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    MDCH Director's Awards for Recipient Rights

    The MDCH Director's Awards for Recipient Rights are presented annually at the Recipient Rights Conference.  If you would like to submit a nomination for consideration for the 2013 awards, please select this link to obtain the Director's Awards Nomination form and instructions. Remember to save your copy of the downloaded form (word format) to your documents before completion of the form.

    Following are the award descriptions:

     Director's Award for Innovation in Rights Protection 

    Nominees for the Innovation Award will have created a new or different way on enabling the vision of recipient rights or of a rights office.  This may include creating a valuable new process or product, constructing a different way of approaching old problems, creating a new solution for systemic problems, etc.  Because of this innovation, the rights office have demonstrated an increased ability to better provide rights services either directly (such as when performing standard rights activities) or indirectly (such as if the innovation improves or enhances the opeation of the rights office.) The nominee will also have shown a demonstrated willingness to share the innovation with others when possible.

    Previous Honorees

    2013  Sue Witting, Henry Ford Kingswood Hosptal
    2012  Recovery Care Committee, Center for Forensic Psychiatry
    2011  Bay-Arenac Behavioral Health Rights Office
    2010  Lisa Jolly, Lapeer County CMH
    2009  James Tenuta, Doctors' Hospital of Michigan
    2008  Shane Ray, CMH Partnership of SE Michigan
    2007  John McKevitz, Oakland County CMH Authority
    2006  Community Network Services - "The Stigma Busters"
    2005  Patricia Jolly, MDCH Office of Recipient Rights
    2004  Cheryl Parker & Beatrice Stevens, Newaygo County CMH
    2003  West Michigan CMH System
    2002  Jonathan Bennett, North Central CMH 
    2001  Woodlands Behavioral Health
    2000  Oakland County CMH Authority



    Director's Award for Advocacy on Behalf of Mental Health Recipients 

    Nominees for the Advocacy Award will have made an outstanding contribution toward, or have gone to extraordinary means, to advocate on behalf of people receiving mental health services.  This may include exceptional effort or initiative by the nominee directly advocating on behalf of an individual consumer or a group of consumers.  It may also include extraordinary indirect advocacy, such as a rights office acting as a catalyst for positive change, inspiring other entities or systems within or outside of mental health, to realize their roles in championing the rights or needs of recipients.

    Previous Honorees 

    2013  John Rogers, Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority
    2012  Rebecca Browne, Shiawassee County CMHA
    2011  Christina Wilkins, War Memorial Hospital
    2010  Jonathan Bennett, Northern Lakes CMH
    2009  Les Behnken, Oakwood Heritage Hospital
    2008  Sue Witting, Henry Ford Kingswood Hospital
    2007  Newaygo County CMH
    2006  Judy Tucker, MDCH Office of Recipient Rights
    2005  Kevin Oosterhouse, Network 180
    2004  Dianne Baker, MDCH Office of Recipient Rights
    2003  Sanilac County CMH
    2002  Borgess Medical Center/Kalamazoo Valley Community College
    2001  Macomb County CMH
    2000  MDCH - Mt. Pleasant Center Office of Recipient Rights



    Director's Award for Consumer Empowerment 

    A nominee for the Consumer Empowerment Award will have a profound or uniquely positive difference in the lives of consumers, so that consumers are empowered to transcend the "world of disability" and live a life of self-advocacy.  Due to the initiative or effort of the nominee, consumers will now be able to advocate for themselves, to the fullest extent possible, in the protection of their own rights, creating hope, control of their own lives, and a valuable place in society.

    Previous Honorees 

    2013  Mark Mishal, Macomb County CMH Services
    2012  Janet Dietsch, Network 180
    2011  Renee Uitto, Oakland County CMH Authority
    2010  Lisa Cook-Gordon, Family-to-Family Health Information and Education Center
    2009  Shannon Kaufmann, InterAct of Michigan
    2008  Jack Donaldson, Oakland County CMH Authority
    2008  Marc DeRush, Macomb County Community Mental Health
    2008  Eunice Howard, Detroit-Wayne County CMH Agency
    2007  Jeff Patton, Kalamazoo County CMH & SA Services
    2006  William Allen, Oakland County CMH Authority 
    2005  Robert Chadwick, Tuscola Behavioral Health Systems
    2004  Cindy Tewksbury, Tuscola Behavioral Health Systems
    2003  Chad Witcher, MDCH Office of Recipient Rights
    2002  Oakland County CMH Authority
    2001  Lifeways
    2000  Tuscola Behavioral Health Systems


    Cookie Gant Spirit Award 


    Cookie Gant was a Michigan grown but nationally known advocate for human rights. She was a disability activist, a performance artist, a powerful raiser of consciousness, and a relentless supporter of diversity in every aspect of life. Cookie fought for human rights in the mental health system every day, never giving up her tough spirit, her love for others, or her sense of humor. She was an unstoppable, irreverent activist, who always maintained loving support and affection for people in "the movement."  Shortly after her death in 2003, the State Recipient Rights Committee established an award in her honor and indicated that it should be given annually to a person who exhibits the dedication, demonstrates the tenacity, and advocates diligently for persons with mental illness and developmental disabilities - just the way Cookie lived her life.

    If you would like to submit a nomination for consideration for the 2013 awards, please select this link to obtain the Cookie Gant Award Nomination form and instructions. Remember to save your copy of the downloaded form (word format) to your documents before completion of the form.

    Previous Honorees 

    2013  Sheryl Kuenzer
    2012  Dalia Smith
    2012  Kate Zajac
    2011  Malkia Newman
    2010  Pamela Stants
    2009  Nancy Lewis
    2008  Donna Nichols
    2007  James Lindsey
    2006  Linda Rama
    2005  Jamie Armstrong
    2004  Marty Raaymakers
    2003  Cookie Gant (posthumously)


    Related Content
     •  Office of Recipient Rights Newsletters
     •  DCH-ORR Recipient Rights Advisory Committee
     •  Community Mental Health Program Assessment Results
     •  Office of Recipient Rights Annual Reports
     •  Mission and Vision
     •  Contact Us
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