Wednesday 1 February 2017


Confronting the Crisis in Mental Health

Dennis Stevenson, Founder, and Cynthia Joyce, CEO, of MQ: Transforming Mental Health

Mental health problems have reached epidemic proportions in the UK and globally, especially amongst young people. Many of us have direct experience of this problem, though not all are as willing to discuss it – or do something about it – as Dennis (Lord) Stevenson who openly admitted 20 years ago that he suffers from episodic clinical depression.

At this event we’ll hear from Dennis about his experience and motivation also from Cynthia Joyce, CEO of MQ: Transforming Mental Health, the mental health research foundation that Dennis founded to understand, treat and ultimately prevent mental health problems, especially amongst the young.

Dennis Stevenson

Dennis has divided his life 50/50 between not-for-profit and for profit – where his main activity has been starting new businesses (although he’s also chaired large companies such as GPA, Pearson and HBOS). On the not-for-profit side, he was Chairman of the Trustees of the Tate Gallery for ten years when Tate Modern was built, Chairman of the largest youth organisation in the UK, more recently Chairman of Inter Mediate, which focuses on negotiation and mediation in the most difficult circumstances, and the founder of MQ.

Cynthia Joyce

Cynthia Joyce is Chief Executive of MQ: Transforming Mental Health.  She serves on the steering committee of the International Alliance of Mental Health Research Funders and works with funding groups here in the UK to help coordinate research efforts to their greatest effect. Cynthia is also serves on the board of the SMA Trust.

In past years, Cynthia has served as Executive Director of the SMA Foundation in New York City and Executive Director of the American Academy of Neurology Foundation in Minneapolis; she has also held positions in industry at Ciba-Geigy (now Novartis) and Cephalon. She holds a BA from the University of Chicago and an MS from the University of Minnesota.

MQ: Transforming Mental Health

MQ is an independent charity which was founded with the backing of the Wellcome Trust. The charity supports research to improve the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mental illness, and advocates for improved awareness and understanding of the importance of mental health in our society.

Focusing its efforts on young people – 75% of mental health problems start before the age of 18 – it supports the world’s best researchers, invests in understanding the most effective therapies and has taken the lead in using big data to produce a better understanding and definition of mental illness.