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Speakers Bureau

Through Triage Cancer’s Speakers Bureau, cancer centers, hospitals, cancer organizations, and other groups that are coordinating educational events can be connected with expert speakers on various cancer survivorship issues.

Triage Cancer’s Speakers Bureau also includes cancer survivors and caregivers who have experience sharing their cancer journey with a variety of audiences. If you are planning an event, it is a good idea to request speakers as early as possible. Some of our speakers are often booked months in advance.

Triage Cancer can also assist in the comprehensive coordination of educational events, in addition to providing speakers on specific topics.

Below you can learn more about each speaker, sort speakers by particular areas of expertise, and read about potential topics that you may want to include in your next event!

Heidi Adams

Heidi Schultz Adams has been a tireless patient advocate since surviving Ewing’s sarcoma in her mid-20s. Her career in advocacy began in 2000 when she founded a pioneering non-profit called Planet Cancer to create a community of support and advocacy for young adults with cancer, a first in the digital space, and to raise awareness about their unique medical and psychosocial needs.…

Pam Braun

Pam Braun’s love of cooking started early, and has continued throughout her life. It began with her preparing dinners for her family of seven at the age of ten, progressed to her managing her first restaurant at twenty-one, and moved on to her owning her own at the age of twenty-nine.

She was diagnosed, at the age of 52, with late-stage fallopian tube cancer.…

Katie Brown

Katie Brown is an 18 year cancer survivor and has worked in nonprofit and lung cancer patient advocacy for over 10 years. She is he Vice President, Support and Survivorship Programs for LUNGevity and is a certified Patient Navigator.

Her transition from the corporate world to nonprofit happened in November of 2002 shortly after her father’s small cell lung cancer diagnosis.…

Monica Bryant Esq.

Monica is a cancer rights attorney, speaker, and author, dedicated to improving access to, and availability of, quality information on healthcare-related issues. Monica is the co-founder and Chief Operating Officer for Triage Cancer, a national non-profit organization that provides education on the practical and legal issues that may impact individuals diagnosed with cancer and their caregivers.…

Scott Burton

Triage Cancer is proud to have had Scott as a member of our Speakers Bureau. He was an incredibly talented juggler and an important part of our community. He will be missed. 

A national headlining comedian and world champion juggler, Scott Burton has been at the forefront of humor in health care for 20 years.…

Johnny Cathcart

Johnny Cathcart is a 2x meduloblastoma brain cancer survivor. Between St. Jude hospital in Memphis and Memorial Sloan Kettering in New York City, his cancer experience spanned almost three years from when he was 12 to 15 years old. At 17, he began speaking at cancer events and and fundraisers for cancer support nonprofit organizations. After moving to New York City in 2009, Johnny published his first book, HOTPANTS, a story of a young cancer stricken life, struggling for acceptance and battling with God.…

Yvette Colón PhD, BCD, LMSW

Yvette Colón, PhD, BCD, LMSW, is an Associate Professor at Eastern Michigan University School of Social Work and a founding board member of The Pain Community. She also is part of a multicultural group practice, providing culturally-sensitive psychotherapy to individuals, couples, and families, and supporting clients with a variety of issues, including chronic pain. For over 25 years, she has provided bilingual social work services in a variety of nonprofit health and mental health settings.…

Alice Crisci

Alice Crisci is a social entrepreneur, published author and young adult cancer advocate. She is the founder of Fertile Action, a non-profit that helps reproductive-aged women touched by cancer become mothers. Her second book “How to Build an Oncofertility Program: the Niche Marketing Guide for Reproductive Professionals” will be published in 2013. She is also a regular columnist on Hypervocal.com and the HuffingtonPost.com in addition to traveling the country as a fertility preservation spokeswoman for the California Cryobank.…

Marcia Donziger

Marcia Donziger is a cancer survivor who believes a strong support community is critical for healing. During her treatment for advanced ovarian cancer at age 27, Marcia struggled with keeping friends and family informed. She felt guilty when she could not stay adequately connected to all of the people who wanted to help.

