2022 Winner – Taylor George Coleman

Kingston, NY — Devoted to fighting for the rights of suicide victims and their families, John H. Fisher, founder of The New York Injury & Malpractice Law Firm, P.C., announced Taylor George-Coleman as the 2022 recipient of the $2,000 Anthony’s Scholarship “Living with a Sense of Purpose.” 

“Suicide remains the leading cause of preventable death in the United States and those who suffer from depression and other mental health illnesses are often not identified or treated,” said Mr. Fisher. “Offering Anthony’s Scholarship to young students is our effort to promote a conversation and stimulate ideas that lower suicide and save lives.” 

Anthony’s Scholarship is given annually to a college-bound high school senior or current college student by Mr. Fisher’s New York malpractice law firm to honor the life and legacy of Anthony Barnhart, who care deeply for his family and community. Suffering from suicide ideation, Mr. Barnhart was released from a hospital’s emergency department without receiving a follow-up plan for mental health treatment, which ultimately caused his death from suicide three days later.

In her award-winning essay on ways to reduce suicide, Ms. George-Coleman called for a multidimensional approach to lowering suicide that incorporates law, mental health advocacy and community assistance. Specifically, the essay called for expanding Medicaid to remove financial barriers to mental health treatment, stronger gun control measures that include required gun safety and storage, and suicide prevention training for professionals to more effectively identify those at-risk for suicide ideation.

“I chose to apply for Anthony’s Scholarship so I could channel the pain I experienced in the past into a force for good,” said Ms. George-Coleman, who explained that she had suffered from suicide ideation in the past, but received the mental health supports she needed. “I understand how someone can feel suicidal. I feel very lucky that my mom recognized the changes in me when I was struggling with the idea of suicide and got me the help that I needed.” 

A recent high school graduate hailing from Atlanta, Georgia, and a member of the National Honor Society, Ms. George-Coleman is a rising Freshman and Trustee Scholar headed for Daemen University in Amherst, New York, this fall. 

“I’m surprised and grateful that I won Anthony’s Scholarship. Thank you so much, Mr. Fisher,” said Ms. George-Coleman. Asked how she plans to use the $2,000 award, she answered, “We don’t have a real winter here in Georgia, like they have in upstate New York, so I think the first thing I’m going to buy is a winter coat and some boots!”

Anthony’s Scholarship was created by John H. Fisher to educate and provide resources to those suffering from suicidal ideation and depression and their families; applications are currently being accepted for the 2023 award and can be submitted by visiting https://protectingpatientrights.com/anthonys-scholarship-living-with-a-sense-of-purpose/. Past applicants are still eligible for 2023 if they resubmit their essays and current required information.