Our Team


CISCRP’s staff is dedicated to providing education and information about clinical research. We work to raise awareness, enhance experiences, and strengthen communication and relationships among participants, research professionals, and the public.


CISCRP Board of Directors

CISCRP Team | Ken Getz
Founder and Board Chair
CISCRP Team | Jorge G. Guerra
Development Consultant



Chief Financial Officer and Director of Operations
Senior Director, Patient Engagement
Director, Research Services
Senior Manager, Development and Community Engagement
Senior Manager, Quality and Compliance
Senior Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results
Business Development Executive, Communicating Trial Results
Senior Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results
Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results
Senior Editor, Patient Communications
Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results
Associate Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results
Associate Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results
Quality and Compliance Associate, Communicating Trial Results
Associate Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results
Project Manager, Research Services
Research Associate, Research Services
Community Engagement Coordinator
Events Coordinator
Event Coordinator
Marketing and Communications Coordinator
Marketing and Communications Coordinator
Finance and Operations Manager
Search Clinical Trials and Special Projects Coordinator

In Memory Of

Founder and Board Chair

Ken Getz

Ken Getz is the founder of CISCRP and chairs the board of directors. He is also an associate professor at the Center for the Study of Drug Development, Tufts University School of Medicine where he directs sponsored research programs on clinical development design optimization and operating models; CRO and investigative site management practices; and study volunteer trends and policies. Ken is also the founder of CenterWatch, a leading publisher in the clinical trials industry and one of several companies that he has sold. A well-known speaker at conferences, symposia, universities and corporations, Ken has published numerous articles and chapters in peer-review journals, books, and in the trade press. He is the author of two nationally recognized books for patients and their advocates including The Gift of Participation, and the recipient of several awards for innovation and scholarship. Ken has held a number of board appointments in the private and public sectors, including serving on the Institute of Medicine’s Clinical Research Roundtable, the DIA Foundation, the Consortium to Examine Clinical Research Ethics, and the Clinical Trials Transformation Initiative.

Jessica D. Blaustein

Jessica Blaustein is the Director, Marketing and Development for Clarion Healthcare, a boutique life sciences consulting firm based in Boston. In this role, Jessica establishes new business relationships and leads a range of marketing and corporate outreach efforts. Prior to Clarion, Jessica was a Principal with JAMB Associates, where she conducted market assessments and primary market research for biopharmaceutical clients. Earlier, she was Manager of Communications with the Partnership for Organ Donation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing organ donation for transplantation.

In addition, Jessica is the Director of Executive Women’s Programming on the board of the Boston chapter of the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association, a nonprofit organization dedicated to furthering the advancement and impact of women in the business of healthcare. She received her BA from Harvard College and her MBA from the Harvard Business School.

Development Consultant

Jorge G. Guerra, MD

Dr. Jorge G. Guerra is a graduate of the School of Medicine, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia (UPCH) Lima, Peru. He trained in Internal Medicine and in Medical Statistics & Epidemiology. Following a position as an Associate Professor of Medicine and Attending Physician at UPCH University Hospital, he joined Merck & Co., Inc (Merck, Sharp & Dohme) in 1984 first as a Medical Director and eventually as the vice president of Clinical Research Operations – Global Trial Management. In 2008 Dr.Guerra joined BIogen Idec as Senior VP, Global Clinical Development Operations. He retired from Biogen Idec in 2013 and now serves as a consultant.

Chief Financial Officer and Director of Operations

Caroline Casey

I’m the Chief Financial Officer and director of Operations at CISCRP. I’m very happy to be a part of this wonderful organization where I work with my team to manage CISCRP’s financial and operating areas. I have more than 25 years of experience as a controller, director and senior executive in a variety of organizations in the health care industry including community health providers; clinical research education and publishing; and medical device and technology services.

I’m passionate about helping patients and their families learn about and find the best treatment options available. I’m also passionate about working with a highly professional group of people who work hard and want to make a difference.

I received a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting from the University of Massachusetts. I reside in the North Shore area of Boston with my husband and two children.

Senior Director, Patient Engagement

Jill McNair

I am the Senior Director, Patient Engagement at CISCRP. In this role, I’m proud to oversee a team dedicated to helping sponsor companies provide lay language summaries to study volunteers. I also provide oversight to the planning, creation, and execution of CISCRP education and outreach programs; development and fundraising; marketing and public relations; and business development.

