After founding the Child Neurology Society in 1972, Dr. Kenneth Swaiman, one of the nation’s first pediatric neurologists, established the Child Neurology Foundation in 2001. While the Society is the professional organization for the nation’s pediatric neurologists, the Foundation serves pediatric patients through advocacy, education, research, and support initiatives.
To serve as a collaborative center of education and support for caregivers and their children with neurologic conditions.
A world in which all children affected by neurologic disorders reach their full potential.
Downloadable PDF of our 2017-2021 strategic plan summary.
Kenneth F. Swaiman, M.D.
Dr. Swaiman is an internationally known child neurologist and Emeritus Professor of Neurology and Pediatrics at the University of Minnesota Medical School where he was the director of the Division of Child Neurology for several decades. He also served as Interim Head of the Department of Neurology. During his tenure, he was involved in the training of almost 100 pediatric neurologists from the United States and Canada, as well as many other countries. His biography is cited in “Who’s Who in America”, “Who’s Who in the World”, “Who’s Who in Science and Engineering”, and “The Best Doctors in America”.
Dr. Swaiman was the Chairman of the organizing committee and first President of the Child Neurology Society (CNS). He received the Hower award, the highest award of that society, and the Founder’s Award at its 25th Anniversary meeting as well as The Lifetime Achievement Award for Neurologic Education by the American Academy of Neurology. As chairman of the organizing committee of the Professors of Child Neurology, he was its first President and a prime mover, and also first president of the Child Neurology Foundation. He was a member of the organizing committee of the International Child Neurology Association (ICNA), has served on many National Institutes of Health Study Sections, and has been visiting professor and lecturer at medical schools in the United States and throughout the world, including Canada, South America, Asia, Mexico, Europe, and Africa.
Dr. Swaiman has been the Editor and a primary contributor to the textbook titled Practice of Pediatric Neurology (two editions) and Pediatric Neurology: Principles and Practice (five editions). He is the Founding Editor and immediate past Editor-in-Chief of Pediatric Neurology, an international journal devoted to the basic and clinical aspects of the diagnosis of children with neurologic impairment. He has served as a member of the Editorial Boards of the Annals of Neurology, Brain and Development, Neuropediatrics, and the Chinese Journal of Pediatrics.
His investigative endeavors have included research into brain energy metabolism, the effect of malnutrition on the developing brain, and the metabolic effects of iron and other metals on brain function. He has been particularly involved in studies of Neurodegeneration with Brain Iron Accumulation (NBIA) and other childhood movement disorders.
Board of Directors
Pediatric neurologists make up at least 51% of our Board and join other Directors that include advocacy organization leaders and parents of children with neurologic disorders.
William Trescher, M.D. – President
William H. Trescher, M.D. is Professor of Pediatrics and Neurology and Division Chief of Pediatric Neurology at the Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital. Before moving to the Penn State Hershey Medical Center in 2005, he worked at the Kennedy Krieger Institute and was a Faculty Member in the Johns Hopkins University Department of Neurology for 16 years. He has been on the Board of Directors of the Child Neurology Foundation since 2009, serving as the Secretary-Treasurer from 2013 to 2014 and the President Elect since 2014. Dr. Trescher’s clinical and research interests have been in epilepsy related to brain injury and in special needs populations of children. At the Penn State Children’s Hospital, he has been working to develop models of coordinated care of children with neurological disorders, particularly in a rural environment where services for children may be spread not only over many different specialists but also over great geographic distances. Dr. Trescher has had a long-standing interest in medical ethics, serving as a member of the Ethics Committees of the Kennedy Krieger Institute and the Penn State Hershey Medical Center for a combined total of 17 years between the two institutions.
W. (Donald) Shields, M.D. – Past President
Donald Shields, M.D. has devoted three decades to children afflicted with epilepsy. As immediate past Chief of the Division of Pediatric Neurology, David Geffen School of Medicine at the Mattel Children’s Hospital at UCLA, he is one of the world’s foremost experts on pediatric epilepsy. He currently serves as Emeritus Professor of Neurology and Pediatrics at UCLA. As a forceful advocate for the early use of surgery to treat some childhood epilepsy syndromes, his efforts have established UCLA as one of the world’s leading centers for pediatric epilepsy surgery, treatment and research. In. 1980, he championed the founding of the UCLA Pediatric Epilepsy Program to fulfill his vision of a comprehensive epilepsy treatment and research center focused on epilepsy in infants and young children. Dr. Shields is President of the Child Neurology Foundation.
