Patrick Kennedy, former US Congressman, To Keynote Sound Mental Health Gala

Contact: Steve McLean
Communications Director
(206) 302-2261

SEATTLE – May 1, 2014 – Sound Mental Health, King County’s most comprehensive provider of behavioral health services, announced that former Congressman Patrick Kennedy, a nationally-respected politician and mental health advocate, will keynote its ninth annual Mental Health Matters gala. The fundraiser, “An Evening for our Veterans,” is dedicated to veteran mental health issues, and takes place from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 15, 2014 at the Seattle Sheraton Hotel.

The son of US senator Ted Kennedy, and nephew of President John Kennedy, Patrick Kennedy has been a tireless advocate for improved mental health services for all Americans, including U.S. veterans. His early work on the Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act was instrumental in promoting the idea of parity in mental healthcare – – which was a critical component of President Obama’s historic Healthcare Reform legislation.

Kennedy, who will receive the Gov. Booth Gardner Community Mental Health Champion Award from SMH, is also a co-founding member of ONE MIND™, a Seattle-based independent, nonprofit research and advocacy organization focused on brain diseases and reducing stigmas associated with mental illness and brain injuries. The award is being presented for his longstanding mental health advocacy work throughout both his political and post-political career.

Though Mental Health Matters is one of the region’s most highly-anticipated behavioral health events, leadership this year believes that the former US Representative’s voice will bring an even greater level of substance to the issues the gala addresses.

“Mr. Kennedy has been such a focal part of the mental health conversation nationally, and played such an indispensable role in legislation that improves lives, we are deeply honored to have him at our event,” said David Stone, Ph.D., CEO of Sound Mental Health. “We are expecting a major turnout at this event, because of what Mr. Kennedy has meant to mental health.”

Television personality, Margaret Larson, host of New Day Northwest, will serve as Mistress of Ceremonies for the event.

Event sponsors include Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, Puget Sound Business Journal, Linn, Schisel & DeMarco, PS, Perkins Coie, Regence, Seattle Children’s, Argosy University, Bennett Bigelow & Leedom, Clark Nuber, Genoa Healthcare, Keeney’s Office Supply, Propel Insurance, US Bank, A&A printing, Inc. and ThinkAlike.

For more information about the gala or to request an invitation, please contact Steve McLean, Sound Mental Health communications director, at .

Seats will fill quickly for this unique event and we encourage you to reserve your space now by visiting Sound Mental Health’s web site at www.smh.org/registration or by calling 206-302- 2251. There is no fee or payment required to register to attend this event.

About Sound Mental Health Sound

Mental Health is a private, tax-exempt organization that has provided a comprehensive array of mental health and related services to the King County community since 1966. Our goal is to help individuals and families achieve the highest level of independence and (mental) health possible. Services are tailored to meet the unique needs of different age, disability and cultural/ethnic groups. To learn more, visit www.smh.org.