Tom Donaldson, President
Tom Donaldson has been associated with NOFAS for twenty years. He has served as the NOFAS Chief Executive Officer since 1998 and also its President since 2002. He is responsible for formulating and carrying out the NOFAS strategic and business plans, and all programmatic, development and policy initiatives. He has extensive experience in non-profit governance, public policy, government affairs, media relations, social marketing, grassroots organizing, coalition building and public health. Under his leadership, NOFAS has established a network of 40 affiliated organizations, expanded services to all 50 states, and ensured a four-fold increase in federal and state investment in FASD-related research, public health and services, among numerous other achievements.
He has served as a member of the Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Center for Excellence Steering Committee and as a liaison representative to the National Task Force on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Effect. He has also served on many maternal/child health and alcohol-related policy boards and committees, including the National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition Executive Committee and the National Association of Broadcasters Alcohol Policy Advisory Board. In 2014, he received the Senator Harold Hughes Memorial Award from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), part of the National Institutes of Health.
Kathleen Tavenner Mitchell, M.H.S., L.C.A.D.C., Vice President and National Spokesperson
Kathleen Tavenner Mitchell is currently the Vice President and National Spokesperson for the National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and a noted international speaker on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) and Women and Addictions. She is a licensed clinical alcohol and drug counselor, has a Master of Human Services degree and twenty-five years experience as a national educator, clinician, and lecturer.
Kathy is a faculty member of the Medical Ethics and Humanities Program at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and the Georgetown University School of Medicine, Department of Family Medicine Selective. She has authored several papers, the Fetal Alcohol Syndrome; a Guidebook for Parents and Caregivers, and co-authored Making a Difference: Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Public Awareness Guide. Kathy supervised the development of FASD prevention curricula for students K-12 and developed an FASD curriculum for addiction professionals and other allied health professionals. In 2001, she also co-founded the Circle of Hope, an international program for birth mothers of children with FASD.
In 2000, she was appointed to the National Task Force on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome/Fetal Alcohol Effects by the Secretary of Health and Human Services. She has testified In the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives on behalf of several bills, worked with a writer of NBC’s Law and Order; Special Victims Unit to create a show about FASD, provided an interview on FASD for the BBC radio network, and has been featured in several documentaries, Glamour Magazine, and on NBC’s Real Life”and the Later Today Show.
Kathy conducts workshops and provides lectures on the addictive disease process, prevention of FASD, screening and assessment of women at risk, addressing secondary disabilities and many other FASD-related topics.
Katelyn Reitz, Director of Development
Katelyn Reitz recently joined the NOFAS team and serves as Director of Development. She will be diversifying the NOFAS funding base by planning and coordinating fundraising efforts. Her previous experience includes working as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ukraine, where she taught English and managed fundraising for community projects within her village. During college, she started the first-ever Relay for Life on her university campus; which included 700 participants walking throughout the night to raise awareness and funding for American Cancer Society. She earned a B.S. in Speech Communication from the University of Wisconsin at Oshkosh in 2008.
Andy Kachor, Media Producer
Andy Kachor has served as the NOFAS Media Producer since 2010. He produces, videotapes, and edits interviews with leading FASD researchers, scientists, community advocates, and FASD family members. Andy designs graphics for print and online and coordinates social media for NOFAS. Andy has a background in video production, graphic design, and community media development. Previously, he produced media for Appalshop, an arts and education organization based in Whitesburg, Kentucky. He earned a BFA in media production from New York University.
Melanie Ruhe, Program Coordinator
Melanie Ruhe recently joined the team and serves as the Program Coordinator for NOFAS. She will be collaborating with organizations whose visions align with NOFAS’s to develop programs for FASD prevention and provide support for individuals, families and communities living with these disorders. She will also be the communication link to the public while managing the resource directory. Melanie graduated with a Master of Public Health with distinction from DePaul University in Chicago, IL and received a Bachelor of Science in Dietetics from The University of Dayton. She previously worked at Chicago Public Schools, Office of Student Health and Wellness where she developed a district wide health policy needs assessment, enforced student chronic disease policies and designed a district communications plan to better relationships amongst CPS staff. Her background provides her with specialized knowledge of maternal and child health issues, student health, nutrition education and program planning.
Steven L. Green, Accountant
Steve Green has served as the NOFAS accountant since 1992.
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NOFAS Board of Directors
The Executive Committee of the NOFAS Board of Directors is the legal governing body of the organization. NOFAS officers and directors volunteer their time and resources to ensure the fulfillment of the NOFAS mission. They are from a variety of backgrounds, including the business, legal, professional and academic fields.
