The National Alliance for the Mentally Ill selected Jan Harding as outstanding member for 1988. Harding shared the award with Medeleine Goodrich of Concord, Mass., for their outstanding efforts on behalf of mentally ill people in prisons and jails.

In 1984, Harding became involved with the nationally known Forensic Network, formerly called HELP-MI (Help Exists for Loved-ones in Prison with Mental Illness) Network. She was active in starting the HELP-MI Monitor, the national newsletter for the Forensic Network. The network coordinates with state Alliance for the Mentally Ill network correspondents and state forensic mental health directors in every state.