I am passionate about providing education to the public so they can make an informed decision as to whether clinical research is right for them. Working at CISCRP affords me the opportunity to engage patients in the continuum of the clinical research process; whether it’s providing education when they are in a physician’s office or receiving a lay summary after they have given the gift of participation by participating in a study.

I recently completed the Executive MBA program at Temple University’s Fox School of Business. I reside in Bucks County, PA with my husband, three children, and two dogs.

Director, Research Services

Annick Anderson

At CISCRP, I manage the design, implementation, analysis and reporting of a variety of CISCRP research studies. I have more than 15 years of experience conducting primary and secondary research studies in the healthcare, life sciences and consumer goods industries. Prior to CISCRP, I worked at Colgate-Palmolive as a research manager.  I hold an MBA from the Graduate School of Management at Boston University and a Bachelor of Science degree from Bryant University. I am passionate about helping others, and CISCRP offers ample opportunities in that regard. People often comment that I am a nice and genuine person.  And I think those characteristics help me connect to the patients I interact with regularly through my work. I especially enjoy being involved in bringing patients and clinical operation teams together through the CISCRP Patient Advisory Boards; speaking with each other about ways to make clinical trials a better experience overall is very rewarding for me.

Senior Manager, Development and Community Engagement

Ellyn Getz

Prior to joining the CISCRP team, I worked at the College of the Atlantic as a Conference and Events Coordinator and at Brandeis University where I worked in the Alumni Relations Department. I hold a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration, Theater, and Latin American Studies at Brandeis University, where I graduated with highest honors summa cum laude.  My role offers me the opportunity to connect individuals with resources and empower them to make informed decisions about their health. I am also fortunate to collaborate and develop educational programs with passionate researchers from around the world who share in our mission of engaging patients as partners in the clinical research process. Every day is new and fulfilling here at CISCRP!

Senior Manager, Quality and Compliance

Behtash Bahador

I began my work at CISCRP while receiving an undergraduate degree in Communications summa cum laude from Bridgewater State University, and joined the staff full time after graduation. I am currently a Master of Public Health candidate at Tufts University School of Medicine, with a focus in Health Communication. CISCRP is a great fit for me as I strongly believe in providing education and information about health related issues to serve the best interests of the public. I know there will always be a need for advocates that can support change in spaces where barriers exist to improvements in public health. It is imperative to continue calling for full accountability of all stakeholders in clinical research. I am proud knowing that CISCRP works tirelessly to move towards meeting the needs of all clinical research information seekers and participants.

Senior Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results

Julie Farides-Mitchell

A trained social researcher, I joined the CISCRP staff full time after working as an independent contractor.  As Senior Project Manager, I work toward synthesizing complicated data into digestible formats in the Communicating Trial Results program and assist CISCRP in producing primary research.  I hold a Master of Arts degree in Sociology from the University of New Hampshire as well as a dual BA in Sociology and Psychology from the University of New England.  Prior to obtaining my Master’s degree, I worked as a psychometrist for a private practice in Southern Maine. My passion for my work at CISCRP can be best described if you think about heroes. Heroes are real.  They don’t always wear a cape, and they don’t always have to help people by fighting the bad guys. When you’re little, every kid looks up to comic book heroes.  For me, it was Batman and the Ninja Turtles. As an adult, you realize comic book feats of justice can’t happen, but the concept of a hero sticks with you.  I’ve always wanted to help people, and I wanted my impact to be tangible.  At CISCRP, we’re blazing the trail of Patient Engagement, and our programs have a very tangible impact on people’s lives. CISCRP is a place where data and research are put to good use, just as it should be. We drive everything we do based on data we and others in the field have collected; that makes our programs more effective.  And, we facilitate the process for sharing clinical trial results with patients in lay language.  The fact that we can show participants the result of the data they helped to create, in a format they understand, is essential to maintaining an educated population.

We’re not policing the streets under cover of night, but we are making the world of clinical research a little less scary.

Business Development Executive, Communicating Trial Results

Jay Matthews

I am a graduate of Wesleyan University with a B.A. in American Government. During my time at Wesleyan, I was a member of the Varsity Ice Hockey Team. Following graduation, I worked at a healthcare startup prior to assist their business development efforts before joining CISCRP. I am excited to be working with the Communicating Trial Results program to produce Plain Language Summaries for patients who participate in clinical trials. As a Business Development Executive, I hope to work with various Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical companies to assist their efforts in patient engagement in clinical trials and offer an incredible resource to their participants.

