Brian Ahmedani, Ph.D., LMSW, received his Ph.D. and M.S.W. degrees from Michigan State University. He is a fully licensed clinical and macro master’s-level social worker in the State of Michigan. Dr. Ahmedani also completed a fellowship program in drug dependence epidemiology funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). He currently serves as a research scientist in the Center for Health Policy and Health Services Research and is the director of research in psychiatry at the Henry Ford Health System (HFHS). His research interests are in the area of health services and interventions for individuals with mental health and substance use conditions, with particular expertise in suicide prevention. Dr. Ahmedani conducts research in the domains of health services and interventions, health disparities, and precision medicine. Currently, he is the HFHS site principal investigator (PI) for the National Institute of Mental Health–funded Mental Health Research Network and the Health Systems Node of the NIDA Clinical Trials Network. He is the PI/co-PI for two large multi-site studies on suicide prevention, one investigating health care use patterns before suicide and the other evaluating the implementation of the Zero Suicide Model across health systems. He is also a co-PI for the Trans-America Consortium of the NIH All of Us Research Program and serves as a co-investigator on several other projects. He has published more than 70 manuscripts since 2011.
Katherine Anderson, M.D., is an assistant professor at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and a family physician in obstetrics at Denver Health, an integrated safety net health system in Denver, Colorado. She
graduated from the University of Colorado School of Medicine in 1997 and completed her family medicine residency at the Clinica Campesina track of the University of Colorado Family Medicine residency program in 2000.
Dr. Anderson chairs the Denver Health cancer screening committee and oversees cancer screening quality-improvement initiatives for 9 federally qualified health centers, which care for 165,000 unique patients. She provides continuing medical education on cancer screening and hereditary cancer syndromes for medical staff, residents, and medical students and oversees a patient navigator program to increase breast and colorectal cancer screening and Pap testing in refugee and minority patients. Dr. Anderson also works with a multidisciplinary breast team to care for women with non-surgical breast complaints, including those with increased breast cancer risk due to family or personal history, and acts as an expert resource to medical staff for assessing and referring patients and families at high risk for breast and ovarian cancer.
Katrina Armstrong, M.D., M.S.C.E., is the Jackson Professor at Harvard Medical School and the physician-in-chief of the Department of Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH). Dr. Armstrong is a graduate of Yale University and the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She was a resident and chief resident in medicine at Johns Hopkins and completed a general internal medicine fellowship and master of science in clinical epidemiology at the University of Pennsylvania. In 1998 she joined the faculty at Penn and became the chief of the Division of General Internal Medicine in 2008. At Penn she also served as the associate director of the Abramson Cancer Center and the co-director of the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program. In April 2013 she was appointed as the physician-in-chief of the MGH Department of Medicine. Dr. Armstrong is an internationally recognized investigator in the areas of medical decision making, quality of care, and cancer prevention and outcomes. For her work she received the Outstanding Junior Investigator of the Year Award from the Society of General Internal Medicine, the Outstanding Investigator Award from the American Federation of Medical Research, and the Alice Hersh Award from Academy Health and was elected to the American Society of Clinical Investigation and the National Academy of Medicine. In addition to her career in health policy and disparities research, Dr. Armstrong is a dedicated practicing internist with a longitudinal primary care practice and rotations as the Bigelow visit on the inpatient general medicine services. Over her career Dr. Armstrong has prioritized her role in medical education, including developing and leading courses on clinical decision making at Penn and at MGH and founding multiple innovative educational programs including the master’s program in health policy research at Penn and the Center for Educational Innovation and Scholarship at the MGH.
Diversity and inclusion are central to Dr. Armstrong’s leadership, including her award-winning roles in the advancement of women, her commitment to programs to support diversity across faculty and trainees at the MGH, and her research leadership in health disparities and community-based research. Dr. Armstrong oversees a department of more than 1,000 faculty members who span 10 clinical divisions and 6 research units, as well as the department’s educational program in undergraduate and graduate medical education.
Natasha Bonhomme has led initiatives in the health care field for more than a decade. Since joining Genetic Alliance in 2006 she has worked to improve the state of women, families, and children. For the past 7 years she has overseen maternal and child health initiatives for the organization, with a particular focus on bringing the families’ perspectives into policy setting around newborn screening and maternal and child health overall. Ms. Bonhomme led and managed a large study of women (with more than 2,000 expectant and new mothers) to gain an understanding of their attitudes toward newborn screening and their preferences on how and when to be educated. She also supervised multiple federally funded projects having to do with newborn screening and prenatal diagnoses.