The NOFAS National Advisory Board consists of researchers and clinical professionals, as well as leading lawmakers and popular entertainment personalities. Advisory Board members support NOFAS programs and help enhance the public standing of the organization.
Kate Boyce (Chair) is a partner with the law firm Patton Boggs LLP, specializing in public policy matters and representing a variety of organizations, including Indian tribes and trade associations. Ms. Boyce is co-author of the book Corporate Political Activity as well as several legal journal articles, and is a member of the Women’s Bar Association of DC and the Women’s Leadership Forum. She maintains numerous professional legal and non-profit affiliations and has served on the NOFAS Executive Committee for more than a decade.
Larry Rosenthal (Vice Chair) is a principal of the Washington, DC-based Ietan Consulting. He has held numerous public policy and legislative positions during the past 20 years.
Virginia Boylan (Secretary) founded her own government affairs consulting firm in 2009. Previously, she was a partner in the Indian and Gaming Law practice group at Gardner Carton & Douglas LLP in Washington, D.C. where she practiced in the areas of Federal Indian Law, Natural Resources, and Gaming Law. Previously, she served as Deputy Staff Director and Senior Counsel to the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs with legislative responsibility for drafting legislation, preparing Committee reports and managing hearings, markups, conferences and Senate floor activity.
Katia Delrahim Howlett, PhD, MPP, MBA (Treasurer) is the director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)/Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Blending Initiative and NIDA AAPI Workgroup Support at Synergy Enterprises, Inc.
Tom Donaldson (ex officio) is the current NOFAS President.
Neal Baer, MD is a pediatrician and award-winning television writer and producer best known for his work on the television shows ER and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. He is currently developing projects for CBS Television Studios. Dr. Baer graduated from Harvard Medical School and received the Jerry L. Pettis Memorial Scholarship in 1994 from the American Medical Association as an outstanding medical student who contributed to promoting a better understanding of medicine in the media. Additionally, he graduated Magna Cum Laude with a B.A. in Political Science from Colorado College; holds master’s degrees from Harvard Graduate School of Education and Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences in Sociology. He serves on the boards of numerous organizations related to health care, including the Venice Family Clinic, the Grace Center of Pasadena, California and NOFAS.
Stacy Bohlen is the Executive Director of the National Indian Health Board.
William J. Edwards is a Deputy Public Defender with the Los Angeles County Public Defenders Office. Currently he is assigned to the mental health court where he represents clients in conservatorship and competency proceedings. Since 1994, Mr. Edwards has specialized in the representation of people with developmental disabilities, including Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders, in the criminal justice system. Mr. Edwards served as one of the amicus attorneys for Johnny Paul Penry, an inmate with an intellectual disability on death row in Texas. In Penry v. Johnson ( 532 U.S. 782 (2001), a landmark Supreme Court case, Mr. Edwards and other amicus attorneys argued that the execution of people with intellectual disabilities violates both national and international law. Mr. Edwards has authored numerous articles on the subject of people with intellectual disabilities and FASD in the criminal justice system. One of his publications was cited by the United States Supreme Court in Atkins v. Virginia 536 U.S. 304 (2002).
Sister Suzette Fisher, SND, Ed.S. is the current chair of the NOFAS Affiliate Network, and a principal of Toledo, Ohio-based, Double ARC, 501(c)3 nonprofit organization founded by the Sisters of Notre Dame in 1992 to address the needs of children whose behavior and academic challenges put them at risk. Double ARC continues today to serve only children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders.
Jennifer Hughes, a founding partner in the law firm of Ayer & Hughes, joined the law firm of Hobbs, Straus, Dean and Walker as Of Counsel in May 2002 and became a partner in 2003. Her background and interests focus on strengthening tribal sovereignty and improving quality of life on reservations and in Indian communities countrywide. Her experience led to involvement in matters affecting tribal governance and governmental relations. These included negotiating intergovernmental agreements with local governments, working on self-determination contracting and self-governance issues, advocating for proper trust management of tribal resources, and advising tribes on their gaming operations.
Gene Hoyme, MD is the Chief Academic Officer of Sanford Health in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, the President and a Senior Scientist at Sanford Research at the University of South Dakota, and a Professor of Pediatrics at the Sanford School of Medicine of the University of South Dakota
The Honorable Dale Kildee is a former member of the United States House of Representatives from Michigan, serving from 1977 to 2013. Mr Kildee is currently a policy advisor with Ietan Consulting and a senior consultant in the American Indian law and policy practice at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP.
