Handlon receives Friend of NAMI award

ALABASTER – Mayor Marty Handlon was given the NAMI Alabama’s Friend of NAMI award at a City Council meeting on Oct. 21 in recognition of her service to people with mental illness in Alabama.

The National Alliance on Mental Illness is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness. Daphne Kendrick, NAMI board member, said that Handlon is deserving of the award because she goes above and beyond to identify mental health needs and seek out resources to meet those needs.

She has held Town Halls to address issues and needs surrounding mental health, and she was a “driving force” in Alabaster City Schools being the first school system in the county to provide mental health services within the schools.

“When asked to assist with NAMI Shelby’s Fun Fair, she went above and beyond to ensure it was a success, not just this year, but also last year,” Kendrick said. “She is truly a friend of NAMI.”

Handlon said she was surprised by receiving the award, but was honored to be recognized.

“It’s usually when something hits you close to home that you become an advocate,” Handlon said.