Ann Tilton, M.D. – President Elect
Dr. Tilton is a Professor of Neurology and Pediatrics and Section Chair of Child Neurology at Louisiana State Health Science Center in New Orleans, Louisiana. She is director of the Rehabilitation Center at Children’s Hospital of New Orleans and director of the Comprehensive Spasticity Program. Special interests include neurorehabilitation, neuromuscular disorders, and clinical applications and research in novel uses of botulinum toxin and intrathecal baclofen in the care of children and young adults with abnormal tone. Dr. Tilton has served on the executive committee of the Professors of Child Neurology and has been active in the national Child Neurology Society as a councilor, Secretary/Treasurer, and served as President of the organization. She is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Child Neurology Foundation. She has been involved in the American Academy of Neurology Board of Directors where she served as the treasurer of the American Academy of Neurology Institute. Residency education is one of her priorities and she served as a member and Vice Chair of the ACGME Neurology Residency Review Committee (RRC). She is currently the Chair of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology (ABPN). Her interest in children with disabilities extends to the American Academy of Pediatrics where she served on the national Council for Children with Disabilities. Additionally, she is a certified member of the American Society of Neurorehabilitation and has been active on the executive committee. Dr. Tilton has been board certified by the American Board of Pediatrics, the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology with Special Qualifications in Child Neurology and the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in Clinical Neurophysiology. She has published on numerous topics and has spoken nationally and internationally on child neurology, rehabilitation, and spasticity management.
Shafali Spurling Jeste, M.D. – Secretary
Dr. Spurling Jeste is an Assistant Professor in Psychiatry and Neurology at UCLA, and she is the director of the Electrophysiology Core at the UCLA Center for Autism Research and Treatment. She currently serves on the board of directors for the Child Neurology Foundation. She also serves on the Professional Advisory Board of the Dup15q Alliance and the Tuberous Sclerosis Alliance. She has been the recipient of the Child Neurology Foundation’s Researcher-in-Training Award (2007) and the American Academy of Neurology’s Clinical Researcher-in-Training Award (2008). She also was selected for the AAN Emerging Leader Forum for 2013-2014. Her research focuses on the design and application of novel, electrophysiological methods to better characterize behavioral and cognitive domains in infants at risk for autism and very young children with autism, in order to ultimately use biomarkers to help define treatment targets and predictors of treatment outcomes. She also studies several neurogenetic syndromes that are associated with autism, including Tuberous Sclerosis Complex and Dup15q syndrome. She has published several manuscripts on the neurology of autism, as well as on early predictors of autism in Tuberous Sclerosis Complex. Her research is funded by NIMH, NICHD and the Department of Defense.
Amy T. Waldman, M.D., M.S.C.E. – Treasurer
Dr. Waldman is an Assistant Professor of Neurology at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She is the Clinical Director of the Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center at CHOP, which she co-founded in 2005 with Dr. Gihan Tennekoon. Since its inception, this multi-disciplinary clinic has evaluated patients with various acquired neuroinflammatory conditions. Her clinical practice also expanded after starting the MS program to include genetic neurodegenerative diseases affecting the white matter of the brain. With advancements in therapeutics for leukodystrophies and expanding newborn screening, she was instrumental in formally creating a new leukodystrophy program at CHOP consisting of over 35 clinicians, researchers, nurses, therapists, and staff members. In May, 2015, Dr. Waldman was named the Medical Director of The Leukodystrophy Center of Excellence at CHOP, which is dedicated to improved clinical care, diagnostic evaluation, and therapeutics for children with inherited white matter diseases. Dr. Waldman’s research career has focused on the development of visual and neurologic outcome measures in pediatric MS. As the recipient of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society-American Academy of Neurology Foundation (now American Brain Foundation) Clinician Scientist Development Award, Dr. Waldman pursued a Master of Science in Clinical Epidemiology (M.S.C.E.) from the Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. This award and training in research methodology has led to advancement in understanding of afferent visual pathway disease in pediatric MS. In addition to support from the National MS Society and American Brain Foundation, Dr. Waldman has received grant funding from the National Institutes of Health (K23 mentored research award, National Institute of Neurologic Disorders and Stroke) and other private foundations. Dr. Waldman’s visual sciences program is actively studying high- and low-contrast acuity, optical coherence tomography, and other functional-structural correlates of inflammatory diseases through innovative work at CHOP as well as international collaborations and multi-center studies.
