Skip to content

Mental Health Symposium coming to Collin County, Nov 18

What : Collin County Mental Health Symposium: Investing in the Future When : November 18, from 8 am - 5 pm Where: Courtyard Marriott, 210 E. Stacy Rd, Allen, TX Mental health.
Mental health

What: Collin County Mental Health Symposium: Investing in the Future
When: November 18, from 8 am - 5 pm
Where: Courtyard Marriott, 210 E. Stacy Rd, Allen, TX

Mental health. It's a topic that most people don't want to talk about, or even reference, in the workplace. With or without a pandemic, it turns out.

The CDC reported this year that from August 2020 to February 2021, "the percentage of adults with recent symptoms of an anxiety or a depressive disorder increased from 36.4% to 41.5%, and the percentage of those reporting an unmet mental health care need increased from 9.2% to 11.7%."

On November 18, 2021 Collin County Mental Health Symposium will tackle it head-on. Stakeholders and mental health professionals will discuss trends, treatment, and dealing with the growing number of people struggling with mental illness in Collin County at this annual event.

From the last Collin County Mental Health Symposium.
From the last Collin County Mental Health Symposium.

There will be special sessions on response to those experiencing crisis (especially during the COVID-19 pandemic), and to foster collaboration between law enforcement and behavioral health providers in Collin County -- and anybody else who encounters mental health struggles on a regular basis.

"In Collin County, like everywhere else across the country, we see issues related to mental illness," says Alyse Ferguson, director of the Collin County MHMC. "Services and treatments we need for these individuals are not always contributing to the persistence of this ongoing issue."

Here are just a few of the speakers you can look forward to hearing from:

  • Timmy Newsome. A member of four football halls of fame, Newsome is a former Dallas Cowboys football player. In 1991, Newsome also proved himself an entrepreneur and founded Newtec Business Solutions, a technology company that works with the private and education sector in communication and collaboration. He is on the NAMI North Texas Board as vice-president, and also serves as a board member of Hugs Café in McKinney.
  • John Salerno. John Salerno is a Retired NYC Detective. He has over 30 Years in the first responder field as a career detective, fire chief, AEMT and Haz Mat Specialist – He has served in Narcotics, Organized Crime, Robbery and Homicide Units in the NYPD. He responded to the rescue efforts on 9/11 with a team of firefighters, and conducted confined space rescue searches. Selerno moved to Texas in 2008 and has become an active PTSI (Post Traumatic Stress Injury) advocate, hosting regular workshops and using his own journey to help others.
  • Theresa Donsbach. Currently the program administrator for Crisis Services of Lifepath Systems, Donsbach has spent over 30 years in the clinical field. ​Since moving to Texas 10 years ago, she was the Practice Manager for UTSW Department of Psychiatry, Clinical and Risk Director for multiple psychiatric facilities. Terri is certified in critical incident debriefing, traumatology, and EMDR. She has worked in crisis centers throughout her career, and teaches crisis at the university level and to our local police departments and academies.    

(Read more about the rest of the speakers here.)

This symposium is expected to draw about 500 mental health professionals, hospitals, EMT’s firefighters, law enforcement, attorneys, judges, detention officers and others -- not to mention the anticipated reach of 50,000 additional individuals and industry professionals.

​Join the conversation. Be part of the change. Find the support you need. Register here.