Patient Power Co-Founder and President
Host, Two-Time Cancer Survivor and Patient Advocate
Andrew Schorr, a medical journalist living with his family in Carlsbad, Calif., has been living with myelofibrosis since 2011. His diagnosis followed being hospitalized for two blood clots in his legs. Andrew, working with his wife of 35 years, Esther, has been a patient education pioneer since 1984 and became a patient himself in 1996 when he was diagnosed with chronic lymphocytic leukemia. A clinical trial in 2000 led to a long leukemia remission and ruxolitinib and, more recently, fedratinib has treated his myelofibrosis since 2012. He leads a full life. Andrew and Esther have three grown children and a dog, they love, a “borkie” Donovan. Andrew’s “day job” is leading—with Esther—Patient Power.info which produces and distributes videos, podcasts, and articles with doctors and patients in several specific cancers, including the two Andrew is living with. More than 300,000 cancer patients are reached monthly via patientpower.info and social media. Andrew has journalism degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Columbia University and was previously a local and national reporter and producer of television news and human interest documentaries. He is also the author of the acclaimed book, The Web-Savvy Patient: An Insider's Guide to Navigating the Internet When Facing Medical Crisis, published in 2011.
Patient Power Co-Founder, Chief Operating Officer,
Care Partner, and Patient Advocate
Esther Schorr is the Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer of Patient Power. Esther is a skilled global project manager, and has worked with her spouse, Andrew, on patient and family education projects for more than 30 years. She has supported him in his cancer journey since his initial diagnosis in 1996. Esther is passionate about empowering "care partners" and is a strong believer that education leads to empowerment and better care. Esther has an undergraduate degree in communications and an MBA, both from UCLA.
Director of IT
Gino Espinoza is our Director of IT. He brings to Patient Power over 20 years of IT expertise spanning various roles and industries. Gino has devoted much of his career serving and supporting the Cancer community as a web developer, software engineer, data analyst and IT/Web solutions architect. In addition, he has lent his technical prowess to organizations such as Hewlett-Packard, Konica Minolta, MicroFocus, HealthTalk, Everyday Health and California Faucets. Gino also dedicates time to international and domestic mission work providing service and support to communities recovering from natural disasters and unrest. He and his family are also self-proclaimed nomads and are in the midst of a three-year-long adventure to visit every state in the US. With only a handful of states left, Gino and his family plan on relocating to Arizona close to his childhood home. Although he lives and eats everything technical, Gino also finds time for leisure camping and fishing with his family, building fine furniture in the shop, or pounding it out on the drum kit.
Operations and Web Publishing
VP of Operations and Web Publishing
Andrea Hutton is our Vice President of Operations and Web Publishing. She is a critically acclaimed author, speaker, breast cancer survivor and patient advocate. The author of Bald Is Better With Earrings - A Survivor’s Guide to Getting Through Breast Cancer (HarperCollins 2015), her work on breast cancer and women’s wellness has been featured in such varied outlets as The Washington Post, Women’s Health and Psychology Today. As a breast cancer survivor, Andrea advocates to empower and educate patients on how to take charge of their own health. She is also a graduate of the National Breast Cancer Coalition’s prestigious Project Lead advocacy training program, an Alamo Scholar with the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, and a Komen Advocate in Science. Andrea has served as a consumer reviewer for the Department of Defense Breast Cancer Research Program and has lobbied on Capitol Hill to secure funding for breast cancer research. She is also a member of the Executive Board of the Metastatic Breast Cancer Alliance. Andrea’s passion for educating patients began with her diagnosis in 2009, and continues today.
See videos with Andrea and read her blogs
Web Editorial & Publishing Manager
As Patient Power's Web Editorial & Publishing Manager, Larry Lukasik manages the online editorial standards and content publication process and maintains the quality control of all material published on the website. With experience ranging from network administration to digital media management and web content administration, he is putting his broad experience to good use in supporting the background functions of the website to help connect Patient Power community with the latest knowledge and resources. A California transplant from an early age and graduate of California State University, Los Angeles (business administration/management) Larry enjoys volunteering in his community, spending time with his wife, spoiling their two dachshunds, exploring the great outdoors and the occasional round of golf.
