American Academy of Pediatrics
V. Fan Tait, MD, FAAP
Chief Medical Officer
Trisha M. Calabrese, MPH
Director, Division of Innovation
Sarah Hueneke, MPH
Manager, Coordinating Center on Epilepsy
Amy Shah, MPH
Project Manager, ECHO
Jeanne Lapp, DC, MPH
Maternal Child Health Bureau
Tina Turgel, RN-BC, BSN, MHA
Program Advisory Committee
The Advisory Committee (AC) provides leadership and strategic oversight for all the Center's activities, including the technical assistance infrastructure, which serves as the educational and systems arm of the Center. The AC also serves as a conduit of information to other stakeholders, including other interested parties and membership bodies, where appropriate.
Sucheta Joshi, MD, MS, FAAP
Executive Committee Member, AAP Section on Neurology
Dr Joshi is a Pediatric Neurologist and Epileptologist and a Clinical Associate Professor in Pediatrics and Communicable Diseases, in the Division of Pediatric Neurology at the University of Michigan. She completed additional fellowship training in Clinical Neurophysiology and Epilepsy and holds a master's degree in clinical research design and Statistical Analysis from the School of Public Health at the University of Michigan. Dr Joshi cares for infants, children, and adolescents with treatment-resistant epilepsy and mentor's medical students, residents, social workers, and other specialties (such as Neuroradiology, Social Work and Neonatology) related to the treatment of epilepsy. Recently, she has served as the Clinical and Administrative Lead for the Pediatric Epilepsy Telemedicine Program in Michigan, which aims to improve access to epilepsy care for children with epilepsy. She is currently serving as the Medical Director for the Coordinating Center of the American Academy of Pediatrics to improve care for Children and Youth with Epilepsy. In addition, she has been involved with several epilepsy research projects.
- Pattie Archuleta (Family Voices)
Ms Archuleta coordinates the Family-to-Family Health Information Center at the Parents’ Place of Maryland. She is active on a variety of initiatives to improve services for children with special health care needs and increase parent professional collaboration, including a gubernatorial appointment to the Maryland State Autism Workgroup. Ms Archuleta sits on the local Special Education Community Advisory Committee (SECAC) and the offers peer support for families on the ketogenic diet at the Johns Hopkins Pediatric Epilepsy Center. She is also experienced in behavior intervention program development and implementation. She is the parent of a young man with an autism spectrum disorder and a history of epilepsy.
- Susan Axelrod, MBA (CURE Epilepsy)
In 1998, Ms Axelrod and other mothers of children with intractable epilepsy joined forces to spearhead the search for cures for the epilepsies. CURE (Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy) is now the major non-profit sponsor of epilepsy research, funding novel research projects, conferences, and workshops around the world. Axelrod has been the recipient of numerous national and international awards and honors for her advocacy, served a four year term on the NIH National Advisory Neurological Disorders and Stroke Council (NANDS), and has also served as a reviewer for the Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program in the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program within the Department of Defense. Ms Axelrod received a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Chicago Business School after earning a Bachelors degree in humanities from Colorado College. She has three adult children and resides with her husband in Chicago.
- Scott Berns, MD, MPH, FAAP (National Institute for Children's Health Quality)
Dr Berns is the President and CEO of NICHQ, an independent, nonprofit organization working for nearly two decades to improve children’s health. NICHQ engages federal, state and local leaders, public and private agencies, professionals and communities to employ quality improvement, innovation and collaborative learning to improve children’s health outcomes. Dr Berns currently serves as principal investigator on three NICHQ-led HRSA Cooperative Agreements: Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems Collaborative Improvement and Innovation Network (CoIIN); Infant Mortality CoIIN; and the Sickle Cell Disease Treatment Demonstration Program. Berns is a nationally recognized expert in quality improvement science, maternal and child health, and has published extensively. He was primary author and editor of Toward Improving the Outcome of Pregnancy 3: Enhancing Perinatal Health through Quality, Safety and Performance Initiatives. Prior to joining NICHQ, Berns served for 14 years on the March of Dimes National Office Staff, most recently as Deputy Medical Officer and Senior Vice President, Chapters Programs. He utilized his medical (pediatrics and pediatric emergency medicine) background and public health expertise to provide direction in education and community services to all March of Dimes state-based chapters, plus DC and Puerto Rico. This included strategic direction and oversight on: (1) development of maternal and infant health program priorities, (2) community program investments, (3) convening and leading state and local professional networks, and (4) conducting healthcare quality improvement programs. Dr Berns is also a Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and a Clinical Professor of Health Services, Policy and Practices at the Brown University School of Public Health.
