Board of Directors
Like our powerful grassroots network, the PAN Board of Directors is a highly motivated group of individuals who are determined to improve the lives of people living with Parkinson’s disease. Each of them has personally felt the devastating effects of Parkinson’s, many by being diagnosed with the disease themselves and others because of a loved one who has PD. With their strong voice, both in Washington, D.C. and across the country, Board members lead our advocacy efforts as we work together to effect change.
Ronald H. Galowich, J.D., Chair – Illinois
Ronald H. Galowich founded international software company Initiate Systems, Inc. in October 1994 and served as a member of the Board of Directors and as its Chairman since its inception. He previously served as the Chief Executive Officer from October 1994 to July 2002. In a very successful transaction for Initiate’s shareholders, in March 2010, IBM purchased all of the outstanding corporate stock of Initiate Systems in an all-cash transaction. In 1982, Mr. Galowich co-founded with Dr. Robert Becker First Health Group Corp., a publicly traded healthcare cost containment company. He held various executive positions there, including Executive Vice President, Corporate Secretary, and General Counsel, while also serving as a Director of the company from June 1982 to February 2005 and as the Chairman of the Audit Committee and the Compensation Committee. He was the Director of Real Estate Operations for the Pritzker Family from April 1981 to November 1990. Ron serves on the boards of directors of a number of private and not-for-profit corporations, including as a member and Past President of the Board of Visitors of the University of Illinois College of Law; a member of the Executive Committee of the Cancer Leadership Institute of Rush University Medical Center; Past President, Director, and founding member of the Joliet Junior College Foundation; and past member of the Board of Directors of the Joliet YMCA. Mr. Galowich actively practiced law from 1959 until 1981 in Joliet and Chicago, Illinois, during which time he was also a major real estate developer in Joliet. He served in the U.S. Army Ordnance Corps and Judge Advocate General Corps to the rank of Captain. He holds a B.S. and a J.D. from the University of Illinois. He has three children and is married to the former Linda Kroupa. They reside in Chicago, Illinois. Mr. Galowich joined the PAN Board in January 2008, becoming Chairman in October 2009.
Ed Weidenfeld, J.D., Vice Chair – Washington, D.C.
Mr. Ed Weidenfeld has practiced law in the Washington, D.C. area for over 40 years. He began his career as an attorney for Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson in New York, and in 1971 he moved to Washington, D.C. and served as the Counsel and Staff Director for the Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs for the House of Representatives. After his work in the House of Representatives, he joined McKenna, Connor & Cunio where he practiced corporate matters and administrative litigation. In 1983, he started his own firm, Ed Weidenfeld Law, P.C., where he currently practices. Mr. Weidenfeld was appointed by the President of the United States to the Council on the Administrative Conference of the United States in 1981, 1985, 1988, and 2010. He has previously served as Director of the Danny Kaye and Sylvia Fine Kay Foundation, and Invision Technologies, Inc. He also served as the Chairman of the Advisory Board for the Center for High Performance Computing, Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Mr. Weidenfeld is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin and Columbia University Law School. He is admitted to the Bar of New York, the District of Columbia, Maryland, Georgia, and the Supreme Court of the United States. He joined the PAN Board in September 2011.
Jodie T. Allen, Treasurer – Washington, D.C.
Ms. Jodie Allen serves as Senior Editor at The Pew Research Center, a nonpartisan "fact tank" that provides information on the issues, attitudes, and trends shaping America and the world. Prior to joining The Pew Research Center, Ms. Allen worked for U.S. News & World Report, where she was a managing editor and the author of a column on the political economy. Ms. Allen also served as Washington bureau chief for Slate magazine, editor of The Washington Post "Outlook" section, and a member of the Post’s editorial page staff. In addition, Ms. Allen spent part of her career as a policy analyst, focusing on demographic and political trends affecting tax and transfer payment programs. Ms. Allen joined the PAN Board in December 2008.
Greg Wasson, J.D., Secretary – California
Mr. Greg Wasson has spent a decade as an active member of the Parkinson’s community, most of which has been spent as an advocate with PAN. He helped design and implement PAN’s original National Grassroots Advocacy Program, working closely with former Board Member, John Rogers. Pursuant to recruiting grassroots advocates Mr. Wasson and his wife, AJ Wasson, traveled more than a million miles by air and auto over nearly two years, speaking about advocacy through PAN. Mr. Wasson has testified numerous times before the California State Legislature to help pass the first legislation in the U.S. to specifically fund embryonic stem cell research. He also testified before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee as a patient advocate in favor of regenerative medicine. He was also on the working group that helped pass California’s $3 billion stem cell initiative, Prop 71. He has also served on the PAN Grassroots Policy Committee and as a Senior Advisor for legislative issues at PAN. Mr. Wasson joined the PAN Board in July 2009.
