Hurricane Depression

This is a story about a reporter in New Orleans and his bout with clinical depression following last year’s Gulf Coast Hurricanes.

Beyond the challenges of rebuilding people’s lives, homes, city infrastructure, government, and business, how are we addressing the mental health challenges brought about by these storms? Is this yet another piece of the recovery that has been overlooked?

The [lack of a] response or recovery effort from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita is often framed in terms of race. However, mental health effects everyone of all races. Also, there are mental health challenges that befall volunteers and first-responders as well.

I think that these mental health challenges are more important to address than issues of rebuilding businesses and governments. Why is it then that the focus of the [alleged] recovery effort is on business and government?

One Love. One II.

New Orleans
Hurricane Katrina
Mental Health


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About Garlin Gilchrist II

I am the City of Detroit's first ever Deputy Technology Director for Civic Community Engagement. My job is to open up the city's public data and information for the consumption and benefit of all Detroiters. I currently live in Detroit, my hometown, with my beautiful wife Ellen and our twins Garlin III and Emily Grace. I'm from Detroit. I created Detroit Diaspora, and was formerly the National Campaign Director at I also co-hosted The #WinReport on "The Good Fight," a an award winning, nationally syndicated radio show that was one of Apple's Best of 2013. After graduating with degrees in Computer Engineering and Computer Science from the University of Michigan, I became a Software Engineer at Microsoft. By day, I helped build SharePoint into the fastest growth product in the company's history. On my personal time, I sought out opportunities to connect my technical skills with community building efforts across the country. This led to my co-founding The SuperSpade: Black Thought at the Highest Level, a leading Black political blog. I served as Social Media Manager for the 2008 Obama campaign in Washington, and then became Director of New Media at the Center for Community Change. I spent two years creating and implementing a strategy for the Center to take it's 40 years of community organizing experience into the digital age. I speak before diverse audiences on effective & responsive government, empowerment in revolutionary new organizing spaces, increasing civic engagement & participation through emerging technologies and protecting civil rights in the age of the Internet. Full bio here.

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