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  Back to Marco Island 2007 Conference Marco Island 2007 Faculty

The Conference Faculty

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Bruce Buckingham, M.D., received his medical degree from the University of California at San Diego, and did his pediatric and endocrine fellowship at the Children's Hospital of Los Angeles. On become an attending at CHLA, he had the pleasure of working with Dr. Fran Kaufman as she started her endocrine fellowship. He subsequently moved to the Children's Hospital of Orange County where he remained for 18 years. While at Orange County he had the opportunity to work with an incredible parent organization, the PADRE foundation. For the last 6 years he as been working at the Stanford Medical Center. He has a long standing interest in glucose sensors, and while at Stanford has conducted a number of studies using the GlucoWatch and Minimed CGMS. He is currently the Principal Investigator at Stanford for the mulitcenter NIH trial (DirecNet) to assess the use of glucose sensors in Children.


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Bob Bulgarelli, M.D., is a cardiologist who specializes in Preventative and Integrative Cardiovascular Medicine. Bob has spent the last several years working with Dean Ornish, MD and Andy Weil, MD in developing a more holistic approach to cardiac care as well as running stress management workshops. He is the director of The Smart Heart Program for Main Line Health System. Smart Hearts is a comprehensive lifestyle program geared toward risk reduction for heart patients, including diet, exercise, stress management, group support and spirituality. His program is expanding to help patients with obesity and diabetes as well. Programs like his have been recently shown to be effective in delaying the onset of type 2 diabetes. Bob has a particular interest in bringing his message of healthy lifestyle change to children and adolescents.


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Kim Kelly, Pharm. D., is the Director of Diabetes Programs at LifeScan, Inc., in Milpitas, California. Dr. Kelly has a lengthy and distinguished career involving both patient care and administrative roles, including President of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy. His research and experience have included a number of publications, participation on editorial boards and review panels of several journals, involvement in medical curriculum development, and various committees of professional organizations. Currently, his activities center around developing diabetes health management and educational programs for various health care providers and provider organizations. Delighted to work with children and teens alike, Dr. Kelly has participated as a volunteer in the Orlando and Universal City Friends for Life conferences as well as the Focus on Fitness and Nutrition conference in Baltimore and the Focus on Pumping conference in Washington, D.C. He joined CWD as 'regular faculty' for the San Antonio Focus on Fitness and Nutrition conference, and has been with us ever since.


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Aaron Kowalski, Ph.D., is a Director of Strategic Research Projects at the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and leads the research efforts of the JDRF Artificial Pancreas Projects, a multi-million dollar initiative aimed at acceleration of progress towards a closed-loop automated insulin-delivery system and diabetes technologies that will improve blood sugar control in people with diabetes. In this role, Dr. Kowalski oversees the JDRF-funded research in the area of diabetes technologies. Dr. Kowalski joined the JDRF research staff in 2004 as a Scientific Program Manager working in the area of diabetic complications and assumed is current position in 2006. Prior to arriving at JDRF, Dr. Kowalski received his Ph.D. in Molecular Genetics from Rutgers University and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. Dr. Kowalski and his brother Stephen have lived with type 1 diabetes since 1984 and 1977 respectively.


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Camillo Ricordi, M.D. is the Scientific Director and Chief Academic Officer of the Diabetes Research Institute. He is also the Stacy Joy Goodman Professor of Surgery and Medicine, Chief of the Division of Cellular Transplantation, and Senior Associate Dean for Research at the University of Miami School of Medicine. Dr. Ricordi is a pioneer in the field of islet isolation techniques, having invented the machine that makes it possible to isolate large numbers of islet cells from the human pancreas. The procedure is now used by most laboratories performing clinical islet transplants. Acknowledged by his peers as one of the world's leading scientists in islet transplantation, Dr. Ricordi has trained the majority of islet cell transplant researchers worldwide and has developed highly innovative strategies in an attempt to transplant islets without the continuous requirement for immunosuppressive drugs. A recipient of numerous honors and awards, Dr. Ricordi is an active and often founding member of many important organizations in the world of diabetes research and transplantation, and has authored more than 400 scientific publications.


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Mike Schurig M.S., R.D., L.D., C.D.E., is a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator who has had type 1 diabetes since age 12. Mike works as a registered dietitian and diabetes educator at Nemours Orlando Children's Clinic, as well as serving as CWD's dietitian. Mike has had experience in diabetes education with kids and adults, and has been involved in CWD conferences since the first formal conference in 2001. Mike is active with local ADA activities, regional diabetes educator groups, and the CWD website. His interests are insulin pump education and technical advances in diabetes. Mike enjoys visiting the nearby theme parks and enjoying Central Florida with his wife Gayle and his daughter Allyson.


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Darrell M. Wilson, MD, Professor of Pediatrics, currently serves as Chief of the Division of Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetes at Stanford. He is well known clinical researcher, concentrating in the area of Pediatric Diabetes. He has served as the Principal Investigator at Stanford University of the NIH funded, multi-center Type-1 Diabetes TrialNet, a multiple study, 14 center group dedicated to the prevention of Type 1 diabetes. Dr. Wilson is also a co-investigator with Dr. Bruce Buckingham in the NIH funded, multi-center Diabetes Research in Children Network (DirecNet), a group devoted to testing how new technology such as glucose sensors can help children with diabetes. As Chief of the Pediatric Diabetes Center at Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford, Dr. Wilson coordinates the clinical care for many children with diabetes and teaches medical students, residents, fellows, and clinical researchers across the Stanford campus.


