Six-time Oscar nominated, Emmy, Golden Globe and Tony Award winning actress Glenn Close will be honored with the AGA Leadership Award for her philanthropic endeavors at the second annual American Giving Awards (AGAs) presented by Chase. Hosted by Joel McHale (NBC’s “Community,” “The Soup”), the AGAs will air on Saturday, December 8 (8-10 p.m. ET) on NBC from the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, CA.
“We are proud to present Glenn Close with the AGA Leadership Award,” said Peter L. Scher, Executive Vice President and Head of Corporate Responsibility, JPMorgan Chase. “Glenn’s continuous generosity and her commitment to raising awareness for mental illness have shown that in addition to being a remarkable actress, she is also an extraordinary advocate.”
In 2009, Glenn Close -- with the blessing of her sister Jessie, who lives with bipolar disorder and her nephew, Calen, who lives with schizoaffective disorder -- co-founded BringChange2Mind, a not for profit organization committed to ending the stigma, and prejudice around mental illness. The Close family had learned that stigma can be as devastating as the diseases themselves. The evolution of this movement began when Jessie asked Glenn to use her celebrity to focus on the stigma. It grew out of Glenn's first-hand observations of Jessie's and Calen's struggles with their illnesses and their brave journey to recovery. It was further informed by Close's subsequent volunteer work at Fountain House, a globally-acclaimed, New York based, clubhouse model program that provides people with mental illness critical access to education, employment and community.
BringChange2Mind was created with The Balanced Mind Foundation, Fountain House, Garen and Shari Staglin of IMHRO (International Mental Health Research Organization), and has the support of the major mental health organizations in this country. BringChange2Mind partners with the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) on a national walk series called NAMIWalks, which had 40 BringChange2Mind teams across the country raising awareness about anti-stigma messaging and raising funds for local mental health services earlier this year.