Mental health board honors local leaders at annual luncheon

Staff report


The Mahoning County Mental Health and Recovery Board honored community leaders Wednesday at its annual “May is Mental Health Month” recognition luncheon.

The board presented the Leadership award to Mercy Health of Youngstown.

“We share a common mission to reach the most vulnerable in our community,” said Brenda Heidinger, associate director of the board. “Not many boards have the same close collaboration with their local health system. I believe our situation is somewhat unique in Ohio.”

The board also honored Vindicator reporter Jordyn Grzelewski with its Eagle award for her reporting on the opioid epidemic.

“Jordyn has powerful vision, is fearless, tenacious and nurturing,” said Duane Piccirilli, the board’s executive director. “[She] has educated herself and continues to seek additional information to help her better cover the topics of recovery.”

Other honorees were Rosemary Lee of the Help Network and Jacci Waller of Catholic Charities Regional Agency, who received the Vanguard award for their work on the front lines; Meg Harris of Alta Behavioral Health Care received the Child Advocate award; Dr. Joseph Sitarik of Neil Kennedy Recovery Center received the Adult Advocate award; and Malik Mostella of the Youngstown Police Department received the Crisis Intervention Team Officer of the Year award.

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