top of page

Inspiration Awards

The KernBHRS Inspiration Awards is a chance to give a voice to the inspirational stories of triumph and perseverance happening in Kern County and recognize the local champions who have been instrumental in promoting recovery principles.

This year's Inspiration Awards will be held on Friday, May 10 in the Westchester Courtyard from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. 

Nominations for Incredible Youth, Trailblazing Achiever, Inspiring Advocate, Professional of the Year, and There's No Place Like Home Awards are now available! Below are descriptions and past winners of each award. Click HERE to nominate for this year's Inspiration Awards! 

Incredible Youth Award - An individual 20 years old and under who has demonstrated resiliency when faced with a high level of adversity. 

Trailblazing Achiever Award - An individual 21 years old or older who has actively and successfully shown courage, determination, and persistence in their recovery journey. 

Inspiring Advocate Award - An individual, team, or, group that has demonstrated exceptional advocacy for mental wellness and recovery. Nominees can include mental health professionals, community partners, and family members. 

Professional of the Year Award - A professional who is committed to serving individuals touched by mental illness and is an inspiration to the local behavioral health community. 

There's No Place Like Home Award - The There's No Place Like Home Award recognizes excellence in residential care for consumers, including foster homes, board and cares, room and boards, and sober living environments, that have demonstrated superior standards in meeting the daily needs of clients. Compassionate and respectful interactions with clients, outstanding communication with the System of Care, and meeting the cultural needs of consumers served are all important values to be considered. The physical home environment, willingness to go above and beyond, regularly serving great food, and providing a rich social activity schedule may also be considered. 

Past Award Winners


Behavioral Health Innovator - Deputy Dylan Fisher

Director's Choice Award - Stephen Gordon

Incredible Youth Award - Damion Vega

Inspiring Advocate Award - Ebone King and Heather Menzel

No Place Like Home Award - Jamie Sanders

Trailblazing Achiever Award - Star Carrigan


Behavioral Health Innovator - Robin Taylor

Director's Choice Award - Dr. Mark Geisbrecht

Hope, Healing, Life, Award - Barbara Paradise and Miranda Balbi

Incredible Youth Award - Melissa Flores

Inspiring Advocate Award - Sgt. Patrick McNeill

Trailblazing Achiever Award - Brianna Nelson

bottom of page