NAMI Alliance Day precedes the general attendance portion of NAMICon and is designed specifically for NAMI State Organizations and NAMI Affiliates. Presented and developed by NAMI National’s Alliance Relations Department and in partnership with internal and external stakeholders, this day is dedicated to supporting the great work taking place across the Alliance.

In 2024, NAMI Alliance Day was held in-person in Denver, Colorado on Monday, June 3, and preceded the NAMI Convention (June 4- 6). 

NAMI Alliance Day is developed for Board Members, Volunteers, Development Directors, Education/Program Managers, Executive Directors, Public Policy Managers, and Walk Managers.
This event provided attendees the opportunity to:

  • Network with NAMI colleagues from across the country.
  • Learn about updates on the strategic planning process and an emerging vision for impact and theory of change to guide the work of the Alliance for the next five years.
  • Hear from several NAMI National departments and teams including advocacy, programs, governance and more.
  • Gain practical tips, tools and takeaways to help build and/or strengthen your organization’s capacity.

Thank you for all you do to advance the mission and movement of NAMI!




Alliance Day Plenary
Approaching our 50th Anniversary: An update on NAMI's Strategic Planning Process  

Over the last ~6 months, NAMI has been working with The Bridgespan Group to help craft a strategic
plan to guide the next phase of NAMI's impact journey. Today, we are coming together to share an update on the strategic planning process and an emerging vision for impact and theory of change to guide the work of the Alliance for the next five years. This vision outlines a path towards catapulting our impact by harnessing the full power we bring as a nationwide movement. It is informed by hundreds of voices across the Alliance and seeks to integrate the learnings and recommendations from 10X and DEI initiatives. Please join us to hear a preview of what lies ahead as we near our 50th anniversary.

Daniel H. Gillison, Jr., Chief Executive Officer, NAMI National

Presentation Slides

#NAMIFundraising: Getting the Most Out of Your Social Media Strategy

Let's get social! From Facebook to Instagram to TikTok, how are you promoting your NAMI Organization in the digital space to not only fundraise but to engage new, diverse audiences? Join the Field Resource Development Team as we discuss all things social media fundraising and awareness to build your local engagement strategy.

Learning Objectives:
▪ Create a social media fundraising and engagement strategy.
▪ Keep their social media audience engaged and broaden their reach.
▪ Utilize social media as a fundraising platform.

Mary Sorensen, Director, Field Resource Development, NAMI National   
Morgan Sills, Senior Manager, Field Resource Development, NAMI National 
Leandra Clovis, Senior Manager, Field Resource Development, NAMI National

Presentation Slides
Handout: Social Media Calendar

Building Our Alliance By Reaching Diverse Communities

NAMI state and affiliate leaders are increasingly engaged in outreach, program and initiatives designed for diverse communities. They recognize that the need in these communities is great, that NAMI increasingly understands how to engage diverse communities and this engagement leads to new funding opportunities, new strategic partnerships and strengthening their organizations. This session will feature innovative ways in which NAMI at all levels - national, state and affiliate levels - are increasing their focus on engaging with diverse communities in new ways. This session will feature newly rolled out resources, tools and strategies to connect with diverse and minoritized communities.

Learning Objectives:
▪ Use the information shared on how to effectively engage minoritized communities to continue to build their community reach.
▪ Understand how community conversations and resources developed for minoritized communities are effective in building trust, making a positive difference for individuals and families and offer the opportunity to create new funding opportunities.
▪ Support individuals and families in minoritized communities with newly released resources to spread the word about 988, crisis services, the role of faith leaders, accessing mental health care in diverse and under resourced communities and more.

Darcy Gruttadaro, Chief Innovation Officer, NAMI National
Dawn L. Brown, Director, Cross-Cultural Innovation and Engagement, NAMI National
Aleta Barnett, Director of Mental Health Equity and Community Engagement, NAMI Keystone PA
Angelina Hudson, Executive Director, NAMI Greater Houston

Presentation Slides: N/A
Handout: NAMI CHEA Fact Sheet- Did you Know
Handout: NAMI CHEA Fact Sheet - Know 988
Handout: NAMI CHEA Fact Sheet - Know the Signs
Handout: NAMI CHEA Fact Sheet - Know Your Care Journey
Handout: CHEA One Pager
Handout: Pathways to Hope Overview
Handout: FaithNet Overview
Handout: Sharing Hope Overview
Handout: CCIE Overview
Handout: VTH Healing Legacies
Handout: Healing Legacies One-pager

Embracing Advocacy: Tools to Help You Succeed

Advocacy is a critical yet often neglected pillar of NAMI's work. In this session, you will learn about what resources are available from NAMI National to strengthen your advocacy impact from advocacy campaigns and publications to grants and hands-on guidance. Attendees will walk away with an understanding of NAMI-specific advocacy tools and how to use them for their own state and local-level policy priorities.

