Evanston resident, Kate Mahoney, M.S.W. has been selected as the new executive director of The Naomi Ruth Cohen Institute for Mental Health Education (NRCI) at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology.
NRCI, housed at The Chicago School, works to overcome the stigma of mental illness by offering mental health education, trainings, and presentations to the greater Chicagoland community and by supporting organizations engaged in mental illness research, education, self-help, anti-discrimination and advocacy. NRCI holds its biggest event, the Community Mental Health Conference, in Evanston every year.
A licensed clinical social worker with more than 30 years of experience in behavioral health, Mahoney comes to NRCI after having served as executive director of PEER Services, a non-profit behavioral health organization that provides community-based substance abuse prevention and treatment services to residents of the North Shore suburbs and Chicago’s north side.
“Kate Mahoney is the perfect choice for the role of executive director,” said Tiffany Masson, Psy.D., campus dean, Chicago Campus, The Chicago School. “She has spent her career being a vocal advocate for reducing the stigma that for too long has prevented individuals impacted by mental illness from accessing mental health services. She has been lauded for her numerous contributions to the fields of mental and behavioral health, and I’m excited to be working with her.”
“It is tragic to see how many individuals and families suffer in silence with untreated mental health needs because of the stigma that is much too prevalent in our culture”, Mahoney said. “NRCI is committed to reducing this stigma and building support for people as they take the courageous steps of reaching out for help and working to be actively engaged in their communities.”
In 2013, Mahoney was awarded the prestigious national Nyswander/Dole Award for her leadership in addressing the opioid epidemic. She has received two awards from the Illinois Association for Behavioral Health, and was the 2010 recipient of the Mental Health America – North Shore Community Service Award. She completed her master’s in Social Work at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and earned her bachelor’s degree in Sociology and Women’s Studies from Northwestern University.
“I am inspired by the words of The Chicago School President Michele Nealon-Woods, when she stated ‘there is no health without mental health.’ This will be my mantra as I work to carry out the mission of NRCI,” said Mahoney.
This year’s conference, which is open to both professionals and the general public, will take place on June 4 at Beth Emet Synagogue, and its focus will be on the mental health of children.