Ms. Bonhomme launched and oversees the nation’s center on newborn screening education, Baby’s First Test. As the director of Baby’s First Test, she has testified before the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pension Committee’s Subcommittee on Children and Families on the importance of public education for newborn screening. Ms. Bonhomme serves on a range of committees including as a co-chair of the Genetics and Bioethics Committee of the American Public Health Association, on the Association of Public Health Laboratories Committee on Newborn Screening and Genetics in Public Health, and on the Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and Children.
In 2011, Ms. Bonhomme obtained a certificate from Georgetown University in nonprofit executive management to better serve other nonprofit partners. Outside of the office, she has been involved with the Planned Parenthood of Metropolitan Washington for several years and was a founding co-chair of its Developing Leaders Program. She currently is a board member of La Clinica Del Pueblo, a local federally qualified health center.
Otis Brawley, M.D., MACP, FASCO, FACE, is the chief medical and scientific officer for the American Cancer Society and, as such, is responsible for promoting the goals of cancer prevention, early detection, and quality treatment through cancer research and education. He champions efforts to decrease smoking, improve diet, and provide the critical support cancer patients need. He also guides efforts to enhance and focus the research pro-
gram, upgrade the society’s advocacy capacity, and concentrate community cancer control efforts in areas where they will be most effective. Furthermore, as an acknowledged global leader in the field of health disparities research, Dr. Brawley is a key leader in the society’s work to eliminate disparities in access to quality cancer care.
Dr. Brawley currently serves as a professor of hematology, oncology, medicine, and epidemiology at Emory University. From April 2001 to November 2007 he was the director of the Georgia Cancer Center at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta and the deputy director for cancer control at the Winship Cancer Institute at Emory University. He filled a variety of capacities at the National Cancer Institute, most recently serving as an assistant director. Among numerous awards, he was a Georgia Cancer Coalition Scholar and received the key to St. Bernard Parish and the U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) Meritorious Service Medal for his work as a PHS commissioned officer in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. He is also a recipient of the Department of Defense Uniformed Services University Distinguished Service Award for his contributions to military medical education.
Dr. Brawley is a fellow of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, a fellow of the American College of Epidemiology, and one of less than 1,400 physicians to be named a Master of the American College of Physicians in its more than 100-year history. Dr. Brawley is also an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine.
Dr. Brawley is a graduate of The University of Chicago’s Pritzker School of Medicine. He completed an internal medicine residency at University Hospitals of Cleveland, Case Western Reserve University and a fellowship in medical oncology at the National Cancer Institute. He is board certified in internal medicine and medical oncology.
Sue Friedman, D.V.M., was diagnosed with hereditary breast cancer 22 years ago at age 33. She recognized gaps in information and resources for people making medical decisions around hereditary breast and ovarian cancer (HBOC) and founded Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered (FORCE), a nonprofit organization, to fill the information and support void for people with HBOC.
As the executive director of FORCE, she has 20 years of experience addressing the needs of the HBOC community through national education, research, and advocacy programs developed and implemented under her direction.
Dr. Friedman serves as an advisor on the National Comprehensive Cancer Network panel on genetics/familial high-risk assessment, NRG Oncology in the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI’s) NCORP, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Advisory Committee on Breast Cancer
in Young Women, and the NCI’s Council of Research Advocates. She has participated in peer review for the NCI, the Department of Defense Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program, and NRG Oncology.
Candace Henley is an accomplished foundation executive director with significant experience in community outreach and patient education and a superior record of successful community service and engagement. Ms. Henley is a 14-year colon cancer survivor who works to help other cancer survivors make sense of the disease as well as publicly sharing her story of a challenging battle with a positive attitude and faith that inspires others to never give up.
Ms. Henley advocates for the Removing Barriers for Colorectal Cancer Screening Act (H.R.1070, reintroduced as H.R.1017). As a lobbyist for Right Scan Right Time and, more specifically, for access to medical imaging, she seeks to convince Congress to enact policies to save lives by expanding patient access to existing imaging technology which is a vital part of the early detection, diagnosis, and treatment of disease.
After years of advocating, Ms. Henley identified a need for grassroots awareness and education of colorectal cancer in communities of color and medically underserved communities, so she started The Blue Hat Foundation in 2015. The organization uses community partnerships with health care providers, physicians, and hospital systems to deliver the message of the importance of getting screened, and it also created and organized a faith-based colon cancer awareness campaign, Blue Hat Bow Tie Sunday, now in its eighth year. Ms. Henley has shared her story with national audiences on the Steve Harvey show and with Katie Couric. She has contributed to several articles about colorectal cancer and has had several articles written about her cancer journey and her advocacy.
