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Lee Dranikoff

Chair

Lee Dranikoff joined American Securities in 2003. He manages the overall deployment of the functional experts within the Resources Group and directly leads the in-house...

Lee Dranikoff

Chair

Lee Dranikoff joined American Securities in 2003. He manages the overall deployment of the functional experts within the Resources Group and directly leads the in-house Strategy Team in the U.S. In this capacity, Lee directs the Resources Group support of due diligence on prospective investments, as well as the extensive Shared Vision process that is used at all portfolio companies. Prior to joining American Securities, Lee spent seven years as a management consultant at McKinsey & Company. Prior to McKinsey, Lee worked as an attorney at Weil, Gotshal & Manges. Lee received a BA and an MA in Economics from Johns Hopkins University and a JD from Harvard Law School.

Avi Benaim

Vice Chair

Avi Benaim is the founder and President of A.B.E. Networks. Avi started the company almost 30 years ago in Silver Spring...

Avi Benaim

Vice Chair

Avi Benaim is the founder and President of A.B.E. Networks. Avi started the company almost 30 years ago in Silver Spring installing car Audio/Video entertainment systems.  As car manufacturers began to offer their own entertainment systems out of the factory and his customer base aged into home ownership, Avi pivoted A.B.E. Networks into residential and commercial technology integration. Avi’s dedication to excellent client interaction and customer service permeates all facets of his company and separates them from the usual home improvement contractor.  Over the years, many of Avi’s clients have become beloved friends.  A.B.E. Networks recently moved to a state-of-the-art facility in Rockville, Maryland, and has over 35 employees in 4 departments. 
Avi is a Montgomery County native and a graduate of Bethesda-Chevy Chase high school and American University. Avi first experienced a loved one succumbing to Colon Cancer after his father passed away when Avi was 10 years old.  
In his early 20s, he met the love of his life, Michelle Benaim, née Goldstein, at a philanthropy event that she had organized. Avi and Michelle married in 1998 and have 3 children: Alex, Sam, and Sophia.  In the early fall of 2015, Michelle was diagnosed with Colon Cancer. They both became immediately involved with the Colorectal Cancer Alliance; spreading awareness and raising money. Michelle fought incredibly hard even until her last days in October 2017. Avi aims to continue to display the Koach (Hebrew for strength) that Michelle was so well known for. 

Kevin Lewis

Treasurer

A carrier of the HNPCC (hereditary non-polyposis colon cancer) gene, Mr. Lewis has had several family members who have died or suffered from colon cancer. He follows an...

Kevin Lewis

Treasurer

A carrier of the HNPCC (hereditary non-polyposis colon cancer) gene, Mr. Lewis has had several family members who have died or suffered from colon cancer. He follows an extensive prevention regime designed to reduce his probability of developing a malignant tumor. He supports the National Cancer Institute by serving as a Patient Advocate on several programs. Mr. Lewis is a Principal and Partner at PwC, providing strategic operations expertise to technology-based clients. He has an MBA from Harvard Business School and an engineering degree from the University of Pennsylvania. His extensive corporate experience includes Raytheon, Teradyne, AMD, Boston Scientific Corporation, Schering Plough, IBM, and Alcatel Lucent, as well as Infolibria, an Internet startup company.

Julie Clowes

Secretary

Julie Clowes became involved in colon cancer advocacy efforts after losing her Mother to the disease in 1998. That experience inspired her to “do something” in order to call attention...

Julie Clowes

Secretary

Julie Clowes became involved in colon cancer advocacy efforts after losing her Mother to the disease in 1998. That experience inspired her to “do something” in order to call attention to the disease. Opportunity came when she moved to Washington, D.C. and helped to create the Scope It Out 5K Run/Walk for colon cancer awareness. Her day job is with the Small Business Administration where she helps people start and grow businesses. Through the years she has served as a public affairs specialist, agency attorney and executive leader. Prior to joining SBA she spent three years with the Michigan Small Business Development Center as an International Trade Specialist where she co-authored “Trade Secrets: The Export Answer Book.”  
Julie is a graduate of the Excellence in Government Fellowship program and has a BA in International Studies from Bradley University and an MBA and JD from Wayne State University. 