Thomas W. Rabaut is a Senior Advisor to the Aerospace, Defense and Business/Government Services Group at The Carlyle Group. Mr. Rabaut served as President and CEO of one of Carlyle’s most successful investments — the 1997 investment in United Defense. Prior to his tenure at United Defense, he served 17 years in various roles at FMC where he ultimately became Vice President and General Manager of FMC’s Defense Systems Group. He also served five years in the United States Army. Mr. Rabaut earned his B.S. at the United State Military Academy at West Point and his M.B.A. from Harvard University. He is the current chair of NARSAD, the world’s leading charity dedicated to mental health research.
Ed Riley, PhD is among the preeminent figures and authorities on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. He is a Distinguished Professor in the Department of Psychology and the Director of the Center for Behavioral Teratology at San Diego State University, and serves as the Principal Investigator and Administrator of the Collaborative Initiative on FASD, the largest basic, behavioral and clinical reserach project worldwide.
Mark Skibbie is the founder and prinipal of Skibbie Wealth Management Group, an independent investment advisory firm focused on oversight and coordination of the financial affairs for a select group of families, non-profit organizations and small businesses. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees of Caron Treatment Centers, a nationally recognized non-profit provider of alcohol and drug addiction treatment and one of the oldest and largest single-site treatment facilities in the United States.
Distinguished Former Board Members
Patti Munter founded NOFAS in 1990 and served as its first Executive Director through 1996. She developed many of the programs, activities, and prevention strategies active today including the first FAS medical school curriculum, the annual NOFAS Leadership Awards Benefit, and the NOFAS International Information and Referral Clearinghouse. She is responsible for bringing many of the distingushed board members and current staff to NOFAS, and was the calalyst for federal recognition and investment in FAS in the early 1990’s. She is an author and artist residing in New York City.
Jane Buffett joined the NOFAS Board of Directors in 1996. Ms. Buffett is a major contributor to health and human welfare causes through her family’s SFC Charitable Foundation. She is the wife of entertainer Jimmy Buffett.
Dr. Faye Calhoun is the Interim Director of the Julius L. Chambers Biomedical/Biotechnology Research Institute at North Carolina Central University. Dr. Calhoun retired from the position of Deputy Director of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), a component of the National Institutes of Health, in April, 2006. While at NIAAA she organized and chaired the Interagency Coordinating Committee (ICCFAS) on FASD. The ICCFAS is a committee of government representatives from the U.S. Departments of Health, Education and Justice.
Susan Carlson is a juvenile district court referee, the founder of the Minnesota Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, as well as the former First Lady of Minnesota. In 1997, Mrs. Carlson convened the Governor’s Task Force on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome to promote education about and prevention of alcohol-related birth defects and to study the issue and make recommendations to the Governor and legislature. She sits on many boards of directors and raises awareness for numerous causes, including women’s health concerns and the prevention of child abuse. In 1998, she was a recipient of the NOFAS Leadership Award.
Linda Hall Daschle served as a member of the NOFAS board from 1999-2008. She most recently served as a senior public policy advisor at Baker, Donelson, Bearman & Caldwell in Washington, DC. She joined the firm after a 20-year career in the aviation industry highlighted by her service as deputy administrator and subsequently Acting Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration. Mrs. Daschle has received numerous awards for her professional and charitable efforts, and she serves on the boards of the Center for National Policy, the Columbia Hospital for Women Medical Center and the George Washington University Aviation Institute Advisory Board.
Michael Deaver (1938-2007) was a member of President Ronald Reagan’s White House staff, a key Reagan advisor for three decades, a political consultant, a public relations executive and active in numerous charitable causes. He served on the NOFAS board from 1997 until his death in 2007.
Michael Dorris (1945-1997) was a prominent author and scholar who wrote the critically acclaimed book The Broken Cord, a story chronicling his families’ experiences raising an adopted son with FAS.
Sam English (Chippewa) is an internationally recognized painter and the owner/operator of the Sam English Gallery in Albuquerque, NM. He is a co-founder of the American Indian Youth Council and was a member of the American Indian Movement in the 1960s.
James A. Johnson is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Johnson Capital Partners, a private investment company. Previously, Mr. Johnson served as Chief Executive Officer of Fannie Mae, Chairman of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and Chairman of the Board of Trustees at the Brookings Institution. He is a past recipient of the NOFAS Leadership Award and served on the NOFAS Board of Directors from 1999 to 2005.
