After completing his medical education at Loma Linda University and psychiatric training at UCLA’s Neuropsychiatric Institute, Dr. Gardner joined the faculty at the University of Utah School of Medicine to be Chief of Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry in 1988. There he rose to a full Professor (Clinical Track), was given numerous teaching awards and developed a practice in forensic psychiatry that ultimately brought him national recognition for his work on high-profile criminal cases and a wide range of civil cases.
After 15 years as a full-time faculty, Dr. Gardner left University employment to pursue a combination of out-patient practice specializing in complex mood disorders and involvement in psychopharmacology research and consulting to the medical, educational, and research programs of several pharmaceutical companies involved with the treatment of serious psychiatric conditions.
In 2009, Dr. Gardner accepted a position as Medical Director of South Valley Mental Health, a large out-patient clinic that was the exclusive provider for Medicaid patients for a catchment area with a population of 600,000 people. Here he supervised psychiatric residents and provided clinical leadership for a large staff of psychiatrists, nurse practitioners, psychotherapists, and case managers as they served many individuals with serious mental illnesses. When that organization went through a disruptive re-organization, he left his employment with Valley Mental Health. He also became keenly aware that there were many people who had no insurance and no capacity to pay for psychiatric care. He decided to develop a clinic that could serve these people for free. With the support of his wife, Connie, and many volunteers and contributors, the clinic has become a major training site for psychiatric residents and nurse-practitioner students, while providing high-quality psychiatric care to many people who had lost hope of ever getting the care they need. It takes the skills, commitment and generosity of a whole community to provide this kind of “community psychiatry”. Dr. Gardner is grateful that he can share the joy of this work with so many friends and colleagues and the hope that it creates in the patients we serve.
Juli Miller joined Impact Mental Health in October 2019. She has over two decades of experience in public relations and business management in the healthcare industry, with the majority of those years being spent in the public and nonprofit sector. She is a graduate of the University of Utah’s Nonprofit Academy and has over 600 hours of board development training, including train-the-trainer.
Juli has spent much of her life advocating in 2 areas: affordable quality healthcare and quality public education. Over the years she has served on various nonprofit and public boards and committees. While residing in rural Wyoming, Juli spent over 6 years as an elected official on the local school board, higher education board, and state school board association. Much of her service was spent in leadership roles including Board Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer, Clerk and Legislative Liaison. She has received multiple awards for her dedication and advocacy, including being inducted into the Wyoming School Board Hall of Fame. Juli is currently serving her second term as a board member on the South Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce as well as a board member at Yellow for Life, a nonprofit organization focused on suicide prevention.
Juli is passionate about mental health awareness and suicide prevention. She has personal experience witnessing the adverse effects that negative social stigma, untreated mental illness, and death by suicide can have on individuals and their loved ones. She started her career path as a receptionist at Valley Mental Health in the mid-1990s. Juli feels she has come full circle with her return to community mental health at Impact and is grateful for the opportunity to work with the staff, volunteers, psych residents, university faculty and students who work in the clinic as well as collaborate with the many community partners to bring these much needed services to uninsured low-income individuals suffering from severe mental illness.
Juli is the proud mother of 4 sons. She lives in Murray and in her spare time loves either curling up with a good book or participating in all the outdoor recreation the state of Utah has to offer.
Mary Grace Heustess
Mary Grace Heustess has served as Impact Mental Health’s Volunteer Coordinator since August of 2018. Before moving to Utah and serving in this role, she completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Public Health at Clemson University in Clemson, SC, May of 2018.
She is currently working towards her Master’s of Public Health degree through George Washington University while continuing to serve at the clinic. Mental Health care and availability are vitally important to a community’s overall health and she views the opportunity to work in the clinic, standing in that gap of care, as a privilege. Office Coordinator
Front Office Coordinator
A traveler… passionate about meeting new cultures, people, food and places that go beyond imagination. After a year of traveling in Asia, I decided to come back home to find an opportunity to work at this clinic and to see firsthand how people’s lives change. I am passionate about being part of this organization and being able to have a positive impact on the lives of all the people who are connected to the clinic from the patients to those who collaborate here. In 2015 I moved from Mexico to the United States, I am the oldest of 3 children. I love to read, travel, and spend time with my loved ones.