Senior Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results

Matt Scanlon

After eleven years in the publishing industry, I joined CISCRP in June 2016.

It’s exciting to work with the Communicating Trial Results team to deliver lay language summaries into the hands of those most deserving – the actual clinical trial participants. CISCRP provides an important bridge between volunteers and researchers, facilitating transparency and awareness. I believe empowerment through knowledge benefits everyone.

I hold a BA in Communications from Clark University and live in the suburbs of Boston with my wife and two sons.

Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results

Brandis Pickard

Prior to joining CISCRP, I spent ten years working as a contracts manager at various oncology research companies in the Boston area, most recently at BeiGene. I landed in the industry by chance, after studying English and Law at UMass. Clinical contract management provided an opportunity to meld those two interests, and to be part of several different teams working toward a common goal: to help patients. For the past decade, I’ve concentrated primarily on the legal documentation and processes essential to get clinical trials up and running. I’m excited now to transition to the Communicating Trial Results group, where my focus will be on a different aspect: delivering lay language summaries to patients once the trial is complete. I’m delighted to be part of an organization committed to patient communication and engagement. I believe in the efforts CISCRP is making to ensure that all stakeholders in the clinical research process have a voice.”

Senior Editor, Patient Communications

Lewis Rice

After working in journalism, I went back to school to get my master’s degree in health communication so I could help people make good decisions about their health. The best way to do that is to give them clear and engaging information.  I’m happy to say that my role at CISCRP is to make sure patient communications – primarily clinical trial summaries – are written in plain language so that an average person can understand them. People with different levels of education and health literacy make the commitment to participate in clinical trials, and they all deserve to know why their time and effort matters.

Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results

Rob Mills

I joined the CISCRP team after several years in academic publishing and health communication, and am proud to share in CISCRP’s commitment to patient education. My career in health communication began at a non-profit media agency, where I worked to provide crucial public health education resources to underserved communities in West Africa. I also served on the editorial staff for several academic journals, including the Journal of Infectious Diseases and the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy. I am excited to share my experience and skills with the Communicating Trial Results team in our work to ensure all participants receive a summary of their results.


I hold a B.Sc. in economics and communications from Bentley University and an M.F.A. from New Mexico State University.

Associate Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results

Jonah Frielich

I am a graduate of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst with a BA in Psychology and Economics. As an undergrad, I was became involved with multiple non-profits including interning at CISCRP. After graduating, I have been fortunate enough to be brought back on to work with the Communicating Trial Results program, which allows me to help ensure that patients get the results of trials they participated in. As an Associate Project Manager, I get to learn a lot about the industry and provide an important service for patients!

Associate Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results

Joshua Dressler

I am a graduate of Muhlenberg College with a BA in Economics and Business Administration with a concentration in management. At school I spent time interning with the Allentown Economic Development Corporation and as a peer tutor for economics, business, and statistics courses. After graduation I spent time working as an adviser for my youth group and as a Webmaster at Dart Sales. After a few months I was hired at CISCRP as a part of the Communicating Trial Results Program. Being a part of this team allows me to ensure that anyone who participates in a clinical trial receives the results of their clinical trial. As an assistant project manager I am looking forward to creating a positive experience for those who participate in clinical trials.

Quality and Compliance Associate, Communicating Trial Results

Anita Naik

I started working at CISCRP as the Communicating Trial Results Intern in my final semester of the Masters in Public Health program at Boston University, where I focused on Epidemiology and Maternal and Child Health. Before this, I studied Neuroscience and Hispanic Studies at Dartmouth College, where I earned my BA.

After earning my MPH at BU in December 2017, I started working at CISCRP full-time and I have been thrilled to be a part of the team! I love getting to work here because I truly believe in the importance of the work we do to increase transparency and encourage participation in clinical trials.

Associate Project Manager, Communicating Trial Results

Rachel Weitzner

Rachel joined the CISCRP team in the fall of 2017. She received her Master’s degree in Public Health at the University of Rochester. During her time in Rochester, NY she gained experience working in various areas of public health, including community engagement work with a local homeless outreach program and fighting food insecurity with a regional non-profit and community partners. Through this work and her time studying public health, Rachel learned the importance of transparency, accessibility, and collaboration in public health first-hand. She is excited to work with a team that strives to advance patient engagement in clinical research.

Project Manager, Research Services

Jasmine Benger

Before coming to CISCRP, I worked in public health with maternal and child populations for over five years. I have always been passionate about helping others which is why I feel the Research Services Project Manager position is such a great fit for me.