Amanda Beard is our Production Manager. She started cultivating versatile media communication skills beginning in high school and graduated from the University of Houston in Clear Lake with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication. She has interned for public relations agencies, TV stations and tech start-up companies that have helped her gain proficiency working with different media - newspaper, blogging, content writing, social media and production. With her experience, Amanda is helping the team put together events, and assisting with content development and production. Amanda knows from personal experience how cancer touches the lives of nearly everyone and believes patient education and self-advocacy is essential for customizing care and living well. She is excited about the opportunity to help connect patients to our supportive community and the latest research.
Rich Hegarty is our Video Editor. Prior to joining Patient Power, Rich formed his own full-service video production company called Anchor & Clover. He also produced videos for the Boston NBC affiliate. With over 35 years in video production, Rich has had the opportunity and privilege to work with a variety of companies including Tourism Ireland, New Balance, and Bayer. Rich is passionate about video because he believes in the power of the medium to impact change, to emotionally connect with the viewer, and to motivate to action.
Special Projects Producer
Maui Voskova is our Special Projects Producer at Patient Power. In her role, she schedules and produces our Facebook Live videos, promotes live events via social media, collaborates on social engagement strategies, collects insights on our social media campaigns and general assisting on the production team. Maui joined us in March 2019. She has an Associate’s Degree in Communications from MiraCosta College, and she is continuing her education at CSU San Marcos, where she is pursuing her Bachelor's Degree in Communications with a Minor in Anthropology. When Maui’s not working or finishing her studies in Communications and Anthropology, you can find her planning her next international travel adventure. This could be anywhere from constructing homes in East Tijuana, Mexico for families with disabled children to building on her already well-traveled shoulders of backpacking through Asia and Europe.
Digital Content and Editorial
Lizzie Warren is our Senior Producer. She is an award-winning documentary producer and writer. Recently, Lizzie produced a documentary about the neuroscience around distracted driving and wrote a documentary about new frontiers in the treatment of Parkinson’s Disease. Both docs will air on PBS in the fall of 2018. She has been working on The Red Wolf Project, a 360 video project about critically endangered red wolves. She recently directed a short about an American couple visiting Poland with a 9mm camera in 1936, and collaborated on a project in partnership with the Kavli Foundation about the BRAIN Initiative.
Amanda Katz is our Associate Producer. She works primarily in the documentary film industry as both an editor and producer, and has collaborated on projects ranging from feature films to 30-second television spots. In 2018, she edited the short Crooked Lines for Field of Vision about Gerrymandering in North Carolina, and in 2017 she edited Lynne Sachs’ feature film Tip of My Tongue which premiered at MoMA’s documentary fortnight that year. Amanda’s personal films investigate the physical and political environment of NYC, the city she lovingly calls home.
Jessica Ellis is our Program Manager. Jessica joined Patient Power in January 2020 having spent the last nine years consulting in project management and technical education for both for-profits and non-profits. Like so many others, her family has been impacted by cancer, and she is passionate about enabling both patients and caregivers with information and education. Outside of Patient Power, Jessica is an international speaker on the subject of computational education for teens and works with several nonprofits empowering youth.
Suzanne Mooney is our Staff Writer. She joined us in December 2019 and has worked for 16 years in event fundraising—helping nonprofits raise money for their missions through runs, walks, bike rides and other athletic fundraising events. During her mom’s battle with breast cancer, Suzanne discovered it was possible to make a living by making the world a better place. When she’s not working, you can find Suzanne running, riding her bike or snuggling old dogs.
Lauren Evoy Davis
Lauren Evoy Davis is our Patient Power Staff Writer and is a lifelong storyteller with a passion for health and wellness. Her writing career has focused on cancer care, supportive care, new therapies, and the interplay of technology and medicine. She graduated from American University in Washington, DC with an MA in journalism and her curiosity about healthy living keeps her learning all the time. Lauren lives in Chesapeake Beach, MD, with her husband and two daughters. When not working, she enjoys paddle boarding on the Chesapeake Bay and walking on the beach.
