Cover photo for Richard  Warner's Obituary
Richard  Warner Profile Photo
1942 Richard 2015

Richard Warner

November 30, 1942 — August 27, 2015

Dr. Richard Warner died at his home on Thursday, August 27, after 71 energetic and optimistic years, eight of them with a cancer he didn't so much fight as work around. Even in the face of death he continued larger than life, traveling to London as recently as mid-July and chairing a board meeting at his dining room table three days before he died. Dick was well known in the Boulder community as the medical director of the Mental Health Center of Boulder County for 30 years and founding director of Colorado Recovery for the subsequent 9. His core professional vision was that people with severe mental illness can recover and can lead full and productive lives in the community. His 1985 book Recovery from Schizophrenia influenced practitioners around the world. Dick published several more books and numerous articles about alternatives to hospitals, how to fight the stigma of mental illness, and a broad array of related subjects. His work with the World Psychiatric Association and other international institutions influenced programs in many countries. He was the recipient of the 2007 Daily Camera Pacesetter Award for Science/Medicine/ Health. Dick was born in Croydon, Surrey, on September 6, 1943. He was educated at Wimborne Grammar School in Dorset, England, and received his medical training at Kings College London. Among his most important professional influences were innovative community psychiatry programs at the two hospitals where he did his residencies: Littlemore Hospital in Oxford, and Dingleton Hospital, in Melrose, Scotland. Early on in his career he began to wonder about cross-cultural recovery rates from major mental illness and on his own time he began to comb the literature for primary sources, which convinced him that having a productive social role was key to what, in fact, could be very good outcomes from major mental illnesses. This insight, quite radical at the time, fueled the vision that drove the rest of his long career and inspired many who read his writings, heard him talk, or worked alongside him. It also motivated him to pursue a Master's Degree in Anthropology from the University of Colorado. A life-long multi-tasker, Dick was also a gourmet chef, an accomplished photographer, a fluent Italian speaker, an A-wave runner, a voracious reader, and a connoisseur of music from jazz to opera. Friends and neighbors will miss the gourmet pizza extravaganzas Dick mounted in his backyard, using a wood-fired oven he built himself. Even more, they will remember the welcoming smile that assured them they were just the person he most wanted to see. He is survived by Lucy, his wife of 45 years, son Adam and fiancée Kristine Jakovleva of London; son David and wife Julie Law of Washington DC; and sister Janet of St. Clement des Levées, France.
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Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Service

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Starts at 2:00 pm (Mountain time)

The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR)

1850 Table Mesa Drive, Boulder, CO 80305

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