Kelly O’Brien

President & Founder, Ideaction Corps and Director, The Kennedy Forum Illinois







Kelly O’Brien is the Founder and President of Ideaction Corps, where she partners on projects that have special meaning to her. She is also the Director of The Kennedy Forum Illinois. Her background includes 20 years experience creating social change, with leadership roles in nonprofits, for-profits, the federal government and Congress. She admits to being plagued with a nagging desire to always be a part of something bigger and more meaningful than the task at hand, and it lights her up to connect people and foster new partnerships and fresh ideas. She enjoys speaking about a variety of topics, including how to find a job doing what you love and using the power of business to solve social problems. She is grateful every day.

Laurence Msall

President, The Civic Foundation







Laurence Msall is the President of the Civic Federation. Msall joined the 120-year-old tax policy and government research organization in January of 2002. The Civic Federation is an independent, non-partisan government research organization founded in 1894 whose membership includes business and professional leaders from a wide range of Chicago-area corporations, professional service firms and institutions. The Civic Federation seeks to assist public policy opinion leaders in the Chicago area and to advance issues such as property tax reform, tax simplification and budget transparency with the objective of improving governmental efficiency and financial accountability.

Before joining the Civic Federation, Msall served as the Senior Advisor for Economic Development for Illinois Governor George H. Ryan. Msall was responsible for the oversight of eleven of the state’s economic development and infrastructure-related agencies including the Departments of Commerce, Revenue, Transportation, and the state’s housing and other development authorities. Appointed as Senior Advisor in February 1999, Msall worked closely with the Governor and his staff on issues related to business climate, tax and transportation policy.

Before joining the Governor’s staff in 1999, Msall served as the Vice President of the Commercial Club of Chicago, a non-profit group of Chicago’s senior business and civic leaders. The Commercial Club seeks to improve and promote the social and economic vitality of the Chicago metropolitan area through a wide range of programs and activities. First organized in 1877, the Commercial Club is most well known for its work organizing and implementing Daniel Burnham’s Plan of Chicago. In addition to his work with the Commercial Club, Laurence Msall served as Secretary to the Commercial Club Foundation and Vice President of the Civic Committee. He has worked with the CEOs of some of Chicago’s largest corporations and service firms promoting regional economic development strategies related to airport capacity, urban redevelopment, and special projects including the Chicago Bears stadium, technology development and the reorganization of the United Way of Chicago.

Prior to joining the Commercial Club staff in 1990, Msall served as Assistant to the Director of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Community Affairs with primary responsibility for policy development. From 1984-1988, Msall represented the Department and Governor Jim Thompson’s office on economic development and business issues before the Illinois General Assembly, serving as DCCA’s chief legislative liaison.

Laurence Msall is a licensed attorney and 1992 graduate of Loyola University School of Law, Evening Division, where he was named to the Dean’s List of Distinguished Students in 1990, 1991 and 1992. He was a recipient of the 1992 Loyola Leadership and Service Award. Msall holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois, where he was the 1984 recipient of the Umbeck Prize for the Outstanding Sociology Student. Msall is a 1980 graduate of Saint Ignatius College Preparatory High School in Chicago, Illinois.

Msall currently serves on the Board of the Woods Fund, advisory Boards of the University of Illinois Institute of Government and Public Affairs and Illinois Issues Magazine. Msall is also a member of the St. Giles Appalachia Service Project; Kennedy Forum of Illinois to eliminate mental health stigma in Illinois; the Economic Club of Chicago and the Chicago Civic Consulting Alliance.  He is an active volunteer with PADS Homeless Shelter in Oak Park and L’arche Chicago—a faith-based community that supports and develops homes for the disabled.

Anne M. Burke

Justice, Illinois Supreme Court – First District






Anne M. Burke was born on Feb. 3, 1944, in Chicago. She received her B.A. degree in education from DePaul University in 1976 and her J.D. degree from IIT/Chicago-Kent College of Law in 1983. She was admitted to the Federal Court, Northern District of Illinois, in 1983, the United States Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit in 1985, and certified for the Trial Bar, Federal District Court in 1987. In that same year, Governor James Thompson appointed her Judge to the Court of Claims and, in 1991, she was reappointed by Governor Jim Edgar. In April 1994, she was appointed special counsel to the Governor for Child Welfare Services. In August 1995, she was appointed to the Appellate Court, First District. In 1996, she was elected to the Appellate Court, First District, for a full term. She is married to Alderman Edward M. Burke, and they are the parents of five children, Jennifer (Jim Murphy), Edward (Jackie), the late Emmett, Sarah, and Travis, as well as five grandchildren.

