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Kate Mahoney is a licensed clinical social worker with more than 30 years of experience in behavioral health. Kate earned her Bachelor’s degree in Sociology and Women’s Studies from Northwestern University. She completed her Master’s in Social Work at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Prior to joining the Naomi Ruth Cohen Institute, Kate served as Executive Director of PEER Services, a nonprofit behavioral healthcare organization for the past 28 years. She is active in the community, is a frequent presenter at conferences and community forums and is a strong advocate for reducing the stigma that for too long has prevented many individuals from accessing mental health services and interfered with individuals impacted by mental illness from being fully integrated into the community.

Kate has dedicated much of her career to impacting public policy in order to increase access to care. She currently serves on the board of the Illinois Association for Behavioral Health. She represents Illinois on the Board of Directors of the American Association for the Treatment of Opioid Dependence. She is a past president of the Illinois Alcoholism and Drug Dependence Association and the current president of the Illinois Association for Medication Assisted Addiction Treatment. She was the 2015 keynote speaker for the ACLU Peoria Chapter Annual Dinner in which she spoke about access to behavioral health treatment as a civil liberties issue.

Kate’s contributions to the field have been acknowledged by colleagues at the local and national level. She has received two awards from the Illinois Association for Behavioral Health. She was the recipient of the Mental Health America – North Shore Community Service Award and was awarded the prestigious national Nyswander/Dole award for her leadership in addressing the opioid epidemic.

Kate has a long history of chairing conferences and presenting workshops for mental health professionals. She served on the NRCI conference planning committee since 2007 and was a discussion leader for a number of their conferences. She Is a past chair for the Illinois Association for Behavioral Health Annual Conference and served as Accreditation Committee Chair for the American Association for the Treatment of Opioid Dependence Conference.  

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