My job allows me the opportunity to interact with patients regularly and convey their experiences to the organizations conducting clinical trials. I believe that seeking out the patient experience and perspective is critical as it helps ensure that the future of clinical research continually evolves and improves.
I’m thrilled to be a part of a fantastic team of people who all have the same goal of engaging patients as partners in the clinical research process. I hold a Bachelor’s of Science in Nutrition from Framingham State University and reside in Boston.

Research Associate, Research Services

Nova Getz

In May of 2016, I earned a Bachelor of Arts in Health Administration and Public Policy with a focus in Public Health, and graduated with Cum Laude honors. During my time as a student, I interned at the subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere on Capitol Hill, and at the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Both experiences taught me a lot about serving the public, and about health resources in the U.S. and in Central and South America. After graduating, I interned at CISCRP over the summer and enjoyed the level of interaction that I got to have with my team and with the diverse population of healthcare utilizers, providers, and advocates. I love the work that I get to do as a research associate, because I get to collaborate with people from all walks of life in order to advance clinical research in a patient-conscientious direction.

Community Engagement Coordinator

Clarissa Budd

After receiving a BA in Graphic Design and minor in Photography from Framingham State University, I joined CISCRP as the Community Engagement Coordinator. I am involved in the planning and execution of our AWARE for All and Medical Heroes Appreciation 5K Events. My role allows me to use my creative skills to create promotional pieces and capture our events revolving around raising awareness of the importance of clinical trial participation. I also have the privilege of interacting with many individuals that help bring our events to life – from sponsors and volunteers to patients and their families. I am thrilled to join the CISCRP team in providing educational resources to the public about the importance of clinical trials.

Events Coordinator

Kayla Seider

In May of 2016, I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology from Penn State University – University Park campus. At Penn State I was introduced to the world of non-profit work through the Penn State Dance Marathon (THON) in which I participated in all four years of my college career. THON is the largest student run philanthropy in the world and raises money for pediatric cancer research. After graduation, I accepted an internship with the National Pediatric Cancer Foundation in Tampa, FL where I managed events and development to help fund clinical trials for pediatric cancer research. I fell in love with my position there which led me to become the Events Coordinator here at CISCRP. My role as the Events Coordinator is to help build CISCRP’s live program portfolio through event logistical management, sponsorship, and community support. I work on event logistics and community engagement for our “AWARE for All,” “Medical Heroes Appreciation Initiative,” and “Amplifying the Patient Voice Roundtable Discussion” programs. I am delighted to be a part of the CISCRP team where I can collaborate with organizations around the world to provide educational resources to the public about the importance of clinical research!

Event Coordinator

Hope Ventricelli

I graduated in 2015 from York College of Pennsylvania, with a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre, and a minor in Public Relations. Prior to joining the CISCRP team, I worked at the Westport Country Playhouse as the Group Sales and Marketing Manager where I worked alongside the marketing team to generate group sales, engage the community and manage special events. I joined CISCRP as an Events Coordinator where I am involved in the planning and execution of our AWARE for All, Medical Heroes Appreciation 5K, and Amplifying Patient Voices: Roundtable events. My role offers me the opportunity to connect with individuals that benefit from our outreach programs, as well as collaborate with community organizations from around the world. I am thrilled to work on the CISCRP team and provide educational resources to the public about the importance of clinical research.

Marketing and Communications Coordinator

Leslie Perez

I hold a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Communication from the University of Massachusetts Boston. During my time as a student I developed a passion for nonprofit work. After interning at a telecommunications company for a few years, I joined CISCRP and felt that I found the perfect position to match my interests and passions. As the Marketing and Communications Coordinator I provide support in all areas of marketing and outreach, including email and event marketing, patient engagement and alliance initiatives, and managing CISCRP’s social media presence. I am thrilled to be working for CISCRP whose mission is to empower clinical trial volunteers and educate the public about the importance of clinical trial participation.

Marketing and Communications Coordinator

Katherine Marriott

I hold a Bachelor of Arts in Business Marketing from the Isenberg School of Management at UMASS Amherst.  Just prior to joining the CISCRP team, I spent three years working as the Assistant Director of Marketing and Outreach at the North American Thrombosis Forum – a healthcare non-profit founded by cardiologists at Brigham and Women’s Hospital to spread awareness and preventative education about blood clots.  At the organization, I utilized my marketing knowledge to promote educational events, expand patient programs, manage online communications, and strengthen the overall brand strategy.  I also discovered my passion for healthcare and patient advocacy.  I am thrilled at the opportunity to come aboard such a wonderful and collaborative team of individuals at CISCRP and contribute my marketing expertise to further CISCRP’s mission!

