2015 Speaker Biographies

John H. Armstrong, MD, FACS

Surgeon General, State of Florida
John H. Armstrong, MD, FACS, was appointed by Governor Scott as Surgeon General and Secretary of Health for the State of Florida on April 27, 2012. Previously, he was Chief Medical Officer of the USF Health Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation; Surgical Director of the USF Health American College of Surgeons Accredited Education Institute; and Associate Professor of Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of South Florida (USF) Morsani College of Medicine, in Tampa, FL. Before this, he was Trauma Medical Director at Shands at the University of Florida Medical Center in Gainesville, FL, and a 2011 Exemplary Teacher at the University of Florida College of Medicine.

Dr. Armstrong is a graduate of Princeton University, the University of Virginia School of Medicine, and the US Army Command and General Staff College. He performed his surgical residency at Tripler Army Medical Center in Honolulu, HI, his trauma/surgical critical care fellowship at the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Hospital, and his Master Educators in Medical Education fellowship at the University of Florida. He is a member of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education Residency Review Committee for Surgery; co-Editor of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) Disaster Management and Emergency Preparedness course; and Editor-in-Chief of the American Medical Association (AMA) Advanced Disaster Life Support,v.3.0, course.

Dr. Armstrong has been a national leader in health policy and advocacy for over 20 years. He is Chair of the ACS delegation to the American Medical Association (AMA) House of Delegates; ACS Governor for Florida; and member of the ACS Health Policy and Advocacy Group. He is the 2011 ACS/American Association for the Surgery of Trauma Health Policy Scholar, and a former trustee and executive committee member of the AMA.

Jennifer Aycock, RN, CCRN

I'm Here Movement, Co-Founder and President
Jennifer Aycock is the clinical nurse manager of the SICU at Barnes-Jewish Hospital. In 1993, Marcus Engel and Jenny spent a harrowing night together; the worst night of Marcus’ life. Twenty years later, a story unfolded that created The I’m Here Movement; a world wide effort to change the culture of care with two simple words.



C. Todd Borchers, MS, APRN, ACNP-BC

Assistant Director, Trauma Services, Chippenham Hospital
Todd Borchers began his nursing career in 2000 and became an NP in 2003. He joined the division of Trauma Surgery and became Lead Trauma Nurse Practitioner in 2006. He has managed and supervised NP clinical operations of the Acute Care Surgery Service to develop and maintain strong clinical performance that support the practice of high quality, evidenced-based trauma medicine and advanced nursing care. He serves as Adjunct Faculty at VCU School of Nursing, teaching and precepting advanced practice nursing students. He currently works at Chippenham Hospital as Assistant Director Trauma Services.

C. J. Bracken Burns, DO, MS

Associate Program Director, Surgery Residency; Flight Director, Trauma Service
J. Bracken Burns Jr., DO, FACOS is an Associate Professor of Surgery, in the Division of Acute Care Surgery, at the University Of Florida College Of Medicine – Jacksonville. Dr. Burns serves at the Medical Director for TraumaOne Flight Services at UF Health Jacksonville. He also serves as the Associate Program Director of the Surgery Residency. His interest in Disaster Management comes from his pre-hopital background and mentoring he received as a faculty member from the late Dr. Eric R. Frykberg.

Diane Bräxmeyer Downey, RN, BSN, CNRN

Supervisor / Educator, Legacy Emanuel Medical Center
Diane is the Nurse Educator and Supervisor for the Neuro/Trauma ICU at Legacy Emanuel Medical Center, a level one trauma center. A critical care nurse for over 16 years, additional current roles include staff and charge nurse, ECMO specialist and Critical Care Transport Team nurse leader. She has been published in Critical Care Nurse and AACN’s Advanced Critical Care. She recently presented at NTI 2014 in Denver and will be speaking at the 2014 Fall Trauma Symposium in Portland.