Marcia saw the need for an online support community for cancer patients, so in 2007, she founded MyLifeLine.org Cancer Foundation.…

Emily Drake MA

Emily is a passionate and innovative public health leader. A graduate of Acadia University’s Department of Psychology, and Dalhousie University’s Master’s in Health Promotion program, Emily demonstrates high levels of academic and public health acuity. A blogger for the Huffington Post and invited public health speaker, her writing and public speaking skills have been sought out by non-profit organizations, healthcare providers and the private sector in Canada, the United States and Australia.…

Ruth Ebenstein

An American-Israeli writer/activist, Ruth has written and spoken about how an unexpected close friendship with a Palestinian emerged out of breast cancer. She is penning a memoir about her experience, entitled Bosom Buddies: How breast cancer fostered an unexpected friendship across the Israeli-Palestinian divide. Galvanized to help others, Ruth became an advocate, promoting women’s health. She has lobbied the Israeli Parliament, the Knesset, and works with Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem to promote women’s cardiovascular wellness among populations with the greatest need: Ultra-Orthodox women, Arab Israeli women, and those with disabilities, in addition to the general Israeli population.…

Brenda Elsagher

You will be laughing hysterically before you know it as Brenda tells her stories in a conversational manner. A colorectal cancer survivor at age 39, wife, and mother of two children under 6, she realized humor would be the key to dealing with the challenges of life. The audience relates to Brenda as she shows how we can laugh in the face of some tough times.…

Nancy Fawzy PhD, RN

Nancy W. Fawzy, PhD, RN, received a Masters Degree in Oncology Nursing and a Doctorate in Nursing Science, from the U.C.L.A. School of Nursing. She was named one of “Sixty Most Influential Graduates” in the UCLA School of Nursing 60th Anniversary Magazine.

She has worked with cancer patients for over 40 years and has always been interested in the importance and impact of psychosocial issues faced by patients and family members.…

Ann Fry MSW

Ann Fry is a professional speaker and an organizational/executive coach. She built this practice by first being a psychotherapist, a health-care administrator, and a college professor. For the last 17 years, Ann has worked around the country speaking, training and coaching in corporations, non-profits, government agencies and at professional association conferences. She brings inspiration for change to her audiences, as well as her sense of humor.…

Ryan Goyette

Ryan Goyette is a young adult cancer survivor. She was just shy of her 25th birthday when she was diagnosed with advanced Stage III Hodgkin’s Lymphoma Cancer. Between hospitalizations and general health set-backs, she endured six months of chemotherapy and two months of radiation.

Following her date of remission in October of 2007, she co-founded Young Adults Taking a Stand [Against Cancer] or better known as “YATS.” YATS is a non-profit organization in the New Orleans metro area for cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers between the ages of 21-39 years old, and strives to navigate young adults toward the supportive resources that reflect the City’s unique local identity.…

Laura Haddad

Laura Holmes Haddad is a breast cancer survivor, writer, and speaker from the San Francisco Bay Area. A graduate of Smith College and the California Culinary Academy, Laura was a cookbook editor and writer before refocusing on cancer and self-advocacy.

Laura was diagnosed with Stage IV inflammatory breast cancer in 2012 at the age of 37 and is currently NED (no evidence of disease).…

Donna Hartley

Melanoma stage III  survivor,  professional inspirational speaker, former Miss Hawaii and television actress with over 100 appearances, she is author of the book Fire Up Your Life!, Fire Up Your Intuition!, and Fire Up Your Healing! a captivating account of the momentous events that reshaped her life.

 

Fire Up Your Healing! A Journey of Cancer and Heart Surgery

“Melanoma … stage III.” Those three words struck fear into every part of Donna’s body on March 1, 2002.…

Loriana Hernandez-Aldama

Loriana Hernandez-Aldama is a cancer survivor and an Emmy award-winning journalist with more than 20 years of on-air television experience, anchoring prime-time and morning news, as well as health/medical reporting on a national
and local level.

Loriana’s unique broadcasting talent has taken her across the country from CNN/CNN Headline News as well as to local stations in California and Texas (Dallas/Austin).…

Betsy Hnath

Betsy Hnath is a writer, mother, and wife from the Washington, D.C. area. Her pieces have appeared in various newspapers, magazines and websites on issues ranging from women’s rites to pop music. She is content manager for Wisdo, a site dedicated collecting and distributing wisdom about life’s most significant challenges from those who have been there to those who currently find themselves on that particular path.…

Michael Holtz

Michael Holtz had just celebrated his 43rd birthday and had recently completed the Rock ‘n Roll New Orleans Marathon in March of 2012 when he underwent a colonoscopy to determine what was causing some weird digestive issues he was experiencing. During the procedure, his gastroenterologist found a three-inch adenocarcinoma on the wall of Michael’s rectum, stage-3b cancer.…

Susan Hong MD, MPH, FACP

Dr. Susan Hong is a board-certified internist who currently runs the Breast Cancer Survivorship Program at the University of Chicago. Since 2002, Dr. Hong has been a key member of the Program for Personalized Health and Prevention, a program that features comprehensive full-day physical exams and tailored recommendations for optimal health. In addition to the Program for Personalized Health and Prevention and the Breast Cancer Survivorship Program, she sees patients in the Primary Care Group.…

