Los Angeles is Changing Direction!

Many well-respected organizations around the world are focusing on mental health in new and innovative ways. Some of these efforts are making great strides but no convening has brought together thought leaders, stakeholders, policy makers, change agents and the entertainment industry to focus exclusively on addressing culture as a primary barrier to changing the way we think about, talk about and address emotional well-being and mental health.

Give an Hour – the backbone organization behind the Campaign to Change Direction – created The Global Summit on Mental Health Culture Change to showcase successful efforts, forge new alliances and create a strategic vision to eradicate the fear, shame and guilt that prevents those who are suffering from receiving the compassionate care they deserve. Culture change will bring lasting change. Thank you everyone who was able to join us!

Red Carpet Film Event

The Dinnerbased on the best-selling novel by Herman Koch and starring Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Steve Coogan and Rebecca Hall, is a powerful psychological thriller that explores the consequences of unaddressed trauma and mental illness in the lives of two families.

A red carpet screening of the U.S. premiere of Oren Moverman’s eagerly anticipated film provided the perfect beginning for this three-day series of events.

Premiere Info

Get Engaged

A Day to Change Direction is all about creating opportunities to engage, educate and inspire. We focused on five populations with unique and compelling mental health challenges: children and youth, veterans and military families, people experiencing homelessness, refugees and immigrants, and at-risk seniors.

Engagement activities engaged our county partners, corporate supporters, non-profit friends, celebrity champions – and everyday citizens – in events across Los Angeles County.

Engage LA Info

The Global Summit

The entertainment community joined thought leaders and stakeholders for a day filled with conversations, performances, and experiences. The Summit explored cultural barriers across and within groups – and examined innovative programs, inspirational movements and unique opportunities.

Our goal is to Change Direction –  as we build a global culture in which all in need are able to seek and receive the care and support they deserve.

2017 Global Summit Info

Give an Hour Would Like to Thank

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors

Hilda L. Solis, First District

Supervisor Hilda L. Solis – First District, Los Angeles County

Supervisor Hilda L. Solis was sworn in as Los Angeles County Supervisor for the First District of Los Angeles County on December 1, 2014.

Prior to becoming Supervisor she served as Secretary of Labor.  Supervisor Solis was confirmed on February 24, 2009, becoming the first Latina to serve in the United States Cabinet. Before that, Supervisor Solis represented the 32nd Congressional District in California, a position she held from 2001 to 2009.

In the Congress, Supervisor Solis’ priorities included expanding access to affordable health care, protecting the environment, and improving the lives of working families. A recognized leader on clean energy jobs, she authored the Green Jobs Act which provided funding for “green” collar job training for veterans, displaced workers, at risk youth, and individuals in families under 200 percent of the federal poverty line.

In 2007, Supervisor Solis was appointed to the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (the Helsinki Commission), as well as the Mexico — United States Interparliamentary Group. In June 2007, Solis was elected Vice Chair of the Helsinki Commission’s General Committee on Democracy, Human Rights and Humanitarian Questions. She was the only U.S. elected official to serve on this Committee.

A nationally recognized leader on the environment, Supervisor Solis became the first woman to receive the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award in 2000 for her pioneering work on environmental justice issues. Her California environmental justice legislation, enacted in 1999, was the first of its kind in the nation to become law.

Supervisor Solis graduated from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, and earned a Master of Public Administration from the University of Southern California. A former federal employee, she worked in the Carter White House Office of Hispanic Affairs and was later appointed as a management analyst with the Office of Management and Budget in the Civil Rights Division.

Mark Ridley-Thomas, Second District

Hon. Mark Ridley-Thomas, Supervisor – Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, Second District

Since he was overwhelmingly elected in 2008, and reelected in 2012 and 2016 to the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, Mark Ridley-Thomas has distinguished himself as an effective leader for more than two million Second District residents. He presently serves as Chairman of the Board of Supervisors and is a board member of the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Commission and LA Care (the nation’s largest publicly operated health plan).

