Mikhael Bortz is a social worker and attorney who transitioned into the behavioral health space after a long career as a commercial litigator.  As DBSA’s Community Engagement Manager, Mikhael zealously advocates for legislation and policies that will improve equitable access to quality behavioral health care. Every day, she works to actualize DBSA’s efforts to ensure that the peer voice is incorporated and respected at all levels of the behavioral health care system. While obtaining her MSW, Mikhael worked across the City of Chicago as a peer specialist serving people with severe and persistent mental health diagnoses. As a person with lived experience of mental health and substance use challenges, Mikhael is especially passionate about dispelling the societal and self-stigma that surrounds mental health issues.

Outside the office, Mikhael is a multi-instrumentalist songwriter and performer, an ancient history and archaeology enthusiast, and an honored steward of Wicket the Bulldog.”