Jonny Imerman

Jonny Imerman is a young adult cancer survivor who strives to make sure no one fights cancer without the support of someone who has already triumphed over the disease. After being diagnosed with testicular cancer at the age of 26, Jonny decided to found Imerman Angels, a non-profit organization, which carefully matches a person touched by cancer (a cancer fighter or survivor) with someone who has fought and survived the same type of cancer (a Mentor Angel).…

Anne Katz Phd, RN, FAAN

Dr. Anne Katz is the certified sexuality counselor at CancerCare Manitoba and Clinical Nurse Specialist at the Manitoba Prostate Centre. In these roles she counsels men and women with a history of cancer who are experiencing sexual and relationship challenges. She also supports couples through recurrence and treatment decisions at that point. She is the fertility preservation counselor for the organization and also runs a sexual rehabilitation program for women after radiation therapy.…

Carolyn Katzin MS, CNS, MNT

Carolyn Katzin is a nutrition expert with twenty-eight years of experience in clinical nutrition with an emphasis on optimizing health and wellness. She specializes is in the fields of integrative oncology and genomics. Carolyn is President of Fountain Resources, Inc., a nutrition consulting company. Carolyn provides individual counseling for cancer patients at UCLA’s Simms/Mann Center for Integrative Oncology

Carolyn received her graduate degree and completed her internship at UCLA.…

Toni Klatt-Ellis APN

Toni Klatt-Ellis has been an Advanced Practice Nurse for over 25 years. She has worked in program development in various hospital settings for 15 + years. She was a team member to help develop programs from the ground up including a satellite Stem Cell Program, Breast Clinic, Pain Clinic and satellite Pediatric Oncology Program. She has been the primary responsible person in developing a multidisciplinary Thoracic Oncology Clinic and also an Advanced Practice Nurse based Survivorship Clinic.…

Shayna Komar RD

Shayna Komar is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian in Atlanta, Ga.. She completed her undergraduate degree in Nutrition, Foods, and Exercise at Virginia Tech and her dietetic internship at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD. Shayna currently contracts with Cancer Wellness of Piedmont Hospital where she provides individual counseling, cooking workshops and group lectures for cancer patients and caregivers.…

Julie Lanford MPH, RD, CSO, LDN

Julie Lanford MPH, RD, CSO, LDN, is the Wellness Director for Cancer Services, a non-profit in Winston-Salem, NC. She is a registered dietitian, licensed nutritionist and board certified specialist in oncology nutrition with over 10 years experience working in oncology.

Lanford developed http://www.CancerDietitian.com a healthy living web site for Cancer Services that translates evidence based nutrition guidelines into consumer friendly messages for everyday life.…

Julie Larson LCSW

Julie Larson, LCSW is a psychotherapist in New York City. In her practice she works primarily with people under the age of 40 around issues of wellness, loss and life transitions. Prior to establishing her private practice, Julie was the Young Adult Program Director at CancerCare for 6 years. In that capacity, she develop a national program inclusive of both age specific support services and educational materials focused on the distinct issues faced by young adults impacted by a cancer diagnosis.…

Jamie Ledezma Esq.

Like so many other 27 year-olds, Jamie Ledezma had plans for her life. Breast cancer changed those plans overnight. Fourteen weeks into her pregnancy, she discovered a lump in her breast and immediately began six months of chemotherapy as her son flourished in the womb.

Professionally, Ms. Ledezma is a cancer rights attorney and previously served as the Central California Regional Director for the Cancer Legal Resource Center where she successfully forged relationships with, and provided cancer-related legal information to, cancer organizations, hospitals, law firms, other community partners, and members of underserved communities throughout California’s Central Valley.…

Lauren Levi D.M.D.

Trained in dental oncology, Lauren Levi, D.M.D., is a general dentist who provides care to cancer patients and is committed to delivering comprehensive oral care. She has extensive experience treating patients who are receiving chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and stem cell transplants and who face individualized dental needs because of these treatment programs.

Dr. Levi received her Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Barnard College of Columbia University.…

Molly MacDonald

Molly MacDonald knows what it’s like to battle the financial burdens of breast cancer while undergoing treatment to battle the disease.

