The event will honor mental health advocates and raise funds to benefit The Chicago School of Professional Psychology Counseling Centers.

NBA Champion and mental health advocate Metta World Peace will be honored at the second annual Mental Health Heroes Awards Luncheon on May 9, 2018, at 11:30 a.m. at The Olympic Collection in West Los Angeles. Presented by The Chicago School of Professional Psychology (TCSPP), a leading nonprofit, private university devoted exclusively to psychology, and related behavioral health sciences, the luncheon will recognize those who have improved treatment, raise public awareness, and reduce the stigma of mental illness, substance use disorders, and suicide.

Metta World Peace is one of the premier NBA defenders of his era and a pop culture personality off the court. The NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award winner in 2004, he was a member of the 2010 NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers and raffled off his championship ring to raise money for mental health nonprofits. In addition, World Peace will be signing copies of his new autobiography, No Malice: My Life in Basketball or: How a Kid from Queensbridge Survived the Streets, the Brawls, and Himself to Become an NBA Champion, at the fundraising event in advance of its May 15, 2018, publication date.

“I am honored and humbled to receive the Mental Health Hero award and greatly appreciate that The Chicago School of Professional Psychology’s Counseling Centers offers affordable and accessible mental and behavioral health services to our communities,” said World Peace. “It is vital for people to have access to mental health services when they need them, and I applaud The Chicago School’s efforts to help raise the importance of mental health awareness in our communities.”

Emceed by actress Carly Chaikin, star of USA Network’s Golden Globe-winning show Mr. Robot and ABC’s hit show Suburgatory, the luncheon will also recognize:

  • Kim A. Bunnell, a trailblazer in healthcare whose business acumen has reshaped the National Alliance on Mental Illness – Los Angeles County.
  • Dr. William A. Covino and Dr. Debbie Covino, President and First Lady, California State University, Los Angeles, who launched the Mind Matters initiative for student inner well-being and academic success.
  • Dr. Peyman Raoofi, a psychotherapist who specializes in children’s developmental disorders and who advocates for children globally.

“We are proud to recognize Metta World Peace as a mental health hero for his work in raising awareness for mental health programs,” said Michele Nealon, Psy.D., President, The Chicago School. “He has played an important role in battling mental health stigma both inside and outside the sports community by publicly sharing his struggle with mental health issues.”

World Peace’s NBA career also includes stops with the Chicago Bulls, Indiana Pacers, Sacramento Kings, Houston Rockets, and New York Knicks. World Peace, who was known as Ron Artest before legally changing his name in 2011, was part of the 13th season of ABC’s Dancing with the Stars, and most recently was on CBS’s first edition of Celebrity Big Brother.