Board of Directors
George Thomas Beall, M.A.
Tom Beall recently retired as the managing director of the Social Marketing Practice of Ogilvy Public Relations, where he was responsible for communications on health and social issues. Mr. Beall has been one of America’s leading social marketing practitioners since 1988, when he directed components of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s America Responds to AIDS Program.
Previously, Mr. Beall was vice president of constituency relations at Burson-Marsteller. While there, he developed and managed stakeholder, ally relationship and public education programs for clients.
For nearly 20 years, Mr. Beall worked in the field of aging, most recently as a senior manager for The National Council on the Aging and as director of National Voluntary Organizations for Independent Living for the Aging, coalition of more than 200 national organizations with interest in older adults.
His current community volunteer work includes serving on the Board of Directors of the Epilepsy Foundation, of OWL: The Voice of Midlife and Older Women, and the National Woman’s Party. He previously chaired the Board of Directors of the National Institute of Senior Housing.
Mr. Beall holds a master’s degree in health services administration and a bachelor’s degree in psychology, both from The George Washington University.
Sarah Deutsch, J.D.
Sarah Deutsch recently retired as Vice President and Deputy Counsel for Verizon Communications where she managed Verizon’s intellectual property practice. Much of her career has been devoted to working on consumer-facing legal and policy issues, including IP policy, online privacy, and combating online fraud and abuse. Sarah was a past recipient of Public Knowledge’s President Award for Protecting the Free Flow of Information on the Internet. She has also done pro bono work for the Massachusetts Advocates for Children and partnered with Wired Safety, a nonprofit devoted to keeping children safe online and combatting cyber-bullying. Sarah recently assisted in the trademark work associated with changing our name from the National Research Center for Women & Families to National Center for Health Research, and associated re-branding, and is assisting in a health and safety-related patent project.
Sarah has practiced law for the past 28 years. She has spent the past 23 years at Verizon and five years as an associate at the law firm of Morgan, Lewis in Washington, D.C. Sarah holds a BA from Emory University and a JD from American University’s Washington College of Law, where she was on the Law Review and was the first Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of International Law and Policy. She spent the year after graduating college working at the Office of Jimmy Carter in Atlanta, Georgia. Sarah and her husband have two children and live in Northern Virginia.
Benjamin Gitterman, M.D.
Benjamin Gitterman, MD is Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Public Health at George Washington University (GW) and Children’s National Medical Center in Washington D.C. He was previously the Chair of General and Community Pediatrics at Children’s National Medical Center, director of Ambulatory Pediatric Services for Denver Health and Hospitals, and on the faculty of the University of Colorado School of Medicine.
Dr. Gitterman is Co-Director of the federally funded Mid-Atlantic Center for Children’s Health and the Environment. He is a member of the Governor’s Council on Children’s Health and the Environment for the State of Maryland, the Scientific Advisory Board of the EPA for Children’s Environmental Health, and a liaison member to the Advisory Committee on Children’s Lead Poisoning and Prevention for the CDC. He also co-directs the Specialty Track in Environmental Health at George Washington University School of Medicine.
Dr. Gitterman is the Medical Director of the Health Access Program, which links Children’s National Medical Center and the Children’s Law Center of Washington, D.C. He is also a member of the Medical Advisory Board of the National Center for Medical Legal Partnership, and is the co-chair of the systemic advocacy committee. He is also the Medical Director of Project Health D.C., and has volunteered annually overseas with Operation Smile.
He was recently President of the D.C. Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and is currently a member of the Executive Committee of the AAP Council on Community Pediatrics and the AAP Chapter Forum Management Committee. He continues to practice clinical pediatrics, primarily with underserved children and their families.
Dr. Gitterman graduated from City College of New York and received his M.D. degree from SUNY at Buffalo. He completed his Pediatrics residency and chief residency at Montefiore Hospital and Medical Center in New York.
Mary G. Hager, M.A.
Mary Hager is a freelance writer who retired from Newsweek after serving as a Contributing Editor and correspondent for the Washington Bureau. Ms. Hager’s recent work includes commission reports to the President and Congress on arthritis and epilepsy, and articles for publications such as Self Magazine, Eco, Longevity, American Psychologist, Impact 21, Consumer’s Digest, America’s Agenda, National Wildlife, World Almanac, Collier’s Yearbook, and Grolier’s Medicine and Health Yearbook.
Ms. Hager received her M.A. in journalism and communications from Stanford University and was a Sloan-Rockefeller Advanced Science Writing Fellow at the Columbia University School of Journalism. She has received many awards for her work, including the Balance in Journalism Award of the National Environmental Development Association, the Page One Award of the New York Newspaper Guild, the Searle Award of the American Medical Writers Association, and national awards from the National Mental Health Association, the National Easter Seal Society, and Action on Smoking or Health. Ms. Hager was a member of the U.S. Delegation to the U.S./Japan Common Agenda Conference on Environmental Education in 1997, was named a Senator John Heinz Fellow in Environmental Reporting in 2000, and is a member of the Board of Directors of the Institute of Journalism and Natural Resources.