Diagnosed with early stage breast cancer in April 2005, the disease was unlikely to take her life, but it did take her livelihood: she was between jobs and was unable to start her new job as planned.…

Kommah McDowell MSLM

Imagine being told you will never be able to have children because you have cancer.  Kommah McDowell, diagnosed at age 29 in 2005, with only a 5% chance to live is now a 7 year survivor of Triple Negative Inflammatory Breast Cancer (IBC) married with a 3 year old son and she is the founder and Executive Director of the Kommah Seray Inflammatory Breast Cancer Foundation (KSIBCF). …

Jenn McRobbie

Jenn McRobbie is a life coach, speaker and author. Jenn has an extremely varied work background; from working as an Internet Communication Specialist for a recruiting company to representing oil and gas marketers in public service commission hearings to serving in the Army Reserves and Virginia National Guard as a Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Warfare Officer.…

Jill Meyer-Lippert RDH

Jill Meyer-Lippert, RDH began her dental career in 1992 as a Dental Assistant and Receptionist. At the same time, her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. Helplessly watching her mother suffer horribly with oral side effects from chemotherapy, she developed a strong interest in the oral concerns of cancer survivors.

Jill earned her degree and became licensed as a Registered Dental Hygienist in 1994 and continued to pursue knowledge to help this very underserved area of cancer care.…

Margo Michaels MPH

Over the last 15 years, Margo Michaels has developed numerous innovative programs to educate cancer advocates, community leaders, and health care professionals about policy and science issues related to cancer and cancer clinical trials. As the Founder of the Education Network to Advance Cancer Clinical Trials (ENACCT), she is considered a national expert in community-based education efforts around cancer clinical research.…

Joyce Mikal–Flynn Ed.D., FNP, BSN, MSN

Dr. Joyce Mikal-Flynn received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from University of San Francisco (1976), a Family Nurse Practitioner Certificate from University of California, Davis (1981) and a Masters’ of Science in Nursing at California State University Sacramento (1992), publishing the thesis: A Phenomenological Investigation of Near Death Event Survivors. In 2007 she completed her Doctor of Education with a dissertation entitled: Transforming Life Crisis: Stories of Metahabilitation After Catastrophic Life Events.…

Jet Mitchell

Stage IV Cancer Warrior. Attorney. Professor. Advocate.

Jet Mitchell is a proud Las Vegas local since 1995. She earned her MBA from the University of Texas in Arlington and her JD degree from Boyd School of Law at UNLV. Although she has been a licensed attorney in the state of Nevada since 2006, she has chosen to serve as a professor at the College of Southern Nevada, teaching management and marketing.  …

Joanna Morales Esq.

Joanna is a cancer rights attorney, author, speaker, and CEO of Triage Cancer, a national, nonprofit organization connecting people to cancer survivorship education through educational events, a speakers bureau, and online materials and resources.

Joanna has spent more than twenty-four years working on behalf of individuals with cancer, including five as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Loyola Law School, teaching a seminar in Cancer Rights Law, and eight at the John Wayne Cancer Institute’s Psychosocial Care Program and Positive Appearance Center.…

Rebecca Nellis MPP

Rebecca Nellis is the Chief Mission Officer for Cancer and Careers. Since 2004, she has helped evolve the organization from early concept to national prominence.

Rebecca now oversees all mission-driven initiatives, including the long-term strategy and growth of Cancer and Careers’ many programs and services. As an expert on cancer-workplace issues, she travels the country speaking at national cancer conferences, leading hospitals and community events — more than 100 presentations to date — about the intersection of life, work and cancer.…

Michele Rosenthal

Michele has significant experience in higher education in institutions throughout the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States. She has held positions of administrative leadership in academic and student services at Mount Holyoke College, Brandeis University and Babson College. From Director of Residential Life to Academic Dean, Michele has always worked closely with students and families.…

Camille Scheel MA

Triage Cancer is proud to have had Camille as a member of our Speakers Bureau. She was an invaluable member of our community.

Camille Scheel was author of Camp Chemo: Postcards Home from Metastatic Breast Cancer, Beaver’s Pond Press, 2015. The book was based on her CaringBridge blog which she started after being diagnosed with Stage III breast cancer at the age of 38.…

Leslie Schover PhD

Leslie R. Schover, PhD is a clinical psychologist specializing in cancer-related problems with sexuality or fertility. She received a PhD in clinical psychology from UCLA in 1979. Her dissertation was supported by a Woodrow Wilson Research Grant in Women’s Studies. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship in sex therapy and sex research at SUNY at Stony Brook in 1981.…

T.J. Sharpe

T.J. Sharpe is a Stage IV melanoma patient sharing his journey through cancer in his Patient #1 Blog. Diagnosed in 2012 with tumors in multiple organs, he has undergone six surgeries and four immunotherapies across two clinical trials.  The initial failures, and subsequent response, have been chronicled in his posts.  He is a keynote speaker and consultant to the biopharma and clinical research industries, working with major pharmaceutical corporations and as a patient advisor to TransCelerate to bring an educated patient voice as a true stakeholder in challenging healthcare’s status quo. …