Robin Anthony Elliott – New York
Mr. Robin Elliott has been Executive Director of the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation, Inc. (PDF) since October 1996. He has been active in development, communications, and non-profit management in New York City for more than 30 years. In that time, he has served as Vice President for Development and External Affairs at Teachers College, Columbia University (1988-95) and (with the same title) at Hunter College, City University of New York (1982-88); as Deputy to the Chancellor for University Relations at the City University of New York (1979-82); and as director of information and education at the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (1971-79). Mr. Elliott began his service to the PAN Board in March 1998.
COL (ret.) Karl E. Friedl, Ph.D. – Maryland
In 2012 COL (ret.) Karl E. Friedl, Ph.D., retired from the US Army after thirty years of service. His last assignment was as the Director, Telemedicine and Advanced Technology Research Center (TATRC) for the US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command in Frederick, Maryland. He received his Doctor of Philosophy (Integrative Physiology) from the University of California at Santa Barbara in the University’s Institute of Environmental Stress in 1984. As a research physiologist, he has published 150 papers, book chapters, and other reviews and technical reports. As a research manager and director, he has facilitated research cooperation between government agencies including the DoD, VA, NIH, NASA, FDA, and USDA and organized and directed research initiatives such military women’s health, Gulf War illnesses, bone health, and Parkinson’s research programs. His research focus areas are applications of metabolism and neurobiology technologies, assessment methods and metrics of research success, and strategies to accelerate research translation to practice. He is a member of the American Society for Nutrition, AMSUS, Endocrine Society, and a fellow of AIMBE. His awards and recognition include Legion of Merit (2d OLC), Morris K. Udall Award for Public Service, Ronald and Nancy Reagan Alzheimer’s Research Award, Founder’s Award for the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, Order of Military Medical Merit, and Diabetes Technology Society Research Leadership Award. COL (ret.) Friedl joined the PAN Board in January 2013.
Clarence T. Kipps, Jr. — Virginia
Mr. Clarence Kipps is retired from the Washington, D.C. firm of Miller & Chevalier, where he practiced law for more than 50 years. He was a trial and appellate lawyer specializing in government contracts. Lockheed, General Motors, Getty Oil, and Hughes Aircraft were among his favored clients. Mr. Kipps was active in the Bar, having been President of the U.S. Federal Circuit Bar Association and Chair of the Federal Circuit and U.S. Court of Federal Claims Advisory Councils. He lobbied a number of bills through Congress, including the Government Contracts Disputes Act of 1978 (provided a statutory base for resolving government contract disputes) and the West Valley Demonstration Act (provided for Department of Energy to remediate a nuclear contaminated site in New York). He was married to the late Mary D. Kipps, who had Parkinson’s disease and died in 2010. Mr. Kipps has served on the Dinner Committee for the Morris K. Udall Awards Dinner for many years. Mr. Kipps began his service to the PAN Board in October 2010.
Morton Kondracke – Washington, D.C.
A journalist for more than 45 years, Mr. Morton Kondracke has covered nearly every phase of American politics and foreign policy in newspapers and magazines, on TV, radio, and the Internet. From 1991 until his retirement in 2011, Mr. Kondracke was the Executive Editor of Roll Call, Capitol Hill’s leading newspaper. He wrote “Pennsylvania Avenue,” a weekly column on national politics and foreign policy, syndicated through United Features Syndicate and carried regularly on Realclearpolitics.com. Mr. Kondracke is a regular commentator on the Fox News Channel. He is also the author of Saving Milly: Love, Politics and Parkinson's Disease, published in 2001. His late wife, Milly Kondracke, lost her long struggle with Parkinson's disease in July 2004. Mr. Kondracke also serves on the Board of the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research and Communities in Schools for the Nation’s Capital. He is a graduate of Dartmouth College and served as a Neiman Fellow at Harvard University (1973-74). He is a member of the Dartmouth Board of Trustees. Mr. Kondracke began his service on the PAN Board in April 1996.
Zachary T. Levine, M.D. – Washington, D.C.
