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Board of Directors

Advisory board Members

Suzie Egolf, president

An accomplished sales and marketing executive, Suzie Egolf has been in the technology industry for more than 20 years. Currently, Suzie serves as Partner Sales Manager at Google Cloud, supporting corporate accounts in the Mid-Atlantic region. Prior to Google, Suzie held positions at both Microsoft and Salesforce and has found her niche building new business markets, sales coaching and creating and implementing sales and marketing programs.

Outside of her career, Suzie is actively involved in her community as an inaugural member of Social4Good, where she helps raise funds and awareness for nonprofits in Northern Virginia. She is also an Emmaus United Church of Christ deacon and youth-group leader as well as a long-standing volunteer with the Girls Scouts of the Nation’s Capital. The Connecticut native currently lives in Vienna, Virginia with her husband.

Mark Kohus, Treasurer

YOPN board member, Mark C. Kohus, is a Senior Vice President and Group Manager with Fidelity Investments. With more than 24 years of experience working in the financial services field, Mark has held a variety of leadership roles including project management, relationship management and supporting operations.

For Mark, his involvement with YOPN hits very close to home as he was diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease in 2018. Not one to let anything slow him down, Mark has ignited his passion for total wellbeing through an active lifestyle and wants to use his personal experience to help others with YOPD do the same.

In addition to serving as a career coach and mentor, Mark is also actively involved in an employee resource group that supports those with physical and mental health needs. He also serves as an Ambassador with the Davis Phinney Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to helping people with Parkinson’s. Mark lives with his wife and daughter in Union, Kentucky.

Check out Mark's climb to Mt. Kilimanjaro

Abi Tidwell, LCSW, Secretary

Abi is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) licensed in Louisiana, North Carolina, Washington DC, and Virginia. Since graduating with her Master of Social Work in 2013, Abi has worked in a variety of environments including inpatient psychiatric facilities, medical centers, outpatient clinics, and most recently, within the EAP realm with BHS. 

Prior to joining BHS, Abi spent over four years at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital working within the neurology and neurosurgery departments. While at Georgetown, Abi gained extensive experience and expertise working with individuals who have been diagnosed with various neurological conditions. During this time, Abi spent a year working exclusively with the Movement Disorders team serving as their only on-staff counselor and social worker.  

In addition to this experience, Abi has worked within the mental health field providing support for individuals experiencing loss, grief, depression, anxiety, other complex medical conditions, and general stress. With these diverse populations, Abi has provided short and long-term counseling, group therapy, and crisis intervention services. Abi’s preferred therapeutic modalities include Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, elements of Existential Therapy, mindfulness techniques, and goal-oriented approaches. 

Jeremy Likness

Jeremy Likness has been a professional technology and software developer for over three decades. Currently, Jeremy is the Senior Program Manager for .NET Data at Microsoft where his personal mission is to empower developers to be their best. Prior to his current position, Jeremy helped kickstart the technology and software development efforts for several startups that ultimately grew into multi-million and multi-billion-dollar corporations.

In addition to his role at Microsoft, Jeremy is the published author of several acclaimed technology books, an internationally recognized keynote speaker, an accomplished blogger and videographer, and a champion for Young Onset Parkinson’s advocacy.

Jeremy was diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson's Disease in February 2020 at the start of the global pandemic. Following his diagnosis, Jeremy immediately took action, implementing his blog, raising over $15,000 for the Michael J. Fox Foundation, and establishing a podcast with his wife at Jeremy lives in the Pacific Northwest where he pursues his hobbies of hiking and astrophotography.

Robert Cochrane

Dr. Robert Cochrane is a recent graduate from UNLV's Integrated Health Sciences department, where he studied the effect of improvisation and storytelling on Parkinson’s disease. He has launched a 501(c)3 non-profit, Yes, AndeXercise to run two programs he developed during his PhD program. He received grants from the Parkinson's Foundation and support from the Davis Phinney Foundation along the way. He has been a Keynote and led workshops at numerous Parkinson's-themed conferences, both online and in person. 

 He has a background in filmmaking, including attending UCLA's graduate screenwriting program. His narrative film work includes the Artisan Entertainment release, The Playaz Court,and two Stephen King-based short films. His father, Dan, was diagnosed with PD in 2001, which shifted Robert’s artistic lens to health. He made his first documentary, the award-winning Boys of Summer, following his and his father’s two-month, 20,000-mile road trip to see a game at each of the 30 Major League Baseball parks. There are two follow-up films in the Boys of Summer series with a plan for a fourth film to be released in 2023.  

 He lives in Walnut Creek, CA with his beautiful wife, two crazy kids, and an old, cranky Cockapoo.  

Anna Grill, Ex Officio Board Member

Anna Grill is the inspiration for Young Onset Parkinson’s Network (YOPN). She was on the fast track as a sales executive at a Fortune 200 company, and the youngest and only woman on the executive team when she was diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease (YOPD) in 2007 at the age of 38.

At the time, she was living her best life: excelling in her career while successfully balancing the roles of wife and mother, with two girls aged nine and seven. She led a division of 110 associates spanning a territory from South Carolina to Delaware and served as an active volunteer in her community. Afraid of being defined by her disease rather than her work, she continued in her stressful career for ten additional years without disclosing her illness to workers, family, and friends.

Once Anna publicly disclosed her diagnosis, she became frustrated with the lack of resources available specifically for those with YOPD. Never one to step away from a challenge, Anna recognized the need for a building community and providing resources to others with diagnosed with Young Onset. Her vision is to specifically support the YOPD community in a holistic, positive environment.

