President’s Report



Dear Friends,

Our busiest season to date is set to begin, and I wanted to thank those of you already participating in our campaign to Learn, Give Thanks and Resolve!

Life Matters Media was just awarded a $40,000 matching grant from the MR Bauer Foundation. We are most grateful for the confidence in our work, and we are asking you to “join the movement” in three simple steps outlined below.

We have received a great response so far, but I wanted to pass along the story and “steps” that one supporter, Nadine Boyle, was kind enough to share with us. Through her participation, Nadine honored her late husband, David R. Boyle, and late brother, Paul W. Harris, pictured below. May this inspire you to Learn, Give Thanks and Resolve!

David was the most fearless person I have ever met. Besides being my best friend and husband, he was a carpenter, a community activist and a lawyer. He took tremendous glee in confronting corrupt government officials and organized crime members. He wasn’t even afraid of his own death, however he knew his diagnosis would freak me out- and he was correct. I think that’s why we never spoke about end of life issues, because it terrified me to think of life without him. I think he was trying to bolster me and protect me from the reality that I was given. 

Paul was so kind and gentle and loved people. He could converse with a homeless person as easily as with a head of state. When he told me his disease was terminal, I froze. We hugged and cried, but neither of us could speak. Both David and Paul were young, they were at an age where you just don’t think death will visit your door. 

I know now the importance of letting family know your end of life plans. It is easier for your family to know that you want a burial or cremation, that health directives are in order, and where you want to spend your last days. So much is going on when a person is dying that to have “housekeeping” issues in place gives a family time to concentrate on a loved one’s passage rather than agonizing over the decision of when, where and how to let the loved one go.

You have inspired me to have the end of life conversations with my nieces and nephews. I plan to have a weekend morning gathering titled something like “Eggs Over the End.” – Nadine Boyle

We hope this story also inspires you to Learn, Give Thanks and Resolve! Here’s how:


As our children and grandchildren have headed back to school, we ask you to get back to learning, too. We invite you to determine how best to take care of those you love most. Check out our website to investigate how to talk about your end of life wishes with loved ones. Get to know their preferences, too!

Send us a message about what you found most helpful as you begin the process. Such feedback can guide us as we grow. Email me at


The MR Bauer Foundation will generously contribute an equal amount as supporters donate through December 31st, 2014. If we raise $40,000, we receive $40,000 more!

Please partner with us in this effort to expand our services online and throughout our Chicago community. Urgency and passion drive us to do this work in end of life education, but we couldn’t do it without you. This is an excellent opportunity to make your 2014 charitable contributions go twice as far. If you, a family member, friend, colleague or charitable organization with which you are familiar really “care” about end of life care, please share our goals! Or point us to them!

Consider a donation of $50 in memory of someone you wish you could have talked to about his or her end of life preferences.

Consider a donation of $50 in honor of someone with whom you have already had this conversation.

If you have reviewed our website or attended one of our educational programs, a $10 donation would be a great way to participate in this campaign. That $10 will turn to $20 through the generosity of the MR Bauer Foundation!

You can donate online:

You can also send donations through mail:
Life Matters Media
517 North Racine Unit 2
Chicago, IL

Please consider sharing a photo of the person you are remembering or honoring in your donation, as did Nadine. Tell us about him or her in an email to me at Let us know why you are donating, and we will honor that gift on our website. We look forward to sharing your stories and making your money go far!


We invite you to resolve to have such a conversation with someone else. Share your end of life preferences, and then learn theirs.

When you do, tell us how the conversation went! We would like to collect your stories about this conversation, so we may share the gift of experience with others looking to get started themselves.

That’s our campaign! Easy!


Life Matters Media is happy to present educational forums at the following locations. A * denotes an official Life Matters Media event. We will also list here some of the events and seminars our team is attending. 

If you are planning a program about end of life care, caregiving, or advance care planning, we are happy to help. Contact us at


“Starting the Conversation” *

This fall, Chicago’s seniors will learn how to initiate dialogue regarding their end of life care preferences, as Life Matters Media presents: “Starting the Conversation.” 
A 2012 study from the California Health Care Foundation reports that if diagnosed with a serious illness, 80 percent of those surveyed reported that they would want to have a conversation about end of life care with their physician. But only one in ten reported having done so. Less than 25 percent of Americans have completed advanced directives.

These conversations are ones we all know we should be having, but that we often find too difficult to start. We aim to make the process a little easier for Chicago seniors.

