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Robert Hawkins Tribute Dinner

Every year, Mental Health America of Pueblo hosts a dinner to honor and award individuals in our community who demonstrate significant achievements or advancements in the mental health community.

Robert Hawkins Award

The Robert Hawkins Award is in honor of Robert Hawkins, who served as Superintendent of the Colorado Mental Health Institute of Pueblo until his untimely death in July 2002.  Robert Hawkins is remembered not only for his strong leadership as a mental health professional but also for his extensive volunteer service and his ability to demonstrate, both professionally and personally, his love of mankind and advocacy for individuals with mental illness.  The criterion for this award is an individual that has demonstrated significant achievements or advancements in the mental health community during his/her career that compliments MHAP's mission.

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Gil Sanchez Mission Award

The Gil Sanchez Mission Award is named after the President and CEO of the Spanish Peaks Mental Health Center who served for many years. He is credited for his innovative approach to insuring poor and minority mental health consumers had their mental health needs met regardless of cost. Mr. Sanchez passed away at the age of 82 in 2012.  This award is designed to recognize an outstanding individual, group, or agency that has made a significant achievement or advancement in the mental health field through treatment, advocacy, policy, exploratory program models, or professional standards.  

Robin Hill Phoenix Award

The Robin Hill Phoenix Award was established in 2017. Robin Hill is the founder of Friendly Harbor and served as the president for many years. According to Greek mythology, the phoenix bird lives a very long life and when it passes it is reborn from its own ashes. This award is designed to recognize an outstanding individual with lived experience who works to improve conditions for and attitudes towards people with mental illness. In other words, they are making major contributions to improving the lives of people who have mental illnesses, substance use, or co-occurring disorders despite potential risks to careers, finances, and public acceptance. 

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Youth Mental Health Champion

This award will be presented by MHAP to a middle or high school student/group who has championed mental health awareness and well-being. This award is to acknowledge an individual/group for their leadership and vision related to the advancement of mental health awareness for middle and high school students. 

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Recent Robert Hawkins Tribute awardees include:

2020/2021- Dr. Robert Tonsing, Southern Colorado Psychiatric

2019- Senator Leroy Garcia 

2018- Michael George, MSW, Friendly Harbor 

2017- Anne C. Courtright, MD, Retired Psychiatrist, CMHIP

2016 - Elizabeth "Libby" Stuyt, MD - Psychiatrist, Circle Program, CMHIP

2015 - Christine Nevin-Woods, DO, MPH, Medical Officer, Pueblo City-County Health Department

2014 - Julie Meeker, M.D., Chief Psychiatrist, CMHIP

2013 - Carlos Rodriguez, Ph.D., New Beginnings 

2012 - James Cameron, Ph.D., Colorado State University-Pueblo

2011 - Musharraf Nizami, M.D., Psychiatrist, Front Range Psychiatric Associates

2010 - Former Chief District Court Judge, Dennis Maes, 10th Judicial District


Recent Gil Sanchez Mission Award recipients include:

2020/2021 - Teah Miller, Director of Crisis Services, Health Solutions

2019- Jason Chippeaux, LCSW, Health Solutions 

2019- Parkview Behavioral Services 

2018- Dr. Michael Nerenburg, MD, Southern Colorado Harm Reduction Association 

2017- Drucilla Pugh, BSW, Program Manager at CASA

2017- Maureen White, EdD, MA, LPC, Director of Youth and Family Services at Health Solutions

2016 - Rob Archuleta - Addicts 2 Athletes

2016 - Dorothy Perry, Ph.D.- CEO of Health Solutions

2015 - Elizabeth "Libby" Stuyt, MD, Psychiatrist, Circle Program, CMHIP

2015 - Kathleen Camblin and Karen Camblin, Volunteers, NAMI Southeast CO

2014 - Cindy Jimenez, LCSW, Pueblo Community Health Center

2014 - Detention Bureau Staff, Pueblo County Sheriff Office

2013 - Nicholas Rodriguez, LCSW (Post Humulously), Pueblo Community Health Center

2013 - Stephanie Haney, MSW, Steel City Behavioral Health

2012 - Ami Gorsky, MSW, Sangre de Cristo Hospice

2012 - Haydee Kort, MD, and Gregorio Kort, MD, Retired Psychiatrists, CMHIP


Recent Robin Hill Phoenix Award recipients include:

2020/2021- Dominique Mundt, NAMI Southeast Colorado 

2019- Joseph Bowers, Friendly Harbor 

2018- Brett Cozza, Friendly Harbor

2017- Robin Hill, MA, Founder of Friendly Harbor