Awards

Nominations have now closed. We thank you for your input and are excited to announce the recipients at Alternatives! 

Esperanza Hope Award

In honoring contributing members of our community, Alternatives has presented the Esperanza Hope Award to a consumer/survivor/peer of color who has expanded the idea of cultural competency and done exceptional work within the mental health and peer support community. Esperanza Isaac Perez was a recognized Latina leader, nationally and internationally, and often attended Alternatives. She is credited with starting Casa La Esperanza, the first clubhouse for Latino consumer/survivor/peers in New York City. This award is given in the spirit of her leadership and perseverance in advancing cultural diversity issues for people of color consumer/survivors/peer.

Cookie Gant and Bill Compton LGBTQi Leadership Award

In honoring contributing members of our community, Alternatives has been honoring those who excel in certain fields. The Cookie Gant and Bill Compton LGBTQI Leadership Award is rooted in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and intersexed community (LGBTQI) caucusing at Alternatives conferences since 1985. From secret to official, people proclaimed their place of competence and prominence in the mental health consumer/survivor civil rights movement, affirming “We’re Here, Queer and Crazy, too!” The award recognizes leadership in a journey of coming out to make it safe to be proud and diverse. It was first given at Alternatives ‘07 in St. Louis, in memory of Bill Compton of California and Cookie Gant of Michigan, who led by example when it wasn’t safe to be “out.”

Youth and Young Adult Peer Leadership Award

In honoring contributing members of our community, Alternatives have been honouring those who excel in certain fields. This year brings the addition of a new award to honor our future – the Youth and Young Adult Peer Leadership Award. Alternatives wishes to stand tall with our emerging leaders and honor a youth or young adult who is excelling in this sector with their leadership to engage more youth and young adults and who is working on continually changing the system to be person directed and recovery, health and wellness focused.