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Rural Well-being to be the Focus of 2019 Robert Lee Sutherland Seminar

AUSTIN, Texas – Registration is now open for the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health’s 2019 Robert Lee Sutherland Seminar. The seminar, taking place on April 24, 2019 in Bastrop, Texas at the Bastrop Conference & Exhibit Center, will focus on the theme of “Working Together for Rural Well-Being.” The free, one-day event is open to all who are interested in the topics of community-based approaches to addressing resilience, mental health and well-being in rural communities.


The content of the seminar is organized into the following five themes:


  • Community Collaboration: How can we create community-led solutions? Learn about the power and pitfalls of working together to address well-being while gaining an understanding of the building blocks of a successful collaborative, such as structures and processes that support inclusivity, authentic listening, and mutual trust.
  • Engaging Historically Excluded Groups: How can we approach collaboration with cultural humility? Learn how past and present inequities undermine communities’ efforts to foster well-being, and how to ensure historically excluded groups are included in community- and systems-level change efforts.
  • Social Determinants of Mental Health: What gets in the way of our ability to thrive? Learn how factors like education, transportation, economic stability, social connection, neighborhood infrastructure, and access to healthcare and healthy food impact resilience, mental health and well-being.
  • Change: What does it take to make lasting social change in rural communities? Learn how to inspire action where barriers seem hard to overcome, and consider strategies that impact systems, groups and individuals that have the power to influence well-being.
  • Dialogue and Learning: What are the best methods for productive dialogue and group learning? Learn how to set the tone for inclusive and safe conversations in which all members of a community—no matter their life experience or circumstance—are encouraged to voice their perspectives and ideas.


The Hogg Foundation recognizes that the places where people live, learn, work, play and pray can have a significant impact on improving well-being. In other words, the work of well-being doesn’t just happen in health clinics. Thus, this year’s seminar is intended not only for mental health consumers, providers and advocates, but also for civic leaders, community members, and individuals from a wide variety of life experiences, such as from schools, faith-based organizations, nonprofits, businesses, and more. If you care about well-being in rural communities, this seminar is for you!


“This biennial seminar carries forward the legacy of the foundation’s first executive director, Dr. Robert Lee Sutherland, who started the series in 1978 to encourage dialogue and increase awareness about complex mental health concepts, such as recovery, integrated health and barriers to well-being,” said Dr. Octavio N. Martinez, Jr., executive director of the Hogg Foundation and senior associate vice president for diversity and community engagement at The University of Texas at Austin. “April’s seminar is an opportunity for Texans to learn from each other and from national experts, and gain tools to help strengthen mental health and well-being across our state.”


Attendance is limited to 350 people. Details about the free event and how to register can be found at




Established in 1940, the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health envisions a future in which the people ofTexas thrive in communities thatsupportmental health and well-being. Using a variety of approaches, including grantmaking, convening, research and public policy, the foundation works collaboratively to transform how communities promote mental health in everyday life. 

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