- Lawrence Brown, MD, FAAP (Child Neurology Society)
Dr Brown is Associate Professor of Neurology and Pediatrics at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and the Perelman School of Medicine of the University of Pennsylvania. He is a senior clinician in CHOP’s Pediatric Regional Epilepsy Program where he is principal investigator on numerous clinical drug trials in pediatric epilepsy. He is also director of the Pediatric Neuropsychiatry Program, a multidisciplinary clinic for children with Tourette syndrome, high functioning autism, complex ADHD and others whose complex learning and behavioral issues have a neurobiological basis. Dr Brown is a principal investigator of a genetic study funded by the National Institutes of Health as part of an international consortium to develop a world-wide data bank of individuals with Tourette syndrome. In addition, he is a senior clinician in the Sleep Disorders Center with a major interest in how sleep and its disorders interact in children with neurological and developmental disorders. Dr Brown is the immediate past president of the Child Neurology Foundation (and currently serves as project director of a national medical transition initiative), an active member of the Child Neurology Society, the American Epilepsy Society, the Academy of Pediatrics (where he served two terms as Chairman of the Section of Neurology) and the American Academy of Neurology (where he served sequentially as fellow, advisor and faculty at the annual Palatucci Advocacy Leadership Forum). In addition to peer reviewed research, Dr Brown’s publications include associate editorship of Schwartz’s Clinical Handbook of Pediatrics, Fifth Edition, as well as all previous editions. He is a member of the editorial boards of Pediatric Neurology and Clinical Neurology. Locally, he served for many years as chairman of the Professional Advisory Board and the executive board of the Epilepsy Foundation of Eastern Pennsylvania. Dr Brown recently served on the American Academy of Pediatric’s Subcommittee on ADHD which revised guidelines for diagnosis and treatment of ADHD.
- Bethany Chernich
Ms Chernich received her Bachelors of Arts degree in Music Education from Saginaw Valley State University in 2012. Currently, she teaches kindergarten through eighth grade general music classes in Brighton, Michigan. When she was eleven, she began having absence seizures. Now, as a young adult and thanks to the genuine care of her physicians, Bethany’s seizures are now controlled. She hopes to bring to the committee the viewpoint of a young person who has seizures
- Erin Fecske, MSN, RN, CNRN, CPNP (National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners)
Erin Fecske is a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner in the level 4 Comprehensive Epilepsy Center at Children's Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri. In this role, Erin manages the care of patients with complex and refractory epilepsy including surgical patients and those on the ketogenic diet. She completed her MSN at Rush University in Chicago, Illinois and is currently pursuing her DNP. Erin is certified as a Clinical Neuroscience Registered Nurse (CNRN) and has specialized in the care of the neuroscience patient for much of her career. She has spoken on the topic of intractable epilepsy locally and nationally and was awarded the 2016 Excellence in Clinical Patient Care Award from the American Association of Neuroscience Nurses (AANN). She has also been awarded honors for Excellence in Nursing Research from the American Epilepsy Society where she has presented a number of abstracts on the pediatric epilepsy. Erin is a member of National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (NAPNAP), American Association of Neuroscience Nurses (AANN) and the American Epilepsy Society (AES).