Sandra Cushner-Weinstein PT, LICSW, LCSW-C
Sandra Cushner-Weinstein has a long history of designing programs, directing health organizations, and establishing non-profit agencies to serve children with chronic health conditions, their families and the community. Sandra is the founder and director of the Brainy Camps Association, a subsidiary of Children’s National serving children with epilepsy, neurofibromatosis, Tourette syndrome, cerebral palsy, autism, down syndrome, hydrocephalus, congenital heart disorders, sickle cell disease and transitioning youth. As a practicing clinician, Sandra provides counseling for children, teens, and parents, promotes community education and conducts leadership training among teens and young adults with chronic health conditions. Her work in the field of epilepsy includes the development of clinics for the Newly Diagnosed, production of an educational DVD: “Coping with Epilepsy: From Seizures to Success” (English and Spanish), and serving on the Institute of Medicine for the Public Health Dimensions of the Epilepsies. Prior to developing Brainy Camps, Sandra was the Director of the Epilepsy Foundation for the National Capital Area, from 1991-1998. During this time, she established the first camp in the metropolitan area for children with epilepsy. Ms. Cushner-Weinstein also served as the director of the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Santa Clara, California from 1986-1991 where she wrote grants and conducted research, and organized educational conferences, including at Stanford University. From 1981-85, she established and directed Intervention with PACT (Parents & Children Together). a center-based, non-profit organization with an interdisciplinary team of professionals in Baltimore, Maryland. to provide assessments and interventions for children, age birth to six, and their parents. She also created and established the first mainstreamed daycare in Baltimore, MD. From 1978-81, Sandra was awarded a demonstration project grant from the state of Maryland to develop the first Parent Infant Intervention Program in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. Prior to this position, Sandra practiced physical therapy and became the Chief Physical Therapist for the United Cerebral Palsy Association. Ms. Cushner-Weinstein holds licenses in Clinical Social Work and Physical Therapy in several states, where she has served on several committees and Boards. Sandra is a principle investigator with research investigating quality of life, resiliency, adaptive coping and parenting stress in chronic health populations. She has published several papers and currently holds faculty appointments in Pediatrics and Neurology at the George Washington University School of Medicine
Dr. Hussain is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at UCLA and he is the director of the UCLA Infantile Spasms Program. His clinical practice is dedicated to infantile spasms and other forms of epileptic encephalopathy. With the recognition that infantile spasms are under-recognized and frequently misdiagnosed—with often deleterious consequences—Dr. Hussain leads a web-based effort (www.InfantileSpasmsProject.org) to increase public understanding of infantile spasms. Although focused on infantile spasms, his research efforts are wide-ranging and include (1) the assessment of novel treatments for infantile spasms, (2) the development of quantitative EEG measures of disease burden to facilitate clinical trials, (3) the evaluation of proposed electrophysiologic and metabolic (PET) biomarkers of epileptogenesis, (4) the critical appraisal of “established” treatments for infantile spasms, and (5) an effort to quantify the magnitude and impact of diagnostic delay in the treatment of infantile spasms. Dr. Hussain received a career development award from the Epilepsy Therapy Project and holds the Elsie and Isaac Fogelman endowed chair in pediatric neurology at UCLA.
John has practiced law since 2007, working in-house and growing his professional career with the American Academy of Neurology (“AAN”) and its related organizations. The AAN is a 501c6, professional association comprised of 28,000 neurologists and neuroscience professionals, nationally and internationally. John began as a legal intern in 2006 and was hired as a Staff Attorney in 2007. John now serves as AAN’s Deputy General Counsel. In this role, John manages the legal and policy services for the AAN and its affiliate, and their Boards of Directors. Additionally, John serves as General Counsel for the American Brain Foundation (“ABF”). ABF is a national 501c3 charity committed to promoting human potential by curing brain disease. As General Counsel, John oversees and manages all legal services for the ABF and provides counsel to the Board of Directors and the professional staff. In both roles, John has participated in high-level strategic initiatives and built relationships with peers at other membership associations and foundations.
For the past five years, John has served on the Minnesota State Bar Association’s Health Law Section Council. He has held the positions of Program Chair, Treasurer, Secretary, and is currently serving as Vice Chair. John is an active member of the General Counsels Component Group for the Council of Medical Specialty Societies. John volunteers for Youth Farm, a youth development organization in the Twin Cities utilizing urban farming to educate and cultivate leadership. John serves as Secretary on the Youth Farm Board of Directors and as Chair of the Development Committee.
