Our Board, Executive Team and Leadership Team members are deeply committed to helping people fight kidney disease and live healthier lives. They leverage their knowledge and talents from the medical and nonprofit communities, as well as the public sector and private sectors, to help AKF achieve its mission.

Board of Trustees

Our independent, non-compensated Board of Trustees is a group of volunteers with a broad range of professional backgrounds, personal experience with kidney disease, skills and talents. Our Board of Trustees sets AKF's strategic direction and provides appropriate oversight to ensure that we have the plans and the resources in place to carry out our important work.


Maureen Nugent Franco, Chair
Silas P. Norman, M.D., MPH, Chair-Elect
Jerry D. Klepner, Immediate Past Chair
Julie A. Wright Nunes, M.D., MPH, Chair, Medical Affairs
John F. Hanley, CFA, Treasurer
William J. Schuyler, Secretary
John B. Moriarty Jr., Esq., Member-at-Large
The Honorable Donna M. Christensen, M.D., Member-at-Large


Frances E. Ashe-Goins, RN, MPH, FAAN
Michael W. Flood
Maria A. Grasso
Brian Krex, Esq.
Gregory P. Madison
Pamela W. McNamara
Elaine Milem
John D. Ring, CPA, CGMA
Lisa A. Robin
Sean P. Roddy, CPA, CMA, CGMA, MBA
Sue E. Rottura
Andrew M. Shore, J.D.
Melanie J. Turieo
Heidi L. Wagner, J.D.
Larry H. Warren

Trustee emerita

Gail S. Wick, MHSA, BSN, RN, CNNe

Non-voting Member

LaVarne A. Burton, President & CEO, ex-officio

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Executive Team

Under the leadership of President and CEO LaVarne A. Burton, our Executive Team brings an unwavering mission focus to the management of AKF, ensuring the organization delivers programs and services that are effective and that meet the evolving needs of patients.

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Leadership Team

Our Leadership Team provides the leadership that puts AKF's values into action: putting patients first, leading with integrity, being a valued partner, promoting team excellence and increasing awareness of kidney disease.

Patient Services and Kidney Disease Education

Gwendolyn Dewberry, Senior Director of Patient Services
Melanie Paris, Senior Director of Health Initiatives and Education
Margaret Solar, Director of Patient Services
Carlos Aparicio, Director of Health Initiatives
Jemetra Collins, Director of Professional Education
Ryan Woolley, Director of Public Education

Marketing and Communications

Christopher Copley, Senior Director of Marketing
Marni Frankel, Director of Digital Marketing

Government Relations 

Deborah Darcy, Senior Director of Government Relations
Melanie Lynn Kahn, Senior Director of State Policy and Advocacy
Michael Ly, Director of Public Policy

Development and Field Operations

Chris Hines, Senior Director of Direct Donor Engagement
Fiona Lawless, Senior Director of Corporate Engagement
Ben Clausen, Director of Corporate Engagement
Daniell Griffin, Senior Director of Individual Giving
Martin McNutt, Director of Community Engagement
Colleen Stevens, Director of Constituent Data
John O’Brien, Director of Individual Giving
Kyndele Rhudy, Director of Corporate Engagement

Finance and Operations

Rosalyn Brown, Director of Strategic Operations
Jack Cunningham, Director of Financial Analysis
Chris McCoy, Director - IT Infrastructure and Desktop Services
Lisa A. Mitchell, SHRM CP, PHR, Senior Director of Human Resources
Avril Miller, Director of Human Resources
Michael Nosil, Chief Financial Officer and Sr. Director of Finance and Administration
Gregory Smith, Senior Director of Information Technology and Chief Information Officer
Shannon Texeira, Director - IT Project Management and Enterprise Applications

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Our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion

At AKF, we are dedicated to fostering a workplace that honors diversity, equity and inclusivity. We create opportunities for ongoing engagement, education, discussion and action around these topics, and for all employees to reach their fullest potential. Read more about our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.

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