Category: Stories

Story of Michael Dote


Michael has schizophrenia and isn’t slowed down by it. Inspired by the world around him, he is a portrait photographer, running his own photo studio ( and own personal website ( He is currently being featured in a documentary he is producing entitled: “Unmasked: a bout with schizophrenia”, which is detailing his return to the sport of fencing after having the illness.

When Michael isn’t making pictures or fencing, he is usually spending time with his wife or practicing Nichiren Buddhism.

Documentary – Unmasked: A bout with Schizophrenia


Story of Elyn R. Saks




Elyn R. Saks is Associate Dean and Orrin B. Evans Professor of Law, Psychology, and Psychiatry and the Behavioral Sciences at the University of Southern California Gould Law School,  an expert in mental health law and a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship winner. Saks lives with schizophrenia and has written about her experience with the illness in her award-winning best-selling autobiography, The Center Cannot Hold, published by Hyperion Books in 2007.  Saks is also a cancer survivor.

Elyn Saks TED talk

Keynote: Elyn Saks, – Living a Productive Life

Living with schizophrenia

Story of Vijay (Robert) Gupta


Vijay (Robert) Gupta has performed internationally as a soloist and chamber musician since the age of eight; after joining the LA Philharmonic, he became the friend and violin instructor of Nathaniel Anthony Ayers—the homeless, mentally ill musician who was the subject of LA Times Columnist Steve Lopez’s book The Soloist, and the movie by the same title (starring Jaimie Foxx and Robert Downey Jr.). In his talks, Gupta explores music’s ability to change our brains, heal ailments, and ultimately, transform lives.

Robert Gupta’s ted talk

Lavin’s Mental Health Speaks Out

Story of Marsha Linehan


Marsha M. Linehan is an American psychologist and author. She is the creator of Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), a type of psychotherapy that combines behavioral science with Zen concepts like acceptance and mindfulness. She has been fighting with her own mental illness since she was 17.

NY Times Lives Restored – Profile

Linehan Institute

NY Times – Expert on Mental Illness Reveals Her Own Fight