FIG1The American Psychiatric
Foundation's first "Conversations" event at the Institute on
Psychiatric Services last year in New Orleans was such a success that it is
hosting a similar event at this year's institute in Chicago. The institute
will be held from October 5 to 8.
Terrie Williams is the co-founder of the Stay Strong Foundation, whose
mission is to promote the well-being of youth and support their educational
and professional development through programs and events.
Credit: Damaso Reyes
Unlike the special event at the 2007 institute—which featured New
Orleans musicians who performed and shared their experiences in the aftermath
of Hurricane Katrina—this year's event will follow the format of the
popular "Conversations" event held each year at APA's annual
meeting. That format features an interview by a psychiatrist with a well-known
person who has gone public with his or her experiences with mental
The person who will be interviewed this year at the institute is Terrie
Williams, president of the Terrie Williams Agency for public relations and
communications. Through the years, her agency has handled such clients as
Miles Davis, Eddie Murphy, Time Warner, and HBO, but she is also well known
for her work as an author, lecturer, executive coach, social worker, and
community activist, especially for youth and people with depression.
"Conversations" will be held on Saturday, October 4, from 7:30
p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Red Lacquer Room on the 4th floor of the Palmer House
Hilton. Williams will be interviewed by the immediate past president of the
American Psychiatric Foundation, Altha Stewart, M.D.
Williams, who was diagnosed with depression in 2004, is the author of the
recently published book Black Pain: It Just Looks Like We're Not
Black Pain identifies the emotional pain that deeply affects the
black experience as the root of lashing out through desperate acts of crime,
violence, drug and alcohol abuse, eating disorders, workaholism, and addiction
to shopping, gambling, and sex. In Black Pain, Williams not only
shares her personal experiences with depression, but also provides insights
from mental health professionals to offer solutions.
In addition to the interview, the event will include a poster session by
the foundation's Helping Hands Grant recipients. The Helping Hands Grant
program is intended to raise awareness of mental illness and the importance of
early recognition and builds interest among medical students in entering
psychiatry and working in underserved communities.
The "Conversations" event is supported by AstraZeneca.▪