Michael Aquilino

Board Member

Michael Aquilino began supporting cancer care projects at Shady Grove Medical Center in Rockville, Maryland, when his late wife, Tammie, was battling cancer...

Michael Aquilino

Board Member

For those who support a loved one through cancer treatment, the idea of a comprehensive cancer center can mean so much: time, convenience and comfort.

“I had to go through it, driving to different appointments, taking someone who’s frail in and out of the car,” recalls Michael Aquilino of Potomac. “When you’re going through cancer, time is so valuable. It will be great to have one place for their care.” Aquilino began supporting cancer care projects at ShadyGrove Adventist Hospital when his late wife, Tammy, battled cancer. “It was a difficult time,” he says, “but the treatment she received at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital was phenomenal.” Aquilino and his family donated a suite in Tammy’s name to the hospital’s dedicated inpatient cancer care unit. He also supported plans for a freestanding cancer center. “That was six years ago. It’s exciting to see the building up today,” Aquilino says. The comprehensive services that will be offered inside the Shady Grove Adventist Aquilino CancerCenter are also a source of pride and excitement for Aquilino. “The caliber of doctors and the collaboration around the latest cancer research and clinical trials will really elevate Shady Grove Adventist Hospital to another level, offering the community access and proximity to top-notch care close to home.”

Michael got involved with the Alliance after becoming great friends with Michelle and Avi Benaim. As a caregiver himself, Michael is dedicated to ending this disease in our lifetime.

John Backus

Board Member

Based in the national capital region, John is a seasoned technology investor and entrepreneur with over two decades of experience investing in and managing...

John Backus

Board Member

Based in the national capital region, John is a seasoned technology investor and entrepreneur with over two decades of experience investing in and managing rapidly growing companies. Before becoming a venture capitalist, he co-founded US Order, which revolutionized online banking, went public in 1995 and was sold to Visa.

John served on the Board of Directors of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA), and currently serves on the boards of the Center for Public Policy Innovation (CPPI), TwoSixLabs, Atlas Obscura, PokitDok and the Colorectal Cancer Alliance. He is Chairman Emeritus of both the Wolftrap Foundation Board of Directors and the Northern Virginia Technology Council (NVTC) Board of Directors, has served as a technologypolicy adviser to Virginia governors Gilmore, Warner and McDonnell and has contributed his views to The Washington Post, Fortune, VentureBeat and the Huffington Post. John began his career at Bain & Co. and Bain Capital, where he was the first management consultant to take a full time operating role in a portfolio company. John holds a B.A. in Economics from Stanford University and an M.B.A. from Stanford University Graduate School of Business.

Brooks Bell

Board Member

Brooks Bell is an established leader in digital analytics and experimentation.

Brooks Bell

Board Member

Brooks Bell is an established leader in digital analytics and experimentation. She started her consulting firm, Brooks Bell Inc, in the early 2000s to help bring a data-driven mindset to digital marketing departments. The Brooks Bell team has generated more than $1 Billion in value for leaders in retail, financial services, media, and technology. Today, her team's goal is still the similar: to help companies build world-class experimentation programs to help better serve their customers.

In January 2019, Brooks was diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer at age 38. She underwent 6 months of surgeries and chemotherapy, putting her cancer into remission. During that time, she learned of the shocking rise of colorectal cancer in young people, as well as the unique ability for people to detect - and prevent -colorectal cancer up to 10 years before they may get it. Brooks launched two programs in 2019: 50 Colonoscopies Under 50, and CheckOutMyAss.org, spreading awareness and demand for colorectal cancer prevention.

In 2011, Brooks co-founded HQ Raleigh, the largest co-working community in Raleigh that helps empower, foster, and cultivate companies that produce long-term job growth and positive social impact. She has also served as the president of the Entrepreneurs Organization, and as a Trustee on the board at St. Mary's School in Raleigh, NC.

