Earlier this week in Las Vegas, SEETHER front man Shaun Morgan received the respected “Artistic Expression” award at the Awards Of Excellence from the National Council For Behavioral Health for his outstanding work as a suicide prevention advocate. The National Council For Behavioral Health is the unifying voice of America’s mental health and addictions treatment organizations, serving ten million adults, children and families living with mental illnesses and addictions. Morgan is the creator of the Rise Above Fest, which has become the number one suicide awareness music fundraiser in the world. The singer has worked diligently over the past five years to raise awareness and funds for suicide prevention, mental health support and to help remove the stigma around depression and mental health issues.
The Awards Of Excellence honor exceptional people and organizations that improve the lives of people living with mental illnesses and addictions, increase understanding of behavioral health in their communities, advocate for public policy reforms, advance professional development and devote their lives to helping others. Morgan was nominated among over thousand other advocates and is incredibly honored to have been acknowledged for a cause that means so much to him.
Morgan lost his younger brother, Eugene, to a suicide in 2007, which lead him to create the Rise Above Fest as a way to honor him. The festival’s name is taken from the song “Rise Above This”, which Morgan wrote as a message to his brother. His brother took his own life before he ever got a chance to hear it and Shaun had the opportunity to open this week’s award ceremony in Las Vegas with an emotional acoustic version of the song. He was then presented with the award and gave an incredibly touching speech. Along with the awards, Morgan received a $10,000 grant which will go to Rise Above Fest partner SAVE (Suicide Awareness Voices of Education), one of the leading national not-for profit organizations dedicated to raising awareness and educating the public about mental health and suicide prevention.
Rise Above Fest 2016 will be held on August 6 at Darling’s Waterfront in Bangor, Maine. The 2016 lineup includes DISTURBED, VOLBEAT, SEETHER, ALTER BRIDGE, KILLSWITCH ENGAGE, HATEBREED, MEMPHIS MAY FIRE, WE CAME AS ROMANS, BEARTOOTH, I PREVAIL and more.
Photo by: Mike B Photography