John’s most important roles are proud husband to Lindsey and dad to their baby girl, Mae. They live in Lakeville, MN along with their 100lb Pyrenees-mix, Oliver
Thomas J. Langan, MD
After medical school at Brown University and neurology training at Washington University, I have been at SUNY Buffalo since 1988. I am an Associate Professor of Neurology, Pediatrics, and Physiology and Biophysics. My original research used brain cell cultures to study processes related to brain injury. More recently, I have conducted research regarding leuko-dystrophies. I coordinate several research projects in my roles as Clinical Director of the Hunter James Kelly Research Institute, and as President of the New York State Krabbe Disease Consortium, both held since 2013. I have consequently been an NIH-funded principal investigator on both basic science and clinical projects. Our current efforts include expansion of the World Wide Registry for Krabbe Disease, a database that now has clinical and genetic information for over 180 affected patients, and incorporating this registry into international data-sharing initiatives. We interact extensively with several patient advocacy groups.
To better understand phenotypes, we are conducting long-term follow-up studies of afflicted children, and also examining neuro-developmental parameters before and after therapeutic transplantation. Our current emphasis is uncovering new biomarkers that may predict onset of symptoms, enabling targeting those pre-symptomatic children who are most likely to respond to leuko-dystrophy therapies.
And since 2008, as a Ski Patroller I have satisfied aspirations for altruism and for enjoyment of winter sports, thereby providing first aid and transportation downhill for skiers injured on Buffalo’s frigid slopes.
Dr. Mink is the Frederick A. Horner Endowed Professor in Pediatric neurology and Professor of Neurology, Neuroscience, and Pediatrics at the University of Rochester (NY) where he is also Chief of Child Neurology and Vice Chair of Neurology. Dr. Mink received his BA (Biology-Psychology) and MA (Psychology) from Wesleyan University and his MD and PhD (Neuroscience) from Washington University where he worked in the lab of Thomas Thach, MD. He completed residency training in Pediatrics and Pediatric Neurology at Washington University / St. Louis Children’s Hospital. After completing a fellowship in Movement Disorders he joined the faculty in Neurology, Anatomy & Neurobiology, and Pediatrics at Washington University in 1994 before being recruited to the University of Rochester in 2001.
Dr. Mink has an active clinical research program focused on Batten Disease and movement disorders in children. In addition, he has a basic and translational research program focused on understanding the control of movement and mechanisms of movement disorders. Clinically, he specializes in pediatric movement disorders with special interests in dystonia and Tourette Syndrome. He is recognized internationally for his work and clinical expertise in pediatric movement disorders, Batten Disease, and basal ganglia physiology. Dr. Mink was the recipient of the first Dr. Oliver Sacks Award from the Tourette Association of America in recognition for his many contributions to Tourette Syndrome Research, Education, and Advocacy.
He serves on several advisory committees including the National Advisory Council of NINDS, the Board of Directors of the International Child Neurology Association, and the Executive Board of the Child Neurology Society. He is President-elect of the Child Neurology Society. He serves as an Associate Editor of Neurology.
Dr. Pomeroy is one of the world’s leading experts on pediatric brain cancer. His group was first to identify genetic markers that predict treatment response of medulloblastomas, the most common malignant brain tumor in children; he was among the first to apply genomic methods to studying childhood cancer. The results have been nothing short of revolutionary; brain tumors are now being classified by molecular features which define mechanisms of tumorigenesis and predict clinical outcome with much higher precision than clinical criteria. Through the Children’s Oncology Group, which unites 250 medical centers throughout North America, he leads an international effort to standardize tumor sample collection and to make genomic analysis a routine step in treatment planning for children with brain cancer.
He has won numerous awards for his research and clinical care of children with embryonal brain tumors including the Sidney Carter Award and the Daniel Drake Medal, and he was the first recipient of the Compassionate Caregiver Award of the Kenneth Schwartz Center, which honors a Massachusetts caregiver who displays extraordinary compassion in caring for patients and their families.
Dr. Pomeroy graduated from Miami University and was the first graduate of the M.D., Ph.D. program of the University of Cincinnati. He trained in pediatrics at Boston Children’s Hospital and in Child Neurology at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. In 1989, he won the Child Neurology Society Young Investigator Award for work done as a postdoctoral fellow with Dale Purves at Washington University. He currently is the Chair of the Department of Neurology and Neurologist-in-Chief of Boston Children’s Hospital, the Bronson Crothers Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School, and the Director of the Eunice K. Shriver National Institutes of Child Health and Human Development funded Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center of Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School.