- C Eve J Kimball, MD, FAAP (Quality Improvement Innovation Networks)
Dr Kimball has spent more than 40 years as a pediatrician and has been privileged to support and care for hundreds families of children with mild through severe epilepsy. She began her career internship and residency training in the US Army and completed it at Children’s Hospital National Medical Center. Throughout her career, she has also practiced pediatrics at a Children’s Hospital Neighborhood Health Clinic, Yater Medical Group, a small private practice, a solo private practice, Madigan Army Medical Center Pediatric Clinic, and the Exceptional Family Member Program at Landstuhl Army Regional Medical Center in Germany. Dr Kimball currently manages her own large pediatric group, All About Children Pediatric Partners, that she grew from one pediatrician to ten pediatricians and nurse practitioners. Dr Kimball is interested in the quality improvement process and has participated in 5 Quality Innovation Network projects – studying areas of Serous Otitis Media, Child Abuse Prevention, Newborn Screening, Bright Futures, and Genetics. In 2009, she was named the Pennsylvania Pediatrician of the Year.
- Christopher A. Kus, M.D., M.P.H. (Title V Representative)
Dr Kus is Associate Medical Director of the Division of Family within the New York State Department of Health. He provides leadership for New York State child and adolescent health activities. Dr Kus received his medical degree from Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan (1978) and did his pediatric training at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in New Hampshire. He served as a Pediatric Fellow in Child Development at the University of Oregon Health Sciences Center (1980-81) and received his Master of Public Health from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1984). Dr Kus has done child development and public health work in New Hampshire and Vermont before coming to New York in 1993. He is a board-certified pediatrician and a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Dr Kus is a Past-President of the Association of Maternal and Child Health Programs (AMCHP). He served on the Early Childhood Expert Panel for Bright Futures: Guidelines for Health Supervision of Infants, Children, and Adolescents, Third Edition (2008). Dr Kus represents the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials on the Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders and Genetic Diseases in Newborns and Children.
- Rebecca Moreau (Epilepsy Foundation of Texas)
Ms Moreau has over 10 years non-profit experience working with children with special needs. The past four years she has worked for the Epilepsy Foundation Texas as the Program Director serving people living with epilepsy in 176 counties in Texas. In August 2015, she became the Project Director of “Emerging Strategies for Children with Epilepsy in Texas” and has worked to establish telemedicine clinics for children and youth with epilepsy and implement outreach initiatives to improve access to care. In September 2016, Rebecca was selected as a representative to the State of Texas’ e-Health Advisory Committee where she is a voice for consumers of health services provided through telemedicine. She graduated with a BA in Psychology and is a passionate advocate for people living with epilepsy.
- Steven Owens, MD MPH (The Epilepsy Foundation)
Dr Owens is a seasoned family medicine and public health trained physician with expertise in minority health issues – health equity and disparities, and public health practice. As the Vice President of Program and Services for the Epilepsy Foundation, he is responsible for supervising all programs and services of the Foundation, and its SUDEP and Wellness Institutes’ activities. Dr Owens provides strategic oversight and direction for the Foundation’s national Community of Practice, and ensures integration of the Foundation’s federal programs, community services and public awareness campaign activities. He oversees ongoing evaluation of activities against intended audiences. Prior to joining the Epilepsy Foundation, Dr Owens served as the Associate Executive Director for the Association of State and Territorial Directors of Health Promotion and Public Health Education. In this capacity, he provided technical assistance to state health department staff on integrating social determinants of health into projects and activities addressing chronic disease prevention and health promotion. Additionally, he led the Diversity Initiative for USAID’s Global Health Fellows Program. Dr Owens received a master’s in biology from Hampton University, a master’s in public health with a focus on international health policy and management from Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University and a medical doctorate from the Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University.
- Kate Taft, MPH (Association of Maternal Child Health Programs)
Ms Taft is the Senior Program Manager for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs (CYSHCN) at AMCHP and assumes a lead role on issues surrounding CYSHCN, birth defects and developmental disabilities and early childhood. Specifically, Ms Taft manages AMCHPs grant portfolio and budget related to autism spectrum disorders and other developmental disabilities (ASD/DD). This includes the State Public Health Autism Resource Center (SPHARC), AMCHPs comprehensive resource center for state Title V programs and others interested in improving systems for children and youth with ASD/DD and their families. Ms. Taft has over nine years' experience working on issues that affect children's health, such as early childhood development, mental health, and injury prevention, at the public health and individual levels. She also has coordinated the Child Fatality Review Team in Suffolk County, MA. Prior to joining AMCHP, Ms Taft worked at the Association of Schools of Public Health (ASPH), providing support to academic public health including the Association of Teachers of Maternal and Child Health and the ASPH Maternal and Child Health Council. She received her Master of Public Health Degree with a concentration in Maternal and Child Health from the George Washington University, and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from the College of William and Mary.