Program Manager and Staff Writer
Megan Trusdell is our Patient Power Program Manager and Staff Writer. She brings more than 20 years of experience as a health writer and researcher and a passion for supporting patients on their treatment journey. Megan’s interest in health dates to a health/science internship at the Boston Globe. She went on to cover health legislation for the University of Maryland’s wire service, produce health stories in between covering cops and city council meetings at the Tampa Bay Times and build the health beat at The Associated Press. Megan has a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Maryland, an MPH from Montclair (N.J.) State University and is a Certified Health Education Specialist. She has worked as a health educator, researcher and patient support program specialist in the areas of oncology and rare disease. Megan lives in New Jersey with her husband and daughter. In her free time, she enjoys Jazzercise, volunteering, reading, and spending time with family and friends.
SEO Copy Editor
Kendra Aquino is our SEO Copy Editor. She brings previous experience in the editorial, digital publishing, and marketing fields, along with her passion for words. Kendra first worked in SEO during her undergraduate career at Cornell College, where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in English & Sociology. She has since utilized the skill while working professionally on various websites and news centers, as well as editing for an international literary magazine. Kendra enjoys optimizing content to make it accessible to all. In her free time, you can find her reading her favorite poets and authors, writing stories, and going on hikes with her husband and dog.
Marketing and Design
Senior Marketing Manager
Ashley Swango is our Senior Marketing Manager, using her marketing and analytical skills to manage our marketing programs and to execute our overall marketing strategy. Prior to Patient Power, she was an associate marketing manager for a Fortune 500 IT distribution company, and a web developer assistant and content writer for a small marketing firm where she created web content, and did social media management, online and email advertising, SEO and copywriting. Ashley earned her Bachelor of Science in Business Marketing from Metropolitan State University in St. Paul, Minnesota. Ashley enjoys working in the healthcare field because she finds it very rewarding to see firsthand how support, innovation and information can help people’s lives. Her favorite aspect of being a Patient Power Team Member is “working with a passionate group of people who want to achieve the same goal of serving the cancer community.”
Social Media Marketing Manager
Sarah Worthington is our Social Media Marketing Manager! Sarah has over 5 years’ experience running professional social media accounts, building social strategy, running paid campaigns, and much more. Sarah’s social media experience ranges from tourism to local news to higher education. She has a passion for social media, storytelling & strategy. She has seen the power of effective social media and its ability to bring people together. Sarah enjoys working at Patient Power because the team is dedicated and passionate about helping people & making a difference in their lives.
Outreach and Engagement
Director of Patient Engagement
Autumn Eadon is Patient Power's expert in patient engagement. In this role, she orchestrates patient immersions, advisory boards, video productions, and patient speakers - bringing the patient and care partner voice firsthand to the pharmaceutical industry. She also coordinates our presence and participation in various national and international medical conferences, nurturing and developing strategic relationships to deliver timely and credible information to our communities. Autumn joined Patient Power in 2012, bringing extensive experience in project management, community management, and production. A personal experience with cancer altered her career path, where she discovered her passion for patient advocacy and the need for patient navigators. Autumn successfully combines her varied talents to provide purposeful management and direction in the pursuit of educating patients to live well and survive with cancer.
Patient Engagement Manager
Lisa Cole is our Patient Engagement Manager,helping to coordinate our patient immersion sessions and outreach that brings the voice of patients and care partners to the pharmaceutical industry. Prior to joining Patient Power, she received her BA in Communication and Media Studies from Washington State University and most recently worked as an Executive/Personal Assistant. After Lisa’s diagnosis with stage II, triple-negative breast cancer, she went through chemotherapy, surgery and radiation. Following the her cancer treatment journey, Lisa decided she wanted to use her breast cancer experience to help others and has found a meaningful fit in her role at Patient Power.
