About Us

Who We Are

Mental Health Connection (MHC) of Tarrant County is a collaboration of dues-paying members committed to revolutionizing the mental health service system by developing long-term systemic changes while addressing emerging needs within our community.

Where We Started

In 1999, the Wedgwood Baptist Church shooting happened as a result of a man suffering from an untreated mental illness. Fort Worth Mayor, Kenneth Barr, turned to local mental health providers, requesting a plan to improve access to quality mental health services for all Tarrant County residents. The initial providers were comprised of Tarrant County, My Health My Resources (MHMR) of Tarrant County, the City of Fort Worth, Fort Worth ISD, Cook Children’s Medical Center, Lena Pope, and the Child Study Center. These founders provided leadership and financial resources, created task forces and set parameters for collaborative planning, recruited organizational and individual members, and developed a fees structure. With this, Mental Health Connection of Tarrant County was established, and this core group has expanded to over 100 members that include county and city officials, both private and not for profit hospitals and service providers, school districts and universities, child welfare and foster care, individual practitioners and impacted family members. With our continuous collaboration, we’re able to develop long-term changes in the system, while addressing emerging needs. 

Our Impact

Together, with collaboration from our members, MHC provides resources, initiatives, and training from national experts and leaders, guiding our community through trauma, towards resilience. 

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Our Leadership

Board of Directors

  • Ottis Goodwin, Board Chair

    Fort Worth ISD, Director of Family and Community Resources

  • Ashley Elgin, PhD, Board Vice Chair

    Lena Pope, Chief Executive Officer

  • Jennifer Gilley, Board Treasurer

    Tarrant County Challenge, Executive Director

  • Holiday Bean, Psy.D, Board Secretary

    The TELOS Project, Clinical Director

  • Julie Evans, Board Immediate Past Chair

    Alliance for Children, Executive Director

  • Zelia Baugh

    JPS Health Network, Executive Vice President Behavioral Health

  • Susan Garnett

    My Health My Resources (MHMR), Chief Executive Officer

  • Matthew Vereecke

    The Jordan Elizabeth Harris Foundation, Chief Executive Officer

  • Bennie Medlin

    Tarrant County Juvenile Services, Director and Chief Juvenile Probation Officer

      • Wayne Carson, PhD

        ACH Child and Family Services, Chief Executive Officer

      • Gaby Garcia

        PSP Professional Services, President

      • Matt Robison

        Cook Children’s Child Study Center, Director

      • Frank Hernandez, PhD

        Texas Christian University, Dean of College Education

 

Staff

Christina Judge, MA, CFRE, Executive Director

Christina Judge is a 30-year veteran of the nonprofit sector. Prior to Mental Health Connection, Christina was Executive Director of The Jordan Elizabeth Harris Foundation, a North Texas nonprofit focused on suicide prevention training and education. Her experience includes executive leadership, program management, fund development, and marketing and communications. She has worked in various roles with the United States Army, higher education, child welfare, healthcare, and mental health. 

A native of the Baltimore/Washington, D.C. area, Christina moved to Texas in 1992. Dedicated to serving her community, she has served on the boards of CASA of Tarrant County, Association of Fundraising Professionals, Hope Floats Foundation, and is the Rotary Club of Fort Worth’s incoming secretary. She is actively involved in several community mental health committees and task forces. 

Christina received a Master of Arts degree from Texas Woman’s University in Sociology with concentrations in demographics and field research, as well as a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Maryland, College Park, in government and politics. She is a Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE). 

Chasity Warren, Office & Communications Manager

Chasity Warren embodies the essence of inspiration within our professional community. With over seven years of invaluable office/administrative experience and three-plus years of impactful leadership roles, her journey epitomizes the remarkable potential fueled by determination and self-belief. For two years she has enhanced her communications and graphic design skills using her creative energy. She is also well-versed in creating standard operating procedures. Remarkably, her expertise has been honed not through formal education, but through hands-on experience and an insatiable thirst for knowledge. 

Beyond her professional endeavors, Chasity’s essence resonates with positivity and purpose, enriching the collective ethos. She derives fulfillment from activities such as hiking, Yoga, and Pilates. Chasity cherishes her role as a mother and is a passionate advocate for mental health and personal wellness. Rooted in her own life experiences, her unwavering dedication to understanding human behavior propels her tireless pursuit of making a meaningful impact on the lives of others. 

Chasity’s resilience and adaptability are truly commendable attributes within MHC. Navigating through dynamic environments, she not only thrives but actively seeks out new challenges and growth opportunities with unwavering determination. Her story illustrates the power of passion and perseverance, breaking barriers, and inspiring others to achieve success regardless of past obstacles. 

Kim Brennan, M. Ed., Strategic Initiatives Director

As the strategic initiatives director at Mental Health Connection, Kim Brennan brings a wealth of experience in education, social work, and training to her role.  With six years of dedicated service in Texas, Kim was a driving force at ACH Child and Family Services, a Mental Health Connection member agency, where she played a pivotal role in establishing and enhancing the training department. Certified in various training areas, Kim’s devotion to mental health extends to developing self-care and wellness programs.   

Her passion for cultural competency led her to spearhead trainings like the poverty simulation and conference presentations regarding effective communication with people from diverse backgrounds.  As a past member of the Mental Health Cultural Competency Committee, she remains committed to fostering inclusivity and awareness.   

Now, in her role as strategic initiatives director, Kim is invested in furthering the organization’s purpose of strengthening the mental health access in Tarrant County by providing MHC members with the opportunities to partner and collaborate, as well as increase our members’ professional advancements through training and education.  

Kim has a Master of Arts degree in Education from Pepperdine University, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in social work from San Diego State University.