Kent Hoskins, M.D., received his medical degree from the University of Iowa College of Medicine and completed an internal medicine residency at that institution. He completed a hematology-oncology fellowship at the University of Michigan Medical Center in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where he also completed postdoctoral laboratory training in cancer genetics. Dr. Hoskins held an academic appointment at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine following his fellowship and now is an associate professor of medicine at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he directs the Familial Breast Cancer Clinic and co-leads the Breast Cancer Research Group. His clinical practice focuses on cancer genetics and breast cancer risk assessment and the treatment of women with breast cancer.
Dr. Hoskins’s National Cancer Institute–funded research focuses on breast cancer risk assessment as a strategy for addressing cancer health disparities and involves both population science and molecular approaches to
develop tools and strategies for reducing breast cancer mortality through the improved identification of high-risk individuals. His research also focuses on elucidating the root causes of the breast cancer mortality disparity that exists among African American women. He is pursuing several avenues of research to address these issues, including molecular epidemiologic studies, tumor genomic and molecular biologic studies, preclinical studies with novel agents, and drug discovery efforts.
Finally, his work also involves research to understand the ethical, psychosocial, and behavioral issues accompanying precision medicine and individualized cancer risk prediction in minority women, especially as it pertains to the use of genomic technologies.
Pat Jolley, R.N., is a senior member of the Patient Advocate Foundation (PAF) team and currently serves in the role of director of clinical initiatives. As a registered nurse, Ms. Jolley is able to share her experience in intensive care, oncology, utilization review, and case management, making her an excellent point of reference and valuable asset to the organization. Ms. Jolley oversees case management, clinical and research ventures, new hires, and advanced clinical training, and she assists in the development of educational webinars and consumer resources. Ms. Jolley continues to provide clinical case management services for complex cases and stays abreast of advances in medical treatments, allowing for an intimate understanding of the access issues patients face as well as the issues encountered by cancer survivors.
Since joining PAF 14 years ago as a senior case manager, Ms. Jolley has been an integral part of the case management leadership and is a frequent representative for PAF at national forums and meetings as a member of the speaker’s bureau. Previously at PAF, Ms. Jolley was engaged as the lead for numerous grants and specialized projects, including serving as the director of two cooperative agreements with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that provided education and outreach to patients who had been diagnosed with a hematologic cancer.
Preeti Malani, M.D., M.S.J., is the chief health officer and a professor of medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases at the University of Michigan. As chief health officer, Dr. Malani serves as a key advisor to the University of Michigan’s president and executive officers on all matters of the health and wellness of the university community, including issues of disease management, public health preparedness, and the promotion of healthy practices and climate on all three campuses.
Dr. Malani’s clinical and research interests include infection control and prevention and infections in older adults. She is the director of the National Poll on Healthy Aging, based at the University of Michigan’s
Institute for Health Policy and Innovation. Dr. Malani is also an associate editor of JAMA.
Dr. Malani is a graduate of the University of Michigan. She received her M.D. degree from Wayne State University School of Medicine. Prior to medical school, she completed a master’s in journalism at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. She completed her internal medicine residency and infectious diseases fellowship at the University of Michigan where she also received a master’s degree in clinical research design and statistical analysis. Dr. Malani completed her fellowship training in geriatric medicine at the Oregon Health & Science University.
Laurence Meyer, M.D., Ph.D., is the chief officer of specialty care services and the national director of genomic medicine for the Veterans Health Administration (VHA). He is also a professor of dermatology and internal medicine at the University of Utah Health Sciences Center.
He received his Ph.D. in molecular genetics from the University of California, Davis. He studied medicine at the University of Miami, Florida, and has active board certifications in internal medicine, dermatology, and clinical genetics. His past research includes the identification of CDKN2A as a major risk locus for melanoma as well as basic studies in immunodermatology. He currently is active in population genomics and the Million Veteran Program (MVP), a biobank with more than 600,000 current specimens. Clinically, the Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA’s) Genomic Medicine Service provides care via telemedicine from Salt Lake City to more than 85 VA Medical Centers.