Terry Lierman is a past board chair instrumental in the growth of NOFAS and the FASD field, responsible for well over $1 million in contributions to the NOFAS mission. He is a passionate supporter of improved health care and funding for medical research, and was most recently the Chief of Staff to U.S. Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), the former Majority Leader of the U.S. House of Representatives. Over the last four decades he has combined his entrepreneurial and political talents in a variety of ventures from serving in leadership positions on the staff of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee, founding companies and non-profit organizations that advanced health care advocacy, to leading the Maryland Democratic Party. He is currently leading a new venture capital company, Health Ventures International, and chairing CSGI, Inc., the parent company of CTIS, a global health information technology company.
Robert W. (Rob) Lively is Vice President for Corporate Government Relations at Express Scripts. Previously, he served as the Staff Vice President for Federal Government Affairs and head of the Washington, D.C. office for Schering-Plough Corporation, a global, research-based pharmaceutical manufacturer. Mr. Lively has been active for over two decades in civic and charitable pursuits in the Washington Metropolitan Area. He is also a member of the Knights of Malta, the fourth oldest religious order in the Catholic Church – an order that sponsors charitable medical care for the poor, among its other duties. After many years of outstanding support, he served on the NOFAS Board of Directors from 2005-2009.
Richard McCormick is the former chairman, president and CEO of US WEST, Inc. Mr. McCormick and employees of US WEST have consistently supported the NOFAS Leadership Awards Benefit as a trustee and helped develop the NOFAS Information and Referral Clearinghouse.
Susan Molinari served as a member of the NOFAS board from 1997-1999. She currently is vice president for public policy at Google. She was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1990-1997 and co-anchor of “CBS News Saturday” from 1997-1998. She also was a longstanding member of the NOFAS Advisory Board, and—along with her husband, the Honorable Bill Paxon—was presented in 1996 with the NOFAS Leadership Award in recognition of her work on behalf of women and children.
Kate Moss founded the Kate Moss Company in 1991, specializing in legislative strategies for financial institutions and telecommunications companies. She has served as National Representative of the Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. and Director of Congressional Relations for the American Financial Services Association. Prior to moving to the private sector, she was Deputy Director for Congressional Liaison of the White House Special Action Office for Drug Abuse Prevention. She is a graduate of Vassar College with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and is active in fund raising efforts on behalf of The Children’s Inn at NIH, the March of Dimes and N Street Village. She served on the NOFAS board for 15 years through 2013.
Theda New Breast, M.P.H. is a Montana born Blackfeet Indian and one of the pioneers in the Native Training field in addition to being one of the original committee members for the Men’s and Women’s Wellness gatherings. She has more than 25 years professional experience in providing healing and training workshops centered on alcohol and other drug use prevention. Theda served as President of the NOFAS Board of Directors from 1990-1995.
Lynne O’Brien is the former Director of Government Affairs for DuPont Pharmaceuticals. Ms. O’Brien graduated from Princeton University and received her J.D. from Georgetown University Law School. She served on the NOFAS Board of Directors from 1996 to 2007.
Gwendolyn Packard co-founded NOFAS in 1990 and served as a founding board member. She is the executive director of Morningstar House in Albuquerque, NM. Ms. Packard is a leading advocate of women’s and children’s issues and received the NOFAS Service Award in 2000.
Tony Podesta was a founding NOFAS board member and was influential in the growth and success of NOFAS during the 1990s. He is the president of the Podesta Group, a national public affairs firm. Mr. Podesta is an attorney, legislative strategist, educator, lecturer, commentator and founding president of People for the American Way, a national nonpartisan citizen’s organization working to protect constitutional liberties. He did graduate work in urban studies at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and received his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 1976.
William Kennedy Smith, MD is a founding member of the NOFAS Board of Directors. He developed and funded the first Fetal Alcohol Syndrome curricula for medical and allied health professionals, a program that has evolved into the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-supported FASD Practice and Implementation Centers at leading universities across the United States. Currently, Dr. Smith is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of MedRed. He is a physician and board-certified physiatrist, as well as a trained prosthetist, with an extensive history of working with war wounded populations and in the area of international humanitarian relief. He is a graduate of Georgetown Medical School, completed his internship at the University of New Mexico and his residency in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Northwestern University and the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. He is a recognized expert on prosthetics, rehabilitation and medical informatics with a track record of envisioning and enacting a number of innovative medical education and informatics programs, including a distance-learning, telemedicine network that currently links individuals and institutions in over 45 countries.
