Since the Golden Gate Bridge opened in 1937, thousands of people have tried to kill themselves by leaping. Only 34 have lived.
Kevin Hines is one of them.
On September 24, 2000, the paranoid and hallucinating nineteen-year-old flung himself off the bridge in a suicide attempt. He fell 220 feet straight down into the San Francisco Bay, shattering his T12, L1, and L2 vertebrae. He lacerated most of his lower organs. A Coast Guard boat pulled Hines from the frigid waters.
Today, Kevin Hines is an award-winning global speaker, Amazon best-selling author of “Cracked Not Broken,” and suicide prevention and mental health advocate who reaches audiences with his story of an unlikely survival and his strong will to live. It was two years after Kevin was diagnosed with bipolar disorder (at 19 years of age) that he attempted to take his own life.
Kevin has spoken to millions of people worldwide – including universities and colleges, high schools, corporations, military, health and medical communities, law enforcement organizations, and various conferences – and wherever he speaks, he shares the same basic message: You are not alone.
In 2012, he was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding work as a suicide prevention advocate and speaker by the National Council of Behavioral Health. He has also been recognized by SAMSHA as a Voice Awards Fellow and Award Winner, an Achievement Winner by the US Veterans Affairs, and he has received a Three Star Marine General’s Medal Award in addition to his numerous accolades.
Kevin’s will to live and stay mentally well has inspired people worldwide. In addition to Kevin’s life changing and affirming keynote, he offers his “The Art of Living Mentally Well” workshop, where Kevin shares his 10 steps for ‘living mentally well.” In order to be self-aware and cognizant of his mental wellness, Kevin has developed a 10 step regimen to stay on track and monitor the signs of falling off track. Kevin shares clinical studies that prove why habits like regular sleep and good nutrition are important for maintaining wellness for everyone, not just those with a diagnosed mental illness.
Audiences come away with a knowledge of how to build their own toolkit for maintaining their mental wellness, as well as the wellness of their loved ones.
Kevin believes in the power of the human spirit and in the fact that you can find the ability to live mentally well. Maybe not every day, but certainly most days.
His mantra: “Life is a gift, that is why they call it the present. Cherish it always.”
“My goodness! We had a large audience including not only college students but also some students from the high school and members of the local community. At the conclusion of his presentation, there was a spontaneous standing ovation, not in response to Kevin’s eloquence (although he is a tremendously dynamic speaker) but because I believe his message spoke to each person in the audience. It was powerful, it was vitally important, and – I’m convinced – will save lives. I know that healthful conversations will be continuing well beyond today and this place.” – Kerry Raadt, Director of College Events – Carleton College
“Wow! Kevin was great! So compelling and inspirational. I have seen him in video before and thought I knew what to expect… he far exceeded that. Our audience LOVED him as well. He was a great addition to the day!” – Kelly M. Untiet, Education Information Dissemination Coordinator – Office of Student Wellness, NH Department of Education
“He was phenomenal!” – Mary Steady, Director, Office of Student Wellness – New Hampshire Department of Education
“… The gym was packed…closer to 700 people were there. I have never seen so many people sitting silent in a room for so long…it was truly an amazing event and the feedback from students, faculty, and staff was nothing but positive.” – Abbie O’Neill, Student Programming Board/Talks and Topics Chair – Quinnipiac University
“With an advanced degree in adversity, Kevin Hines next survived a penultimate test to become uniquely qualified like no other, as an eloquent and effective witness for Wellness and Hope that an audience can ever hope to hear. Ours was spellbound, listening to his challenges through to his ultimate victory. Kevin is more than a survivor … he’s now a champion for anyone who needs to notch a win in the game of life.” – Serni Solidarios, Director of Student Programs – University of Puget Sound
“Kevin Hines was one of the most authentic, effective and memorable speakers I have had the honor to present in the over 30 years I have worked in Student Activities at Sonoma State University. He had an overflow crowd of students completely engaged and truly listening to what he had to say. There is no question that he touched everyone in attendance that night and more importantly, he allowed people to open up and tell their stories and be heard. I would not be surprised if Kevin’s presentation did not change many lives that night and perhaps saved some, as well.” – Bruce Berkowitz, Associated Students Program Coordinator – Sonoma State University, California
“Powerful!!!!!”; “Phenomenal!!”; “Captivating story, emotional and moving”; “This is a moving testimony. I am thankful to have been able to hear him speak”; “Off the charts”; “Fantastic!!”; “Amazing story. Think he could help millions”; “Very powerful – was in tears!”; “Words can’t describe”; “Wow!”; “Outstanding”; “Awesome! Worth the $! Read his book previously but hearing his story meant so much!”; “Worth the price of admission alone”. – Marianne Halbert, J.D., Criminal Justice Director – NAMI Indiana