Kennebec Behavioral Health (KBH) held its 59th Annual Meeting on Thursday, June 13th at the Senator Inn in Augusta. The event included recognitions of area community partners for exceptional community service and partnership.
Matt Brown was presented with the 2019 James R. Schmidt Award, which is presented annual to a person or organization that best exemplifies the late Jim Schmidt’s efforts to improve quality of life for adults who experience mental illness by providing them with social, education and employment opportunities. Mr. Brown has been working in some capacity of law enforcement since 1989. For the past year, he has been the coordinator of informal support systems for Law Enforcement Officers struggling with alcohol, substance abuse, and/or mental health issues. He has been an integral part of connecting Clubhouses to the broader community, including partnering Clubhouses with advisory board members, establishing employment opportunities, and promoting law enforcement relationships with the Clubhouses.
The Outstanding Community Partnership Award was awarded to Maine Health Access Foundation (MeHAF) for the organization’s enduring support in our shared efforts to increase access to evidence-based addiction care for Maine citizens living with opioid use disorder. Through their Expanding Addiction Care Initiative, MeHAF provided invaluable support for KBH Outpatient Services and Redington Fairview General Hospital’s Primary Care to take the first steps in increasing access to the critically needed service of Medication Assisted Therapy.
The Transformational Clinical Collaboration Award was awarded to the Family Violence Project for their unique and innovative partnership to provide service for women surviving domestic violence. Since 2012, Family Violence has mentored and collaborated with KBH to provide treatment which meets the unique strengths and needs of the women they serve. Through this partnership of domestic violence shelter services and mental health and/or substance use disorder treatment services, Family Violence and KBH staff paved the way to a promising practice for women seeking safety, recovery and a new life.
A highlight of the evening was Kennebec Behavioral Health’s keynote speaker, Gordon Smith - Director of Opioid Response for the Office of Governor Janet T. Mills. A Maine native, Mr. Smith has served as Chair of the Maine Health Data Organization and of the Executive committee of the Advocacy Resource Center of the American Medical Association. He is also a former Chair of the Board of Quality Counts, a regional quality improvement collaborative and a former board member of the Maine Association of Area Agencies on Aging. He is a current board member of the Daniel Hanley Center for Health Leadership. Mr. Smith shared his vision for the Opioid Response efforts in the State of Maine and underscored the importance of prevention, intervention and treatment for substance use disorder.
Kennebec Behavioral Health was founded in 1960 and operates clinics in Waterville, Skowhegan, Winthrop, Augusta and Farmington. For more information, or to schedule an appointment for any KBH service, call 1-888-322-2136. Information can also be found at www.kbhmaine.org.