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Our Senior Officers & Staff
The mission and vision of the PFF can only be achieved through the dedication and commitment of the people who have been chosen to lead the PFF team. Below is a list of our Leadership Officers & Senior Staff.
Dr. Franck Rahaghi graduated from the University of California San Diego Magna Cum Laude with a degree in biomedical engineering. He subsequently attended the University of California San Francisco where he obtained his doctorate in medicine. He also concurrently attended the University of California Berkeley to obtain a degree in public health and health administration. Dr. Rahaghi completed his internship at the University of Minnesota and in his medical residency at the University of Illinois in Chicago. He completed his pulmonary and critical care fellowship at the Weil-Cornell campus of New York Presbyterian Hospital. Before joining the PFF, he was as staff attending and clinical researcher at the Cleveland Clinic in Florida. Dr. Rahaghi was named the Scholar Physician of the Year at the Cleveland Clinic Florida and is an Associate Professor of medicine at the Cleveland Clinic/Case Western Reserve Lerner College of Medicine. He was the Director of Advance Lung Disease Program, Director of the Alpha-1 Foundation Clinical Resource Center and the Chairman of the Department of Pulmonary and Critical Care. Dr Rahaghi was a business & marketing consultant to multiple pharma companies and non-profit organizations and sits on board of directors of pharmaceutical and non-profit entities. He is also a published researcher and lecturer. His areas of research include drug adverse effect management, Delphi consensus studies, increasing screening in pulmonary diseases, phase II and III clinical trials and exploring disease modification in pulmonary conditions.
Scott Staszak has worked in leadership roles for the PFF since 2011. He oversees the effective execution of the business plan for the organization and manages the day-to-day functioning of the operating units – PFF Registry; Care Center Network; Corporate Business Development; Finance; Human Resources; and Information Technology. He also supports strategic planning for the Foundation.
Prior to joining the PFF, Scott worked at The Field Museum of Natural History for nearly ten years as the director of financial operations. Additionally, he taught a course in financial management within the master’s degree program for Arts Administration and Policy at the School of the Art Institute in Chicago.
Seth is responsible for overseeing the Fundraising and Marketing operation at the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation. He provides leadership in guiding staff members in major and planned giving, events, and annual fund. He manages the planning, development, and execution of the PFF’s marketing, communications, and advertising initiatives.
Previously, Seth spent 15 years at Children’s Memorial Hospital, later Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, in leadership roles in Human Resources as well as Lurie Children’s Foundation, where he was the Vice-President of Operations.
Seth graduated from Ohio University with a BS in Health Care Administration and a Minor in Business.
Dr. Amy Case established the ILD program at Georgia Lung Associates, which became part of the Piedmont Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Division in 2013. She leads the Advanced Lung Disease at Piedmont directs the ILD program, which became part of the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation’s Care Center Network in 2014. Dr. Case also serves as principal investigator for numerous clinical trials for pulmonary fibrosis.
Dr. Sonye Danoff is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine and Co-Director of the Interstitial Lung Disease Clinic at Johns Hopkins Medicine. Dr. Danoff is a specialist in diseases causing fibrosis in the lung, particularly those associated with autoimmune diseases including myositis. She actively participates in local, regional, and international collaborative groups in the study of ILD.
Dr. Kevin Flaherty is the Director of the Interstitial Lung Disease Program and Associate Professor in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at the University of Michigan Health System. His clinical and research interests include lung transplant, COPD, and interstitial lung diseases such as pulmonary fibrosis. Dr. Flaherty is an active participant on grants and clinical trials related to the study and treatment of patients with idiopathic interstitial pneumonias, particularly idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.
Dr. Joyce Lee is an Associate Professor of Pulmonary Sciences and Critical Care and Director of the Interstitial Lung Disease Program at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. She established the University’s ILD program which is now part of the PFF Care Center Network. Dr. Lee has developed clinical-translational research programs with both NIH and non-NIH funded investigator-initiated studies and clinical trials.
Zoe joined the PFF ten years ago and is responsible for Board of Directors and committee-related projects, governance, management reporting, and logistics. She also manages the PFF’s research program and the peer-review process throughout the entire lifecycle of a research award, and she is responsible for the biennial PFF Summit program development process and faculty management. She works on many cross-departmental initiatives, including the Foundation’s strategic plan and the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Task Force.
She has almost 25 years of experience working across multiple federal and state regulated organizations and in the private sector in quality control, finance and accounting, audit preparation and management, budgeting, grant writing, staff management, change management, project management, board management, and analytics.
Zoe received a BS in Business Management and an MBA from the University of Phoenix.
Kate Gates leads the PFF’s education and volunteer Programs – including the PFF Ambassador Program; Support Group Leader Network; Disease Education Webinar Series; and Patient Education Materials. She also works with the PFF’s government affairs program and PFF Advocates. Kate is responsible for the strategy and development of the Programs to meet the needs of the pulmonary fibrosis community.
Before joining the PFF, Kate oversaw a team that managed healthcare services for children in foster care in New York City. She also has worked as a case manager for adults with chronic diseases. Kate has experience in program development, community outreach, and patient advocacy.
Kate has a Master’s in Development Management (MSc) from the London School of Economics and a BA from Taylor University.
Jennifer Mefford leads corporate partnerships at the PFF in support of mission-driven activities that serve the PF community. This includes developing and managing program and event sponsorship and grants. In addition, she directs corporate engagement for the biennial PFF Summit.
Prior to joining the PFF, Jennifer managed events for the Contemporary Arts Center New Orleans, a mid-size multi-disciplinary arts center, including theater, dance, film, and music.
She coordinated a multi-day theater symposium as part of RADAR L.A., an international festival of contemporary theater produced by REDCAT (Los Angeles) Center Theatre Group (Los Angeles) and The Public Theater's Under the Radar Festival (New York).
Jennifer holds a MA in Arts Administration and Policy from the School of the Art Institute of Chicagoand a BA from California State University, Northridge.
Jessica Shore manages the PFF Care Center Network (CCN), supporting centers across the country that specialize in interstitial lung disease to improve the care delivered to patients living with pulmonary fibrosis.
Prior to joining the PFF, Jessica directed a clinical research office and taught nursing students at Loyola University Chicago. Her research focused on adherence to medication and community engagement with research.
Jessica started her bedside nursing career in the medical intensive care unit at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. She then transitioned into research nursing and administration at academic medical centers.
Jessica graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) from Loyola University Chicago and received a PhD at the University of Illinois Chicago.
Amy Wardzala lends her expertise to all things development and oversees PFF’s fundraising events. She enjoys working with donors and finding ways that she can support them in their journeys.
Since joining the PFF five years ago, Amy has held multiple roles within the organization. Amy launched the PFF Walk program in 2017 and has supported the continued expansion of the program since its inception.
Amy has spent the majority of her career in the non-profit sector with an emphasis on peer-to-peer fundraising and events.
Amy graduated from Illinois State University with a BS in Public Relations.