DPAC is proud to announce our Board of Directors for 2018!

We are honored to have dynamic individuals from diverse career backgrounds who all share a passion to help the diabetes community.

Bruce Taylor, Chair

Mr. Taylor is a healthcare veteran with more than 35 years of experience in senior sales, marketing, health policy and advocacy positions with pharmaceutical manufacturers, chain pharmacies, managed care, and medical device manufacturers. He actively participates on advisory boards for the ADA, AACE, CWD, AADE, The Endocrine Society, the National Minority Quality Forum and AMGF.

Diabetes isn’t just a professional assignment for Bruce but a disease that is personal and demands his attention 24/7/365. He was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes 1980 and has actively managing his diabetes for over 30 years.  He is currently the Director of Government Affairs and Market Access at Dexcom.

Stewart Perry, Vice Chair

Since 1983, Mr. Perry has been the co-owner of Perry & Perry State Farm Insurance, one of the largest State Farm Insurance agencies in the state of Kentucky. Stewart’s family has been dramatically affected by diabetes. His son has type 1 diabetes; both parents and sister have all had Type 2 diabetes during their lifetime.

Stewart was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in 1990. Since that time, he has been actively involved in the American Diabetes Association. Stewart was the Chairman of the National Board of Directors and Chair of the National Advocacy Committee for five years. He is the State of Kentucky State Advocacy Chair for ADA, a member of the Kentucky Diabetes Network and a founding member of the Fayette County Diabetes Coalition. Stewart was appointed by two different Governors of Kentucky to the GET FIT KY Board and The Diabetes Research Trust Fund Board where he currently still serves. Mr. Perry is one of the founders of the National Diabetes Volunteer Leadership Council and currently serves as an officer of that organization. He also sits on the board of T-1 Today, Inc. (Children With Diabetes).

Lawrence T. Smith, MBA, Treasurer

Larry Smith is the founder and manager of a national marketing research and consulting firm in Lexington, Kentucky. His business performs marketing research for firms in a number of industries, particularly the financial services industry.

Larry’s work with the American Diabetes Association is extensive. He has served as Chair of the Kentucky Affiliate and of the Southern Region. He was either a member or Chair of the Inclusion, Marketing, Communications, CEO Selection, Income Development, and Diversity committees. He is a current board member of the NDVLC.

Alissa Heizler-Mendoza, MA, RD, CDE, Secretary

Alissa Heizler-Mendoza is a Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator and has vast experience and expertise within the diabetes arena for > 20 years.

Alissa has published articles in various journals such as Diabetes Self-Management and the Diabetes Educator and has presented at hundreds of patient and professional meetings related to her clinical, scientific, educational and advocacy expertise in diabetes. Her leadership abilities are highly recognized by various awards including the Elizabeth Seton Leadership Award from Seton Hall University.  She leads the Advocacy Team at Insulet Corporation.

Neil Benchell, JD

Neil is a licensed attorney practicing in the area of intellectual property.  He has extensive experience litigating patent and trademark cases, with a particular emphasis on pharmaceutical patent litigation.

Having worked within the diabetes community for several years, Neil currently partners with a number of diabetes-specific non-profit organizations.  In particular, Neil has been most actively involved with the Children With Diabetes organization, where he is one of the leaders of its Teen Programming.  Neil has also held leadership positions in other non-profit organizations.

Patty Martin, MBA

Patty Martin “graduated,’ commonly referred to as retirement, from Eli Lilly and Company in June of this year celebrating an eclectic and energizing 26-year career. After graduating from Harvard Business School in 1991, Patty joined Lilly and held over a dozen positions across a variety of corporate functions.  Most recently, she was the Chief Operating Officer for Lilly Diabetes.

Patty is a member of the board of trustees of CareSource Management Group, Inc., a leading nonprofit managed care company based in Dayton, Ohio. In 2016, she served as the 500 Festival Chairman for the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 in 2016. She is a member of Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business Dean’s Council and the IU Women’s Philanthropy Leadership Council.

Gary Puckrein, Ph.D

Gary A. Puckrein is President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Minority Quality Forum. Dr. Puckrein also serves as Executive Director of the Alliance of Minority Medical Associations—a collaborative effort of the Asian and Pacific Physicians’ Association, the Association of American Indian Physicians, and the National Medical Association.

Dr. Puckrein has built the Forum’s capacity to house vital statistics and other information—including demographic, environmental, claims, prescription, laboratory, hospital, and clinic data—in a centralized data warehouse. Dr. Puckrein has also led the development of the Forum’s health indexes and atlases to measure and forecast health status in small geographic areas, evaluate the impact of specific interventions, monitor changes in health outcomes, and provide information and analysis regarding the health of ethnic and racial minorities.

Christina Roth

Christina is the Chief Executive Officer and Founder of CDN (College Diabetes Network). Diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 14, Christina became an active patient advocate while in college where she started CDN as a campus group in 2009.

Due to the overwhelming response to the initial group, Christina expanded CDN into a national non-profit organization serving young adults with diabetes. After graduation, Christina worked at the Joslin Diabetes Center and consulted for the T1D Exchange. As CEO of CDN, Christina frequently speaks on topics such as CDN’s programs, research on the young adult population and how to meet their unique needs, non-profit management, women in business, innovation, and startup organizations.

Michael R. Swearingen

Mike’s broad background in healthcare includes 30 years of management experience with increasing responsibilities at Eli Lilly & Co. and Johnson & Johnson Diabetes Care. He is currently Managing Director of Blackbriar-LLC International Consulting.

His global experience includes North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, and Australia. In the U.S., Mike has been a catalyst for passage of several state legislative measures to improve healthcare outcomes. Mike was instrumental in the passage of a state licensure requirement for Diabetes Educators in the States of Kentucky and Indiana. Mike has been recognized as an honorary Physician Assistant in Indiana, and in 2014 the Diabetes Care Education practice group of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics awarded him the national DCE Champion Award.

These volunteers will shape and guide DPAC to ensure that all people with diabetes have a voice in policy making.

Please join us in welcoming them.