Finance and Operations Manager

David Getz

In May of 2015, I graduated from Brandeis University with a BA in Economics and Mathematics and a minor in Chemistry. I joined CISCRP as the Finance and Operations Manager after previously working as a finance intern at The Jackson Laboratory. I’ve pursued this industry niche for a while – my education and passions very effectively translate into a finance position within the life sciences. As an extrovert, CISCRP is also a great fit for me – I am passionate and well suited to the work that I do in patient advocacy and educating the public. I find that the work we do here has a very human quality. I am dedicated to our mission that information and education in clinical research should be readily accessible, and each party should be mutually respected and appreciated. I am proud to be a part of such an enthusiastic team at CISCRP, and I have boundless respect for my coworkers’ dedication.

Search Clinical Trials and Special Projects Coordinator

Jacqueline Litwin

I joined CISCRP in February 2017, shortly after completing my bachelor’s degree in International Studies at American University. While I was in college, I had internships at the National Museum of American Jewish History, the Council for a Strong America, and other non-profit organizations. I worked with our Marketing & Events Team for a year before transitioning to the Operations Department as the Search Clinical Trials and Special Projects Coordinator. In this new role, I oversee our Search Clinical Trials service, which connects patients to trials of interest in their area. My position involves managing the day-to-day running of Search Clinical Trials, as well as working to facilitate long-term improvements to the service. I also manage CISCRP’s external contacts, and work across departments on special projects.

Rachel Minnick

In Loving Memory of our Friend and Colleague

1978 – 2018

We are deeply saddened by the passing of Rachel Minnick, our Senior Manager of Marketing and Patient Engagement Alliances. Rachel was so passionate, and played such an important role in CISCRP’s mission and success. Having volunteered in clinical trials herself Rachel was truly the embodiment of a Medical Hero. Her battle with cancer was hard fought, and through it all Rachel brought her usual positive outlook and optimism; compassion for the patient community; constant support and encouragement for her staff and colleagues, and courage. She will be greatly missed.

Patient Advocate

Jean Burns

Diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2003, Jean may be one of a handful of people with PD who has been in more than one new treatment clinical trials. The first in 2003 was CEP1347, a phase 2/3 trial that failed after 2 years. The second new treatment clinical trial is taking place at the NIH and is a phase 1 trial involving brain surgery and Glial Derived Neurotrophic Factor (GDNF surgery in 2014). She has been in numerous studies and speaks about PD and clinical trials.

Jean has spent the past 14 years advocating for clinical trials and for Parkinson’s awareness. She now focuses on advocacy for human safety and well-being in risky clinical trials. US policy is to provide no insurance or long term care coverage for clinical trial participants who participate in brain surgery clinical trials, even though they may suffer stroke (including loss of speech and mobility) and other terrible injuries.

As a country, the US stands alone in this policy; Jean is working to change this policy of no-care in for research-related injuries.

President & Chief Executive Officer, PMG

Jennifer Byrne

Jennifer Byrne is the CEO of PMG Research and the co-founder of the non-profit Greater Gift Initiative. She has concentrated her career in the clinical research site sector for over 25 years, leading the PMG Research team to include more than 100,000 participants in over 7,000 clinical trials. Having been fortunate enough to work at the patient/provider level and actually witness the impact of clinical research in the lives of patients, Jennifer is driven to expand clinical research as a health care option for as many participants as possible. There is much work to be done to further educate the health care system and all people about the value proposition of clinical trial participation; Jennifer is honored to work with CISCRP on this journey.

Senior Strategic Advisor, SCORR Marketing

Joan A. Chambers

Vice President, Marketing, Acurian, Inc.

Scott H. Connor

Scott has more than 20 years of marketing experience in the life sciences and technology sectors. At Acurian, Connor is responsible for company strategy, market intelligence, product management, creative services delivery, and the development and execution of all corporate marketing initiatives. Prior to Acurian, Scott was director of marketing at Liquent (now a Parexel subsidiary), the leading provider of regulatory submission software and services for the biopharmaceutical industry. Before Liquent, Scott held a variety of marketing and web-based technology positions with SCT (now Ellucian), a developer of administrative software and outsourcing services to the higher education, local government, public utility, and process manufacturing industries. Scott graduated summa cum laude from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University with a B.S. in Advertising and English.