10 a.m. Thurs. Oct. 9 | Southeast Senior Center(1767 E. 79th St.) 312-747-0189
10 a.m. Fri. Oct. 10 | Northeast Senior Center(2019 W. Lawrence Ave.) 312-744-0784
10 a.m. Tues. Oct.14 | South Senior Center (9233 S. Burley Ave.) 773- 745-1282
10 a.m. Tues. Oct. 21 | Southwest Senior Center(6117 S. Kedzie Ave.) 312-747-0440
10 a.m. Thurs. Oct. 23 | Central West Regional Center (2102 W. Ogden Ave.) 312-746-5300
10 a.m. Tues. Oct. 28 | Abbott Park Senior Center (49 E. 95th St.) 312-745-3493
10 a.m. Thurs. Oct. 30 | Auburn Gresham Senior Center (1040 W. 79th St.) 312-745-4797
10 a.m. Thurs. Oct. 31 | Pilsen Senior Center(2021 S. Morgan) 312-743-0493
10 a.m. Tues. Nov. 4 | Garfield Ridge Senior Center (5674B S. Archer Ave.) 312-745-4255
10 a.m. Thurs. Nov. 6 | Edgewater Senior Center(5917 N. Broadway) 312-742-7502
10 a.m. Fri., Nov. 7 | Kelvyn Park Senior Center(2715 N. Cicero Ave.) 312-744-3799
10 a.m. Tues. Nov. 11 | Chatham Senior Center(8300 S. Cottage Grove) 312-745-0401
10 a.m. Thurs. Nov. 13 | Englewood Senior Center (653-657 W. 63rd St.) 312-745-3328
10 a.m. Thurs. Nov. 13 | Edgewater Senior Center (5917 N. Broadway) 312-742-7502
10 a.m. Fri. Nov. 4 |  Norwood Park Senior Center (5801 N. Natoma) 773-775-6071
10 a.m. Tues. Nov. 18 | Roseland Senior Center(10426 S. Michigan Ave.) 773-468-1901
10 a.m. Thurs. Nov. 20 | Portage Park Senior Center (4100 N. Long) 312-744-9022
10 a.m. Fri. Nov. 21 | Austin Senior Center (5071 W. Congress Parkway) 312-743-1538
10 a.m. Tues. Nov. 25 | North Center Senior Center (4040 N. Oakley) 312-744-4015



American Society for Bioethics and Humanities (ASBH) 2014 Annual Meeting

Bayfront Hotel
San Diego, CA

“Disparities and Barriers in Advance Care Planning: A City-Wide Analysis of Chicago Seniors”
Oct. 16-17 (12:30 p.m.)

“Engaging New Media to Drive Advance Care Planning”
Oct. 18  (11 a.m.)

“Advance Care Planning Among Seniors of a Diverse City”
The Westin Boston Waterfront
Boston, MA
October 24-25



Chicago’s only theater company composed of senior actors announces its 11th original musical comedy: “Bud’s Café Redux.” Though light-hearted and uplifting, the production is crafted around the decisions and preparation central to end of life experiences. Such preparation is critical to both our senior cast and to theater-goers citywide who either face similar issues or care for ill or aged parents, friends and other loved ones.

Following each performance, a post-show presentation will engage audiences with honest and educational discussion about the many facets of end of life preparation.

Life Matters Media will answer audience questions and empower them with tools to spell out and document their own end of life care wishes. Randi Belisomo, Dr. Mary Mulcahy and members of the Chicago End-of-Life Care Coalition will take the stage after each performance.

Purchase tickets here:

Here’s the cast after a recent appearance on CAN-TV!

“Bud’s Café Redux” *
Presented by Time of Your Life Players
Stage 773
1125 W. Belmont
Chicago, IL

2 p.m. Wednesday Oct. 22
2 p.m. Saturday Oct. 25
2 p.m. Sunday Oct. 26
2 p.m. Wednesday Oct. 29
2 p.m. Saturday Nov. 1
2 p.m. Sunday Nov. 2
2 p.m. Wednesday Nov. 5
2 p.m. Saturday Nov. 8
2 p.m. Sunday November 9
2 p.m. Wednesday Nov. 12
7:30 p.m. Friday Nov. 14
2 p.m. Saturday Nov. 15
2 p.m. Wednesday Nov. 19
7:30 p.m. Friday Nov. 21
2 p.m. Saturday Nov. 22

Please visit the Time of Your Life Players’ website:

And don’t forget to Purchase tickets!:

Thanks so much for your support. If you made it this far, you have a real interest in end of life education. So check out some features from our website, like the following from Life Matters Media healthcare columnist Bruce Japsen. He explains new legislation impacting the hospice industry:

And the World Federation Conference for “death with dignity” came to Chicago last week, drawing supporters and opponents from across the country. Our reporter Daniel Gaitan was there and filed this complete report:


Randi Belisomo
President and Co-Founder