Dr. Zachary T. Levine, M.D., is a board-certified neurosurgeon with advanced training in cranial base surgery and stereotactic/functional surgery for movement disorders. In addition, he has extensive experience in deep brain stimulation and image-guided, computer-assisted microsurgery. He is currently the Chair of Neurosurgery and Director of Functional Neurosurgery at Holy Cross Hospital. He is also a Fellow of the American Academy of Neurological Surgery. A graduate of Dartmouth College, Dr. Levine completed medical school at New York University School of Medicine in the Honors Program and did his residency in neurological surgery at the George Washington University Medical Center. Dr. Levine has taught cranial base surgical approaches at national meetings and has authored original articles and book chapters in cranial base and neurovascular surgery. He currently holds a patent for cell transplantation for neuro-degenerative diseases and movement disorders. Dr. Levine is a Diplomat of the National Board of Medical Examiners. He holds numerous memberships in professional societies, and he has received multiple awards and honors for his work. He also serves on the medical advisory board of the Parkinson Foundation of the National Capital Area. He resides in the D.C. metropolitan area with his wife and two daughters. Dr. Levine began his service to the PAN Board in May 2012.
Daniel M. Lewis, J.D. – Maryland
Mr. Daniel M. Lewis has been active with PAN since 2007, most recently serving as the congressional coordinator for Maryland’s 8th District. He has also served on the Udall Dinner Committee and PAN’s Grassroots Policy Committee. Dan serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Parkinson Foundation of the National Capital Area, sits on its Executive Committee, and has chaired its Development Committee. Mr. Lewis also founded and continues to lead the Sumner PD Support Group. He was first diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 1994 and had deep brain stimulation surgery in 2005. He is a graduate of Yale University (1966) and Yale Law School (1969). He served as a legislative assistant to U.S. Senator Joseph D. Tydings in 1969-70 and as chief legislative assistant to Senator Edmund S. Muskie during the 1972 presidential campaign. Mr. Lewis joined the Washington law firm of Arnold & Porter in 1972 and practiced there until his retirement in 2006. Working with Arnold & Porter, he has been involved in the defense of the human embryo research funding litigation on behalf of the Coalition for the Advancement of Medical Research. Mr. Lewis established the firm’s corporate bankruptcy practice in 1982 and served on its Policy, Compensation and Lateral Committees. His last major bankruptcy matter was representing US Airlines in its successful reorganization in 2006. Mr. Lewis joined the PAN Board in January 2011.
Joyce A. Oberdorf – Florida
Ms. Joyce Oberdorf was named President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Parkinson Foundation in March 2008. Prior to her position at NPF, Ms. Oberdorf was Vice President, Policy, Planning and Communications for the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research. In that role, she was responsible for strategic planning projects, public policy and communications and marketing. Prior to joining the Fox Foundation, Ms. Oberdorf was Vice President, Corporate Public Relations at Aetna Inc., one of the nation’s leading health insurance providers. In addition to oversight of all corporate and financial communications, as part of the senior management team, she was also tapped to help devise strategies for broader projects, such as corporate center restructuring and revamping health business products to be more consumer-centric. Ms. Oberdorf holds an A.B. degree, cum laude, from Douglass College, Rutgers University and an M.A. degree from Northern Illinois University.
Cheryl Lynn Prescott – Wisconsin
Cheryl Lynn Prescott began her leadership with PAN as a PAN Congressional Coordinator for the 5th Congressional District of Wisconsin in 2004. Her father, George Prescott, the former owner and chief executive officer of Prescott Supermarkets, Inc., announced his diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease in 2001. Ms. Prescott is also on the Board of Directors of the Wisconsin Parkinson’s Association, an organization of over 7,000 members and 60 support groups. She was first elected to the PAN Board in October 2005 and rejoined the Board in October 2012.
Karl A. Robb – Virginia
Mr. Karl Robb began his involvement with Parkinson’s disease advocacy soon after his diagnosis in 1990. He has been a PAN advocate since the inception of the organization. In 1995, his wife, Angela, joined him in his Parkinson’s disease advocacy efforts and together, they serve as PAN Virginia State Directors. Mr. Robb’s advocacy efforts include meeting with Members of Congress, speaking on behalf of PAN in the media, and working to educate his local community about Parkinson’s disease. Representing PAN, he has appeared on local Washington, D.C. newscasts, local access television, BBC Radio, and national news channels to speak about living with Parkinson’s disease and issues affecting the Parkinson’s community. Mr. and Mrs. Robb speak at a wide range of support groups, conferences, and symposia to alert people to the importance of advocating on behalf of PAN. The two were recognized by PAN for their advocacy efforts in 2008 with the Murray Charters Award For Outstanding Service to the Parkinson’s Community. Mr. Robb is finishing a book on Parkinson’s disease and is an avid photographer. He joined the PAN Board in October 2009
Todd Sherer, Ph.D. – New York
Dr. Todd Sherer joined The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research as Associate Director, Research Programs in April 2004; he was promoted to Vice President, Research Programs in June 2006 and Chief Program Officer in November 2010. He assumed the role of CEO in May 2011. In this role, he leads a team that proactively manages the world’s largest privately funded Parkinson’s disease research portfolio. Every year, this team reviews up to 800 grant proposals to fund approximately $45 million in Parkinson’s research, with a strong focus on pre-clinical therapeutic development and clinical research. At any given time, Dr. Sherer’s team manages up to 300 active grants, working closely with academic and industry scientists to help speed promising new discoveries from research labs to pharmacy shelves. In addition to research funding, Dr. Sherer’s team leads an effort to engage the pharmaceutical industry in Parkinson’s disease drug development and encourage and expand subject participation in clinical research. Prior to joining the Foundation, Dr. Sherer was a respected Parkinson’s disease bench researcher with over 30 peer-reviewed scientific publications. He joined the PAN Board in May 2011.
