Patrick J. Kennedy - Founder of The Kennedy Forum
A pioneer in mental health policy and advocacy, Rep. Patrick J. Kennedy served Rhode Island’s First Congressional District for 16 years, championing causes essential to the well-being of all Americans. During his time on Capitol Hill, Mr. Kennedy was the author and chief sponsor of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, groundbreaking legislation that guaranteed, for the first time in history, equal access to mental health and addiction services. Upon leaving Congress in 2011, Mr. Kennedy made a promise: to be a vocal advocate for the full and unequivocal implementation of the 2008 Parity law, and to push for a greater global investment in brain research. To make that promise a reality, Mr. Kennedy has been instrumental in the formation of two innovative organizations: One Mind for Research and the Kennedy Forum on Community Mental Health.
Rep. Kennedy has been recognized by many organizations for his mental health advocacy and leadership. He is the recipient of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology Distinguished Service Award, the Society for Neuroscience Public Service Award, the Peter C. Alderman Foundation Humanitarian Award, the Clifford Beers Foundation Centennial Award, the Autism Society of America Congressional Leadership Award, the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance Paul Wellstone Mental Health Award, and the Epilepsy Foundation Public Service Award. In 2014, he is being recognized by the Society of Biological Psychiatry, The Samaritan Institute, and The Association for Medical Education and Research in Substance Abuse (AMERSA).