Patient Engagement Specialist
Cynthia Chmielewski is our Patient Engagement Specialist and a "Jersey Girl.” She was born and raised in the Trenton area and attended college at Rutgers University where she pursued a degree in Psychology and Elementary/Special Education. Upon her graduation from college, she was fortunate enough to secure her first teaching position and immediately fell in love with her chosen profession. Cynthia continued teaching for 28 years. She was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in July 2008 after suffering for two years with debilitating back pain which was wrongly attributed to degenerative disc disease. Unfortunately, her induction therapy stopped working after a few cycles. Cynthia proceeded with a stem cell transplant which failed to put her into remission. Depressed and scared, she continued her fight using several of the available novel agents. Fortunately, these novel therapies worked slowly but steadily for her. Cindy is now in a very good partial remission and continues treatment with a maintenance therapy regime. She enjoys an excellent quality of life.
Patient Engagement Specialist
As our Patient Engagement Specialist, Julie Fuller brings her love of connecting with others to support the work at Patient Power. Joining the team in 2020, Julie’s background in marketing and account management in a variety of industries including healthcare, offers her the opportunity to use her skills to engage with patients to help them share their stories and also provide important insights to the pharmaceutical industry. She graduated from the University of Illinois (Champaign-Urbana) with an English degree and has enjoyed a career on the creative side of work. Like many members on the team, Julie has been affected by cancer and wants to support those going through this journey. When she is not at her computer, you can find Julie in her garden or on a bike ride.
Correspondents and Contributors
Host, Myeloma Patient and Advocate
Jack Aiello of San Jose, California is a leading patient-advocate in multiple myeloma. In January of 1995 Jack had a terrible backache. He was diagnosed with multiple myeloma through a blood test. Since that time Jack has had stem cell transplants that have brought him to remission, even if only for a short time. Mr. Aiello's spirit remains high and to quote him "I certainly don't want anyone to feel bad for me. I consider myself extremely fortunate to be alive.”
Host, CLL Patient and Advocate
Jeff Folloder, from Houston, Texas, is a husband, father, son, blood cancer survivor and Patient Power host. He is passionate about patient education and connecting with other patients to help them with resources and support for their condition. Jeff was diagnosed with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) in 2010 and sought treatment at MD Anderson Cancer Center. He entered a clinical trial at the end of 2011 and enjoyed more than six years of complete remission. Jeff has relapsed and is now back in "watch and wait" mode, though is confident and optimistic about what the future holds. Jeff credits his support team, including family and medical staff, with the all the needed tools to live life well, even with cancer.
Host, MPN Patient and Advocate
Ruth Fein Revell is a health and environment writer/editor and a rare disease advocate who has lived with an MPN (myeloprolific neoplasm) for more than 25 years. Her journalism training always her guide, she is known for translating medical specialist and researcher interviews into compelling, understandable features and blogs. Her stories have been published in numerous magazines, newspapers, trade journals and websites since she first freelanced while raising two boys in Upstate New York. She is a former regular contributor to The New York Times and currently writes for health and environmental websites, including most recently for Well, a New York Times newsletter. She has appeared on Patient Power as a patient advocate as well as a host on: MPNs, Adult ALL, Hodgkin Lymphoma, and on speaking to children about a cancer diagnosis. She is the author of A crazy year - it isn't easy! - a children's book told by a 9-year-old living through the 2020 pandemic, with hope and a few chuckles along the way.
Raquel Jex Forsgren, C-IAYT
Certfied Yoga Therapist
Raquel Jex Forsgren is a Certified Yoga Therapist, C-IAYT who graduated from the Soul Institute and certified by the International Association of Yoga Therapists (IAYT). She has been featured in several Patient Power videos that explain and demonstrate yoga and meditation techniques. Raquel has a depth of experience in science and the body, including her Bachelor of Science in Biology and Microbiology, Graduate Work in Pharmacology and Toxicology, She also has over 25 years of experience in drug development and marketing in oncology, hematology, pain and serious liver diseases. Raquel is a 500-hour registered yoga teacher and graduated from Aura Wellness Institute in Massachusetts with High Honors and Soul of Yoga, in Southern California. She is also a certified Yoga Therapist of Yoga of the Heart Cancer and Cardiac Rehabilitation Programs, certified in Chair Yoga for Seniors, Yoga for Veterans with PTSD, and is a member of the International Yoga Therapist Association and Society for Integrative Oncology.