The Youth Faculty

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Natalie Bellini, R.N., C.D.E., has had diabetes since she was a young child and within a year of finishing nursing school started to care for people with diabetes, first focusing on high risk pregnancy and then pediatrics and insulin-requiring adults. She has lectured extensively to clinicians, patients and their families about diabetes, the psychological effect of the disease and how to keep going on the hardest of days. Natalie has worked with children and adults of all ages and has assisted in initiating and expanding pump programs at numerous hospitals and private practices. She is currently a Territory Manager with Animas Corporation. Natalie believes in truth in education and that knowledge is power. She enjoys working with children and teens, and has a second full-time job as mom of her own teen, Erin. Natalie will be leading the Teen Program at this Friends for Life conference.


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Neal Billetdeaux, from Michigan, is learning to be a diabetes advocate from kids Carolyn and Sam. His most frequent complaint to wife, Laura, is that he doesn't have enough vacation time to make it to all the CWD conferences! When not downloading meter data, changing infusion sets, or cooking dinner, Neal is a principal in a landscape architecture firm in Ann Arbor. His CWD 'claim to fame' is that - in a sleep-deprived stupor one night - he awoke to his alarm at 2 a.m. and tried to test the dog. He's a great dad with a great sense of humor!


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Katie Daugherty, MPH, has had type 1 diabetes for 19 years, having been diagnosed at the age of 10. She believes that having diabetes has enriched her life in many ways and has made her a better person. Katie has lots of family members with type 1 diabetes: her sister-in-law, cousin, and uncle were all diagnosed within 5 years of each other, and they all relied on Katie to teach them everything about type 1! When she is not attending CWD events, Katie is a Program Manager in Research & Development at Abbott Diabetes Care Inc., where she is known as "the test strip guru." Originally from the Boston area, she is a dedicated Red Sox and Patriots (and Tom Brady) fan, and she now resides in the San Francisco Bay area. Interests include health policy, writing, laughing, and long-distance running. She plans to complete at least one marathon in 2007! How does Katie view CWD? Quite simply: I'm home.


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Kim Kelly, Pharm. D., is the Director of Diabetes Programs at LifeScan, Inc., in Milpitas, California. Dr. Kelly has a lengthy and distinguished career involving both patient care and administrative roles, including President of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy. His research and experience have included a number of publications, participation on editorial boards and review panels of several journals, involvement in medical curriculum development, and various committees of professional organizations. Currently, his activities center around developing diabetes health management and educational programs for various health care providers and provider organizations. Delighted to work with children and teens alike, Dr. Kelly has participated as a volunteer in the Orlando and Universal City Friends for Life conferences as well as the Focus on Fitness and Nutrition conference in Baltimore and the Focus on Pumping conference in Washington, D.C. He joined CWD as 'regular faculty' for the San Antonio Focus on Fitness and Nutrition conference, and has been with us ever since.


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Lauren Lanning is a self-proclaimed Jersey Girl transplanted to Colorado. She has been involved in the CWD diabetes conferences since the very first gathering in Orlando in 2000, where she volunteered to make name badges. Little did she know. Making name badges evolved within an hour into leading a huge group of CWD volunteers who assist with every aspect of helping all the CWD conferences run smoothly. Lauren has two adorable daughters, Monica and Sarah, who are the inspiration in her life. A computer geek at heart, Lauren teaches computer skills at the elementary level and also has her own web design business. For fun, she is a crossing guard. For more fun, the last three years she has ridden century rides in Death Valley to raise money for diabetes research.


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Michelle Rago is an attorney and CWD mom. She graduated from Harvard University in 1986, magna cum laude, with a B.S. in Sociology. There she received the First Annual Ben Teel Memorial Prize for Public Service. She graduated from Columbia University School of Law in 1990, receiving a Charles Evans Hughes Fellowship. Michelle has practiced complex commercial litigation since graduation, specializing in securities and other class actions on behalf of investors. In 2000, Michelle's son Trent was diagnosed with diabetes at age 4. Due to the diagnosis, Trent's daycare would not accept him back. Since then, Michelle has worked hard to keep abreast of the changing laws with relation to diabetes and school, insurance coverage, and discrimination on account of diabetes. She is a member of the parents list on the CWD website and often assists parents with legal issues that arise in connection with diabetes.


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Melissa Ringley, R.N., C.D.E., Manager of Clinical Services at Animas Corporation, is a graduate of the University of Virginia School of Nursing-Wise Virginia, and has been involved in diabetes education for over 12 years. When her daughter was diagnosed with diabetes 12 years ago, Melissa dedicated herself to learning about diabetes and giving back that learning to patients and the medical community alike. Melissa has presented to numerous groups of patients with diabetes as well as health care practitioners, and has worked with hundreds of insulin pump patients with all types of diabetes and from all walks of life. Melissa is known for her caring attitude and genuine concern for all her patients, and for her active involvement in the diabetes community. She will be taking the lead role with the Tweener track at this Friends for Life conference.


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Jim Vail was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 19 while he was a sophomore at the State University of New York at Fredonia. Jim graduated with a degree in Media Communications and was a producer for CNBC Business news in Washington, D.C., for nine years all the while wrestling with the unpredictability of NPH and Regular insulin. After finally going on a pump in October of 2001 and 'getting his life back,' Jim pursued Animas Corporation, the maker of his insulin pump, for a job and a chance to reach others with diabetes. Jim made the jump from CNBC and has been with Animas Corporation as a Territory Manager since April 2002.


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Last Updated: Saturday October 13, 2007 10:40:56
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