John M. Spratt, Jr., LL.B — South Carolina
Mr. John Spratt served as a U.S. Representative of South Carolina’s 5th district from 1983-2011. He presided as chairman of the U.S. House Committee on the Budget, and he also served on the U.S. House Committee on Armed Services. While in Congress, Mr. Spratt was a strong voice for Parkinson’s issues. In 1997, he co-sponsored the Morris K. Udall Parkinson’s Disease Research Act. He was a long-time member of the Bicameral Congressional Caucus on Parkinson’s Disease. Mr. Spratt also strongly supported the Department of Defense Parkinson’s research program, and he voted in favor of ground-breaking embryonic stem cell research. One of Mr. Spratt’s proudest accomplishments was the Balanced Budget Act of 1997, which he co-authored, putting the federal budget in a surplus of the first time in 30 years. In March 2010, Mr. Spratt was appointed to the President’s National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform. Mr. Spratt is a graduate of Davidson College and Yale Law School. He also earned a M.A. degree from Oxford University while studying on a Marshall Scholarship. He joined the PAN board in July 2011.
Anne J. Udall, Ph.D. — Oregon
Dr. Anne Udall is the Vice President of Professional Development for the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA), headquartered in Portland, Oregon. NWEA, a 25-year-old nonprofit, is committed to partnering to help all children learn. Their assessments are used extensively throughout the United States and the world. Helping educators use data to make the best decisions possible for helping students learn is the focus of their growing professional development services. From 2001 until May 2010, Dr. Udall was the Executive Director of the Lee Institute in Charlotte, North Carolina, and was involved in a number of collaborative efforts in the region focused on education, senior citizens, environment, and health care. Dr. Udall is the daughter of the late Representative Morris K. Udall and serves as the Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Udall Foundation, a federal foundation dedicated to leadership development and conflict resolution in a number of key policy areas. Dr. Udall has more than 20 years of experience as an educator, facilitator, and trainer. She served as the Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools in North Carolina. She earned her undergraduate and master’s degrees from the University of New Mexico in education and was awarded a Ph.D. in education from the University of Arizona. Dr. Udall was the Founding Chair of PAN’s Board of Directors in 1993 and most recently rejoined the Board in October 2010.
Carol Walton – New Jersey
Ms. Carol Walton’s dedication to advocacy started in 1981, when her father was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. In 1994, Ms. Walton attended the PAN Research & Public Policy Forum and became an advocate for research. She spent a lot of time walking the halls of Congress - and helped to get the Morris K. Udall Parkinson's Research Act passed in 1997. During the Forum, she met Margaret and Martin Tuchman, who were also advocates and wanted to raise funds for research. They offered Ms. Walton the opportunity to head their foundation, and in 1999 she moved to New Jersey to start the Parkinson Alliance. The Parkinson Alliance is the umbrella organization responsible for: The Parkinson’s Unity Walk – the largest single-day grassroots awareness and fundraising event for PD research; Team Parkinson – an organization whose goal is to raise awareness, raise money for research for a cure, and empower people with PD to take charge of their lives through exercise; and DBS-STN.org – a web-based organization devoted to improving the quality of life in the deep brain stimulation community. Ms. Walton began her service to the PAN Board in February 2006.
Ms. Cokie Roberts is a political commentator for ABC News, providing analysis for all network news programming. From 1996-2002 she and Sam Donaldson co-anchored the weekly ABC interview program This Week. Ms. Roberts also serves as Senior News Analyst for National Public Radio. In her more than forty years in broadcasting, she has won countless awards, including three Emmys. Ms. Roberts has been inducted into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame and was cited by the American Women in Radio and Television as one of the 50 greatest women in the history of broadcasting. She holds more than 20 honorary degrees, serves on the boards of several non-profit institutions, and serves on the President's Commission on Service and Civic Participation. In 2008 the Library of Congress named her a "Living Legend," one of the very few Americans to have attained that honor. Ms. Roberts is the mother of two and grandmother of six.
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