Advocate Receives Award
Molina Healthcare recognizes resident
Molina Healthcare of New Mexico recently recognized six community heroes at its fourth annual Community Champions Awards, including Ron Gurley, a mental health advocate from Las Cruces. The ceremony was held in Albuquerque and included a traditional blessing by Patrick Romero, the Taos Pueblo Tribal Secretary.
Gurley (center of picture) has been a key player in bringing together the people of Las Cruces and the state to advocate for underserved people with mental illnesses. He has been a driving force in southern New Mexico’s law enforcement community and its creation of Crisis Intervention Training. As a result, the program diverts hundreds of mentally ill people from jails throughout New Mexico.
Additionally, he has been the catalyst for many successful programs that have saved lives and improved services for New Mexicans with mental illnesses. Gurley is known for getting “down in the trenches,” making himself available 24/7, personally assisting people in need of services, making sure they have a safe place to stay, and getting their medications and treatment.
“We are proud to recognize Ron as a Community Champions winner,” said Patty Kehoe, president of Molina Healthcare of New Mexico. “His dedication and willingness to go above and beyond to help people with mental illnesses is inspirational, and has not only made a huge impact in our community, but our entire state.”
Established to honor the memory of Dr. C. David Molina, Molina Healthcare’s founder, the Community Champions program
spotlights the good deeds of everyday heroes in their communities. The 2012 winners were all nominated by community-based organizations and also each received a $1,000 grant to give to a deserving nonprofit organization as part of his/her award. Gurley selected the National Alliance on Mental Illness – Doña Ana County to receive his grant.