As the chief officer of specialty care services in VHA, he directs policy for all specialties of internal medicine, nutrition and food services, neurology, podiatry, eye care, pain, radiology, and pathology. Additionally, he has oversight of all VA opioid policy and programs.
John Moeschler, M.D., is a professor of pediatrics and medical genetics at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth College. His research interests are the clinical description and delineation of genetic conditions causing developmental anomalies and disabilities; genotype-phenotype correlations; and the natural history of such conditions. His research has been done in collaboration with those in many other disciplines, including molecular genetics and genomics and epidemiology. His research interests became focused on the genetic aspects of neurodevelopmental outcomes in 1978 during a fellowship at the University of Washington with exposure to faculty such as David W. Smith. In 2005 he received a master of science degree from the Center for the Clinical Evaluative Sciences at Dartmouth, now The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy & Clinical Practice. This was founded by John Wennberg and is home to the Dartmouth Atlas of Health
Care. As the program director of New Hampshire Leadership Education in Neuro-Developmental Disabilities since 1992, he oversees and mentors 15 faculty and 15 graduate students at 3 universities. Recently he became the child health specialist and co-investigator on the formative Children’s Environmental Health and Disease Prevention Center with Dr. Margaret Karagas and colleagues. In this capacity he has provided senior leadership, mentorship, and research expertise in medical genetics. He currently serves as a co-principal investigator on the New England Regional Genetics Network, whose aim is to improve access to quality genetic services for the medically underserved in New England. This is funded by the genetic services branch of the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau.
Rena Pasick, Dr.P.H., is a professor at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), School of Medicine. For more than 30 years she has conducted research, training, and community engagement to reduce cancer disparities among underserved populations of the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond.
Dr. Pasick’s current research addresses breast and prostate cancer disparities by developing and testing communication strategies that will improve patient outcomes and institutional strategies to equalize the quality of cancer care. Her current breast cancer research is the second study at the intersection of precision medicine and cancer disparities, exploring communication related to hereditary breast and ovarian cancer in three public hospitals. In her role as the director of the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center Office of Community Engagement, she established a faith communities partnership in four Bay Area counties that fosters and sustains health ministries in African American churches through various service and research programs designed to build their capacity to promote health. Dr. Pasick’s passion to reduce inequities in health led her to obtain four successive National Cancer Institute grants to establish and sustain the Minority Training Program in Cancer Control Research (1998–2018) with the goal of encouraging underrepresented master’s level public health students and professionals to pursue doctoral training and become leaders in public health and disparities research. To date, more than 200 master’s students of color have gone on to doctoral programs from two sites under her direction at UCSF and the University of California, Los Angeles, almost half of whom have now graduated with their doctorates. Dr. Pasick is the recipient of the UCSF Martin Luther King, Jr. 2014 Faculty Award for Diversity.
Marc Schwartz, Ph.D., is a professor in the Department of Oncology at the Georgetown University Medical Center. Within the Lombardi Comprehen-
sive Cancer Center, he serves as the associate center director for population science. He also co-directs the Jess and Mildred Fisher Center for Hereditary Cancer and Clinical Genomics.
A behavioral scientist by training, Dr. Schwartz focuses his research on clinical and population translation of advances in cancer genomics, medical decision making, and decision support. His recent work in cancer genomics has focused on the development and evaluation of novel approaches to deliver cancer genomic services with the goal of expanded access. Dr. Schwartz and his collaborators have also developed and tested a variety of decision support interventions to aid individuals in making decisions about various cancer screening tests and treatments.
Dr. Schwartz’s research has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health since 1995. Currently, Dr. Schwartz has National Cancer Institute funding for studies focused on expanding the reach of genetic counseling and testing among family members of BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers and examining decision making and the outcomes of multi-gene testing for hereditary breast-ovarian cancer. He has published more than 140 articles and has served on numerous editorial boards, study sections, and scientific advisory committees.
Todd Skaar, Ph.D., is an associate professor of medicine in the Division of Clinical Pharmacology at the Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis. He did his graduate work in nutrition at the University of Wisconsin and in lactation physiology at The Pennsylvania State University, followed by a postdoc in breast cancer drug resistance at the Lombardi Cancer Center at Georgetown University.
