JANUARY 31, 2018
Looking After Each Other
Improving Mental Health in the Entertainment Industry
We know that life in the entertainment industry can be both rewarding and challenging to our mental health. Now we need to move past awareness; it’s time to focus on action.
How can we do a better job of taking care of each other?
Last July, Chester Bennington, lead singer for Linkin Park, tragically and unexpectedly took his life. Our panel includes several of those closest to him, including Talinda Bennington (Chester’s wife), Anna Shinoda (his band mate’s wife), and Jim Digby (Director of Touring and Production for Linkin Park), plus Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen (Psychologist). Together, they will draw on their experiences to talk about mental health within the entertainment family.
This discussion will explore:
- How to talk about mental health
- Recognizing warning signs, changes in behavior and triggers
- Seeking support for ourselves
- Helping those in our lives who are suffering emotionally and/or dealing with addiction.
Information on how to access local support and resources will also be provided, including:
- 320 Changes Direction
- Over the Bridge
- Mental Health First Aid
- The AFC
- Unison Benevolent Fund
Please be advised that we’ll be diving into some potentially sensitive areas of conversation. If at any point you feel uncomfortable, feel free to step out of the room and join back in when you’re ready. We want everyone to participate within their own comfort level. No judgment.
Non-alcoholic refreshments will be served. We want everyone to feel welcome.
Talinda Bennington grew up from humble beginnings in Southern California. She married Chester Bennington of Linkin Park in 2005 and instantly had the large, beautiful family she had always dreamed of – becoming stepmother to Chester’s three sons. Chester and Talinda went on to have three more children of their own and together had the joy of raising their six children together. In 2009, Talinda became a Founding Board Member of Stars of the Season, an annual fundraising event for the newly built Cardon Children’s Medical Center in Mesa, AZ. In the summer of 2017, Talinda lost her husband to depression and addiction. Chester Bennington died by suicide on July 20, 2017. Determined to prevent others in need from suffering alone, Talinda partnered with Give an Hour and the Campaign to Change Direction and launched 320 Changes Direction – an effort named in honor of Chester Bennington whose birthday was March 20th. The goal of 320 Changes Direction is to ensure that families are equipped to understand and support loved ones who are dealing with mental health challenges. Talinda has become a spokesperson and champion for this effort and speaks regularly on panels, on social media and at events – about the need to change our culture so that those who are suffering emotionally are able to receive the care they deserve. In June 2018, Talinda will be a featured speaker at the Global Summit on Mental Health Culture Change in London.
Jim Digby is a 30+ year veteran of the live music and event production industry. He is highly experienced in domestic and international live event execution, team building, partnership development, and crisis management as applied to the successful execution of global entertainment production. He is a vocal advocate for the advancement and application of safety controls and education within the live event sector, and is a highly-regarded keynote speaker on life safety issues, career mentoring, and live events as a force for positive social change. He is a member of the advisory board for the Fest Forums Conference and is board member of the Behind The Scenes Foundation. He currently serving as Director of Touring and Production for platinum-selling artists Linkin Park, and is the founder and Chairman of the Event Safety Alliance®
Anna Shinoda was raised in a mountain town so small it lacked a stoplight. She used to escape into the high branches of trees to read and dream of stories, out of reach from her own family skeleton. Eventually she climbed down with her debut novel, Learning Not to Drown (Atheneum 2014), a story about a young girl who struggles to preserve her own identity amidst a chaotic, dysfunctional family unit. Anna married musician Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park in 2003 and has led efforts with the band’s non-profit, Music For Relief, in the U.S. and abroad. She is also a passionate supporter of 320 Changes Direction. Visit her at annashinoda.com or on Twitter @AnnaShinoda or Instagram @AnnaShinoda.
Barbara Van Dahlen
Barbara Van Dahlen, Ph.D., named to TIME’s 2012 list of the 100 most influential people in the world, is the president of Give an Hour™, a nonprofit she founded in 2005 to provide free mental health services to the military and veteran community. A licensed clinical psychologist practicing in Washington, D.C., she received her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Maryland in 1991, her M.A. in clinical psychology from the University of Maryland in 1987, and her B.A., summa cum laude, from California State College in 1982. Give an Hour’s 7,000 mental health professionals have given 239,365 hours of care, valued at nearly $24 million. Give an Hour also leads the Campaign to Change Direction, a national public health initiative to change the culture of mental health in America. She has received numerous awards, including the American Psychological Association’s Presidential Citation and the Richard Cornuelle Award for Social Entrepreneurship of the Manhattan Institute in 2013. In 2014 she was honored by the Chief of Staff of the United States Army as an outstanding civilian who has made significant voluntary contributions to our military and the United States Army. She also received the 2016 American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Lifesavers Gala Public Service Award and was appointed in January 2017 to serve on the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports, & Nutrition.
We Welcome You
Janet is one of Canada’s leading experts in health and safety and the arts. After a career in stage management, she pioneered the health and safety program at the Stratford Festival. As a Health & Safety Consultant (Sellery Health + Safety), she focuses on customizing programs, training, and resources to reflect the constantly evolving and unique demands of the live event environment. Janet led the working group that created the Temporary Performance/Event Structures Safety Guideline (Ministry of Labour) and is involved with the Event Safety Alliance. She has been awarded the “Ron Epp Memorial Award for Professional Achievement” (Canadian Institute for Theatre Technology) and “Canada’s Safety Manager of the Year” (Canadian Occupational Safety Magazine).
Sam has been working in the music industry in the US, UK and Canada for almost 20 years and is currently Executive Director for Capital Presents. Her music industry experience has focused primarily on concert promoting, working for 15+ years producing music festivals for some of the largest promoters throughout North America and the UK, including Mean Fiddler (Reading & Leeds Festivals), AEG Live (Coachella Music Festival, Stagecoach Music Festival and Virgin Music Festival) and House of Blues (Lillith Fair and Edgefest) to name just a few. She brings brings a wide range of concert production knowledge and experience to the Republic Live team, most notably her specialized knowledge of festival legal and risk management.