April 24, 2023 | Washington, DC – The American Association of Suicidology (AAS), the world’s largest and nation’s oldest membership-based suicide prevention organization, announced several new hires to support the AAS mission to promote the understanding and prevention of suicide and support those who have been affected by it.
“Building a team with not only knowledge and experience but those who can and do exemplify the passion and ingenuity to bring awareness, prevention, postvention, and bring forth the understanding of suicide and how to support those affected by it is key to not only the success of AAS but for every individual across the world,” said AAS President & CEO Leeann Sherman, MPH, CAE. “Every member of the AAS team is committed to the field and helping every individual.”
Chris Cosentino has been named Chief Marketing Officer to build the AAS brand as well as position the organization as a world leader in suicide prevention resources and research. Cosentino comes to AAS with more than 15 years of experience in the integrated marketing field where he helped generate unprecedented funds and awareness for some of the nation’s most respected nonprofit organizations. Over the years, he has secured media placements in national outlets such as NBC’s Today Show, ABC News, FOX News, CBS News, People Magazine, ESPN and many more. Chris also has extensive experience in building ambassador programs featuring celebrities, professional athletes, musicians, and other influencers who have used their platforms to support various initiatives. Throughout his career he has produced short films, podcasts, digital education series and major special events.
Amelia Lehto has been promoted to Chief Program Officer and will oversee all development and deployment of all AAS training and accreditation programs. Amelia has worked in crisis services
and suicide prevention for the past 15 years specializing in quality improvement, facilitation skills,
suicide prevention and postvention services. Her unique skillset brings a wealth of knowledge,
experience, and leadership to this critical role within the organization. She is a former Crisis
Centers Division Chair for the American Association of Suicidology, past President of Six Feet Over,
and sits on the Advisory Council for Kevin’s Song. Amelia has contributed to a number of local,
state, and federal efforts in the field of suicidology.
Also joining the Program Team is Katherine Delgado as Senior Director of Programs, Emily McKee, MSSW, IMH-E® as Director of Training and Samantha Nadler, MSSW as Director of Accreditation.
Katherine has worked in the nonprofit sector for 15 years supporting crisis services and trauma informed service delivery programs. Her work began by volunteering at a local crisis and referral line, evolving into direct service followed by program and department leadership with a special interest around understanding systems while keeping a heart for the frontline work of serving and supporting those who do critical work. She specializes in process and data management, incorporating analytics into strategic development, change impact consideration, and the streamlining and operationalizing of application training, literacy and documentation.
Emily has worked in the nonprofit mental health sector for over 15 years, supporting trauma informed, evidence-supported programming. Prior to AAS, she has worked as a family & children’s case manager; helped raise millions of dollars through her work in non-profit development via fundraiser coordination, grant writing, and direct fundraising campaigns; most recently she has served as a training and professional development specialist as the director of a Mental Health Awareness Training program, focusing on equipping community members and mental health workers with suicide prevention training and crisis intervention techniques.
Samantha has been working in crisis services and suicidology for nearly 15 years. She has experience in carrying out front-line work in addition to leading various crisis services throughout her career, most recently working as Senior Manager of Clinical Quality at a national text-based crisis service. Her specialties include call center operations, quality improvement, and change management in 24/7 services.
In addition to the Program Team, Bonnie Benetti, CPA has been named Director of Finance. Bonnie is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) with more than 11 years of professional experience in accounting, audit, taxes, and regulatory compliance.
About American Association of Suicidology
The American Association of Suicidology is the world’s largest and nation’s oldest membership based suicide prevention organization. Founded in 1968 by Edwin S. Shneidman, PhD, AAS promotes the research of suicide and its prevention, public awareness programs, public education and training for professionals and volunteers. The membership of AAS includes mental health and public health professionals, researchers, suicide prevention and crisis intervention centers, school districts, crisis center professionals, survivors of suicide loss, attempt survivors, and a variety of laypersons who have an interest in suicide prevention. Learn more about AAS at www.suicidology.org.
Responsible reporting on suicide, including stories of hope and resilience, can prevent more suicides and open the door for help for those in need. Visit the Media as Partners in Suicide Prevention: Suicide Reporting Recommendations for more details. For additional information, visit SuicideReportingToolkit.com and Stanford University’s Media and Mental Health Initiative. For crisis services anywhere in the world, please visit FindAHelpline.org and in the continental United States chat, text or call 988.
American Association of Suicidology