2017 Women Breaking the Silence About Mental Illness NY Luncheon

Image from the 2015 Women's Luncheon of Ellen Levine and Lee Woodruff


A Conversation Between Ellen Levine, Dr. Dolores Malaspina & Dr. Myrna Weissman

Hearst Magazine’s former Editorial Director Ellen Levine led a wide-ranging conversation with pioneering mental health researchers Dolores Malaspina, M.D. (schizophrenia) and Myrna Weissman, Ph.D. (mood and anxiety disorders) before a sold-out audience of 300 at the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation’s third “Women Breaking the Silence about Mental Illness” luncheon at the Metropolitan Club in Manhattan.

The event, co-chaired by board members Suzanne GoldenCarole Mallement and Barbara Streicker raised more than $250,000 to help the Foundation—the top non-governmental funder of mental health research grants—to support its Young Investigator Research program and accomplish its mission to alleviate the suffering caused by mental illness by funding research that will lead to better diagnosis and treatments.

“Our luncheon, which featured a conversation between Ellen Levine, who has done so much to help the public understand mental illness, and Drs. Malaspina and Weissman, pioneering researchers in mental health, showcases the vital collaboration between generous donors and scientists that has enabled the Foundation to fund the most innovative research in neuroscience and psychiatry,” says Jeffrey Borenstein, M.D., President and CEO of the Foundation, who notes that 100 percent of every dollar raised for research—all from private donations—goes to support research grants.

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Ellen Levine

Ellen Levine

Editorial Director
Hearst Magazines

Ellen Levine is responsible for strengthening current titles, developing new titles domestically and internationally, and evaluating opportunities for brand extensions, books, and digital alternatives for Hearst. Levine made publishing history in October 1994 as the first woman to be named editor-in-chief of Good Housekeeping. She was instrumental in launching O, The Oprah Magazine in 1999 and Food Network Magazine in 2008. Prior to Hearst Magazines, Levine served as editor-in-chief of Redbook (1990 to 1994) and Woman’s Day (1982 to 1990). She is the author of numerous books and articles, and her work has appeared in many publications, including The New York Times.

Dolores Malaspina, M.D., M.S., MSPH

Dolores Malaspina, M.D., M.S., MSPH

Anita & Joseph Steckler Professor of Psychiatry & Child Psychiatry
NYU Langone Medical Center

Dolores Malaspina applied to medical school with one aim–to understand the illness, schizophrenia, that afflicts her younger sister. Dr. Malaspina’s research has found that about a quarter of all people living with schizophrenia may owe their symptoms to spontaneous mutations in paternal sperm, and the older the father, the more likely his sperm is to carry such mutations. Still a practicing clinician, Dr. Malaspina also hosts a weekly “Psychiatry Show” on Sirius XM’s Doctor Radio and is a four-time Foundation Grantee including two Young, one Independent and one Distinguished Investigator Grant.

Myrna Weissman

Myrna Weissman, Ph.D.

Diane Goldman Kemper Family Professor of Epidemiology in Psychiatry
Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons

Dr. Weissman’s research is focused on understanding the rates and risks of mood and anxiety disorders using methods of epidemiology, genetics, neuroimaging, and the application of these findings to develop and test observation-based treatments and preventive interventions. She directs a three-generation study of families at high and low risk for depression who have been clinically studied for over 30 years. Dr. Weissman is a member of the Foundation’s Scientific Council, a three-time Distinguished Investigator Grantee, and member of the National Academy of Sciences.