Bev Gutray, CEO of the Canadian Mental Health Association, BC Division, announced today her plan to retire effective March 31, 2019.
“I am thankful for the privilege of serving this organization as its CEO, and for the exceptional people I have worked with,” said Gutray. She made her remarks in front of staff and CMHA supporters at the Celebration and Awards event in Vancouver for CMHA champions and scholarship and bursary recipients.
“Bev has been the face of CMHA in BC for the past 26 years. Her vision has been an inspiration to all of us on the Board of Directors. It was difficult to accept her resignation but she has built an extraordinary legacy that will help people living with mental illness and addiction for years to come,” said Barb Keith, Board Chair.
“On behalf of the BC Government I would like to thank Bev for everything she has done to bring mental health out of the shadows and into the light. Under her leadership, programs like Confident Parents, Thriving Kids and Bounce Back have helped thousands of families access the services and supports they need to manage mental health challenges. Her vision where mental health is accorded the same value as physical health is the vision that we are carrying forward today in the work of our ministry. Her legacy is inspiring and serves as a great reminder that we all have a role to play in building communities and a mental health system that work for all British Columbians,” said Minister of Mental Health and Addictions Judy Darcy.
“Bev has changed the course of not just CMHA, but Canadian mental health history,” said Vancouver teacher and Ride Don’t Hide founder Michael Schratter. “Whether it was her successful fight to have people with mental illness included in BC disability benefits, her leadership to address addictions in CMHA’s mandate, or the innovative partnerships she has built across sectors of BC, Bev has taken down barriers for people with mental illness and addictions.”
The Board of Directors for CMHA BC Division is embarking on a nation-wide search to fill the position of CEO prior to Gutray’s retirement.
“The role of CMHA as an advocate, as a service innovator, as a service provider and as an educator reaching out to people and organizations across the life span is what makes CMHA’s contribution unique,” said Gutray.