Prior to his election to the Board of Supervisors, Supervisor Ridley-Thomas served the 26th District in the California State Senate where he chaired the Senate’s Committee on Business, Professions and Economic Development. While in the Senate, he served as Chair of the California Legislative Black Caucus in 2008 and led the Caucus in unprecedented levels of cooperation and collaboration with counterparts in the Latino and Asian-Pacific Islander Legislative Caucuses.

Mark Ridley-Thomas was first elected to public office in 1991 and served with distinction on the Los Angeles City Council for nearly a dozen years, departing as Council President pro Tempore. He later served two terms in the California State Assembly, where he chaired the Assembly Democratic Caucus. His legislative work addressed a broad range of issues with implications for economic and workforce development, health care, public safety, education, budget accountability, consumer protection and civic participation.

He is widely regarded as the foremost advocate of neighborhood participation in government decision-making. By virtue of his founding of the Empowerment Congress, arguably the region’s most successful 25-year experiment in neighborhood-based civic engagement. Ridley-Thomas’ political career was preceded by a decade of service as executive director of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Greater Los Angeles (1981-1991).

The Supervisor graduated from Manual Arts High School (Class of 1972) and then earned BA and MA degrees along with secondary and adult education credentials from Immaculate Heart College. Supervisor Ridley-Thomas went on to receive his Ph.D. in Social Ethics from the University of Southern California focusing on Social Criticism and Social Change.

He is married to Avis Ridley-Thomas, Co-Founder and Director of the Institute for Non- Violence in Los Angeles. They are the proud parents of Sinclair and Sebastian, both Morehouse Men. Sinclair recently earned an MBA degree at USC’s Marshall School of Business, works in the investment banking industry, and resides in San Francisco with his wife Shaunicie, an attorney, and newborn son Duke Flynn. Sebastian is a member of the California State Assembly representing the 54th District, which includes Southwest Los Angeles, Culver City, Century City and Westwood. He currently chairs the Assembly Revenue and Taxation Committee.

Sheila Kuehl, Third District

Supervisor Sheila James Kuehl – Third District, Los Angeles County 

Supervisor Sheila James Kuehl, representing Los Angeles County’s Third District, was elected on November 4, 2014, and assumed office on December 1.

Since then, she has undertaken or collaborated in a number of initiatives and motions to improve quality of life and reform systems in the County, including increasing the minimum wage, creating a Sheriff’s Oversight Commission, providing unprecedented funding and services for our homeless population and those trying to find and keep affordable housing, increasing services and support for relative caregivers for our foster children, supporting the creation of the Office of Child Protection, creating oversight of the Probation Department, innovating on issues of water conservation and recycling, protecting our arts venues and productions, reforming both our adult and juvenile justice systems to emphasize and enhance “second chance” and anti-recidivism programs, protection of the Santa Monica Mountains, as well as the Coast, kicking off a Women and Girls Initiative design team to build toward a County-wide collaboration on needed changes and programs in all County departments, bringing together three County health departments into a new Agency model to break down barriers to service for those who need physical health,

mental health and substance abuse treatment, establishing a position to concentrate specifically on LGBT foster youth who comprise almost 20% of our foster kids, and more.

She is also Chair of the Board of Commissioners of First Five, LA, and a member of the Boards of Directors of Metro, the Expo Authority, and the LA Local Agency Formation Commission.

Kuehl previously served eight years in the State Senate and six years in the State Assembly. She is the Founding Director of the Public Policy Institute at Santa Monica College and, in 2012, was Regents’ Professor in Public Policy at UCLA.

She was the first woman in California history to be named Speaker Pro Tempore of the Assembly, and the first openly gay or lesbian person to be elected to the California Legislature. Kuehl served as chair of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee, Natural Resources and Water Committee, and Budget Subcommittee on Water, Energy and Transportation, as well as the Assembly Judiciary Committee.