Since joining Indiana University, he has focused his research on the discovery and implementation of genomic predictors of drug response. More specifically, his studies are focused on genetic variants in the genes that regulate drug metabolism and disposition. The discovery studies are focused on identifying genetic variants that are associated with clinical drug efficacy and toxicity. Those variants are followed up with laboratory functional studies to understand the mechanisms underlying their association. They also include studies to identify miRNAs that contribute to the drug-induced and developmental changes in hepatic drug metabolism. He also leads the Indiana Genomics Implementation Opportunity for the Underserved (InGenIOUS) study as part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH)–National Human Genome Research Institute IGNITE (Implementing Genomics into Practice) network. The goal of the study is to identify and overcome the barriers to using pharmacogenomics to guide clinical drug therapy. The implementation studies include prospectively testing and using pharmacogenetic testing in clinical care. He currently serves as the chair of the NIH–IGNITE network. He has co-authored several pharma-
cogenetics implementation guidelines published by the Clinical Pharmacogenetics Implementation Consortium for using pharmacogenetics to guide clinical drug therapy. He also serves as a co-leader of the Cancer Prevention and Control Program of the Indiana University Simon Cancer Center and leads the germline pharmacogenetics part of the Indiana University Precision Genomics Oncology Clinic.
Jacquelyn Taylor, Ph.D., PNP-BC, R.N., FAHA, FAAN, is the inaugural Vernice D. Ferguson Professor in Health Equity at the Rory Meyers College of Nursing at New York University (NYU). Dr. Taylor’s work focuses on the interaction of omics and social factors that contribute to health disparities for common chronic conditions among underrepresented minority populations in the United States and vulnerable populations abroad. Her current R01 study examines the gene–environment and DNA–environment interactions of perceived racism and discrimination, parenting stress, and maternal mental health on blood pressure on African American mothers and their young children. Dr. Taylor is also conducting a study on the genomics of lead poisoning in Flint, Michigan.
Dr. Taylor was awarded the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) by President Barack Obama in 2017, the highest honor awarded by the federal government to scientists and engineers. As part of her award, she will examine next-generation sequencing-environment interactions on blood pressure among African Americans. More recently, Dr. Taylor has been selected as the 2018 recipient of the Mary Mahoney award from the American Nurses Association. The Mary Mahoney Award was created to recognize an individual who has made significant contributions to opening and advancing equal opportunities in nursing to members of minority groups. Her long-term goals are to develop nursing interventions to reduce and prevent omic–environment risks associated with health disparities in diverse populations across the lifespan. Prior to joining the faculty at NYU, Dr. Taylor was an associate professor and the associate dean of diversity and inclusion at the Yale School of Nursing.
Reed V. Tuckson, M.D., FACP, is the managing director of Tuckson Health Connections, LLC. Previously he served as the executive vice president and chief of medical affairs for UnitedHealth Group; the senior vice president for professional standards of the American Medical Association; the president of the Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science; and the commissioner of public health for the District of Columbia.
Dr. Tuckson is a former president of the American Telemedicine Association and former chairman of the board for ViTel Net, LLC. He is currently the chairman of the board for the Alliance for Health Policy and a board member of LifePoint Health; Cell Therapeutics, Inc.; and Inform Genomics.
At the National Institutes of Health, he serves on the Clinical Center Research Hospital Board, and he is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine, serving on the Health Sciences Policy Board of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine and as co-chair of the Digital Learning Collaborative.
Dr. Tuckson is a graduate of Howard University, the Georgetown University School of Medicine, and the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania’s general internal medicine residency and fellowship programs, where he was also a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar studying at the Wharton School of Business.
Sean Tunis, M.D., M.Sc., is the founder, president, and chief executive officer of the Center for Medical Technology Policy (CMTP) in Baltimore, Maryland. CMTP is an independent, nonprofit organization working to strengthen the quality, relevance, and efficiency of clinical research. Dr. Tunis’s work currently focuses on expanding infrastructure for the conduct of pragmatic clinical trials within the health care delivery systems, developing condition-specific evidentiary standards for reimbursement, and promoting greater engagement of patients and consumers in clinical research. Dr. Tunis serves as the president of Health Technology Assessment international and is a member of many other advisory boards for public- and private-sector organizations focused on issues of comparative effectiveness, innovation, health technology assessment, evidence-based medicine, clinical research, and reimbursement.
Dr. Tunis received a B.S. degree in biology and the history of science from the Cornell University School of Agriculture and a medical degree and master’s in health services research from the Stanford University School of Medicine. Dr. Tunis did his residency training at the University of California, Los Angeles, and at the University of Maryland in emergency medicine and internal medicine. He is board certified in internal medicine and holds adjunct faculty appointments at Johns Hopkins, Tufts, and the University of California, San Francisco, Schools of Medicine.
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