- Stacy Taylor, JD (Parents’ Place of Maryland)
Stacy Taylor coordinates two systems change grants for the Parents’ Place of Maryland, including the Access Improvement Grant for Maryland Children and Youth with Epilepsy. Stacy has served on the Maryland Universal Newborn Hearing Screening Program advisory committee, and currently serves on the Connections Beyond Sight and Sound advisory committee. She is a Commissioner with the Baltimore County Commission on Disabilities and is a member of the Baltimore County Special Education Citizens’ Advisory Committee (SECAC). Stacy is the parent of four children, two of whom have multiple disabilities and a history of seizures.
- Patience H. White, MD, MA, FAAP, FACP (Got Transition)
Dr White received her MD from Harvard Medical School and a master in Education from George Washington University (GWU) School of Education and Human Development. Throughout her career, she has been active in academic medicine, clinical care, research, and public policy. She has served as the vice president for Public Health Policy and Advocacy at the Arthritis Foundation and director of the Division of Adult and Pediatric Rheumatology, associate dean of Faculty Affairs and a tenured professor of medicine and Pediatrics at GWU School of Medicine and Health Sciences where she is a practicing pediatric and adult rheumatologist. For over 20 years her clinical, research and advocacy efforts have focused on assisting youth with and without special health care needs in their transition from pediatric to adult health care. She has been a consultant to the youth subcommittee of the President's Task Force for Employment of Adults with Disabilities, served as the creator and executive director for 10 years of a transition program, the Adolescent Employment Readiness Center, at Children’s National Medical Center, completed a Robert Wood Health Policy Fellowship where she worked on the Senate Finance Committee on Medicaid and Medicare policy and served as a consultant to the Maternal and Child Health Bureau’s Healthy and Ready to Work national center. Since 2013 she has been co-director with Peggy McManus of Got Transition: the federally funded Center for Health Care Transition Improvement where she is actively involved in providing technical assistance to integrated health care delivery systems, health plans, Title V agencies, pediatric and adult primary and specialty care practices, and patient organizations and health provider professional societies. She has published many peer reviewed articles on transition, was a co-author of the 2011 AAP, the AAFP, and the ACP joint clinical report, “Supporting the Health Care Transition from Adolescence to Adulthood in the Medical Home” and is leading the update of the AAP/ACP/AAFP Clinical Report in 2017.
- David Wood, MD, MPH, FAAP (Medical Home Pediatrician)
Dr Wood is board-certified in Pediatrics and in Preventive Medicine and Public Health. He completed a health services research fellowship at RAND/UCLA. He is currently a Tenured Professor and Chair Department of Pediatrics at the East Tennessee State University and Chief Medical Officer for Niswonger Children's Hospital, part of Mountain States Health Alliance (MSHA), a 14 hospital system serving Middle Appalachia. For more than twenty years his research and advocacy efforts have focused on improving health systems for underserved children and adults. He has published more than 150 peer-reviewed publications, reports, and book chapters. He founded and directed the Jacksonville Health and Transition Services (JaxHATS) program until late 2014. Since its inception JaxHATS has received continuous funding from the Florida Title V program and has served approximately 1000 youth, providing a patient-centered medical home to medically complex and developmentally disabled young adults. Dr Wood helped create and was the Medical Director of FloridaHATS, the Florida Office of Health Care Transition. Dr Wood has been active in advocacy for disadvantaged children and adults, with a focus on children and adults with IDD, serving as a gubernatorial appointee to the Florida Developmental Disabilities Council for over 12 years. In his current position Dr Wood is working with ETSU, MSHA and other community partners to build a system of care for all children in Middle Appalachia, an area that includes NE Tennessee, SW Virginia, Western North Carolina and Eastern Kentucky.