As an international Crisis Management, Suicide Prevention, and Leadership Skills presenter, Sergeant Kevin Briggs’ story and lived experiences have been featured at the Technology, Entertainment, and Design 2014 Conference as a TED Talk, Ciudad de Las Ideas (Mexico), NBC’s Access Live, Yahoo News, The New Yorker Magazine, Men’s Health Magazine, NPR’s Bob Edwards Radio Show,People Magazine, USA Today, as well as other magazines, newspapers, radio, and podcasts across the world. His first book, Guardian of the Golden Gate: Protecting the Line Between Hope and Despair, was released in July 2015.
Briggs, a retired California Highway Patrol sergeant, spent many years patrolling the Golden Gate Bridge. While on patrol, he encountered numerous individuals clinging to life by a thread – individuals who had lost hope and could see no way out of their current situation – ready to jump off the bridge to what they assumed was a sudden death and ending of their pain and hopelessness.
Briggs, through his compassion, gentle voice, eye contact, and his innate ability of “listening to understand” encouraged more than 200 individuals over his career to either not go over the bridge’s rail or come back to solid ground from where they had been standing precariously out on the chord of the bridge and start a new chapter in their life. These challenging, but rewarding efforts earned him the nickname “Guardian of the Golden Gate Bridge.” After a 23-year career with the California Highway Patrol, Briggs retired to dedicate his life to promote mental health awareness across the globe through Pivotal Points, an organization he founded.
Today, Briggs is mapping a movement as he speaks and trains others in suicide prevention, crisis management and negotiations. He shares his “Listening to Understand” skills followed up with key active listening points; his personal triad for healthy living; his RELEASE model to assist in communicating with someone in crisis and his crisis safety plan for those who may be struggling. He also discusses in depth his own personal mental health struggles. Briggs spends the majority of his time speaking/teaching at conferences, advocacy events, colleges and universities, first responder conferences, law enforcement (including FBI & Secret Service), and military bases. He also works with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), corporations, and other venues.
In honor of his work, Briggs has received several awards:
• 2017 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Voice Award
• 2016 recipient of the National Council for Behavioral Health Visionary Leadership Award
• 2015 recipient of the joint American Psychiatric Association and California Psychiatric Association Warren Williams Award
• 2015 recipient of the Matthew Silverman Memorial Foundation Matt’s Hero Award
• 2013 recipient of the ASIS International Outstanding Officer Award
• 2013 Harvey’s Heroes Award (Steve Harvey Show)
• American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Public Service Award
• California State Senate Resolution for Public Service
• Bay Area Jefferson Award for Public Service
• Heroes Award, given by the Northern California Association of Public Safety Communications Officials International
• 2004 International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) Outstanding Service Award