Kirsten Banks, LPC, CPCS, CAI, CIP
INDUSTRY SPOTLIGHT | Cindy Mills
CINDY JONES MILLS Vice-Chair Forsyth County Board of Commissioners
At TRN we value our vast network and working relationship with others in the field. To show our gratitude we like to highlight those that stand out. This week’s “Industry Spotlight” is Cindy Jones Mills! Cindy has been a huge activist in bringing awareness to addiction to the community. She founded the Forsyth County Drug Awareness Council, which is a grant funded Drug Free Community Coalition. In 2013 Cindy, along with others, started the Forsyth County Drug Summit which brings awareness to the drug abuse crisis that is impacting citizens of Forsyth County. Cindy led the effort to pass a proclamation to make August 31st officially “Overdose Awareness day” in Forsyth County. On September 10th at 7pm Cindy will be moderating a Facebook LIVE event titled “Let’s Talk Openly About Suicide” on the Forsyth County Drug Awareness Council’s Facebook page. Cindy is such an advocate in the fight against addiction and because of all her hard work Forsyth County is a better place.
Cindy, we are so incredibly grateful for all you do, and we are honored to have you as this week’s Industry Spotlight!
Cindy has recently been re-elected to her third term on the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners for District 4. One of the things she holds dearest to her heart while being in office is being the founder of the Forsyth County Drug Awareness Council and receiving a SAMSHA grant to fund it. It came after hosting our first few Drug Summits that began after she took office in 2013. Those involved knew the need was great in the community for a permanent Council with a full-time coordinator. From that group coming together, we have been able to do so many wonderful things together. After attending the National Prescription Drug and Opiate Summit in Atlanta for several years we had ideas to start a full-time drug counselor at the county’s alternative school at Gateway. This year will mark the third year that counselor has been in place. Others ideas that came to fruition from our Drug Council members were the Parent Recovery Network, TIP Program, CHAMPS Program, Teen Drug Councils, The Connection, Full Circle Program, Empower, Drug Summits, Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Summits, Mental Health Council, and Forsyth county received a $500,000 CJCC mental health grant through SAMSHA to fund a drug rehabilitation program inside their county jail and to assist with mental health intake and data entry/input/history/programming there as well.
Cindy was able to bring forth ordinances, with support from her board, to stop the sale of drug paraphernalia in convenience stores by tying it to alcohol license sales. She also tied the sales of vaping products to alcohol license as well and made the underage sales of it go against their alcohol license so that those stores would choose to not sale vaping products that are so harmful to young people.