MHA To Host Farewell-Promotion Party Friday

The Mental Health Association in Chautauqua County invites the public to join in a party saying goodbye to Kia Briggs, executive director, as she leaves her position and celebrating the promotion of Steven Cobb as he assumes it. From left are Dr. Lillian V. Ney, Mental Health Advisory board chair; Carm Micciche, board chair; Briggs and Cobb. Submitted photo

The Mental Health Association in Chautauqua County is making its farewell to Kia Briggs, executive director, easier by welcoming Steven Cobb, associate director, as its new executive director.

The public is invited to participate in the Farewell-Promotion Party on Friday from 3-5 p.m. at the Mental Health Association, Door 14 in the rear of the Gateway Center, 31 Water St., Jamestown.

Formed in 1999, the Mental Health Association became a peer-run organization in 2005. Briggs was only the second full-time person to join the staff. Cobb was the third and has been part of the Mental Health Association for seven years.

With the acceptance of the need for more recovery services, in 2015 the MHA became a United Way of Southern Chautauqua County Community Partner. The association now has 16 full- and three part-time employees and served 683 individuals or families in its last six-months reporting period.

“It has been an amazing experience watching our team of peer coaches help people regain their lives and grow beyond their past,” Briggs said. “These 11 years have been an extraordinary chapter in my life, and I will value the memories of all we have done here as a community in bringing awareness and hope to those who are in recovery.”

In a letter to the Mental Health Association board, Briggs explained that she decided to accept an unexpected opportunity that allows her to be closer to her family and spend more time with her young son.

“I know that I am leaving the organization and this capable team in the hands of strong leadership. Steven Cobb (is) … a respected leader who focuses on the personal value of every individual while promoting the importance of collaboration and advocacy for those that have an experience of mental health or substance use,” Briggs said.

The Mental Health Association is a peer recovery support center offering recovery coaching, peer support services, peer support groups, advocacy, veterans support, employment and job support, trainings and family support. The MHA provides linkages to mental health and substance use treatment, primary care doctors, health and human services and is available to assist adult individuals in identifying community resources for healthier living. Anyone with questions or in need of services for themselves or a family member can visit the association at Door 14 in the rear of the Gateway Center, 31 Water St., Jamestown. Hours are Monday from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., Tuesday and Wednesday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information, call 661-9044 or visit or