Bertha Purnell

Founder and CEO, Mothers On a Mission

2021 Chicago Peace Fellows

Bertha is the mother of 5 and the grandmother of 10. Her 2nd youngest son died at 3 months of SIDS. Her youngest son, Maurice, was killed by gun violence at 28. Because of that incident, her life and career as a nurse changed course. Bertha started Mothers On a Mission 28 to help families get services also to be a support. They join in with other survivors organizations to unit and support survivors on a bigger scale. She is also the Chapter Coordinator for CSSJ, which is a national organization supporting all survivors and others such as those reentering from prison and the currently incarcerated. Bertha is on the board of Nature120 which is an organization working to heal trauma for the 120 minute outdoors recommended by standards and more. She is on the community board of Axon hosting community meetings and town halls with the community including youth in the company. Bertha strives to do as much as she can without causing additional trauma. She prides herself on being a credible messenger and a listener who desires to learn and teach what she knows.

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