Institute of
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Institute of Rural Health

IRH Researcher to serve on SAMHSA Steering Committee for ADS Center

Ann Kirkwood, Senior Research Associate for ISU's Institute of Rural Health, has been named to serve on the Steering Committee for SAMHSA's Resource Center to Promote Acceptance, Dignity and Social Inclusion Associated with Mental Health (ADS).

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) formed the ADS Center in 2003 to promote acceptance and social inclusion by ensuring that people with mental health problems can live full, productive lives within communities without fear of prejudice and discrimination.

The 8-member ADS Center national steering committee includes leaders from various perspectives in the mental health field. The steering committee works to guide the ADS Center focus, activities and programs.

Kirkwood initiated children's mental health programs in Idaho in 1997 and has won a Peabody Award for managing broadcast documentaries focusing on mental illness stigma. In 2009 she won a VOICE Award from SAMHSA for her work addressing stigma and supporting everyday living for people with mental illnesses.

The SAMHSA ADS Center accomplishes its anti-stigma mission by gathering information about what works to promote acceptance and social inclusion of people with mental health problems. The Center also shares information about publications, events, research, resources, and issues of relevance regarding prejudice and discrimination. Ongoing training and technical assistance, including training teleconferences, are delivered to help create initiatives that promote social inclusion.

March 2010