Julie Lanford is the Wellness Director for Cancer Services, a non-profit in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. She has been featured in several Patient Power videos covering nutrition and diet topics and answering audience questions. Julie is a registered dietitian, licensed nutritionist and a board-certified specialist in oncology. Julie developed the Cancer Services website to translate evidence-based nutrition guidelines into consumer-friendly messages for everyday life. The site reaches thousands of people across the country who are interested in cancer nutrition and the most current topics on healthy lifestyle in our culture. Julie received a B.S. in Biology from North Carolina State University and a master’s degree in public health nutrition from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has written more than 350 wellness articles and provides prevention to and survivorship education to Winston-Salem and surrounding rural communities.
Video Reports & Communications
Michele Nadeem-Baker has worked nationally as a broadcast journalist and globally as the chief of communications for well-known, publicly traded multi-billion-dollar corporations. Her chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) diagnosis changed her life but did not stop her. She was drawn to Patient Power for its credible, unmatched information. Joining the team in 2015 as Patient Power’s PR advisor, she brings an extensive background in communication strategies that encompass, among other ventures, various national and international health-related concerns where she has successfully taken a leading role. Michele has extensively represented the American Cancer Society and worked with organizations on medical conditions including various cancers and cardiovascular health—and now draws on her experience to represent Patient Power to the media, public, and patients. Having personally intersected with the cancer community as a CLL patient, Michele has called upon her reporting background to help others effectively navigate the world of treatments, education, and coping skills and become a known CLL influencer. Her video reports and program hosting are viewed on PatientPower.info. Her past journalism experience includes ABC (network), Boston’s NBC and CBS TV news stations. Michele is an FDA Patient Representative, has authored several published articles on global communications topics, is a frequent national conference keynote speaker and a Boston Globe Magazine contributor. She is also a lead moderator for AnCan's Blood Cancer virtual support group. Michele's advocacy efforts were recognized when she was nominated as a WEGO Health Awards Patient Leader Finalist.
Host, CLL Patient and Advocate
Carol Preston is a Patient Power host with over 30 years of experience in communications. She worked as a journalist and talk show host for 25 years. With her interest in medical issues, Carol has worked with scientists and physicians on a wide range of medical conditions including cancer-related treatments, cardiovascular health, metastatic breast cancer and others. Carol received her MS and BS degrees from Syracuse University in New York, and the AP and UPI have honored Carol for her documentary on Holocaust survivors. She has lectured on media at George Washington University and has written Congressional testimony and speeches for C-level executives. Carol served on the board for the organization Bread for the City in Washington, DC for eight years and remains active with the organization.
Cancer Exercise Specialist
As a Cancer Exercise Specialist, Cathy Skinner has provided exercise and wellness training for cancer survivors since 2008. She was the first certified ACSM Cancer Exercise Specialist in Minnesota. Cathy has been featured in several Patient Power videos explaining and demonstrating exercise and stretching techniques and is a Master teacher for ACSM and she authored The Art of Wellness Exercise for Cancer Recovery. Cathy teaches classes, speaks at support groups and conferences about the value of exercise for cancer recovery.
Maria de Bofarull
Global Administrative Coordinator
Maria de Bofarull is an expert logistics coordinator and personal assistant to the Schorrs, based in Europe and working globally for Patient Power. She came to Patient Power in December of 2013 armed with a diverse background in finance and tourism, including an education from the University of Barcelona. Maria uses her organizational talents to maintain all of the details associated with navigating the various administrative tasks that keeps us harmoniously coordinated. She is passionate about helping patients. In Maria's own words, “I left the bank because I wanted to feel I was giving back to society. Now I am.”