Comedian, Actor, and Writer John Mulaney Accepts McLean Award

March 10, 2024

On Friday, November 3, more than 350 supporters and staff of McLean Hospital gathered at Boston’s Intercontinental Hotel for the 2023 Annual Dinner.

After a three-year pause on the annual gathering, attendees delighted in the opportunity to reconnect with friends, both old and new, and to celebrate the hospital’s mission and progress.

McLean President and Psychiatrist in Chief Scott L. Rauch, MD, used his introductory remarks as a chance to thank the McLean community, expressing his personal gratitude for all who have supported the hospital over the years.

“Every one of you has contributed to the McLean story,” he said. “Your presence, your advocacy, and your support are an enormous part of what makes this hospital special.”

The evening also honored comedian and actor John Mulaney with this year’s McLean Award for his efforts toward destigmatizing the topics of mental illness and addiction.

Group smiling with award

Dr. Scott L. Rauch, John Mulaney, and McLean’s Board Chair Carol A. Vallone

Mulaney spoke candidly about his experience with addiction, relapse, and recovery, sharing that “recovery works slow, or at least it does for me. Every single day has its own changes. I’m happy that tonight I’m standing in a good moment in that process.”

Mulaney shared moments of vulnerability and honesty interspersed with his own wry humor.

Earlier that day, Mulaney visited McLean—touring the campus and meeting with hospital leadership.

His remarks reflected appreciation for McLean’s work and he thanked the clinicians and staff who daily provide care and offer hope to those who are living through some of their most difficult moments.

“The work you’re doing is beyond awe-inspiring, and I get the sense that you’re making a lot of minds much better.”

Carol Vallone, chair of the McLean Board of Trustees, commended Mulaney for discussing his struggles so publicly and emphasized the impact of personal storytelling.

“As we go our separate ways, I would like to leave you with one thought, and that is to be mindful of the power of sharing stories,” said Vallone in her closing remarks.

“Someone in your life has a story to tell, someone in your life needs to be heard. Thank you for sharing, thank you for listening.”

Learn more about past recipients of the McLean Award

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