The stigma surrounding mental health disorders leads to discrimination and fear. With one in four adults having experienced a mental health disorder, that means a quarter of our population has most likely suffered in silence. But what if we looked at mental illness in our city differently? What if we connected the dots to build an incredible foundation to help survivors, their families and friends? What if we educated corporate America on what mental illness really looks like? Jeanine Hoff will share her own story of how mental illness ravaged her life, and how she found the strength to survive by helping others with mental health problems find positive support and community connections.
Jeanine Hoff is the Founder and President of Where is the Sunshine?, a Northeast Florida-based 501(c)3 non-profit organization and social media resource dedicated to positive mental health advocacy through education, community collaboration, and inspiration. Jeanine is a certified presenter for the National Alliance on Mental Illness’ (NAMI) Ending the Silence and Peer-to-Peer programs, and is certified in Mental Health First Aid (YOUTH) and Suicide Prevention. She is a featured contributor for The Mighty and Jacksonville Moms Blog, and has also been featured in Stigma Fighters and the Florida-Times Union. She is currently working on a feature piece for an upcoming published anthology of motivational mental health stories. Jeanine is a classically trained singer, actor, composer and pianist, and holds a Bachelor’s of Music degree in Music Theatre Performance from Arizona State University. She also holds a Master’s degree from Arizona State in American Media and Culture, focusing on film and social media. Jeanine spent several years as an associate of International Creative Management in NYC, working with some of the biggest names in entertainment. Upon moving from NYC to Jacksonville, Jeanine taught K-8 music, drama, and improv comedy at the Martin J. Gottlieb Day School. During that time, she and her student choir performed live in concert with Barry Manilow at Veterans Memorial Arena. Jeanine’s passion for community service and leadership eventually turned into a professional role as a fundraiser and event planner. Now she dedicates herself to bringing our community together to support those who struggle with mental health disorders. She and her husband Mathew are the proud parents of three young boys.