Cynthia Blank-Reid, RN, MSN, CEN

Trauma Clinical Nurse Specialist, Temple University Hospital
Cindy has been a registered nurse for 30 years. She has an extensive surgical critical care and trauma background with a focus on the neurosciences.  She is currently the Trauma Clinical Nurse Specialist at Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia, PA which is a large inner city Level I Trauma Center and Burn Center .  Cindy lectures nationally and internationally and published extensively on a wide variety of topics including trauma.  Cindy has been involved with STN for many years had has lectured frequently at their annual meetings.   She is currently serving as the Treasurer of STN.

Keith Clancy, MD, MBA, FACS

System Chief of Trauma, University Hospitals of Cleveland Health System
Dr. Keith Clancy earned his medical degree from Creighton University School of Medicine. After completing his residency at Loyola University Medical Center in Chicago, he completed a surgical critical care fellowship at University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Medical Center. He subsequently completed an MBA in Healthcare Management at the University of Texas at Dallas.

Keith is the System Chief of Trauma for the University Hospitals of Cleveland Health System. In addition, he is the Chief of the Division of Trauma, Surgical Critical Care and Acute Care Surgery at UH Case Medical Center.

Keith is a member of the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma and serves on the PIPS committee and Rural Trauma Committee. He is a TOPIC instructor.

Becky Cook, DNP, RN, CPNP

Cincinnati Children's Hosptial Medical Center, Pediatric Trauma Nurse Practitioner
Becky has fulfilled the role of pediatric Trauma Nurse Practitioner for more than 15 years caring for traumatically injured infants and children.  She has spoken on multiple topics nationwide including cervical spine clearance, solid organ injury, and mild traumatic brain injury in children. She collaborates with the Child Abuse Team at Cincinnati Children’s and has particular interest in the evaluation of children who may have been physically abused.


Amy Eberle, RN, BSN

Trauma Program Manager, Sanford Health – Bismarck
Amy Eberle is currently the Trauma Program Manager at Sanford Health – Bismarck, an ACS Level II verified Trauma Center. Prior to her current position she was the North Dakota State Trauma Coordinator with the Division of Emergency Medical Services, North Dakota Department of Health for seven years.

Amy is a member of the ND COT, Society of Trauma Nurses, and the ND ENA. She is also a part of the planning committee for the annual ND State Trauma Conferences.

Amy has been a strong advocate for an all-inclusive trauma system within ND. She has been involved in many legislative activities in regards to enhancing the ND trauma system and as a result has been very successful in getting legislature to provide appropriations for the trauma system. Amy has also been very active in regional and state system performance improvement.

Amy is a Registered Nurse with a Bachelor in Science degree. She graduated from the University of Mary, Bismarck ND. She also obtained certification as a TNCC instructor and has attended numerous conferences, courses, and workshops on EMS, Trauma and disaster planning and response.

Amanda Elikofer, MSN, RN, NE-BC

Trauma Program Manager, Deaconess Regional Trauma Center
Amanda Elikofer is the Trauma Program Manager at Deaconess Regional Trauma Center (ACS Level 2 and State of Illinois Level 2) in Evansville, IN. Prior to coming to Trauma Services, Amanda was a trauma ICU nurse and the assistant manager of the pediatric trauma unit. She received her BSN and MSN from the University of Southern Indiana and is a certified nurse executive. She was the STN/EAST Foundation Nurse Fellow in 2013 and currently serves on the STN Leadership Committee. Amanda will join the STN Board of Directors in 2015. Outside of work she enjoys spending time boating and being outdoors with her husband and two young boys.

Terri Elsbernd, MS, RN, CEN, CPEN

Pediatric Trauma Coordinator, Mayo Clinic Hospital
Terri Elsbernd MS, RN, CEN, CPEN is currently the Pediatric Trauma Coordinator at the Mayo Clinic Hospital – Rochester, an ACS verified Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center. She joined Mayo in 1990 and has an academic rank of Assistant Professor of Nursing.

Terri received her BSN from Gustavus Adolphus College and an MSN with a clinical nurse specialist focus from Winona State University.

