Published On: Wed, Jan 31st, 2018

Fifth Annual Voice Awards Luncheon Honors Those For Understanding, Commitment and Action For “Breaking the Silence” For Mental Health

Boca Raton’s Promise and its affiliate Palm Beach County Action Alliance for Mental Health presented the fifth annual Voice Awards Luncheon this month to honor understanding, commitment and action by key community leaders in “breaking the silence” for mental health. Demonstrating that a use of various platforms — individually and collectively – are needed to “move the mission” forward in meaningful and impactful ways, Voice Awards were presented in a variety of categories.

Voice Award Recipients: Pamela Fraizer, Gabriela Regalado,Lauren Zuchman. Cindy Wides, Ed Frontera, Alle Sealy, Dr. Michael Kane, Peter Davey

Gerda Klein, Rita Thrasher, Dr. Michael Kane, Dr. Bruce Saltz

Maria Kovachev, Elaine Rotenberg, Boca Raton Mayor Susan Haynie, Marla Kosec, Poppi Mercier, Dr. Seth Bernstein

Jenny Ceasar, PBSO Chief Deputy Michael Gauger, Ann Faraone, Ann Marie Dilbert, Ro Robozzi, Ana Cristina Lerner

Dr. Bruce Saltz, Gabriela Regalado, Andrea Gurvitz, Sgt. James Hightower, Dr. Brandi Baumkirchner, Maria Kovachev

PBSO Detective Matthew Ott, PBSO Deputy Andrew Ford, Inger Harvey, PBSO Sgt. James Hightower, Shana Bush, PBSO Chief Deputy Michael Gauger, (Seated) Voice Award Recipient Bill McDonald

These ranged from film production, community education, community organization, volunteerism and youth and family guidance to student leadership, community collaboration and education and media productions.

Attending the luncheon held at Broken Sound Club was a diverse cross-section of the Palm Beach County community, including residents, educators, government officials, healthcare and business leaders, employers, employees and religious leaders. All gathered to celebrate at the high powered, inspiring and healing call-to-action program that recognized those in Palm Beach County who have encouraged, stimulated and/or held critical community conversations to increase support for families, friends, neighbors and colleagues in crisis.


Holly Katz, Ann Marie Dilbert, Eileen Sands, Gerda Klein, Dr. Bruce Saltz, Bonnie Kaye

“It is more gratifying each year as we add more game-changing individuals and organizations to our coveted five-year ‘Voice Awards’ champions roster,” noted
Boca Raton’s Promise Co-Founder and Palm Beach County Alliance for Mental
Health Chairman Rita Thrasher. “The ripple effect of these dedicated, passionate
and compassionate honorees reaches wide and deep to benefit so many in our community.”

The 2017 Voice Awards recognized the variety of ways in which professionals, students, volunteers and organizations have “amped up the volume” on mental illness and educated many to enrich and save lives by recognizing those struggling and encouraging them to seek help. Using their voices and encouraging others to find and/or use theirs, awardees and presenters were as follows:

  • Gabriela Regalado, ITV Network: Film Production
    Presenter: Ana Cristina Lerner
  • Cindy Wides, MHFA: Community Education
    Presenter: Rick Lewis
  • Pamela Frazier, West Palm Beach Mental Health Coalition: Community Organization:
    Presenter: Priscilla Taylor
  • Lauren Zuchman, Healthier Delray Beach: Leadership
    Presenter: Tammy Fields
  • Bill McDonald, Volunteer PBSO: Organization
    Presenters: Sgt. James Hightower and Detective Matthew Ott
  • Peter Davey, NAMI-PBC: Youth & Family Guidance
    Presenter: Katherine Murphy
  • Allie Sealy, BRC High School: Student Leadership
    Presenter: Jordan Hernandez
  • Michael Kane, School District: Community Collaboration
    Presenter: Keith Oswald
  • Ed Frontera, Boca Raton’s Promise: Education and Media Production
    Presenter: Bonnie S. Kaye

“Because when it is not taught, nor talked about, the ‘deafening silence’ only breeds fear and shame that prevent those who need help and their loved ones from seeking it,” added Thrasher.  ”We will continue to raise the volume and educate on mental illness at home and in neighborhoods, schools, workplaces, houses of worship and on the student and professional sports fields. This is our promise.”

For more information on the Boca Raton’s Promise, its mission, vision and programming
and/or its affiliate Palm Beach County Action Alliance for Mental Health, visit, email or call (561) 866-1850.


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