Black Mental Health Summit

Wednesday, July 10, 2024
9:30 AM - 2:00 PM
Hosanna House, Inc.
Hosanna House, Inc., 807 Wallace Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15221


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If you have questions about the Black Mental Health Summit, email NAMI Keystone Pennsylvania's Director of Mental Health Equity and Community Engagement, Aleta Barnett, at abarnett@namikeystonepa

NAMI Keystone Pennsylvania’s third annual Black Mental Health Summit, Our Journey to Community Healing, will take place from 9:30 am – 2 pm on Wednesday, July 10, 2024, at the Hosanna House in Wilkinsburg.  During the summit, we’ll explore ways that personal, family, and community trauma are affecting Black Americans, and the steps to take to heal the pain and find a path to wellness. 


The Black Mental Health Summit is a free event, but registration is encouraged.

Register Here  Summit Agenda  

The deadline to register is Friday, July 5, 2024.

Pursuant to the ADA, if you require specific aid or services, please contact Sara Levine Steinberg by email at or call 412-366-3788 Ext. 122. Please make all requests for accommodations at least three weeks prior to the conference date. 

Morning Keynote Speaker: Leon Ford
Transforming Personal Challenges into Purpose

Leon Ford is a dynamic speaker, consultant, and advocate for social justice and healing. At the heart of his mission is the drive to bridge gaps between disparate groups, fostering understanding and collaboration among communities, organizations, and social groups. With a compelling personal story of resilience and transformation, Leon has become a beacon of hope and a source of invaluable insights for those looking to turn adversity into a catalyst for personal and community growth.  
Leon’s journey is marked by his profound ability to overcome personal trauma and to use his experiences as a platform to advocate for mental health, trauma-informed care, and social equity. His speaking engagements and consulting work span a variety of sectors, including for-profit and non-profit organizations, where he delivers impactful messages on resilience, leadership, and change. 

During his presentation, Transforming Personal Challenges into Purpose, he will walk us through the obstacles he faced and the moment he realized he had to adjust his mindset if he wanted his life to be defined by more than just one night. Mr. Ford’s inspiring approach emphasizes the importance of therapy, resilience, and creating a lasting societal impact.  


A native of Pittsburgh, Leon Ford is a celebrated author, social entrepreneur, impact investor, international speaker, and changemaker dedicated to driving positive change in his community and beyond. As a respected activist and mental health ambassador, Ford passionately addresses disparities by focusing on holistic wellness. His inspiring approach emphasizes the importance of resilience, transforming personal challenges into purpose, and creating a lasting societal impact. 
In 2012, Leon was tragically shot five times by a police officer during a traffic stop, leaving him physically paralyzed. Nevertheless, he has continued to positively impact his community, working with police officers on cultural competency and legislators on drafting policies to modify the use of force laws. 
In 2022, Leon joined forces with former Pittsburgh Bureau of Police Chief Scott Schubert to co-found The Hear Foundation. This trailblazing nonprofit seeks to bridge the gap between residents, community leaders, and law enforcement in order to cultivate a safe and thriving community for all. In 2024, Leon became the organization’s director of external affairs, giving him the opportunity to focus full-time on fostering safety through police and community collaboration in Pittsburgh. 
In recognition of its innovative approach, the foundation received the prestigious McNulty Catalyst Prize in 2023. Ford has also joined 150+ other leaders as a Founding Partner of Starts With Us – a movement to end the culture wars by fostering curiosity, compassion, and courage as daily habits. 
Leon was recently named to Gov. Josh Shapiro’s Pennsylvania Citizen Law Enforcement Advisory and Review (CLEAR) Commission to bring state law enforcement experts and criminal justice reform advocates together to support public safety and ensure accountability for state law enforcement agencies. 
In 2023, he completed a year-long national and international book tour to launch “An Unspeakable Hope: Brutality, Forgiveness, and Building a Better Future for My Son,” and in late 2023 was named recipient of the prestigious Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award. 
As an influential figure in social justice and mental health, Ford inspires others through speaking engagements, mentorship, and fostering open dialogue. Through his work, he cultivates leaders, organizers, and social entrepreneurs, ensuring his vision for a compassionate and just society endures for future generations. 
Ford’s accomplishments include executive producing the Cannes Film Festival award- winning documentary Leon (2019) and Breaking Bread: A Conversation on Race in America (2021), which won a Shorty Award; President Obama’s Volunteer Service Award (2017); The Root 100 (2018); Pittsburgh’s 40 Under 40 (2019); Forbes 30 Under 30 (2023); and National Urban League Community Service Award (2023) 
As a member of The Aspen Institute's Inaugural Civil Society Fellowship, Ford is devoted to nurturing the next generation of leaders and activists. He serves as an entrepreneur in residence for Bronze Investments, is co-founder of the Leon Ford Legacy Fund, and holds board positions with multiple organizations. 
In addition to his activism, Ford has authored valuable resources for overcoming adversity and promoting well-being, including his memoir, An Unspeakable Hope (May 2023); Untold: Testimony and Guide to Overcoming Adversity (2017); and The Leon Self-Care Handbook: From Surviving to Thriving, offering practical tools for healing and personal growth. 


Afternoon Speaker: Erica L. Givner, DSW, LCSW, EMDR-C

Erica L. Givner, DSW, LCSW, EMDR-C, is lead clinician and owner of Vision Towards Peace Counseling Services. Dr. Givner is a pioneer in the social work space who has served Black/African American clients for the past two decades. Since the beginning of her professional career, she has been inspired by the plight of Black America and uses her professionalism as a tool to heal her community. Dr. Givner has stated that her agility and focus when she has had to “hit the ground running” in various life circumstances has defined her outlook and workflow in the most positive way. From being a teen mother, a veteran, to an entrepreneur of two businesses, she is thankful for the many challenges in her life which have allowed her to remain deeply connected to her clients and colleagues. In 2007, Dr. Givner received her Bachelor’s and Master of Social Work from the University of Pittsburgh, and she received her doctorate in social work from Simmons University in 2023. She began her career as a therapist and soul connector, contributing to healing Black America. 


Sponsorship Opportunities

Sponsors can choose from several categories. Each option gives companies and organizations an acknowledgment at the summit and in marketing materials, a resource table, and recognition in the summit slide show. 

View 2024 Sponsorship Packet  

If you have questions about sponsoring, contact Sara Levine Steinberg by email at or by phone at 412-366-3788 (ext. 122). 

Thank You Sponsors

Platinum Sponsors
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Bronze Sponsors
Supporter Sponsors