pexels-wouter-de-jong-571169 2.jpg


Hope ~ Healing ~ Wellness

Removing The Stigma educates, empowers, and offers hope to individuals while removing the stigma associated with mental illness and suicide. 


The vision of Removing The Stigma began in 2013, after Denise Holcomb, Founder and Executive Director, shared her story in a documentary film Living With Bipolar, for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.​​


individuals with mental illnesses through peer connected support groups and wellness resources.


the obstacles of discrimination, stigma, and prejudice associated with mental illness and suicide through education, advocacy, and community collaboration. ​


change to achieve mental and emotional wellness.


of hope to families who have lost a loved one(s) who have died by suicide.



We are a peer-run, peer-owned organization.
As peers, we have walked some of the same paths, yet we realize all of our journeys are different.


Denise Holcomb

Founder and Executive Director

Peer Recovery Supporter | Educational Paraprofessional | Sources of Strength Trainer | Mental Health Recovery Coach | Suicide Prevention Trainer | Suicide Bereavement Clinician 

Denise Holcomb is the Founder and Executive Director of Removing The Stigma (RTS). She combines peer support, coaching, training, and biblical teaching as she works with individuals to discover their true passion and purpose. She assists peers in understanding that they are not identified by a mental illness or substance use diagnosis, but they are individuals with an illness like any illness, and they too can live a meaningful productive life if they remove self-stigma and work toward living their true purpose. 


Denise also helps individuals whose loved ones have died by suicide to walkthrough

the stages of grief and find a way to remember their loved ones in a unique and meaningful way. 


Darcella Lambert

Darcella has over fifteen years of experience working with traumatized youth in both residential and outpatient settings.

She has mothered three of her own children with mental health disorders, all while going through her own personal struggles with mental illness. These personal and family experiences helped her to understand the mental health challenges and the level of extreme stress and pressure that is placed on caregivers, individuals, and families.


Margaret Montgomery

Margaret worked at Case Western Reserve University for over a period of thirty-two years. She resigned to focus and care for her two adopted children who were both mentally challenged. She highlights raising her two sons as one of the most purposeful and fulfilling time periods in her life. Now that her children have grown up, Margaret enjoys other fulfilling avenues such as event planning, with a specialty in wedding planning, consulting, and directing.

Committee Board Member 

Aissatou Diop

Aissatou Diop is a senior at John Carroll University.  She is employed at Bellefaire Jewish Center for Children with Autism as a youth counselor. She has worked in the behavioral and mental health field as a caretaker and counselor and has worked on projects throughout the years which address breaking stigmas surrounding mental health issues.  She is looking forward to her internship with Removing the Stigma and believes it will allow me to gain the experience and knowledge she needs to start working toward achieving her goals as well as help bridge the gap between people living with mental health issues and families.

Internship Youth Counselor