Terri’s other professional activities including serving as a member the executive board of the Pediatric Trauma Society, the Emergency Medical Services for Children Advisory Board, the Society of Trauma Nurses, and as the pediatric representative to the executive board of the Southern Minnesota Regional Trauma Advisory Committee. She also is an instructor for TNCC, ATCN, and TOPIC. In addition Terri is a site reviewer for the state of MN Trauma System.

Sean Elwell, MSN, RN, EMT

Alfred I duPont Hospital for Children
Sean Elwell, MSN, RN, EMT, is employed at the Alfred I duPont Hospital for Children. Sean graduated Summa Cum Laude from Drexel University, with a MSN in leadership and health systems management. Sean is a member of the trauma program where he was the injury prevention coordinator and then promoted to trauma program manager. As part of the trauma program he led the charge to become a level 1 pediatric trauma center. Sean is actively involved in several professional organizations, including the Society of Trauma Nurses, where Sean is Director at Large in charge of leadership development and played a key role in the development of the Trauma Certification for Registered Nurses. Sean also remains active in his community. He is currently serving as Mayor of his township and Deputy Chief of his volunteer fire company and ambulance squad.

Marcus Engel

M.S. in Narrative Medicine, Columbia University, NYC
Marcus Engel, M.S. is an author and expert in issues surrounding the patient and family experience. Jennifer Aycock is the clinical nurse manager of the SICU at Barnes-Jewish Hospital. In 1993, Marcus and Jenny spent a harrowing night together; the worst night of Marcus’ life. Twenty years later, a story unfolded that created The I’m Here Movement; a world wide effort to change the culture of care with two simple words.

Diana Fendya MSN (R), RN

Trauma/Acute Care Specialist, Childrens National Medical Center, Emergency Medical Services for Children National Resource Center
Diana has been the Trauma/Acute Care Specialist for the EMS for Children National Resource Center (NRC) for 15 years. Previously she was the Director and Pediatric Trauma Nurse Specialist at a Level I Pediatric Trauma Center.   As part of the NRC, she works closely with the Federal EMSC Program.  She serves as a resource for hospital pediatric emergency and trauma initiatives and provides emergency/trauma consultative services to states and territories.  Additionally, she has published in numerous peer review medical and nursing publications including STN's Journal of Trauma Nursing.

Paula Ferrada, MD

Medical Director, Trauma Intensive Care Unit (TICU); Assistant Professor of Surgery, VCU School of Medicine; Associate Director of Surgical Critical Care Fellowship and Associate Director of Surgery Residency
Paula Ferrada, MD graduated from the Universidad Del Valle Medicine, (Magna Cum Laude), in Cali, Columbia. She is currently the VA Chapter President of the Association of Women Surgeons (AWS). Dr. Ferrada specializes in trauma, critical care, and acute care surgery and is interested in Global Surgery, Surgical Education, Surgeon Performed Ultrasound, and Trauma Resuscitation.

Raquel Forsythe, MD

Assistant Medical Director, Trauma Surgery, and Director of Education, Trauma Surgery for the University of Pittsburgh
Dr. Forsythe obtained her medical degree at SUNY Stony Brook School of Medicine, completed her residency at UMDNJ-New Jersey Medical School and her fellowship is Surgical Critical Care at University of Tennessee – Memphis. She is the Assistant Professor of Surgery and Critical Care Medicine, Medical Director, eRecord Presbyterian Hospital, Associate Program Director, General Surgery Residency Program

William Hampton, DO, MM, BA, AS

Board Certified Emergency Physician and Assistant Clinical Professor of Emergency Medicine, Midwestern University, Downers Grove, Illinois
Dr. Hampton is a board certified emergency physician and Clinical Assistant Professor in EmergencyMedicine for Midwestern University. He lectures internationally to medical students, paramedics, physicianassistants, nurses, and physicians. He has presented at the Emergency Nurses Association AnnualConference annually since 2010. He also lectures for various ENA state conferences, EMS conferences, atSEMPA's national meeting, and at ACEP's Scientific Assembly as well. His lectures have also been featuredonline for the Emergency Nurses Association as well as QuantiaMD.