Nancy Hardt, M.D.
Dr. Nancy Hardt is professor of pathology, immunology, and laboratory medicine and of obstetrics and gynecology, as well as the recently appointed Senior Associate Dean for External Affairs at the University of Florida College of Medicine. As Dean, she is involved in legislative issues, women’s health initiatives, and expansion of the capabilities of the East Side clinic, and will develop a center of excellence in minority health care disparities.
In 2006-2007, Dr. Hardt was a Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Fellow, working as Health Policy Advisor with Senator Jeff Bingaman of New Mexico and as a key staffer on health issues in the office of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.
Dr. Hardt is boarded in both Pathology and Obstetrics and Gynecology. She served on the full-time faculty at the university for nearly 20 years, rising to the rank of Professor with tenure and Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs and Managed Care. She has held a number of key leadership positions, including serving as Co-Director, Center for Research on Women’s Health. In 2002, she moved to the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, where she served as the Director of the Institute for Women’s Health.
Dr. Hardt has been recognized for her outstanding contributions by many organizations, including the National Board of Medical Examiners Distinguished Service Award in 2006 and being named as one of “50 Women Who Make a Difference” in Memphis in 2005.
Judith L. Harris, J.D.
Judy Harris is partner at the law firm Reed, Smith, Shaw and McClay, where she is Head of the Communications Group and concentrates on telecommunications policy issues. Prior to her current position, Ms. Harris served as Director of the Office of Legislative and Inter-Governmental Affairs at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). She was in charge of the Commission’s work with Capitol Hill and the Clinton Administration during the debate on children’s television, digital T.V. and connecting classrooms to the Internet, among many other issues.
Before her appointment at the FCC, Ms. Harris’ practice focused on litigation and antitrust counseling, primarily with respect to the healthcare and communications industries, and included the defense and prosecution of class action lawsuits, and grand jury, merger and other investigations involving the Antitrust Division and the Federal Trade Commission. In addition to her recent government position, Ms. Harris served as a senior trial attorney with the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice. Her first job after graduating from Yale Law School was as a law clerk to the Honorable James A. Belson, now of the D.C. Court of Appeals. Ms. Harris is married to Norman Ornstein, a political analyst and commentator with the American Enterprise Institute.
Courtney McKeldin is a well-known leader and public servant in Baltimore, descended from one of the first families to settle in Maryland. She was the first woman to serve on the city’s zoning board, the lone Republican when she was first nominated in 1974, serving on and off for 21 years until deciding to step down in 2014. She also served for 23 years on Maryland’s Open Meetings Law Compliance Board. She serves on several Boards and was appointed to the Baltimore City Property Tax Appeals Board by Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake in 2014.
As the daughter-in-law of the late Republican Governor of Maryland and Mayor of Baltimore, Theodore R. McKeldin, Ms. McKeldin is a well-known and well-respected figure in the state, assisting many important nonprofit and public institutions. She was the founder and first President of the Women’s Committee of The Medical Eye Bank of Maryland. She has served as Director of Development for The Baltimore School for the Arts, Manager of Membership and Public Relations for The Baltimore Area Convention and Visitor’s Association, Director of Development for Ladew Topiary Gardens, and Vice President for Institutional Advancement for The Baltimore International Culinary College. She was the first President of the Board of Advisors of CTY, Center for Talented Youth, of the Johns Hopkins University.
Ms. McKeldin is a graduate of McDaniel College and has been married for 53 years to Theodore R. McKeldin, Jr., a lawyer with the Maryland Attorney General’s Office. They have two children and two grandchildren.
As a cancer survivor, Courtney is strongly committed to our mission to provide accurate, understandable and useful assistance to all patients.
Alan Mendelson, LLD
Alan Mendelson was elected to the Board of Directors of the National Research Center for Women & Families in June 2006. He is a venture capitalist in Hartford, Conn., where he is the founder and managing general partner of Axiom Venture Partners. Axiom has over $200 million under management and invests in both information technology and the life sciences. Mendelson heads the life science practice.
Prior to founding Axiom, Mendelson served as vice president for Aetna Life and Casualty for about 25 years. In this capacity, he oversaw many projects including Aetna’s $135 million venture program, which generated over $300 million of profits. He also helped to create MBIA, the country’s largest municipal bond insurance company and he worked directly on over three billion dollars of corporate loans. Mendelson successfully worked with the chief information officer to formulate strategy and policy regarding Aetna’s $27.5 billion commercial mortgage loan portfolio. During this time, he also initiated and served as president and CEO of Aetna, Jacobs, and Ramo, a venture capital deal sharing arrangement.
He has dedicated more than two decades of his career to technology policy and development in Connecticut. As the finance committee vice chairman of the State’s first High Technology Task Force in 1984, Mendelson created Connecticut Seed Ventures and two Centers of Excellence. He has served on the Advisory Board of Connecticut Innovations since 1989, and is currently a board member of the Connecticut Technology Council. In his industry roles for the State, he has received the Distinguished Service Award from Connecticut Innovations and the Leadership Award from the Connecticut Venture Group, of which he was a past president.
