2014 Allies in Action Awards

On Thursday, February 27, AFSP honored its 2014 Allies in Action Award winners at an reception held at the Reserve Officers Association's Top of the Hill Banquet and Conference Center.

The annual reception brings together mental health professionals, suicide prevention allies, congressional leaders, and state and national partners. Award recipients are recognized for their dedication and leadership efforts in suicide prevention and education.

This year’s award winners are as follows:

Congressional Awards

Senator Joe Donnelly

Senator Joe Donnelly receiving AFSP's Congressional Award

Senator Joe Donnelly (D-IN) – For introducing as his first bill in Congress the Jacob Sexton Military Suicide Prevention Act (S. 810)

Senator Kelly Ayotte

Senator Kelly Ayotte receiving AFSP's Congressional Award

Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) – For her support of, along with Senator Mark Begich, the Mental Health First Aid Act (S. 153) in the United States Senate

Representative Bill Cassidy

Representative Bill Cassidy receiving AFSP's Congressional Award

Representative Bill Cassidy (R-LA) – For introducing the Garrett Lee Smith Memorial Act Reauthorization (H.R. 2734) in the United States House of Representatives

(not pictured)
Representative Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) – For introducing the Native American Suicide Prevention Act (H.R. 1599) in the United States House of Representatives

Congressional Staff Awards

Diane DiSanto

Diane DiSanto receiving AFSP's Congressional Staff Award

Diane DiSanto, Senior Legislative Assistant, Office of Alaska Senator Mark Begich – For her leadership in the United States Senate in promoting AFSP Federal Policy Priorities including the Mental Health First Aid Act (S.153) and the National Violent Death Reporting System as well as providing much needed staff support to the Congressional Spouses for Suicide Prevention and Education

Lauren Barber

Lauren Alfred receiving AFSP's Congressional Staff Award

Lauren Alfred, Legislative Director, Office of Representative Ron Barber – For her leadership in the United States House of Representatives on the Mental Health First Aid Act (H.R. 274)

Partner Award

Representatives from The Trevor Project, National Association of School Psychologists, and American School Counselor Association

Representatives from The Trevor Project, National Association of School Psychologists, and American School Counselor Association receiving AFSP's Partner Award

The Trevor Project, National Association of School Psychologists, and American School Counselor Association – For collaborating with AFSP in our work to create a Model School District Policy on Suicide Prevention

Federal Partner Award

Arne Duncan, United States Secretary of Education – For leading efforts in the Department of Education to promote anti-bullying policies in schools across the United States, including the development of stopbullying.gov, a website for parents, educators, teens, kids, and communities that want to stop bullying

State Award

Keith Hotle

Keith Hotle, J.D., M.P.A. receiving AFSP's State Award

Keith Hotle J.D., MPA - For his work as a Suicide Prevention Specialist within Wyoming’s Department of Health Mental Health Division, and for overseeing the suicide prevention initiative in Wyoming, which has the highest rate of suicide in the United States of America