Founder of Monahan Law Group, LLC

Joseph Monahan, JD, MSW, ACSW

Joseph T. Monahan is the founder of Monahan Law Group, LLC, and one of Illinois's preeminent mental health law attorneys. Under Mr. Monahan's direction, Monahan Law Group, LLC provides legal services to over 80 hospitals and numerous mental health clinics, child welfare agencies, and social service agencies. In addition to professional clients, the firm also represents individuals at all administrative and judicial proceedings levels. Mr. Monahan has tried countless guardianship, mental health, and child welfare cases over the past 36 years. From confidentiality of mental health records to same-sex adoption, Mr. Monahan has successfully argued cases at every level of the Illinois court system, including the Illinois Supreme Court. He has been appointed by the court to represent persons with disabilities in complex or extraordinary mental health cases. His background as a social worker makes him acutely aware of the legal issues that impact social service professionals and the people they serve. Joe is the Past President of the NASW Risk Retention Group Board of Directors, the malpractice insurance company for social workers, and has been an active member of NASW for decades. Joe continues to serve on the NASW Risk Retention Group Executive Committee. Mr. Monahan has been an engaging member of the legal community throughout his career and has played an integral role in developing important policies and legislation to assist individuals with disabilities and those involved in their care. As a recognized leader in his field, he is frequently invited to teach courses and provide training to law students, attorneys, medical and mental health professionals, and family members. Mr. Monahan is an Adjunct Associate Professor of Law at Loyola University Chicago School of Law, where he has taught mental health law for over 28 years. He has also taught at Northwestern University School of Law. Mr. Monahan has repeatedly served as Chair of the Illinois State Bar Association Mental Health Law Section Council. Throughout his longstanding career, he has been appointed to numerous other leadership positions in state and local not-for-profit groups. Mr. Monahan is a steadfast advocate for persons with disabilities, their families, and the professionals who serve them. He cares deeply about each of his clients and strives to represent them with principled advocacy and practical legal advice.

Asst. Vice President/Sr. Risk Analyst/Admin Superv.

Dina Larsen, CPHRM

Dina Larsen has been with Western Litigation (currently Gallagher) since 2006. In her current role, Dina provides various risk and claim-related services to a large multi-hospital Risk Retention Group (RRG) and a Risk Retention Group for social workers. Other of her responsibilities include assisting with claims and risk management; preparing statistical analysis and applicable reports reflecting claim and risk activity; interacting with risk managers at various facilities; participating in claims and risk subcommittee meetings; completing miscellaneous projects as requested; coordinating monthly risk management meetings in various locations throughout the U.S.; and serving as administrator for the online incident reporting system (R.L. Solutions) for several of the hospitals. Dina also provides claim management and routinely answers calls on a national hotline service for the NASW Risk Retention Group. She also holds a Certified Professional in Healthcare Risk Management (CPHRM) designation, an exclusive certification offered by the American Hospital Association (AHA) for healthcare risk managers. Ms. Larsen spent 18 years as the main paralegal for a medical malpractice group of attorneys. She was responsible for the preparation and maintenance of medical record summaries for specific files; reviewing all pleadings filed with courts or hearing processes; confirming legal citations and document citations; responsible for the office docketing system to ensure compliance with calendar deadlines and court rules; and working with co-defense counsel and clients on document preparation and production, and other items needed.

James Townsend

James "JT" Townsend is President and CEO of The Townsend Groups, LLC, a Health Care Consulting Company ( He has extensive experience in Managed Healthcare, Medical, and Mental Health companies. He has experience providing workshops on Strategic Business Planning, Management Development/Mentoring, Stress Management, and Managing Risk in Clinical Settings. JT served as Chief Operating Officer for a Major Healthcare Organization, National Vice-President of Medicaid Program Services, Vice-President of National Provider Contracting, Vice-President of National Development Medical Clinics, and Corporate Director of Mental Health. JT holds a Master's in Health Care Administration and a Master's in Clinical Social Work and was in clinical practice for twelve years. NASW involvement: Former Trustee (1992–1995) of the NASW Insurance Trust Board of Directors; President of Wisconsin Chapter (1978-1980). JT is currently a presenter for the NASW Assurance Services' risk management program. NASW Assurance Services: Current Director and Treasurer of NASW Insurance Company, Inc. (NASWIC). Past board member of the NASW Risk Retention Group, Inc. (currently Preferra Insurance Company RRG). Risk Management Presenter for over a decade.