National Alliance on Mental Illness
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June 22, 2007

NAMI Honors Media

At its 2007 national convention in San Diego this week, NAMI presented its 2007 Outstanding Media Awards.

Every year, NAMI is proud to honor editors, reporters, writers, directors, and actors in news, entertainment, and other media who "get it right" in addressing mental illness and related issues.

Measured by accuracy, fairness, and compassion, these professionals' work made significant contributions to public education and the elimination of stigma in 2006.

This year's awards were presented in the categories of advocacy, editorial writing, news reporting, investigative reporting, feature writing, and dramatic motion picture.

The award for dramatic motion picture was presented in conjunction with a special screening of the award winner "Canvas". Awards in other categories were presented during NAMI's annual business meeting.

2007 Award Winners:

Crazy: A Father's Search Through America's Mental Health Madness
by Pete Earley
Published by G.P. Putnam's Sons; finalist for 2007 Pulitzer Prize

Editorial Writing:
Raleigh News and Observer
For sustained support of mental healthcare services and reforms:

  • Paying for care; federal subsidies for community mental health services are welcome despite gaps. The state is obligated to fill those (January 8, 2006)
  • Durham’s better idea  (January 18, 2006)
  • …for the mentally ill (April 17, 2006)
  • Mental health mirror (August 21, 2006)
  • Paths to treatment; training law enforcement officers in keeping the mentally ill out of jail is a healthy development for the Triangle (September 26, 2006)
  • Tales from home: up to 50,000 mentally ill people share rest homes in this state with elderly people—a situation that needs correcting (October 15, 2006)
  • High on the hill: Raleigh Mayor Meeker is right to throw his support behind a city purchase of the Dorthea Dix hospital property (November 2, 2006)

News Reporting:
The Wall Street Journal, Gary Fields

Focusing on mental illness and criminal justice

  • In Brooklyn Court, A Route Out of Jail for the Mentally Ill (August 21,  2006)
  • With “Reality Visors,” Officers Try New Tack to Face Mentally Ill (September 26, 2006)
  • On Death Row, Fate of Mentally Ill Thorny Problem (December 14, 2006)

Investigative Reporting:
The Hartford Courant, Lisa Chedekel and Matthew Kauffman

Four-part series on soldiers being sent to front-lines taking psychiatric medication without counseling or monitoring and troops diagnosed with PTSD being sent back into combat. Finalist for 2007 Pulitzer Prize.

  • “Jeffrey Was Really Messed Up” (May 14, 2006)
  • “Mentally Unfit, Forced to Fight” (May 14, 2006)
  • “Slipping Through the System” (May 15, 2006)
  • “Still Suffering, But Redeployed” (May 17, 2006)

Feature Writing:
Dallas Morning News, James M. O'Neill

Eight-part series, “Rosie’s Journey,” the story of Rosie Sims, who lived with  schizophrenia for 30 years. In the end, a loving family and an inadequate mental health system couldn’t save her.

  • A battle within  (November 5, 2006)
  • Diagnosis and decline (November 6, 2006)
  • Bullet to head sends illness into hiding (November 7, 2006)
  • Her family tries to cope (November 8, 2006)
  • Needing a place to heal, jail instead (November 9, 2006)
  • More time in jail, hospital (November 10, 2006)
  • The trial that would never come (November 11, 2006)
  • Lonely end to a lengthy battle (November 12, 2006)

Kansas City Star, Eric Adler

Four–part series, “Mending Marcus” about a 6-year-old boy with severe mental illness

  • Mending Marcus: when she’s tried everything else, where can a mother turn? (December 17, 2006)
  • A new teacher, a new hope (December 18, 2006)
  • This session is no child’s play (December 19, 2006)
  • The time arrives for decisions (December 20, 2006)

Dramatic Motion Picture:
Canvas, directed by Joseph Greco; starring Marcia Gay Harden, Joe Pantoliano, and Devon Gearhart