President, Investigator Support Services, Inc.

Sarah Ebner, MBA, MPH

Associate Director, Integrated Site Services Alliance Manager, Oncology, Quintiles

Peter Fredette

Peter is a Toxicologist by training and has over 15 years of experience in the industry and has maintained ACRP certification for over 10 years. Peter’s deepest experience is in oncology research however, it extends to all phases of drug development, across more than a dozen therapeutic areas. He is passionate about clinical trials as a care option for patients, and building alliances that bring research professionals and patients closer together.

Executive Vice President & Group Director, DC Health Edelman

Courtney Gray Haupt

Courtney Gray Haupt leads the healthcare team in Edelman’s Washington, DC office, specializing in public affairs and thought leadership campaigns on medical innovation, clinical trials, consumer health and wellness and public health issues including mental health, cardiovascular health and infectious diseases. She has worked with NGOs, associations, academic groups and global organizations on programs to improve patient access to care, address health reform and prevent substance abuse.

Courtney has collaborated with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health to address antibiotic resistance and helped numerous professional groups and coalitions to successfully advocate for increased federal funding for the NIH. She also led the Up and Away and Out of Sight initiative to educate parents about medicine safety. Courtney previously managed advocacy and clinical research education and outreach programs for the Association of Clinical Research Organizations. She is active in efforts to increase bone marrow stem cell donation to support blood cancer patients and caregivers.

Therapeutic Area Liaison: Cardiovascular & Metabolics, Janssen Research & Development, LLC

Suzann Johnson

Director, Health Care Alliances Clinical Research Service, ICON

Almenia Garvey, M.Sc.

With over 20 years of clinical research experience, Almenia Garvey, Director of Health Care Alliances at ICON, is a strong leader and proven relationship builder. Almenia is a site relations expert who specializes in minority recruitment, site selection strategy, investigator identification and investigator relationship management. ICON plc is a global provider of drug development solutions and services to the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device industries.

President, Clinical Performance Partners, Inc.

Beth Harper

As a veteran of the clinical research world with over 30 years of experience, I am passionate about advancing treatment options for us all.  From direct patient care experience to supporting clinical trial design and execution, I have remained passionate about ensuring patients are aware of clinical trial opportunities, well educated to make informed decisions about their participation and to help minimize the burdens of participation.  I truly believe that those who give the gift of participation are medical heroes and remained focused on doing my part to make their participation easier and more meaningful.

Global Enrollment Manager, Janssen Research & Development

Barbara Kephart

Executive Director, Association of Clinical Research Professionals

Jim Kremidas

Jim Kremidas is currently the Executive Director of the Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP). He is an original member of the CISCRP Advisory Board and has been a leading advocate of patient engagement since 1997 at Eli Lilly where he established and lead the first patient focused organization in their clinical development function. He has also lead the patient engagement functions within large CROs.

President & CEO, Benchmark Research

Mark Lacy

Mark Lacy is founder and CEO of Benchmark Research – a growing and dynamic firm with a network of quality investigative research sites throughout the United States. Mr. Lacy’s active participation with the Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP) has encompassed serving as Chair of the Site Manager’s Forum, Chair of the Finance Committee, being elected to the Board of Trustees; and in 2005 being honored as a recipient of the Meritorious Service Award. Mr. Lacy also serves on the Board of Advisors for The Center for Information & Study
on Clinical Research Participation (CISCRP), and as a member of the Executive Committee for the PharmaTimes U.S. Clinical Researcher of the Year competition.

In 2010, Mr. Lacy was selected by Entrepreneur Magazine as one of the top four “Established Entrepreneurs” for his success in growing Benchmark Research, and was recognized in 2011 by PharmaVoice as one of the 100 most Inspiring People. This entrepreneurial approach has extended into his formation of VaxCorps, a nationally prominent research network focusing on vaccines, of which he is the CEO. Additionally, Mr. Lacy is expanding his healthcare entrepreneurial activities by opening a chain of Family and Urgent Care medical clinics in association with his research sites, which is being touted as revolutionary and a game-changer. He is also emerging as a leader in real estate development in Texas with office buildings in Austin and ocean front resort properties on the Texas coast.

