Living in Recovery: A Panel Discussion on Eating Disorders
April 2nd, 2014. 6.30-8.00pm. Reeve Theater
This panel will focus on what life looks like for those with eating disorder histories now that they are in recovery. We will be joined by Kitty Westin and Matt Wetsel via Google Hangout. Both of these speakers are well-regarded activists for eating disorder recovery. Our Director, Geneva Murray, previously worked with Kitty Westin at the Eating Disorders Coalition for Research, Policy, and Action - where Kitty Westin served as the board President. We are delighted for their participation.
Kitty Westin is the founder and former President of the Anna Westin Foundation which is now known as The Emily Program Foundation. The Anna Westin Foundation was started by Anna’s family after Anna died of anorexia in 2000. Kitty is on the board of The Emily Program Foundation, the Eating Disorders Coalition for Research, Policy & Action, and she is a former member of the Minnesota Governors Advisory Counsel on Mental Heath, the Minnesota Mental Health Legislative Network and numerous other boards and counsels.
Since Anna’s death Kitty has spoken to millions of people about eating disorders through personal appearances and the media. She has been invited to tell her story to a variety of groups in Minnesota and across the United States and the world. Kitty has been an outspoken advocate for people who struggle with eating disorders, their families and friends, and professionals who work in the field.
Kitty has received numerous awards for her advocacy efforts including the EDC Advocacy Award, the Redbook Mothers and Shakers Award, the AED Meehan/Hartley Leadership Award for Public Service and/or Advocacy, the Park Nicollet Community Service Award and the National Eating Disorders Association Inspiration Award.
After suffering from anorexia as an undergraduate in college, Matt Wetsel got involved with the Eating Disorders Coalition (EDC) in 2007 doing volunteer grassroots lobby work. Inspired by the people he met there, he became active in his local community organizing occasional guest speakers and giving talks to help educate others about eating disorders. He joined the EDC Junior Board in Spring 2011, focusing on volunteer recruitment and state-level organizing year-round.
He started his blog, …Until Eating Disorders Are No More, in early 2011. The name was inspired by the legislative efforts of the Eating Disorders Coalition to help end eating disorders through effective policy reform, public education, and properly funded research. More recently, his attention has shifted to examining gender constructs and how they negatively impact mental health and eating disorders in particular.
When not working on eating disorder advocacy, Matt has a background in research, having worked as the primary data collector for a large, federally funded research grant, the Traumatic Brain Injury Model Systems (TBIMS) Project since 2008.
Matt has degrees in Psychology and Religious Studies, and holds a Graduate Studies Certificate in Gender, Sexuality, & Women’s Studies from Virginia Commonwealth University.