She authored 171 bills that were signed into law, including legislation to establish paid family leave, establish nurse to patient ratios in hospitals; protect the Santa Monica Mountains and prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender and disability in the workplace and sexual orientation in education. She fought to establish true universal health insurance in California.

Prior to her election to the Legislature, as a public-interest attorney Kuehl drafted and fought to get into California law more than 40 pieces of legislation relating to children, families, women, and domestic violence. She was a law professor at Loyola, UCLA and USC Law Schools and co-founded and served as managing attorney of the California Women’s Law Center.

Supervisor Kuehl graduated from Harvard Law School in 1978. In her youth, she was known for her portrayal of the irrepressible Zelda Gilroy in the television series, “The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis.”

Janice Hahn, Fourth District

Supervisor Janice Hahn – Fourth District, Los Angeles County

Los Angeles County Supervisor Janice Hahn inherited a passion for public service from her late-father, Supervisor Kenneth Hahn, who held public office in Los Angeles County for fifty years and who left behind an incredible legacy of service.

Janice Hahn was elected to the Los Angeles City Council in 2001, and represented the 15th district spanning from the port communities of San Pedro and Wilmington through Harbor City, Harbor Gateway and Watts. She made a name for herself on the Council as a champion for working people, securing healthcare for LAX workers and a living wage for Los Angeles hotel workers. She operated by the philosophy that our communities could have clean air and good jobs and negotiated new green policies at the Port of Los Angeles. When gang violence surged in Watts, Janice Hahn created the Watts Gang Task Force which fostered new trust between the local community and law enforcement and is credited with reducing shootings among youth in the Watts area by two-thirds.

In 2011, Janice Hahn won a special election to Congress. For 5 ½ years, Congresswoman Hahn represented her constituents in Washington serving on the House Homeland Security Committee, Committee on Small Business, and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. She founded the PORTS Caucus and recruited over 100 of her fellow House Members as colleagues in order to advocate for ports issues and infrastructure.  She was a leader in the fight to implement commonsense gun violence prevention legislation and to reform our broken immigration system. During her time in Congress, Hahn had a reputation for working to find common ground across the political aisle on behalf of the American people.

In 2016, Hahn was elected to the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, following in her father’s footsteps. As Supervisor for the Fourth District, Hahn is making addressing the homelessness crisis her top priority.  She also is working to step up the fight for environmental justice for communities plagued by pollution and health problems.

Kathryn Barger, Fifth District

Supervisor Kathryn Barger – Fifth District, Los Angeles County

Supervisor Kathryn Barger proudly serves the residents of Los Angeles County’s 5th Supervisorial District — the county’s largest — spanning 2800 square miles, which includes 22 cities and 70 unincorporated communities in the San Gabriel, San Fernando, Cresenta, Santa Clarita and Antelope Valleys.

Dedicated to providing effective, responsive representation to the residents of Los Angeles County, Kathryn began her career in public service as a college student intern in the office of Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich and rose to become his Chief Deputy Supervisor in 2001, where she served until her election to the Board this past November.

During the course of her County career as chief policy advisor on Health, Mental Health, Social Service and Children’s issues, Kathryn provided leadership to deliver efficient and effective services and programs that have significantly improved the quality of life for foster children, seniors, veterans, the disabled and the mentally ill.

Committed to keeping our neighborhoods and communities safe, she has worked with state and federal leaders along with our County District Attorney’s office, Sheriff, and other law enforcement agencies to implement tough laws and vital public safety initiatives. She is an advocate for the environment and efforts to preserve open space, enhance parks, trails, recreational programs and facilities; and strongly supports libraries and after-school programs to serve local communities.

With a strong sense of fiscal responsibility and prudence, Kathryn is dedicated to providing vital county services while protecting financial resources as a responsible steward of taxpayer dollars.

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