Regional Mental Health Center: Providing Mental Health Services Since 1970s
On July 1, 2009, Southlake Center for Mental Health and Tri-City Community Mental Health Center consolidated to form Regional Mental Health Center. Tri-City had been providing services to North Township since 1971, and Southlake began treatment for the southern portion of Lake County in 1974.
The two CEOs, Bob Krumwied at Tri-City and Lee Strawhun at Southlake, worked together through the years to provide the community a continuum of mental health and substance abuse services. Upon Lee’s retirement in January of 2008, the Boards of Directors decided that Bob would be CEO of both Agencies. After a year and a half, realizing the vast similarities of Southlake and Tri-City, the Boards spent many hours working to combine the Agencies, so that one behavioral health provider would now serve the bulk of Lake County. Thus, the dream of a Regional Mental Health Center was realized.
The Mental Health Association in Lake County had long advocated for mental health care and was instrumental in organizing an effort to apply for the first community mental health centers. Tri-City opened in East Chicago with an outpatient office in the Pepsi Building on Chicago Avenue and admitting privileges at St. Catherine Hospital. Staff then moved into the old Indiana University Building on Indianapolis Blvd; a new center was built next to that structure in 1980. Southlake began in 1977 with an outpatient office on East 86th in Merrillville.