Kathleen Mackenzie, EdD, MSW, LICSW, CMHIMP, is an award-winning clinical social worker, senior lecturer in the behavioral science program at Northeastern University, supervisor of clinical and behavioral services in the New Bedford school department, and a certified mental health integrative medicine provider. She graduated from Brown University with a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations. Dr. Mackenzie received her master’s in social work from Boston University, her doctorate in education from Northeastern University, and her certificate in mental health integrative medicine from the Mental Health Integrative Medicine Institute. In 2013, Dr. Mackenzie received the Hubie Jones Award from Boston University for her ongoing dedication to working with underserved and disenfranchised urban communities. She also received the Dean’s Medal from Northeastern University for her doctoral thesis “Teaching English Language Learners Within the General Education Setting: A Phenomenological Study.”
Dr. Mackenzie has worked as a clinical social worker and educator for the past 25 years in a variety of settings including: the K-12 public school system, an undergraduate program in behavioral science, a domestic violence and sexual assault program, a federal prison, an outpatient mental health clinic, and an inpatient psychiatric hospital. In addition to her formal education and professional experience, Dr. Mackenzie’s life experiences and personal challenges have motivated her to develop a scientific understanding of the factors that contribute to our overall functioning and wellbeing.
Born into an interracial family at a time when interracial marriage was still illegal in the south, Dr. Mackenzie grew up during one of the peak periods of racial tension between blacks and whites in America. Her biracial background gave her access to the perspectives and issues on both sides of the fence, so to speak, giving her a solid understanding of the personal and interpersonal dynamics behind bias, discrimination, racism, and disenfranchisement. Dr. Mackenzie has also had some challenging health issues, one of which resulted in the loss of her independence for a period of time. As she regained her health through the help of alternative medicine and a lot of research, she realized that individual, social, and group dysfunction has a lot to do with a lack of knowledge about how what we do to our bodies and brains not only impacts our health and our lives, but it also impacts the people around us, including family, co-workers, community members, and future generations.
Dr. Mackenzie’s knowledge on race and diversity, integrative health, mental health, wellbeing, nutrition, neuroscience, biochemistry, epigenetics, yoga, pranayama, qi gong, and Reiki, gives her a unique perspective on life. Her specific areas of expertise have led her to be invited to speak at numerous educational and medical institutions including Brown University, Boston University, Northeastern University, Bradley Hospital, St. Luke’s Hospital, and the New Bedford School Department. People who have heard Dr. Mackenzie speak say she has an uncanny ability to present difficult information in a way that is accessible to everyone, helps diffuse anger, build self-awareness, increase compassion, and foster healing.