Peter O’Brien Sr.

Owner, O’Briens Restaurant & Bar; President & CEO, MADO Management, L.P.





Peter O’Brien, Sr. is President and CEO of MADO Management, LP, a diversified family business.  A division of the company, MADO Healthcare, LLC, owns and operates three specialized mental health rehabilitation facilities and one skilled and intermediate care facility for persons with mental illness and coexisting chronic illnesses, each delivering integrated primary and behavioral health recovery and rehabilitation.  MADO Healthcare is a principal partner with Be Well Partners in Health Care Coordination Entity, a provider organized health network, which helps individuals with mental health issues manage their well-being.  Peter has been on the forefront of statewide campaigns for mental healthcare advocacy, legislation, and reform and has been a chief convener and sponsor in the foundation of the Kennedy Forum Illinois.  MADO Healthcare’s first facility was created in 1961 and Peter worked with the homes’ populations throughout his youth and adolescent years.  In 1977 he began formally working with the company.

MADO Management is additionally invested in residential and commercial leasing and community development, particularly in Chicago’s Old Town Neighborhood, and owns and operates O’Briens Restaurant with locations in Old Town, O’Hare, and the downtown Riverwalk.  His enduring participation in local business and his community involvement has contributed to the growth and prosperity of beloved Old Town and Chicago.

Peter has served on the Metropolitan Pier & Exposition Authority and the Illinois Development & Finance Authority.  He currently serves as Chairman on the Capital Development Board of Illinois.

Peter and his wife Mimi have raised three daughters and one son.  Peter and his family’s involvement with mental illness became more personal in 1999 when his son and oldest child, the late Peter O’Brien, Jr., was first hospitalized and diagnosed with schizophrenia at the age of 20.  In the 12 years that Peter, Jr. lived with and struggled to come to terms with his illness, Peter and Mimi were steadfast in their own struggle with how to best help their son through the ups, downs and de-stigmatization of the disease.  Peter became evermore committed to compassion and understanding for those often overlooked, forgotten, and stigmatized, preventing individuals and families from identifying mental illness and seeking care.  It was Peter, Jr.’s journey that brought Peter, Sr. to the realization of the need for intensified involvement in mental health parity and in a system of coordinated care for persons with serious mental illness.  And two years after his son’s passing, Peter bravely shares his family’s story to help promote understanding and awareness for mental health and forges forward with the quest to support the practice and expansion of person-centered programs that follow those that suffer with mental illness through their needs for hospitalization, rehabilitation and community care.

the kennedy forum illinois

Tuesday, March 24, 2015


Continental Breakfast and Networking: 8:00 a.m. – 8:30 a.m.
Program:   8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.


Justice Anne M. Burke, Illinois Supreme Court

Laurence Msall, President, The Civic Federation

Kelly OBrien, Director, The Kennedy Forum Illinois; President & Founder, Ideaction Corps

Peter O’Brien, Sr., Owner, O’Briens Restaurant & Bar; MADO Management, LC.


The Kennedy Forum Illinois is a campaign to end the stigma against mental health disorders and substance use disorders.

One in four Americans is affected by mental health disorders or substance abuse disorders — 16 percent of all Illinoisans.  Yet, approximately two-thirds of people with symptoms of mental health challenges do not receive any treatment at all for their condition. Amazingly, one of the key barriers to receiving care is the continuing, and in some cases increasing, pervasive stigma against those with such challenges.

Untreated mental illnesses significantly contribute to lost productivity and absenteeism in the workplace, and limitations on mental health services significantly increase employers’ direct and indirect health care costs.  Nationally, mental illness and substance abuse annually cost employers an estimated $80 to $100 billion. To address this issue, The Kennedy Forum Illinois has launched a campaign to change both attitudes and practice.

Please join us as founding members of The Kennedy Forum Illinois, Peter O’Brien, Sr., Owner, O’Briens Restaurant & Bar, MADO Management, LC., Laurence Msall, President, The Civic Federation, Justice Anne M. Burke, Illinois Supreme Court, and Kelly O’Brien, Kennedy Forum Illinois Director, discuss this initiative, the project’s goals, the role of employers, and how corporate Chicago can be engaged.


Catalyst Ranch
656 West Randolph Street
Chicago, IL 60606