A native of Alaska, Brooks earned her B.A. from Duke University in 2001.

Charlie Guevara

Board Member

Most recently Charlie was the Vice President of Global Sales for Albert Technologies, an AI tech company focused...

Charlie Guevara

Board Member

Most recently Charlie was the Vice President of Global Sales for Albert Technologies, an AI tech company focused on digital media. He is credited with building a world class sales organization serving Fortune 500 clients across five continents. His expertise in ABM sales strategy has helped drive similar results across several other AdTech companies. Charlie's success has led to his new focus of providing angel funding and guidance to several startups where he takes an active role on their advisory boards.

Charlie studied Economics at Duke University where he was a four year letterman and captain on the nationally ranked soccer team. Charlie is passionate about finding a cure for colorectal cancer after having lost his wife Liz of 26 years to the disease.

Patrick G. Jackson, M.D., FACS

Board Member

Dr. Jackson is an Associate Professor of Surgery and Chief of General Surgery at Medstar Georgetown University Hospital where he is also the Chair of the Cancer Committee...

Patrick G. Jackson, M.D., FACS

Board Member

Dr. Jackson is an Associate Professor of Surgery and Chief of General Surgery at Medstar Georgetown University Hospital where he is also the Chair of the Cancer Committee. Having graduated from Harvard University and then Columbia University Medical School, he completed his surgical residency at Massachusetts General Hospital before moving to Washington, D.C.. He has been published extensively and has numerous book chapters and invited lectureships. He was the state chair for the Commission on Cancer for Washington D.C., and has been the President of the Metropolitan D.C. Chapter of the American College. He has dedicated himself to the care of colon cancer patients on both the individual and systemic levels.

Melissa Lynch

Board Member

Melissa Lynch is a businesswoman and currently a Market Leader with Apple Inc that is passionate about leading through positive energy, compassion...

Melissa Lynch

Board Member

Melissa Lynch is a businesswoman and currently a Market Leader with Apple Inc. that is passionate about leading through positive energy, compassion, and making a significant impact in our communities. Melissa leads a team of over 600 employees but also collaborates with teams globally. Before joining Apple Inc. in 2010, Melissa had a career over 20 years in leadership which has included being a multi-unit Leader with The Walt Disney Company and The Gymboree Brand, spanning territories from the East and West Coasts of the United States. Melissa has held positions of Retail Leadership, Recruiter, and Regional Trainer with The Walt Disney Company in Virginia and Florida. Melissa is known for consistently driving top results but also developing top talent in the companies she has worked for. Through strategic planning, innovation, and the belief of personal responsibility, Melissa has shown success in creating change, growth, and dynamic loyalty among the teams and work she has led.  
Melissa grew up in Virginia Beach, VA and attended college and studied Fashion Merchandising and Design in Richmond, VA at the Virginia Commonwealth University. Melissa’s immediate family is in Virginia Beach area so she needs to balance her time between Washington, DC and Virginia Beach. Melissa became connected and involved in Colorectal Cancer Alliance in 2013 when her brother in law, Andrew Brown was diagnosed and then passed away 11 months later from Stage IV Colon Cancer at the age of 38. 
Melissa is committed to making a difference in raising awareness, and supporting all efforts to fund critical research to end this disease. Melissa joined the Board of Directors for Colorectal Cancer Alliance in 2017. 

Craig Melvin

Board Member

News Anchor, TODAY; Co-Host, 3rd Hour TODAY; anchor on MSNBC Live....

Craig Melvin

Board Member

Craig Melvin is an award-winning news anchor on NBC News’ “TODAY,” a co-host of 3rd Hour TODAY, an anchor on MSNBC Live, and a host of “Dateline.” His breaking news coverage and reporting appears across all NBC News and MSNBC platforms.