Anna is a vocal advocate, active volunteer for the Parkinson’s Foundation and Ambassador for Supernus Pharmaceuticals. She lives in Northern Virginia with her husband and her two grown daughters.

Yasar Torres-Yaghi, MD, Medical Advisor

Yasar Torres-Yaghi, M.D. is an attending physician and Director of the Parkinsonism and Dementia Clinic at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital. Dr. Torres-Yaghi is skilled in neurology, clinical trials and movement disorders, as well as an accomplished public speaker and training specialists.

Specifically, Dr. Torres-Yaghi’s focus is on neurodegenerative conditions such as Parkinson’s Disease, Lewy Body Dementia, Alzheimer’s Disease, Post Concussion Syndrome and Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy. He received his Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) from The George Washington University and completed his residency and fellowship in the neurology residency program at Georgetown University.

With his extensive medical background and ongoing medical pursuits related to Parkinson’s, Dr. Torres-Yaghi brings a wealth of knowledge and insight to the board of the YOPN and its members. He lives with his wife and young son in Arlington, Virginia.

Beth Hirst

Beth Hirst is the Parkinson’s Marketing Director at Supernus Pharmaceuticals (a biopharmaceutical company focused on products for the treatment of CNS diseases).

She has extensive industry experience with over 20 years in Marketing and sales leadership positions in various therapeutic areas. She has received recognition for innovative marketing campaigns and sales excellence awards as a top performer.

Her expertise is in developing strategic plans, leading change management initiatives and launching new products within sales and marketing. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Biology and Economics from the University of Delaware.

In her free time, she enjoys spending time outdoors and at the beach with her husband and 2 children, volunteering at the local NAMI chapter and coaching her kids mountain bike team.

Jennifer Johnston, PhD

Jennifer is the creative force behind NysnoBio, responsible for the business and scientific focus of the company as CEO. She has over 20 years of experience in the biopharmaceutical industry, including 13 years in neurodegenerative diseases at Elan Pharmaceuticals.

As VP, Head of Discovery Research at Elan, Jennifer delivered multiple novel molecules for Parkinson’s disease from initial discovery to candidate selection. In 2015, she co-founded An2H Discovery, focused on ubiquitin pathway enzymes, and successfully led the company to identification of lead candidates with potent in vivo activity.

In 2019, Jennifer co-founded NysnoBio to focus on the development of small molecule and gene therapy approaches for Parkin E3 ligase. She has studied the Ubiquitin pathway throughout her education, from her Ph.D. at Dartmouth, to subsequent work on E3 ligases at Caltech with Alex Varshavsky, and to her discovery of Aggresomes at Stanford with Ron Kopito, resulting in more than ten patents and over 40 publications. She has served as a reviewer for multiple scientific journals, and on the SAB of the Michael J. Fox Foundation for over 15 years.

Outside the office, Jennifer has been a member of the USA Track & Field 100Km Team, earning bronze and silver medals in the national championships, and holds the record for the most wins in the Angeles Crest 100-mile trail run.

Allison Maden, JD

Allison Madan lives in Arlington, VA with her husband, Ajay. She is currently Of Counsel with Slevin & Hart, a 25 attorney law firm specializing in employee benefits law, where until recently she was the firm's Managing Partner.

Allison has represented employee benefit trust funds throughout the country for over 33 years. She is a frequent speaker on various issues involving pension and health plans as well as the fiduciary responsibilities of boards of trustees that administer benefit plans. She serves as an Advisory Director on the Board of Directors for the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans and was the former Board Chair of the Field School's Board of Trustees.

Allison was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease in 2021 and has been active in the Rock Steady Boxing program since her diagnosis. She enjoys the support and friendship she has found in the PD community.

Brad MCDaniels, PhD CAC

Brad McDaniels is an assistant professor and program coordinator for the Rehabilitation Studies program in the Department of Rehabilitation and Health Services at the University of North Texas.

Brad earned his Ph.D. from the University of Kentucky, and after graduating, completed a Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation in the School of Medicine at Virginia Commonwealth University focusing exclusively on Parkinson’s disease.

Brad is currently involved in research focusing on meaning in life, loneliness, demoralization, stigma, and other non-motor issues of PD. He is also an active participant of the Davis Phinney Foundation Science Advisory Board.

Hiral Shah, MD

Hiral Shah is an assistant professor of neurology at CUMC in the Division of Multispecialty Neurology.

Dr. Shah completed her undergraduate at MIT and her medical doctorate at Indiana University School of Medicine. Dr. Shah completed her neurology residency at Columbia, serving as chief resident in her final year. Dr. Shah subsequently spent nearly a year at the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva, working in the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse on public health aspects of neurological illnesses.

She is currently a Global Mental Health Scholar, and also serves as coordinator for WHO’s project on dementia prioritization and G7 Dementia Research Agenda portfolio analysis. In addition, Dr. Shah is a Global Health and Aging Policy Fellow, with plans to examine best practices surrounding human rights protection for those with cognitive impairment and dementia. Dr. Shah is most interested in learning how to overcome barriers of stigma and discrimination to improve care access for vulnerable individuals who suffer from mental health conditions and neurodegenerative disorders. This includes the assessment of cognition and mental health among those with neuropsychiatric conditions.

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Young Onset Parkinson’s Network is sponsored in part by a grant from the Parkinson’s Foundation.

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