Education and conversation are first steps in dealing with the difficult reality of mental illness. Learn about the newly launched Wellstone-Barlow Mental Health Initiative that is designed to do just that. Hear about the experiences of Ken Barlow, recently diagnosed with bipolar disease and whose father died with it. Know how he's dealt with the stigma attached to mental illness and what he's learned from it that has led him to 'jump start' the public discussion. Become familiar with the signs of mental illness or addiction and how to have safe and impactful conversations with those we love who are struggling.
Since 2007, Dave Wellstone has been a key figure in Washington D.C. with regards to the recent passage of the Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equality Act. He continues to be actively involved in these Congressional level conversations and is considered a force to be reckoned with, much like his father, the late Senator Paul D. Wellstone. Dave is in the battle to end the stigma associated with mental illness and addiction. Dave speaks of his own struggle with PTSD and depression following the plane crash which killed his father Paul, his mother Sheila and his sister Marcia. He is also an author with the recent publication of "Becoming Wellstone - Healing from Tragedy and Carrying on My Father's Legacy".
Ken Barlow is a meteorologist in the Twin Cities at KSTP-TV. Ken graduated from Plymouth State University (New Hampshire) with a BS in Meteorology/Atmospheric Science in 1984. Barlow has worked in the Twin Cities since 1990 and after a 4 year stint in Boston, MA and one year in Sacramento, CA, Ken returned to the Twin Cities with his family in 2010. Ken publicly disclosed his battle with bipolar I disorder in September of 2012 while hosting the annual NAMI Walk. Dave Wellstone was also at the walk as a keynote speaker. Ken's main interest now is the reduction of the stigma associated with mental illness, including addiction. Ken has been nationally recognized for excellence in his field. He has won Emmy Awards and been nominated for his work in Minnesota and New England. Additionally, Ken was an adjunct professor of broadcast meteorology at St. Cloud State University.
Registration is appreciated but not required to attend. Please call the office at 612.312.3400 or visit our registration page.