Sara Skillen COC, CPC

Sara Skillen is the owner of SkillSet Organizing, a professional organizing and ADHD/productivity coaching business serving the Greater Nashville, TN area. Her mission is to help overwhelmed people from all walks of life manage their stuff, their time, and their tasks. A former educator and paralegal, Sara has worked in just about every kind of setting you can imagine – from a converted janitor’s closet, to a cubicle in an international corporation, to telecommuting from a home office.…

Cathy Skinner

As a leading expert in exercise and wellness for cancer survivors since 2008, Cathy Skinner (CEO and Founder of Thrivors) was the first certified American College of Sports Medicine Cancer Exercise Specialist (ACSM) in Minnesota and a Certified Physical Activity for Lymphedema (PALs for Life) specialist. Cathy’s book, the Introduction to Exercise for Cancer Recovery™ (2013) was utilized as a framework for the mobile technology platform, THRIVORS™.…

Kathryn Smolinski MSW, JD

Ms. Kathryn Smolinski, MSW, JD, is an oncology social worker and public interest attorney who assists cancer patients with their legal issues. Ms. Smolinski has designed and currently manages a medical-legal partnership between Wayne State University Law School and Karmanos Cancer Center which provides free legal education, representation and resources to low-income cancer patients in Detroit, Michigan.…

Thomas Strouse MD

Tom Strouse is Medical Director Stewart and Lynda Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital (NPH) at UCLA. Prior to becoming Medical Director at NPH, Dr. Strouse was Director of Psychosocial Services and Cancer Pain Management Services at the Outpatient Cancer Center. Dr. Strouse’s clinical expertise is in psychiatric aspects of medical illness and cancer pain management. Dr. Strouse is a Fellow of the Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine and a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association.…

Ross Suozzi

Cancer Survivor , husband of cancer survivor and father of cancer survivor. Disabled Combat Veteran U. S. AIR Force. Born in Buffalo, New York in the 1960. Joined the US Air Force, trained as an aircraft mechanic and completed a Bachelor’s of Science degree Aeronautics from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University. Continued an aviation career with Delta Airlines until a realization that heath and fitness was my passion as a young adult and thru my adult life. …

David Tabatsky

David Tabatsky is a writer, editor, teacher and performing artist.His memoir, American Misfit, was released in November 2017. He has coached, co-written, and edited several inspirational memoirs of people surviving cancer, stroke, abuse, and conversion therapy, as well as numerous self-help guides. David is the co-author of several books about cancer, including Rx for Hope, (Rowman & Littlefield 2018) Reimagining Women’s Cancers and Reimagining Men’s Cancers (HCI 2016), The Cancer Book: 101 Stories of Courage, Support and Love (Chicken Soup for the Soul 2009) and the author of Write for Life: Communicating Your Way Through Cancer.…

Samantha Watson

Samantha Watson began her 16-year career as a health advocate at age 21 when she was diagnosed with cancer. She is the Founder and CEO of The Samfund, a Boston-based nonprofit organization uniquely designed to support young adults in their financial recovery from cancer treatment.

Sam created The Samfund in 2003 after her own battle with cancer (diagnosed in 1999 with Ewing’s Sarcoma and in 2001 with secondary Myelodysplastic Syndrome).…

David Wellisch PhD

Dr. David Wellisch is a Professor-in-Residence and Chief Psychologist of the Adult Division in the Department of Psychiatry at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA for 38 years. Dr. Wellisch has had a dedicated interest in clinical work and research with cancer patients and their families for his entire carrier. He has published 150 scientific articles and book chapters on psychological aspects of cancer.…

Richard Wiener

Richard Wiener’s life story includes being a natural athlete, a teacher, a basketball coach, an athletic director, President of the Chicago Public League Athletic Directors Association, a member of the Chicago Public League High School Basketball Hall Of Fame, an author of three published books, and a recent Breast Cancer Survivor.

In February 2007 his beloved wife, Lynn passed away after a 10 year battle with breast cancer.…

Karen Wonders Ph.D.

Karen Wonders, Ph.D., is the Founder and Director of Maple Tree Cancer Alliance, and Professor of Exercise Physiology at Wright State University, where she serves as Program Director for the Sports Science major. She began her work in the field of exercise and cancer recovery in 2003, while earning her doctorate at the University of Northern Colorado.…

James Zabora

Dr. James Zabora has held many positions over his illustrious career.  He was the Executive Director of the Life with Cancer Program© for the Inova Health System in Northern Virginia.  Before that he was Dean and Professor of Social Work at the National Catholic School of Social Service  of The Catholic University of America for 10 years.…