Many transitions and changes for the Aurora Mental Health Center were shared at the organization’s 15th Annual Fall Benefit Luncheon sponsored by Citywide Banks. The theme for this year’s event was: “New Season, New Directions, New Opportunities: A Celebration of Change.”

Emcee Lane Lyon welcomed guests to the event held Sept. 9 at the Hyatt Regency Aurora-Denver and thanked the board and a dozen long-time corporate supporters serving the agency from throughout the metro region.

Long-time Board Member Stephan Ghadaifchian of Citywide Banks has served 18 years with the organization and shared some organizational history and his observations and contributions throughout the years.

Board Chair Mark Stevenson, CEO Kelly Phillips-Henry, Board Member Stephan Ghadaifchian

Incoming Board Chair Mark Stevenson shared some upcoming goals and relationship changes for the new administration. Stevenson also recognized past AuMHC CEO Randy Stith and wife, Shirley. Stith served the agency for several decades before retiring in 2018.

AuMHC CEO Kelly Phillips-Henry, selected a year ago for the top spot, reviewed some changes and improvements with various systems and a new culinary program that will  help clients build self-esteem and cooking expertise. A U.S. Air Force veteran, Phillips-Henry brings 22 years of behavioral healthcare experience to the organization and has served as a clinical psychologist, and leadership roles in behavioral health management, and integrated physical healthcare.

Entertainment was provided by FACE Vocal Band, the internationally acclaimed group that shared their award- winning a capella performance with some 300 guests. Based in Boulder, CO, the group helps reduce the stigma of mental illness through their own testimonies and experience with mental health and addiction. The 5-member group shares their own experiences and vows to fight for those struggling with mental health issues as they tour cities world-wide.

The creation of the AuMHC’s Culinary Institute ensures that clients can learn and master marketable long-term skills. The program achieves several goals including building confidence, stable employment, job satisfaction and quality of life. Founded more than 40 years ago the AuMHC has been a local leader in vocational rehabilitation, serving more than 5,600 individuals since 2005. As the new year approaches, Phillips-Henry said that continued support is essential for expanding service offerings to reach more clients throughout Aurora, the state’s 5th largest city.

The Aurora Mental Health Center is a private, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that has been serving Aurora with a wide range of mental health services since 1975.

Hugh Sweeney, Mike Coffman

The Center uses proven programs and methods for helping people cope with mental illness and attain good mental health. The organization also provides education, coaching and wellness services to help people remain emotionally healthy no matter what circumstances may arise.

For more information and to learn more about specific programs and how to donate be sure to visit the web site at: www.aumhc.org