About CNF

About CNF

The Child Neurology Foundation connects partners from all areas of the child neurology community so those navigating the journey of disease diagnosis, management, and care have the ongoing support from those dedicated to treatments and cures.

Our expanding network of patients and caregivers, volunteers and advocates, researchers and clinicians is committed to helping one another along the path that leads to the best quality of care — and the highest quality of life—for every child.

Our Vision

A world in which all children affected by neurologic disorders reach their full potential.

Our Mission

To serve as a collaborative center of education and support for children and their families living with neurologic conditions.

Our Core Values


We treat others as they would want to be treated. We are collegial and respectful in our professional relationships. We are dedicated to expanding our knowledge, being innovative, and understanding the perspectives of others. We honor and respect difference and diversity in all its forms.
We strive to exhibit excellence in our work.


We are accountable for our commitments and our actions. We are committed to ensuring the interests of the children and families we serve come first. We promote honesty and transparency in our relationships with each other and our collaborators.


We work humbly, to identify and understand the urgencies and challenges facing our shared community; we know that they cannot be overcome alone. Whenever possible, we earnestly collaborate on the actions, programs, and initiatives we engage. We want to go farther, so we go together.


We are committed to being good listeners and to act in responsive service to the needs of the child neurology community. We are respectful stewards of the relationships and stories shared with us. We are empathetic, compassionate, and positive.

Read more about where we are heading in our 2017-2021 strategic plan summary.

The Review

Every year, we put together an annual review to reflect on the past year. Thank you for being a part of the child neurology community; we hope that you’ll enjoy taking a walk through 2019 in our 2019 A Year in Review document.

If you have any thoughts on our year in review, or would like to partner on any of our initiatives moving forward, please contact us.

Our history

After founding the Child Neurology Society in 1972, Dr. Kenneth Swaiman –  one of the nation’s first pediatric neurologists –  formally established the Child Neurology Foundation in 2001. The Society is the professional organization for the nation’s pediatric neurologists, while the Foundation serves pediatric patients through advocacy, education, research, and support initiatives.

CNF’s current Executive Director and CEO is Amy Brin, who has been working on behalf of children with special needs and their families for nearly two decades. Brin was named Executive Director of CNF in 2015; during which time, the foundation has experienced unprecedented growth in strategic partnerships, programming, and operations.

Read more about CNF’s team here.


Kenneth F. Swaiman, MD (Founder)

Dr. Kenneth Swaiman dedicated his life and career to bettering the lives of children with neurologic conditions and their families. His legacy in the pediatric neurology field is unprecedented and his impact is universally recognized.

He founded the Child Neurology Foundation in 2001, recognizing the need to support the outreach of child neurologists, and support families and children with neurologic disorders. As CNF’s first president, he was instrumental in laying the foundation for the work we continue to do decades later.

Dr. Swaiman was 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.

Dr. Swaiman passed away on September 18, 2020 and is deeply missed by all those who knew him. Read more about his legacy here.

Financial Statements

FY2019  Child Neurology Foundation IRS 990 | FY2018 Child Neurology Foundation IRS 990 | FY2017 Child Neurology Foundation IRS 990

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