Teton Valley News publisher and Driggs resident Scott Anderson was recently awarded the Humanitarian Award from the Teton Valley Mental Health Coalition. The award was created by the TVMHC to recognize outstanding individuals who have dedicated their time to promoting mental wellness in Teton Valley.
“This nominee is someone who advocates for mental health, empowers marginalized populations, fights indifference, intolerance, and injustice consistent with mission of the Teton Valley Mental Health Coalition,” the coalition explained in a release looking for nominations.
Anderson was nominated by Greg Little, editor of the Standard Journal in Rexburg. Little said Anderson, who is also the publisher of the Standard Journal helped spearhead a nine-part series for the newspaper focusing on a vast array of mental health issues. That series featured in-depth information about mental health issues, from PTSD to dyslexia. The Madison Cares group, which focuses on mental health issues, has since submitted that series for national recognition.
Little said Anderson is a big believer and supporter of his employees being properly trained in knowing how to write about mental health and suicide prevention issues. On top of that, he has teamed up with local experts in the field to offer training for his staffs in both Driggs and Rexburg.
“I know too many individuals who have silently struggled because they didn’t know help was out there,” Anderson said. “As the local media provider in the valley it’s our duty to educate others of all the great things offered by the Teton Valley Mental Health Coalition.”
The TVN worked with the Mental Health Coalition to publish a four-week series in May supporting Mental Health Awareness Month. Members of the Mental Health Coalition submitted pieces on addressing mental health early, eating disorders, understanding the crisis center and mindfulness.
“On a personal note, I know how much Scott cares about the issue of mental health,” said Little. “He understands the misinformation that is out there and works hard to make sure the correct information is presented to the public. That is one of the most important roles someone in his position can perform. Also, I think you would be hard pressed to find anyone who is better at promoting this issue than the publisher of the local newspaper. That is where people in the Teton Valley get much of their information about this critical issue.”
Anderson said he’s received other awards but “nothing felt as important or valuable as this one. I feel honored to be recognized and I am thankful to be part of such a great cause. The work done by the Teton Valley Mental Health Coalition has made Teton Valley a better place.”
Anderson was chosen by a selection committee comprised of TVMHC members: Farrin Eddins, Sandi Bills, and Candace Dayton. Anderson was presented with the award at the TVMHC annual meeting on May 29.