Save the Date for 2025!

May 14th, 2025
California State Capitol Park

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10th Annual Mental Health Matters Day


We believe passionately in the power of building momentum and strength together to better the lives of those with mental health challenges. Speaking up about mental health is a essential part of battling stigma, and shining light on behavioral health. Our voices are amplified when we speak up together. By hosting Mental Health Matters Day, we continue to strengthen our state, and the movement towards ending stigma.



10:00 Event Begins – Exhibitor booths open throughout entire event
10:05 Land Recognition – Albert G. Titman Sr.
10:15 Welcome to 10th Annual MHMD
10:15 Slideshow: 10 Years in Review, A Decade of Stories: Shining a Light on Behavioral Health
10:35 Speaker LaVontae Hill
11:00 Speaker Claudia Fernandez-Niedzielski
11:20 Performance by The Philharmonik
11:45 Keynote Speaker Heather Bodie
12:30 Visit Exhibitor Booths
1:00 Event Ends

A Decade of Stories

Shining a Light on Behavioral Health

You are invited to join us
May 15th, 2024
toward the corner of L & 15th St.
California Sate Capital Park
10:00am – 1:00pm

Free to attend! 



 Keynote Speaker

Heather Bodie
Making Room For Light
Celebrating the Brightness Within Our Stories of Struggle

About Heather:
Heather Bodie is a public speaker, artist, and mental health advocate who has spent the last 15 years creating events and sharing stories to disarm the deadly stigma surrounding mental illness. She joined the Chicago-based non-profit Erasing the Distance in 2013 and served as Executive Artistic Director, facilitating conversations about mental health in a wide variety of industries across the country.

She is deeply invested in exploring the role that language plays in the ability to acknowledge and address mental health challenges both personally and professionally. She has worked within a multitude of professional industries, identifying ineffective communication patterns, ideating mental health-focused approaches to solutions, and coaching management teams to invest in open conversations about mental health with their teams.

Learn more at

LaVontae Hill

LaVontae Hill was born and raised in Richmond, CA.  LaVontae carries the title of an Associate Clinical Social Worker with over half a decade of experience as a Mental Health Therapist.  LaVontae graduated from California State University, Sacramento with a BASW and The University of Southern California with a MSW. LaVontae, has over a decade of experience working with children, youth, and families residing in impoverished communities. LaVontae considers himself to be a Wounded Healer as he utilizes his life story of trauma to inspire while breaking generational curses for all who face and struggle with mental health challenges and mental illness.

Claudia Fernandez-Niedzielski

Claudia is a thriver and a woman who has learned to succeed despite the many challenges she has faced.  She endured a psychotic break at the age of 22 and was hospitalized for 6 months with no end in sight for her illness nor a way to get better.  It was through the tireless dedication of an entire team of doctors who refused to give up, the loving support of her entire family and those who knew her and to Electro Convulsive Therapy (ETC) that she was brought back to life.  Claudia is currently on a quest to be the best version of herself and as she shares the lessons she has learned and use to find meaning, self-discovery, understanding and compassion for herself and others and her deep self-worth. Through her seminars and classes, she has a genuine and profound impact on those she mentors and leads.

Land Recognition

Albert G. Titman Sr.

Albert G. Titman, Nisenan/Miwok/ Maidu/ Pit River CADCII. Deputy Director for the Native Dads Network. Albert provides culturally sensitive services and is blessed with the opportunity to incorporate Native American wellness modalities in his work. He has over 18 years’ experience in implementing the Medicine Wheel & 12 Steps program in his community.


Live Music Performed By

The Philharmonik

About The Philharmonik:
The multi-Instrumentalist, Producer, and artist The Philharmonik brings a revitalizing sense of urgency and musical depth to the shallows of the current mainstream music landscape. Talented and versatile, passionate and personal, The Philharmonik is a refreshingly creative force whether singing, rapping, producing, playing keys, or engineering a session.

Learn more at: | Spotify | Instagram

DJ FroDough

Gerald White (DJ FroDough) has advocated for California’s behavioral health community for a decade. He has worked at local and statewide organizations, reducing mental health stigma and discrimination, distributing suicide prevention materials, and encouraging harm reduction best practices for substance use disorders. Music has always helped him cope with daily stresses and helps him build and connect to community. Music also helps to inform his advocacy through healing and building coalitions.


Master of Ceremonies

Marianna Sousa

About Marianna:

For over 20 years, her commitment to “edutainment” serves as a culturally responsive and highly engaging approach to inspire personal, professional and institutional transformation. Founder of Mariworks Productions, a multimedia arts and education organization, her mission is to boost self-awareness and restorative practices with an emphasis on mental health and emotional hygiene. Through the scope of public health, safety and crisis prevention her impact on social wellness ushers in motivation and guidance essential for global change. Miss Marianna’s refreshing keynotes, workshops and training continue to agitate greatness in the home, school, neighborhood and workplace.

Learn more at

2024 Sponsors!

Special Thank You

Sponsorship Opportunities

Thank you for your interest. Sponsorship is closed. See you in 2025!


Thank you for your interest. Exhibitors are closed. See you in 2025!

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention



Cal Voices

California Alliance of Child and Family Services

California Association of Social Rehabilitation Agencies

California Behavioral Health Planning Council

California Council of Community Behavioral Health Agencies

California Department of Rehabilitation

California Institute for Behavioral Health Solutions

California Youth Crisis Line

CAPS Academy

California Youth Empowerment Network (CAYEN)

Consumers Self Help Center

County Behavioral Health Directors Association of California

Crestwood Behavioral Health Inc.

Dignity Health

Disability Rights California

I AM Collaborative

I Got Your Back (Mulvaney’s B&L)

Lightfully Behavioral Health

Mental Health America of California

Mental Health Association of Alameda County

Mental Health Association of San Francisco

MHASF Warm Line

Mental Health Services Oversight and Accountability Commission

Mercy Pedalers

NAMI Sacramento

National Union of Healthcare Workers

Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc.

NorCal Services for Deaf & Hard of Hearing

Pacific Clinics

Peers Envisioning & Engaging in Recovery Services

Postpartum Support International

PRC (formerly Positive Resource Center)

Rich’s Ice Cream

Saint John’s Program for Real Change


Stars Behavioral Health Group

Steinberg Institute

Stop Stigma Sacramento

Thank You 2024 Planning Partners!

Questions about Mental Health Matters Day?

Send us a message.