheran Foundation had conducted in 2013-2014.  This needs assessment recommended forming a regional advocacy body to speak to both policy and larger structural issues in mental and behavioral health, as well as to combat the stigma with them.  At this inaugural meeting, over 80 people from throughout the region attended.  Since then, this Coalition has grown, and is guided by a 25-member leadership council (photo included), consisting of regional experts from a variety of organizations.   This Council works to ensure collaboration of efforts between entities, assists in the development of campaigns to reduce stigma, and advocates for policy and systemic changes.

Happy Anniversary to the Regional Mental Health Coalition of Northeast Indiana!  For more information about this Coalition, please contact Kristina at

Seated (L-R):  Cory McConnell, Fort Wayne Director, CleanSlate; Dr. Mindy Yoder, Dean of Health Sciences, University of St. Francis; Captain Kevin Hunter, Fort Wayne Police Department, Vice and Narcotics; Connie Kerrigan, Director of Outreach, Parkview Behavioral Health; Pastor Crystal Bush, New Zion Tabernacle; Natalie Robinson, Office of Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill; Rebecca Buhner, Deputy Director, Indiana Division of Mental Health and Addiction; Kristina Johnson, Director of Community Initiatives, The Lutheran Foundation; Dr. Deborah McMahan, Allen County Health Commissioner; and Judge Wendy Davis, Allen County Superior Court, Criminal Division.

Standing (L-R):  Superintendent Brent Lehman, North Adams Community Schools; Kurt Carlson, CEO, Bowen Center; Paul Wilson, CEO, Park Center; Michelle Wenglikowski, Director of Student Services, East Allen County Schools; Theresa Bradtmiller, Chief Nursing Officer, Adams Memorial Hospital; Judge Dan Heath, Allen County Juvenile Center; Austin Hollabaugh, Department of Child Services, Noble County; Gail Doran, COO, Physicians Health Plan of Northern Indiana; Dr. Dan Roth, Summit Pain Management; Marcia Haaff, CEO, The Lutheran Foundation; Joe Salem, Community Advocate; and Phil Zahm, Huntington County Coroner.

Missing from photo:  Indiana Representative Dan Leonard, District 50; Tom Antisdel, General Manager, WANE-TV, and Doug Thieme, Community Advocate

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