Learning Objectives:
▪ Identify where to access NAMI’s public policy positions and how to use them for advocacy and media opportunities.
▪ Understand what advocacy-related questions and requests you can leverage NAMI National’s GRPA team for assistance.
▪ Recognize evergreen, annual, and one-off advocacy resources generated by NAMI National for field use.

Hannah Wesolowski, Chief Advocacy Officer, NAMI National
Steph Pasternak, Director, State Affairs, NAMI National

Kathryn Gilley, Senior Manager, State Affairs, NAMI National

Presentation Slides
Handouts: N/A


Guide To Measuring The Impact of NAMI Signature Programs  

This presentation will serve as a guide to measuring the impact of NAMI Signature Programs through numbers and stories. Through the presentation, hands-on activities, group discussions and Q&A, attendees will learn the role that impact measurement plays in program growth, and sustainability, along with implementing strategies to measuring program outcomes. The session will also touch upon ways NAMI National can help NAMI State Organizations and NAMI Affiliates track and retrieve their program data for ease of use.

Learning Objectives:
Utilize data and stories as a way of measuring program impact.
▪ Identify objectives that are helpful to implementing impact strategies.
▪ Collaborate with other workshop participants to prepare a sample structure for measuring impact.
▪ Create a plan and format for measuring impact in a variety of different scenarios.

Susan Caban, National Director, Education Programs, NAMI National
Nikki Rashes, Senior Manager, Programs and Training, NAMI National


Presentation Slides
Handout:NAMI ED Program Flyer
Handout: Impact Worksheet
Handout: PCLE Postcard


How To Build A Grants Program

Join us for an overview of how to build a successful grants program. We'll cover how to find grants, tips for grant writing, and advice on how to prioritize grants when you have a small staff. We will also answer your grants-related questions and take feedback to develop additional, virtual grants trainings.

Learning Objectives:
▪ Search for grant opportunities for their NAMI.
▪ Learn best practices for writing grants and creating budgets for grants.
▪ Receive advice on creating a grants program for a small organization.

Jessica Edwards, Chief Development Officer, NAMI National 

Presentation Slides
Handout: N/A

Playing Cupid: How To Match Volunteers To Your Organization's Needs

Volunteers are the foundation for the work that NAMI Affiliates and NAMI State Organizations do. They provide programming, assist with events and operations, and join Boards of Directors. They strengthen ties to the communities served and broaden support networks. Given the important role they play, taking an intentional and strategic approach to recruiting volunteers can go a long way in meeting an organization's needs, and fostering a stable and sustainable volunteer base. In this session, participants will receive tips and tools.

Learning Objectives:
▪ Identify and prioritize areas of need for their organization.
▪ Match needs to desired qualities/skills in volunteers.
▪ Develop a plan for best utilizing volunteers to meet their organization’s needs.

Annie Schmidt, Senior Manager, Field Capacity Building, NAMI National
Ashley Pollowitz, Senior Manager, Field Capacity Building, NAMI National
Athena Trenton, Ed.D., Executive Director, NAMI North Texas

Presentation Slides
Handout: Blank Matchmaking Tool
Handout: Completed Matchmaking Tool


With A Little Help From My Friends - How Can NAMI State Organizations Help Affiliates Maintain Good Governance?

All incorporated NAMI organizations have an obligation to remain in good standing in their jurisdictions, including any and all mandatory filings at the local, state, and federal levels. NAMI organizations operate as nonprofit entities with many of the same requirements as other corporate entities within their state. On occasion, these administrative necessities take a back seat to the well-intended ambitions to deliver on the NAMI mission. This session aims to share strategies that refocus NAMI organizations to meet their requirements under the law so that they are free and unencumbered to do all the wonderful and supportive activities that help those in their

Learning Objectives:
▪ Identify what government filings and documents/policies they likely need to remain in good standing.
▪ Recognize what processes that they have - or need - in order to ensure those filings and documents/policies are completed on a timely and consistent basis.
▪ Consider how an Affiliate can work with its NAMI State Organization to ensure they file all the necessary paperwork with government agencies and have all the requisite documents/policies.

Chioma Obi, Senior Manager, Governance and Quality Assurance, NAMI National
Dennis Gabriels, Senior Manager, Governance and Quality Assurance, NAMI National
Mary Kay Battaglia, Executive Director, NAMI Wisconsin

Presentation Slides
Handouts: N/A

Thank you to those who participated in NAMI Alliance Day!

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