Board of Directors

Gail AndersonGail Andersen  |  Chair

Mason, OH
Gail is retired from Procter & Gamble after a 31-year career. Most recently she served as Associate Director of Innovation. Gail’s husband died in 2012 at the age of 56 with bvFTD and ALS. Ms. Andersen brings important experience in strategic planning and project management to the board. She served on AFTD’s Task Force for Families with Children, and she and her children have held several fundraisers for AFTD. She is very interested in research.

Michael Stowell, Ph.D.  |  Vice Chair

Boulder, CO
Michael is an Associate Professor of molecular biology at the University of Colorado, Boulder. His laboratory focuses on study of the molecular and supramolecular structures that facilitate communication between neurons at the chemical synapse. Michael’s stepfather died of bvFTD; he has been a long-time sponsor of AFTD’s annual conference and since the summer of 2016 has served on AFTD’s Research Committee.

Paul LesterPaul Lester  |  Treasurer

Raleigh, NC
Paul is a Services Operation Manager at Toshiba Global Commerce Solutions; he has worked for IBM/TGCS for the past 30 years. Mr. Lester has been involved with AFTD for many years, participating in the AFTD Task Force on Families with Children and in the parents’ phone support group. His wife, Arnette, passed away in 2013 at the age of 61. Mr. Lester is particularly interested in AFTD fund development.

Steve FenoglioStephen Fenoglio, Esq.  |  Recording Secretary

Austin, TX
Stephen runs his own law practice in the city, specializing in: administrative, gaming, utility, oil and gas law; legislative analysis and bill drafting; business transactions and contract negotiations; and litigation. He has represented hundreds of nonprofit organizations in matters before federal and state courts and agencies, and actively supports The Arc of the Capital Area and the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. Steve lost two siblings to FTD: His sister Libby Webb, a Wichita Falls teacher and school principal died at age 56 in 2010, and his brother Michael Fenoglio, a prominent Denver surgeon, died at age 57 in 2012. An active participant in his community, Steve chairs the Austin area’s FTD support group.

Steve BellwoarSteve Bellwoar

Phoenixville, PA
Steve is President and CEO of Colonial Electric Supply Co. Inc. He has a BS in Marketing and a BS in Computer-based Management Systems, both from Clarkson University. Mr. Bellwoar’s mother is diagnosed with FTD.

Rick ChildsRick Childs, M.B.A., C.F.A.

Scituate, MA
Rick is Vice President and Chief Compliance Officer at the SRB Corporation, an investment advisory firm that offers financial planning, consulting and investment management services. Mr. Childs earned his B.A. in Economics and M.B.A. in Management, both from Harvard University and his Chartered Financial Analyst® (C.F.A.) designation in 1984. Deeply rooted in the Boston, MA area, his family established Harvard University’s first professorship in photography in honor of his grandfather, famed photographer Shirley Carter Burden. After his wife, Beatrice (Beezie), was diagnosed with PPA in 2010, he became an avid supporter of the Florence V. Burden Foundation, his family’s foundation, and joined AFTD’s Board of Directors in 2016.

Helen Ann ComstockHelen-Ann Comstock

Perkasie, PA
Helen-Ann is the founder of AFTD. Her husband, Craig, was diagnosed with FTD at age 44 in 1978 and died seven years later. In order to increase research funding for frontotemporal degeneration and to provide information and support to those coping with FTD, Ms. Comstock formed the AFTD in 2002 and served as its board chair until 2010. Ms. Comstock continues to spearhead the organization’s international efforts and serves on the Executive and Governance Committees. The Comstock Respite and Travel Grant Program is named in her honor and the foundation she has laid for the organization.

Sandra GrowSandra Grow

Massillon, OH
Sandra is a registered nurse with nearly four decades of experience; she currently works part time as a Quality Nurse at the Ohio Anesthesia Group. In 2007, her husband Karl – a former air traffic controller in the U.S. Air Force and Air Force Reserve and a U.S. postal worker – was was diagnosed with FTD. Sandra’s involvement with AFTD dates back nearly 10 years. She has co-facilitated a support group in Akron, co-presented a webinar with AFTD Program Director Sharon Denny, and is a current advisor to AFTD’s Partners in FTD Care initiative.

