Linda Naomi Baron-Katz. raised as a modern orthodox Jew, where mental illness became a factor throughout her life. It had started with her mother when she was in the fifth grade. Her mother had suffered a nervous breakdown and was diagnosed with acute depression. This gave Linda and her family a huge amount of stress. As she was growing up into adulthood, her mother’s illness affected her in ways that she too would become a depressed person. Linda had difficulties making friends, developing positive relationships, and maintaining employment. After she graduated college, she also suffered from a mental illness and was diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
Through the years she was faced with challenges that were difficult to overcome, but worked hard to achieve recovery. As part of her recovery from mental illness, she became active and volunteered for a variety of mental health organizations. Linda became a member of NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness or formerly called National Alliance for the Mentally Ill) and published articles about her life in New York City Voices, a newspaper for people with mental illness to share their personal recovery stories. Both of these agencies helped fight against stigma and other issues pertaining to mental illness. Soon after, Linda found employment working for agencies that help others with mental illness reach their goals and dreams. Today, Linda is happily married, a Certified Peer Specialist at The Jewish Board, and is an author who has published a book titled Surviving Mental Illness, My Story which won a Silver Medal Award by Readers Favorite for best non-fiction/autobiography and came in First Place and won the Life Journeys Award for best memoir/biography from Readers Views. Through this book she describes all of her challenges that she dealt with while having a mental illness and how she found her way back towards establishing a wellness by staying mentally and physically strong.