Melvin has covered a wide-range of news events, including several Republican and Democratic National Conventions and three Presidential Inaugurations. His coverage of politics has included notable interviews with former President Bill Clinton, Former Vice President Joe Biden, Ambassador Nikki Haley, and Secretaries of State John Kerry, Mike Pompeo and Condoleezza Rice. He has also covered tragic mass shootings across the country for the network, including Dallas and Orlando in 2016; Charleston, South Carolina in 2015; the Navy Yard in Washington, D.C. in 2013; and Sandy Hook in 2012. Melvin reported extensively on police involved shootings and subsequent protests nationwide.

In addition, he has also covered two Olympic Games and six Super Bowls. Prior to joining NBC News and MSNBC in July 2011, Melvin was a weekend anchor for WRC, NBC’s owned-and-operated station in Washington, DC. Before that, Melvin earned acclaim as an evening news anchor at WIS in Columbia, South Carolina, which is also his hometown.

Melvin is a graduate of Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina where he serves on the board of trustees. He is an active member in several charities, including the Colorectal Cancer Alliance.

Melvin lives in Connecticut with his wife, awarding winning sportscaster Lindsay Czarniak, who is a Fox Sports reporter and the host of the podcast “The Artist and The Athlete.” They have a son and daughter.

Melvin is on Twitter at @craigmelvin.

Edith P. Mitchell, MD, FACP, FCPP

Board Member

Dr. Edith Peterson Mitchell, MD, FACP, FCPP, has spent her medical career helping individuals in medically underserved areas to realize that simple changes in lifestyle...

Edith P. Mitchell, MD, FACP, FCPP

Board Member

Edith Peterson Mitchell, MD, FACP, FCPP, is Board Certified in Internal Medicine andMedical Oncology and is Clinical Professor, Department of Medicine and Medical Oncologyat Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University and Associate Director forDiversity Programs and Director of the Center to Eliminate Cancer Disparities for the SidneyKimmel Cancer Center at Thomas Jefferson University.

Dr. Mitchell has spent her medical career helping individuals in medically underserved areasto realize that simple changes in lifestyle can have a dramatic impact on cancer care.Through her work, Dr. Mitchell has demonstrated the importance of community service andoutreach especially to those individuals who may not have the means to seek out moreconventional medical advice.

Dr. Mitchell received a bachelor of science in Biochemistry “with distinction” from TennesseeState University and her medical degree from the Medical College of Virginia in Richmond.In 1973, while attending medical school, Dr. Mitchell entered the Air Force and received acommission through the Health Professions Scholarship Program. She entered active dutyafter completion of her internship and residency in Internal Medicine at Meharry MedicalCollege and a fellowship in Medical Oncology at Georgetown University.

Dr. Mitchell’s research in breast, colorectal, and pancreatic cancers and other GImalignancies involves new drug evaluation and chemotherapy, development of newtherapeutic regimens, chemoradiation strategies for combined modality therapy, patientselection criteria and supportive care for patients with gastrointestinal cancer. She travelsnationally and internationally teaching and lecturing on the treatment of gastrointestinalmalignancies.

Michael J. O’Neil

Board Member

Michael O’Neil’s practice focuses on international trade, security, information technology, privacy and federal policy. He advises foreign and domestic clients on both regulatory...