Mendelson currently serves on the Board of the MIT Enterprise Forum and the Advisory Council of Claremont College’s Keck Graduate Institute, which offers a master’s degree in Bioscience. He also is treasurer and a Board of Trustee member of the Jewish Community Foundation, a director of the Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford, and chairman of the Board of Trinity College Hillel. Mendelson graduated Phi Beta Kappa, with a Bachelor of Science in Economics from Trinity College. He received, with honors, his LLD degree from the University of Connecticut.
Omega Logan Silva, M.D.
Omega Logan Silva, M.D., is professor emeritus of medicine at the George Washington University in Washington, D.C. She is a long-standing advocate for universal health care and a committed supporter of the advancement of women in medicine.
Omega Silva started her career as a chemist as the National Institutes of Health, and in 1963 returned to Howard University to train as a physician. After earning a doctor of medicine degree in 1967, Dr. Silva completed a residency in internal medicine at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Washington, D.C., and from 1970 to 1974 served as a fellow in endocrinology at George Washington University.
In 1975 she was appointed assistant professor of medicine at George Washington University, and in 1977 she was also appointed associate professor of oncology at Howard University. Dr. Silva has held academic posts at both institutions ever since, becoming full professor at Howard in 1985 and at George Washington in 1991. In 1983 she was elected president of the Howard University Medical Alumni, making her the first woman to hold that post. From 1977 to 1996 Dr. Silva was also assistant chief of the Metabolic Section and chief of the diabetic clinic at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Washington, D.C.
Dr. Silva is a member of dozens of local and national committees and organizations and from 2000 to 2002 served as president of the American Medical Women’s Association. She has served on six separate advisory groups for the National Institutes of Health and was a consultant to the Food and Drug Administration’s Immunology Section from 1981 to 1989. Dr. Silva has also served on the board of directors for the Howard University Medical Alumni Association, the National Association of Veterans Affairs Physicians, the American Medical Women’s Association and the Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine.
Dr. Silva has made numerous media appearances to highlight issues in women’s health including smoking, cervical cancer, and thyroid disease. She has also participated in various career days and educational events at local schools, and has been an editorial referee for Chest, Archives of Internal Medicine and The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics.
In 1984, Dr. Silva received a Letter of Commendation from the President Reagan and in 1995 she was given a Letter of Thanks from President Clinton for her participation in health care reform. In 2003 Dr. Silva was elected to a Mastership at the American College of Physicians. She is also listed in American Men and Women of Science, Who’s Who in Black America, Who’s Who in Professional and Executive Women, and Who’s Who of American Women.
The Honorable Duchy Trachtenberg served on the Montgomery County Council, Maryland from 2006 – 2010. Upon joining the County Council, Ms. Trachtenberg became the leading force in creating the Montgomery County Family Justice Center to bring coordinated government services to domestic violence victims. The Center opened in the summer of 2009 and four years later is serving more than 500 families from 100 countries.
As a public health professional and effective grassroots activist for over twenty years, Ms. Trachtenberg has had a special interest in women’s health, behavioral health services, and public health policy. Ms. Trachtenberg holds a Masters Degree in Social Work and is a past Governing Councilor and Section Chair within the American Public Health Association (APHA).
Ms. Trachtenberg has received numerous honors, including the Our Bodies Ourselves Health Collective, “Women’s Health Hero” Award, the “Hero” Award from the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI), the “Ally for Equality” Award from Equality Maryland, and recognitions from NARAL, APHA, NOW and other national organizations. Ms. Trachtenberg has also completed the 2009 Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard.
Susan F. Wood, Ph.D.
Dr. Susan F. Wood is Research Professor at the George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services, where her work focuses on the use of scientific knowledge in public policy. She is also Director of the Jacob’s Institute of Women’s Health at GWU.
Dr. Wood served as Director of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Office of Women’s Health from November 2000 through August 2005. She championed women’s health both inside and outside the FDA, and then resigned on principle over FDA’s delay of approval of emergency contraception for over-the-counter sale.
Previously, Dr. Wood was the Director for Policy and Program Development at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office on Women’s Health, where she led the development of policy for the Office. She also coordinated the activities of the Public Health Service Coordinating Committee on Women’s Health. From 1990 to 1995, Dr. Wood worked on Capitol Hill for the Congressional Caucus for Women’s Issues, an organization of Members of Congress dedicated to legislation that promotes legal, economic, and health equity for women. Prior to coming to Capitol Hill, Dr. Wood was a research scientist at the John Hopkins University School of Medicine, in the Department of Neuroscience, where her research focused on cellular mechanisms of sensory transduction. She received her Ph.D. in biology from Boston University at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, MA, where she carried out basic research on the biochemistry of vision.
Dr. Wood has received numerous awards in recognition of her work. She is married and has a daughter.