Ron Alterman, MD
Dr. Alterman was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. He received his bachelor’s degree, magna cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania in 1982 and his medical doctorate from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in 1986. After completing his neurosurgery residency at Montefiore Medical Center in 1994, he became the first fellow in stereotactic and functional neurosurgery at New York University Medical Center and was promoted to the NYU faculty in 1995. Over the next 16 years, Dr. Alterman established himself as the premier deep brain stimulation surgeon in New York, becoming chief of neurosurgery at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in October 2011.
An internationally recognized expert on stereotactic neurosurgery and the surgical management of movement disorders, Dr. Alterman is a regular speaker at national and international neurosurgical symposia and has published more than 100 scientific articles, reviews and book chapters. He has also participated in and served on the planning and clinical review committees for a number of pivotal trials of DBS and other biosurgical therapies for the treatment of both movement and psychiatric disorders.
Rick Celebrini, PhD
Dr. Celebrini is a sports and orthopedic physiotherapist at the University of British Columbia, Canada. He is and has been a therapist and consultant with a wide variety of national and professional teams in North America. Dr. Celebrini is currently the director of sports medicine and science for the Vancouver Whitecaps Football Club, consultant to the Vancouver Canucks and a co-founder and chief sport officer for Fortius Sport and Health, a fully integrated, multidisciplinary athlete development centre in Burnaby, BC, Canada. A former professional and national team soccer player, he has been a member of the core medical team at three Olympic games and has participated in the Pan-Am games as a soccer player. Dr. Celebrini was manager of medical services and the chief therapist for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. His research focus is in sports injury prevention.
Catherine Cho, MD
Dr. Cho has expertise in gait and balance impairment due to neurologic disease. Some of the diseases causing gait and balance impairment are Parkinson’s disease, atypical parkinsonian syndromes, vertigo, Mal de Disembarquement Syndrome (MdDS), normal pressure hydrocephalus and cerebellar ataxia. She has extensive experience in deep brain stimulation for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease, tremors and dystonia, and botulinum toxin injections for the treatment of movement disorders and spasticity. Her research focuses on studying gait abnormalities in parkinsonian disorders. She collaborated with Dr. Mingjia Dai on a novel treatment for Mal de Debarquement Syndrome that is now being offered at The Mount Sinai Hospital.
V. Reggie Edgerton, PhD
Dr. Edgerton received his PhD in exercise physiology from Michigan State University, master’s from the University of Iowa and bachelor’s degree from East Carolina University. He is the director of the Neuromuscular Research Laboratory; distinguished professor of the departments of Integrative Biology and Physiology, Neurobiology and Neurosurgery; and member of the Brain Research Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). He has been teaching and conducting research at UCLA for over 40 years. His research focuses on how the neural networks in the lumbar spinal cord of mammals, including humans, regain control of standing, stepping, and fine movements after paralysis, and how these motor functions can be modified by chronically imposing activity-dependent interventions after spinal cord injury. Many of these projects are being performed with national and international collaborators. Dr. Edgerton has published more than 460 peer-reviewed papers on topics in this area. He is also the president and chairman of the board for Neurorecovery Technologies Inc.
Carl J. Hauser, MD
Dr. Hauser is the trauma medical director of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston and a visiting professor of surgery at Harvard Medical School. He trained in surgery at Harbor/UCLA Medical Center where he went on to become a surgical critical care specialist early in the specialty’s development. He joined the faculty of Los Angeles County Hospital/USC Medical Center in 1986 and moved to the faculty of the University of Mississippi in 1992. Then, he spent 10 years at the UMDNJ-New Jersey State Trauma Center in Newark, where he became a tenured professor. In 2006, Dr. Hauser moved his lab to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center where he helped found the Division of Acute Care Surgery.
He has made many contributions as a clinical surgeon, intensivist and scientist, including publishing more than 300 journal articles, textbook chapters, abstracts and editorials. His works are as likely to be found inNature or the Journal of Biological Chemistry as in the Journal of Trauma or Annals of Surgery.
Scott Parazynski, MD
During his 17-year career with the NASA Astronaut Corps, Dr. Parazynski flew on five shuttle missions and conducted seven spacewalks, traveling over 23 million miles in orbit, spending more than eight weeks in space and 47 hours outside the vehicle. As a shuttle crew member, he served as crew medical officer, shuttle flight engineer, lead spacewalker, assembly and maintenance worker, operator of robotic arms and more.
Since leaving the space agency in 2008, he has worked in senior leadership positions in both the aerospace and medical research industries, and has been instrumental in the development of numerous medical devices and other technologies for supporting life in extreme environments.
Parazynski currently serves as the chief medical officer and director of The University of Texas Medical Branch’s Center for Polar Medical Operations in Galveston. In this role, he oversees the medical screening and on-ice care of the National Science Foundation’s U.S. Antarctic Program.
Major General Gale S. Pollock (Ret)
General Pollock became a certified nurse anesthetist soon after her graduation from the University of Maryland. She has master’s degrees in business, healthcare administration and national security and strategy, as well as an honorary doctorate from the University of Maryland. She was the 22nd chief of the Army Nurse Corps, and served as the commander of the US Army Medical Command and the acting surgeon general of the Army (becoming the first female nonphysician to have this role in any of the military services).
In 2008, she established the Louis J. Fox Center for Vision Restoration and was an associate professor at the University of Pittsburgh Schools of Medicine and Nursing. General Pollock was a 2011 Fellow in Harvard University’s Advanced Leadership Initiative. She serves on multiple advisory boards, is the owner of Pollock Associates, LLC, and is a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives, the American Academy of Nursing and the National Board of Corporate Directors. General Pollock was selected as a 2013/2014 Professional Business Women of the Year by the National Association of Professional Women.
D. James Surmeier, PhD
Dr. Surmeier is the Nathan Smith Davis Professor and chair of the Department of Physiology at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University, and director of the Morris K. Udall Research Center of Excellence for Parkinson’s Disease Research at Northwestern University. He received his PhD in Physiology and Biophysics from the University of Washington in 1983. In 1998, he moved to the Department of Physiology at Northwestern University and assumed his current position in 2001. The author of more than 150 peer-reviewed papers, Dr. Surmeier’s research program focuses on the basal ganglia—neural structures controlling movement and intimately involved in the pathophysiology of Parkinson’s and Huntington’s diseases. He was elected as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and has received many other scientific awards, including the NARSAD Established Investigator award and the Jacob Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award.
Jennifer Sweet, MD
Dr. Sweet is an assistant professor of neurosurgery at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and a neurosurgeon at University Hospital’s Case Medical Center. She earned her medical doctorate at Georgetown University School of Medicine and holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan. As an academic neurosurgeon in stereotactic and functional neurosurgery, she applies her broad background in functional neurosurgery, deep brain stimulation, epilepsy surgery, stereotaxy, pain and peripheral nerve treatment to a variety of research goals.
During her fellowship at Case Western Reserve University, Dr. Sweet carried out research projects on movement disorders, epilepsy and neuromodulation. Since then, she has also conducted research in the study of pain, memory and psychiatric disorders.