Michael J. O’Neil

Board Member

Michael O’Neil’s practice focuses on international trade, security, information technology, privacy and federal policy. He advises foreign and domestic clients on both regulatory and legislative solutions. His recent work has involved counseling U.S. and foreign parties on investment in the U.S., and assisting a range of U.S. clients on critical infrastructure protection, privacy, trade compliance, and Congressional investigations. Michael also serves as the North American Director of the Trilateral Commission. He heads up the Trilateral office, meets regularly with Trilateral members in North America, Europe and Pacific Asia, and helps coordinate Trilateral studies. Michael has had a distinguished public service career in defense and intelligence matters and has served in positions in the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of Defense and the U.S. House of Representatives. Immediately prior to joining the firm, Michael served as the general counsel of the Central Intelligence Agency. In this position he was responsible for the conduct of all legal affairs of the Agency. He also served as the chief of staff of the Agency where he coordinated the legislative and public affairs strategy and acted as the Agency’s liaison to the National Security Council and Intelligence Community agencies. 
In 1995, Michael served as the counselor to the secretary and deputy secretary of defense. In this position he advised the secretary and deputy secretary on policy, organizational and legislative matters. From 1989 to 1994, he served as the counsel to the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, Thomas S. Foley (D-WA). In addition to advising the speaker on all legal and national security issues, he acted as liaison to foreign embassies and U.S. national security agencies. Before his work for the speaker, Michael served as the chief counsel to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence from 1977 to 1989. Michael is the recipient of the Distinguished Intelligence Medal, the highest honor awarded by the Central Intelligence Agency, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He was also included in the 2015 “Top 10 List” of U.S. Commercial Litigation lawyers by United States Lawyers Rankings. 

Frank L. Sapienza

Board Member

Frank Sapienza was a founding director of the Chris4Life Colon Cancer Foundation. He served as Chairman of the Board during 2014 and 2015 and was a member of the...

Frank L. Sapienza

Board Member

Frank Sapienza was a founding director of the Chris4Life Colon Cancer Foundation. He served as Chairman of the Board during 2014 and 2015 and was a member of the Medical Advisory Board for Chris4Life. After a 30-year career with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), he has been a founding partner in The Drug and Chemical Advisory Group, LLC, a consulting group specializing in drug development guidance for the pharmaceutical industry for products containing abusable substances. During his career at the DEA Mr. Sapienza was the senior scientific advisor on technical and policy matters. He has served on expert panels with the U.S. Government, the World Health Organization, the International Narcotics Control Board and the United Nations Office of Drug Control Policy as well as on scientific and medical advisory boards for the pharmaceutical industry. He has lectured internationally and written and co-authored articles on drug regulation and abuse liability, prepared portions of national legislation and international treaties and provided expert testimony in criminal, administrative and legislative proceedings.

Mr. Sapienza has a graduate degree in chemistry from the University of Pittsburgh. His wife of 37 years, Christine Antonelli Sapienza passed away in 2009 after a three year bout with colon cancer.

Clay Scheetz

Board Member

Clay Scheetz serves as Managing Director and Principal of Great Lakes Capital, a real estate private equity and development firm.
 

Clay Scheetz

Board Member

Clay Scheetz serves as CIO of the Sterling Group and is a key member of the Executive team and investment committee. Clay is responsible for overseeing capital raising and acquisitions. Clay began his commercial real estate investment career in 1995. As a debt and private equity principal and advisor investing across all property types and Capital structures, he has underwritten in excess of $25 billion of commercial real estate assets located throughout the United States. Prior to joining Sterling in 2015, Clay spent nearly ten years overseeing Grandbridge Real Estate Capital’s Indianapolis regional office, Prior to joining Grandbridge, while based in New York City, Clay held a variety of executive positions with Nomura Asset Capital, Olympus Real Estate Partners, and Starwood Capital Group. He has earned his CPA (inactive) and real estate broker licenses. Clay graduated with honors with a BBA degree in accounting from the University of Notre Dame, and he received an MBA degree with a concentration in finance from Columbia University.

Clay is actively involved in numerous civic and trade organizations and is a strong supporter of Riley Hospital for Children and the Colorectal Cancer Alliance. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his wife and three children as well as water skiing and running.

David Schoeman, MBA

Board Member

David Schoeman is a Senior Partner in the New York Office of McKinsey & Company. David servers Private Equity firms and their portfolio companies...