Matt HatfieldMatthew Hatfield, Esq.

Tampa, FL
Matthew is an attorney with the law firm of Johnson Pope Bokor Ruppel & Burns, LLP. Matt practices in the areas of health care law and corporate and commercial transactions. He assists health care providers and health care companies with a wide variety of business, corporate and compliance matters. Matt earned his undergraduate degree from Yale University and attended Stetson University College of Law for law school. With the help of family and friends, Matt created the Robert M. Hatfield Foundation, Inc. – a charitable organization that hosts an annual golf tournament to raise funds in support of the AFTD’s mission. Having lost his father Robert to FTD in 2010, Matt has a personal connection to FTD and joined the AFTD Board of Directors in 2016.

Daniel Hedaya

New York, NY
Daniel is the Managing Partner of the real estate investment company DAX Real Estate. When he was in his teenage years, his father was afflicted with FTD; he passed away in 2009. Though this was a painful loss, Daniel’s father has inspired him to become intimately involved with AFTD, and drives his motivation for greater awareness, research, and the  hope for a cure. Daniel has led a successful grassroots campaign and served as co-chair for AFTD’s Hope Rising benefit.

Kacy Kunesh

Austin, TX
Kacy is a business consultant with expertise in communications, strategic growth, sales and marketing. Her international career, combined with being an avid adventurer, has taken her to 32 countries. Kacy’s caregiver journey spans 12 years, starting as her mother endured four and a half years of misdiagnoses before being diagnosed with bvFTD. Kacy has played key volunteer roles in the AFTD’s Partners in FTD Care program, our 5K in Austin, and our Young Adult Facebook Support Group, and speaks publicly to advocate for greater awareness of FTD and the needs of caregivers. She joined AFTD’s Board in 2017.

Kathy MeleKathy Mele

New York, NY
Kathy has been an elementary school teacher and a teacher of English as a second language. Currently, she is Chair of the Board of National Dance Institute, an organization that teaches dance in the New York City public schools. Other interests in the non-profit world include The Paper Bag Players, a children’s theater group whose board she chaired from 2000-2009 and Citizens Committee for Children, a city and state advocacy group. She is passionate about supporting AFTD because her mother suffered from Primary Progressive Aphasia for more than fifteen years.

David PfeiferDavid Pfeifer

Denver, CO
David is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning. He currently is a partner at Anderson Mason Dale Architects in Denver. In his 24 years with the firm he has led teams designing a diverse array of projects with an emphasis on university and college science and research facilities, some of which have won awards for outstanding design. David’s wife, Cathy, was diagnosed with FTD in 2014 at the age of 47. David placed Cathy in an assisted living facility early in 2016, and she passed away December 2016. Their children were 17, 15 and 13 at the time. While caring for Cathy and his family, David has engaged with AFTD, attending several Denver events, the AFTD Education Conference, and Hope Rising, as well as hosting a grassroots event. David brings a passion for finding treatments and a cure before FTD can affect another generation.

Brian RoseBrian Rose

New York, NY
Brian is an Institutional Relationship Manager at Credit Suisse. In addition to having experience managing relationship with senior executives of large financial institutions, he has expertise is in financial statement analysis, budgeting and capital expenditure analysis. Brian’s mother is afflicted with FTD, and he has become an avid AFTD supporter by organizing successful events for AFTD’s Food for Thought campaign as well as serving on the Hope Rising planning committee. He continues to seek out best practices from philanthropic contacts to raise FTD awareness and gain usable knowledge for fundraising and governance.

Beth WalterBeth Walter

Sacramento, CA
Beth, the co-founding partner of a commercial real estate development company of 35 years and civic leader, lost her husband, Mike, and four of his family members to FTD/ALS. To honor his memory, she created the Mike Walter Fund for Research to support AFTD’s research initiatives. An active supporter of GRE events, Ms. Walter also founded The Walter Charitable Fund and has facilitated the “Quest for the Cure” golf tournament fundraisers since 2007, raising resources to advance research efforts and share knowledge about FTD. Ms. Walter served as AFTD’s Board Chair from 2010-2013, succeeding its founder.