Thursdays with NAMI

Terry Russell Reflects on Life as an

Advocate, Executive, and Family Member

7 p.m. Aug. 25, 2022

Terry Russell’s first exposure to the mental health system came after school one day when he was 13. Police officers were taking his older brother to the hospital, and his mother was crying.

As a mental health advocate decades later, he spoke with authority about the family-wide trauma that comes with serious mental illnesses like schizophrenia. He had seen his parents’ friends drift away. He had felt the sting of stigma on the school bus.

He used those painful experiences to fuel a 50-year career of advocating for “the sickest of the sick.” Terry spent 22 years at the helm of Ohio’s largest multi-county community mental health system, and another 20 years leading NAMI Ohio. He was a driving force in bringing Medicaid Expansion to the state. In 2018 he spearheaded the creation of a new Mental Health Rehabilitation Center in Southeast Ohio, giving peers up to 50 days to recover after a psychiatric hospitalization. The awards on his wall are numerous and prestigious.

Join us to hear the perspective of this family member and storied NAMI executive. The event is free and open to the public.

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