David Schoeman, MBA

Board Member

David Schoeman is a Senior Partner in the New York Office of McKinsey & Company. David servers Private Equity firms and their portfolio companies, Banks and Insurance carriers. While focuses primarily in the US, he has supported clients in the North and South America, Europe and Asia. Over his 20 years at McKinsey, David has supported clients on a range of strategic and operational topics. Including new business building, go-to-market strategies, integrations, organization redesign, investment due diligences, and performance turnarounds. He has also helped investment funds and non-profits on fundraising and investor management. In addition to his client work, David leads McKinsey’s Consumer Finance Practice in the Americas. David is also on the Board of McKinsey Solutions, the Firms benchmarking, software, and analytics capabilities. Prior to joining McKinsey, David was a systems developer at Morgan Stanley supporting the Prime Brokerage, Clearing, and Custody businesses. 
David received an MBA from Columbia Business School and BA in Economics and History from Northwestern University. He is a published writer on bank economics and school finance reform. David currently lives in New Jersey with his wife and two daughters. 

Sharon Seto

Board Member

Sharon Seto's determination to end colorectal cancer is inspired by her mother, Susan Lee, who passed away in 2005 after a courageous two-year battle against metastasized colon cancer.

Sharon Seto

Board Member

David and I are developing what media is dubbing "the Tower of Silicon Valley" or "tallest building between San Jose and Los Angeles". Sending you a Silicon Valley Business Times article separately. We were also principals of the largest pyrotechnical company in the USA, Red Devil Fireworks and the only Chinese Americans who joint ventured with China in production of pyro works in the 80's. I was the President and Dave was CEO and Chairman. We had over 300 employees at the retail level and controlled 90% of the fireworks you see in Disney shows, Vegas etc.

Carmen Marc Valvo

Board Member

American fashion designer Carmen Marc Valvo has used his designs as a platform to raise awareness about colon cancer all over the US...

Carmen Marc Valvo

Board Member

American fashion designer Carmen Marc Valvo has used his designs as a platform to raise awareness about colon cancer all over the US. Carmen is an Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF) Ambassador and has appeared in a PSA with Vanessa Williams for the National Colorectal Cancer Research Alliance (NCCRA). As a colon cancer survivor, Carmen Marc Valvo has been working with Katie Couric since 2004 when she partnered with the organizers of New York Fashion Week. His efforts, on behalf of the organization, were honored at a gala in 2006 where Carmen received the first-ever Advocate Award from the foundation. Since then, Carmen has been honored by numerous organizations including Gilda’s Club World Wide, the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship, the American Cancer Society, and the Colorectal Cancer Alliance. He has appeared on the covers of AARP and Coping with Cancer magazines, NBC Today Show, CBS Early Show, USA Today and countless other national and local media outlets to make colon cancer fashionable to talk about. His book (no longer in print) “Dressed to Perfection, The Art of Dressing for your Red Carpet Moments” (Rizzoli 2011) benefitted colon cancer research.

Joe Whalen

Board Member

Mr. Whalen has more than 25 years of experience in the healthcare industry leading and supporting transactions...

Joe Whalen

Board Member

Mr. Whalen has more than 25 years of experience in the healthcare industry leading and supporting transactions involving licensing, acquisitions, and strategic alliances. Mr. Whalen joined Horizon in April of 2010 and has led or supported many of Horizon’s acquisitions since that time helping to grow Horizon from a company with around 20 employees and no sales to over 1,100 employees and over $1.2 billion in net sales. Transactions he led include Horizon’s acquisition of Crealta Holdings LLC for $510 million, PENNSAID® 2% for $45 million and VIMOVO® for $35 million. He also led the divestiture of the RAVICTI® and AMMONAPS® business outside of North America and Japan for $35 million and the out-licensing of LODOTRA® and DUEXIS® ex-U.S. He has supported Horizon’s IPO and other fund-raising activities which total over $3 billion.

Prior to Horizon, he was at Baxter Healthcare where he led and supported a number of transactions as part of Baxter’s Medication Delivery business. Mr. Whalen worked at Searle prior to Baxter where his experience included various finance roles supporting business development, European operations, U.S. marketing, and R&D.

He earned an MBA from the University of Illinois and bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame.

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