SAMHSA Administrator Pamela S. Hyde and George Hoehmann, RILCWASHINGTON, D.C. & NEW CITY – Imagine having a prestigious high-level federal government agency create a national award because of your work. That is the honor bestowed on New City-based nonprofit Rockland Independent Living Center. On September 4, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), an operating division within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), presented George Hoehmann, CEO and Executive Director of Rockland Independent Living Center (RILC), with the first-ever “Wellness Initiative Award.”

SAMHSA Administrator Pamela S. Hyde presented the award to Mr. Hoehmann at the Third Annual Recovery Month Event Awards Luncheon, held at the J.W. Marriott Hotel. RILC was recognized for its 2012 award-winning “Heart & Soul: A Film Promoting Whole Body Wellness in Behavioral Health.” The film addresses a public health crisis taking place – the fact that individuals with behavioral health issues are dying decades earlier than the general population, often due to cardiovascular disease and stroke.

Heart and Soul is narrated by Ted “The Golden Voice” Williams and was sponsored by a SAMHSA grant, part of the Million Hearts campaign, produced by the Rockland Independent Living Center, Inc., and directed by Falling Awake Productions. “Heart and Soul” is available for purchase for $19.95, plus shipping and handling at

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