Prior to founding Benchmark Research, Mr. Lacy earned a B.A. degree from The University of Texas at Austin (Plan II Program, Summa Cum Laude); and held several prominent positions in state and national politics, including service under a Presidential Administration.

VP, Business Development, Praxis Communications LLC

Robert Loll

President and Principal Consultant for Atheneum Consulting, LLC.

Laurin Mancour

Laurin has a diverse background in research ranging from activities in nonclinical through various types of product development.  She also has extensive experience with clinical trials education and training.  Laurin is a certified trainer for the ACRP Certification Prep Course and Fundamentals of Clinical Research Course.  Laurin is a Committee Participant, Former Chapter Chair, Lead Chapter Chair, and Former Board of Trustees member for ACRP.  She is also the NC East/RTP Area SoCRA Chapter Chair, an Advisory Board Member for CISCRP, and a member of the Consortium of Academic Programs in Clinical Research (CoAPCR).  Laurin is an inaugural winner of the ACRP Advancing Awareness in Clinical Research award and a patient advocate for RSD/CRPS, Small Fiber Neuropathy,  and Dysautonomia.

President & CEO, Rx Trials, Inc.

Christine Pierre, RN

Vice President Clinical Trial Division, Artcraft Health

Brian Schaechter

Brian has extensive experience in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, chemical, research, education, and medical device markets. His over 25 years of experience has taken compounds and devices from pre-clinical to market.  Prior to joining Artcraft Health 6 years ago he spent his early career with Baxter Lifesciences, ThermoFisher Scientific, and the Atcor Medical organizations.  His knowledge base and experience is extensive and has supported hundreds of global and domestic clinical studies.

Brian graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park, with a bachelor of arts in economics and a minor in finance. He is certified in the principles of Good Clinical Practice developed by the International Conference on Harmonization. Brian has also completed numerous business courses and is a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt Champion.

Outside of work, Brian believes strongly in community service. He belongs to and holds leadership positions in local planning, and school boards. He and his wife of 25 years share a belief that it’s important to instill a sense of community in their 2 daughters.

Vice President, Segal Institute for Clinical Research

Bonnie Segal

Bonnie Segal is the Vice President and Co-Founder of Segal Institute for Clinical Research. She also holds the position of Vice President for each of the 6 affiliated site entities that Segal Institute represents. These entities specialize in Psychiatry, Addiction, Women’s Health and General Medicine. Bonnie has been in medical research for 19 years and has been involved in every area of Segal Institute’s expansion and diversification. She leads the business development, operations, and recruitment teams, as well as the company’s community advocacy initiatives, staff engagement and staff leadership programs. Bonnie has been a crucial part of the success of over 1,000 clinical trials conducted by the 6 affiliated site entities at 9 research locations throughout South Florida and South Carolina.

Chief Medical Officer, Horizon Pharma

Jeffrey W. Sherman MD, FACP

Jeffrey (Jeff) Sherman, MD, FACP, is Chief Medical Officer and Executive Vice President, Research & Development, at Horizon Pharma based in Lake Forest, Illinois. He has more than 25 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry at IDM Pharma, Takeda Global Research and Development, NeoPharm, Searle/Pharmacia, and Squibb/Bristol-Myers Squibb.  Jeff is an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and a member of a number of professional societies as well as a Diplomat of the National Board of Medical Examiners and the American Board of Internal Medicine.  He is a Past President of the Drug Information Association (DIA) and a former member of the Board of Directors, is an inaugural DIA fellow, and serves as the DIA liaison to the FDA Clinical Trial Transformation Initiative (CTTI) Steering Committee.  Jeff most importantly serves on the Board of Advisors of the Center for Information and Study on Clinical Research Participation (CISCRP) and is passionate about patient engagement since all of us are patients and need to be best informed about the importance of clinical research for optimal care.

Patient Advocate

Darby Steadman

Principal and Founder, Strategic Clinical Consultants

Linda Strause

Dr. Strause is Principal and Founder of Strategic Clinical Consultants has more than 25 years of expertise in global clinical operations and clinical development, with an emphasis in oncology, critical care, and ethical considerations for subjects with life-threatening diseases. Her passion for educating and engaging patients in clinical trials was additionally influenced as a result of her personal journey as a caregiver to her husband with GBM. Dr. Strause holds maintains an Adjunct Professor position at UC San Diego. Her undergraduate degree is from UC San Diego and her PhD from UC Santa Barbara in Neurophysiology.