Colorado Suicide Prevention History

In March 1998, the Suicide Prevention Advisory Commission was established by the Governor’s office as a result of growing concern over the high rate of suicide in Colorado.

The commission reviewed trends, risk factors, methods, and demographics; reviewed and analyzed suicide prevention plans in other states; and looked at existing strategies that recognize and respond to people who are at risk. The commission finished its work in 1998 and Governor Owens directed the Department of Public Health and the Department of Human Services to put together a proposal to address this ever-increasing tragedy.

It was determined that the Office of Suicide Prevention be created in the Department of Public Health and Environment by legislative action during the 2000 legislative session. Representative Gayle Berry and Senator Elsie Lacy sponsored a bill. This bill directed the Office of Suicide Prevention to act as the state coordinator for suicide prevention programs throughout the state. The office was funded and authorized to accept gifts, grants, and donations.

The Office of Suicide Prevention was also made responsible for training, assessments, administering local grants, and conducting a public awareness campaign.

—Office of Suicide Prevention (2002)


In 2014 Senate Bill 14-088 was passed in Colorado, creating The Suicide Prevention Commission. The Commission was created in order to serve as the interface between public and private sectors in establishing statewide suicide prevention priorities in Colorado that are data-driven and evidence-based. By focusing efforts on current resources and also expanding the network of partnerships across the state, the Commission boosts the efforts of Colorado’s Office of Suicide Prevention and makes annual reports to the governor. (CDPHE 2014)


Main Number: (303) 692-2560
Office of Suicide Prevention
Jarrod Hindman, M.S., Program Manager, Office of Suicide Prevention, and Youth Violence Prevention Coordinator


Prevention Services DivisionColorado Department of Public Health and Environment
4300 Cherry Creek Drive South
Denver, CO 80246
Phone: (303) 692-2539
Fax: (303) 691-7901