Assistant Professor of Graduate Counseling at Waynesburg University Dr. Dennis Winkler (‘22) was recently awarded The Maxie T. Collier Phoenix Arising Award, Peoples’ Choice For Impact on the Mental Health And Substance Use In the Community by the Black Mental Health Alliance for Education & Consultation, Inc. (BMHA).
Dr. Winkler was presented the award at the Dr. Maxie T. Collier Awards Ceremony and 40th Anniversary Gala Friday, Dec. 1, at the Baltimore World Trade Center in Maryland.
The Phoenix Arising Award is named in tribute to Dr. Collier, BMHA principal founder. Recipients are nominated and selected based on their work, life and vision for building human development in the Black community.
“This is an honor, as luminaries in the field whom I have studied for years have received this award,” said Dr. Winkler of his selection. “Moreover, it feels good to be awarded as it was unexpected, and many times, mental health professionals' work goes unnoticed.”
Some of Dr. Winkler’s recent work in the field includes providing responses to mass shootings in Baltimore, Maryland, where he has assisted community members, students and community activists in processing these traumatic events.
In addition, Dr. Winkler co-presented with Waynesburg University Master of Arts in Counseling student, Maia Hawk, at the Pennsylvania Counseling Association’s Annual Conference. Their 90-minute presentation was titled, “Advocacy for Adolescent Substance Users: Addressing the Stigma.”
“I am blessed to be at WU, as our service-oriented mission aligns with the work I strive to carry out each day,” added Dr. Winkler. “Awards like these aren't bigger than mission, but they can be fuel along the way.”
As a counselor, Dr. Winkler specializes in working with underserved communities, which includes clinical and research focus on trauma, family and spiritually integrated psychotherapy.
Dr. Winkler holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Sojourner Douglass College, a Master of Science degree in clinical mental health counseling from Loyola University and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in counselor education and supervision from Waynesburg University.
BMHA is a nonprofit mental health and social advocacy organization focused on the mission of developing, promoting and sponsoring culturally-relevant services to support the health and well-being of Black communities. It works to serve clinicians, individuals, families and children, and the community.
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