Sue Yudovin, RN, MN, CPNP
Sue Yudovin is a pediatric nurse practitioner at UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital, in Los Angeles. She coordinates the pediatric epilepsy surgery program as well as practices in the BrainSPORT concussion/TBI program. She sees patients in clinic with concussions and participates in educational events for youth athletes about concussion prevention and, “If in doubt, sit it out.”
Dr. Mary Zupanc is a professor in the Department of Pediatrics and Neurology at the University of California-Irvine (UCI). She is also the Division Chief of Pediatric Neurology UCI/Children’s Hospital of Orange County, the Director of the Pediatric Comprehensive Epilepsy Program, and the Program Director for the UCI Pediatric Neurology Residency Program. Dr. Zupanc received her undergraduate degree in Zoology from the University of Wisconsin—Madison in 1974 and her MD degree from UCLA in 1979. She completed her pediatric residency training at the University of Washington—Seattle/ Harbor –UCLA Medical Center and her pediatric neurology training at the University of Wisconsin-Madison under the mentorship of Dr. Raymond Chun. Subsequently, her training in epilepsy has been broad, with additional training at the University of Wisconsin, UCLA, and Stanford University. She was instrumental in the development of comprehensive pediatric epilepsy programs at the Mayo Clinic, Columbia University, the Medical College of Wisconsin, and currently, the University of California-Irvine/Children’s Hospital of Orange County.
Dr. Zupanc is board certified in Pediatrics, Neurology with special competency in Child Neurology, Clinical Neurophysiology, and Epilepsy. She has published many articles in peer reviewed journals on a variety of topics, including neonatal seizures, infantile spasms, outcomes of pediatric epilepsy surgery, and the efficacy of felbamate in intractable pediatric epilepsy.
Dr. Zupanc has been a member of the Child Neurology Society (CNS) and the American Epilepsy Society (AES) since the early 1980s. She has had an active role in the CNS and has served on several committees, including Membership, Electronics, and Legislative Committees. She has also been active in AES, serving as the co-chairperson for the Women with Epilepsy SIG. She is currently on the Nominating Committee of the AES. Dr. Zupanc has been a member of the Professors of Child Neurology (PCN) for many years. In addition, Dr. Zupanc has served on the ABPN Maintenance of Certification Committee and has recently completed her tenure on the United Council of Neurological Subspecialties. Dr. Zupanc has also been a program director for pediatric neurology residency training programs at the University of Wisconsin and the University of California-Irvine. She is passionate about education and has been given multiple awards for teaching recognition and clinical care.
› Ex Officio Directors – Voting
Ken Mack, M.D., Ph.D.
President, Child Neurology Society
› Ex Officio Directors – Non-voting
Executive Director, Child Neurology Society
Roger Larson graduated from the University of Minnesota with a double-major in American Studies and History. While at the U, he stumbled into a part-time job organizing anti-epileptic drug studies in the Division of Pediatric Neurology (chaired by Ken Swaiman). In time, he parleyed that position into a part-time supporting role with the Child Neurology Society, attending his first CNS Annual Meeting in Halifax in 1988. Twenty-three later, following the Society’s 40th Annual Meeting in Savannah, he accepted a promotion from Associate to Executive Director, succeeding the Society’s first ED, Mary Currey. In his five years at the helm, Roger has overseen a dynamic growth in membership and annual meeting attendance, strengthened partnerships with allied neurological organizations (including the Child Neurology Foundation), and cultivated a culture of engagement among members through newly created and enhanced communication tools including CNS Connections, two websites—a primary, public and committee and special interest group “community” website—with a third, on-line learning website in development and set to launch in late September. Roger prides himself on being able to recite the names of every past and present officer of the CNS, is humbled by the memory of having met all but five of them, and honored to be able to call a goodly number of them friends.
Amy Brin Miller, MSN, MA, PCNS-BC, ACHPN
Executive Director, Child Neurology Foundation
Amy Brin Miller has been working on behalf of children with special needs and their families for over 14 years. She is an advanced practice nurse and is board certified in Pediatrics and Hospice/ Palliative Medicine. Miller has been responsible for the development of various tertiary, ambulatory and community-based pediatric palliative and hospice programs in several states. She has served as a national consultant regarding building systems of care for children and youth living with special healthcare needs. In 2015, Miller was named Executive Director of the Child Neurology Foundation – a national nonprofit aimed at improving the lives of children living with neurologic disorders. She believes the bottom of a potato chip bag comes far too quickly, creating a better tomorrow for all children is a shared responsibility for this world, and her greatest treasures in life are her husband Ryan and their son Ari.