Denise St. Cyr (Winnebago) is Director of Corporate Development at Caddo Office Products, a national, American Indian-owned office supply company. She serves as a board member of the Rocky Mountain Indian Chamber of Commerce, the American Indian National Chamber of Commerce, the Native American Sports Council, the Mayor’s committee for American Indian issues, and the Colorado University Advisory Board. She also is vice chairman of the Board for the Denver Indian Center. Recently, she was appointed to the MGM Grand Markets Advisory Committee.
Chris Stearns (Navajo) is a partner at Hobbs, Straus, Dean & Walker in Washington, D.C. He has served as Director for Indian Affairs at the U.S. Department of Energy and the Democratic Counsel for the U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources, among other public policy positions. Mr. Stearns co-chaired the NOFAS National Native American Advisory Committee and served on the NOFAS board from 1997 through 2006.
Kimberly Teehee (Cherokee) is a principal of Mapetsi Policy Group and the former senior policy advisor for Native American affairs in the administration of U.S. President Barack Obama where she served as a member of the White House Domestic Policy Council. Previously, she served as a Senior Advisor to the House of Representatives Native American Caucus Co-Chair, Congressman Dale Kildee (D-MI). She served as a member of the NOFAS Board of Directors from 1996 – 2006.
The Honorable Mike Synar (1950-1996) served in the U.S. House of Representatives for 16 years. During his tenure he was an ardent and persistent foe of the tobacco industry. Mr. Synar was awarded the 1995 John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award, one of the nation’s most prestigious honors for elected public servants. Mr. Synar died of a brain tumor on January 9, 1996, at the age of 45. The American College of Physicians offers a national public service award in honor of Rep. Synar’s public efforts against tobacco smoking. His name is also attached to the Mike Synar Center at Northeastern State University in Muskogee, Oklahoma.
Michele Zieger is founder of Zieger Productions and a writer-producer in Hollywood, Calif. Her current efforts include remaking Divorce Italian Style with Vertigo Films and co-writing and associate producing the 2002 Universal production Skulls II. Ms. Zieger has worked as the head of Development and Business Affairs for PM Entertainment, developed TV projects for Rick Edelman and worked as a story editor for Lynda Obst Productions. She was an entertainment attorney at the firm Hughes, Hubbard and Reed. She earned a master’s degree in screenwriting from the American Film Institute, as well as undergraduate and law degrees from Georgetown University. She is a member of the Screen Actors’ Guild and both the California and Washington, DC, bars. Ms. Zieger was the founding chair of NOFASWest, coordinating NOFAS awareness and fundraising activities on the West Coast.
NOFAS National Advisory Board
The Honorable Thomas A. Daschle, Former Senate Majority Leader, U.S. Senate
Jon Aase, M.D., Pediatric Dysmorphologist, Albuquerque, NM
The Honorable Jeff Bingaman, Former Member, U.S. Senate
Jimmy Buffett, Entertainer
The Honorable Ben Nighthorse Campbell, Former Member, U.S. Senate
Sterling Clarren, M.D., University of Washington School of Medicine
The Honorable Tom Coburn, M.D., U.S. Senate
Kevin Costner, Actor
The Honorable Christopher J. Dodd, Former Member, U.S. Senate
Cecelia Fire Thunder, Community Health Planner, Pine Ridge Reservation, SD
LaDonna Harris, Executive Director, Americans for Indian Opportunity, Albuquerque, NM
The Honorable Orrin Hatch, U.S. Senate
The Honorable Kay Bailey Hutchison, Fomer Member, U.S. Senate
Kenneth Lyons Jones, M.D., Professor of Pediatrics and Dysmorphology, University of CA, San Diego
The Honorable John Kasich, Governor of Ohio
The Honorable Joseph P. Kennedy II, Former Member, U.S. House of Representatives
Pat Locke, Educator, Standing Rock Sioux Reservation
Patty Marks, Fredericks Peebles & Morgan
Philip May, Ph.D., Nutrition Research Institute, University of North Carolina
The Honorable John McCain, U.S. Senate
The Honorable George Miller, U.S. House of Representatives
The Honorable Carol Moseley-Braun, Former Member, U.S. Senate
Gwendolyn Packard, Morningstar House, Albuquerque, NM
Bonnie Raitt, Musician
Ann Streissguth, Ph.D., University of Washington
Kara Kennedy Allen, Washington, DC (1960-2011)
The Honorable Daniel K. Inouye, Former Member, U.S. Senate (1924-2012)