MAYWOOD, Ill. – J. Paul O’Keefe, MD, medical director of the Medical Specialties Practice at Loyola Outpatient Center as well as medical director of the Maywood Primary Care Clinic, was presented the esteemed 2015 Dennis F. Kelly Award by Catholic Charities. The award is given to a member of the Board of Advisors who has exhibited outstanding service to the mission of Catholic Charities. Dr. O’Keefe also serves as professor and chair of the Department of Medicine at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine.
A board member since 1997, Dr. O’Keefe credits his father, who was also a Catholic Charities board member, with inspiring his sense of social justice and charity. Of his medical philosophy, Dr. O’Keefe says, “I’ve never noted a difference between the insured and the uninsured. I enjoy the privilege of providing service to people. God is present in everyone, especially the poor and the outcast. Justice demands that we do something to provide help when we can.”
From the earliest days of his medical career at Loyola University Medical Center, Dr. O’Keefe has had a passion for serving the poor, specifically people without access to medical care. As a young physician at Loyola, he volunteered at free health clinics on Chicago’s South Side while teaching at Loyola’s Stritch School of Medicine. In 1987, he was the founding director of the Cook County Department of Public Health’s Maywood Clinic. Dr. O’Keefe also established a multi-disciplinary AIDS clinic at Loyola, which combined health care with social and spiritual support.
His tireless dedication to the community is evidenced by his roles as chair of the HIV/AIDS Task Force of the Archdiocese of Chicago and as a member of the Health Advisory Board of
Catholic Charities of Chicago. Dr. O’Keefe’s devotion to teaching and the service of others has been recognized with numerous awards, including the Medical Alumni Association’s Golden Apple Teaching Award in 1992 and the Spirit of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Award.
Dr. O’Keefe was honored in 2004 with the University’s Stritch Medal for his service to students, the community and the medical profession. Throughout his career, Dr. O’Keefe has donated his time and skill to bring essential healthcare services to communities in desperate need, consistently honoring the service-focused, Jesuit-Catholic values that have shaped his life and work.