Deb Harkins, MBA, BSN, RN, CCRN

Senior Clinical Consultant, Blue Cottage Consulting
Ms. Harkins combines effective leadership skills in healthcare administration and consulting with more than 26 years of nursing experience. She brings an in-depth understanding of complex clinical operations and is adept at seeing the flow of processes from the senior management level to the bedside. Debbie is a Senior Clinical Consultant at Blue Cottage Consulting and previously was a founding member of MDContent, LLC, a healthcare management education consulting firm. She managed trauma systems at the University Of Michigan Health System, where she directed the performance improvement program, led strategic redesign for trauma, burn and emergency surgery, and implemented an in-hospital executive education program. Debbie has been involved in STN since 1997 is a past president. She continues her clinical practice in the Trauma Burn Center at the University of Michigan and earned her Master of Business Administration degree and Bachelor of Nursing degree from the University of Michigan.

Missy Hockaday, MSN, ACNP-BC

Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Director of Trauma Services
Melissa Hockaday is an Acute Care Nurse Practitioner and Director of Trauma Services for an American College of Surgeon Verified Level I Trauma Center in Indianapolis, Indiana. She obtained her master’s degree in nursing from Indiana University as well as her BSN. Melissa is a board certified Acute Care Nurse Practitioner who currently practices on trauma and surgical critical care service. Melissa has over 15 years of experience in emergency medicine, trauma and surgical critical care. Her professional career includes several leadership roles for nursing and advanced practice providers. She is the immediate past present for the Indiana Trauma Network for the State of Indiana.

Her future goals are to continue to be active in leadership roles within Society of Trauma Nurse and mentor and support new trauma leaders within the organization.

Tom Hornyak, BSN, RN, CEN, PHRN

Tom Hornyak is a ER/ICU nurse at a level 1 trauma center in Pittsburgh,PA. He received his BSN from the University of Pittsburgh. He is currently working towards his MSN in the Clinical Nurse Leader program at the University of Pittsburgh. Tom joined the U.S. Army Reserves in 2008 and deployed to Afghanistan in 2012 with a forward surgical team.

Carol Immermann, BSN

Mayo Clinic Rochester Minnesota, Trauma Program Manager
Carol Immermann currently is the Trauma Program Manager at Mayo Clinic Rochester, a Level I trauma program in rural Minnesota. In her role, Carol works with a number of Level IV trauma centers supporting the trauma coordinators and medical directors in regional development and performance improvement. Carol is a member of the Minnesota State Trauma Advisory Council, the Minnesota State Applicant Review Committee, and Minnesota State Trauma Performance Improvement Committee. She is a site surveyor for Level III and Level IV hospitals in the state and the STAC liaison to the Southern Minnesota Regional Trauma Advisory Committee (SMRTAC). Carol currently co-chairs the STN Rural Special Interest Group (SIG) and vice-chair to the TOPIC committee.

Casey R. Kandilakis, PT, DPT

Shepherd Center
Casey R. Kandilakis, PT, DPT received her Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science from the University of Tennessee, and her Doctorate of Physical Therapy at East Tennessee State University. She earned her Neurologic Clinical Specialist Certification in March 2014. She has been a physical therapist working in the field of spinal cord injury research and rehabilitation for the past 4 years. Her emphasis has been on locomotor training with and without the use of advanced technologies with individuals with spinal cord injuries and other neurological injuries / disease. She is currently a clinical research scientist at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta, GA, focusing on the use of exoskeleton technology with individuals with spinal cord injuries.

Jorie Klein, RN

Director, Trauma Program & Disaster Management, Parkland Health & Hospital System Parkland, Dallas, Texas
Jorie Klein is the Director of the Trauma Program, Disaster Management, and North Texas Poison Center for Parkland Health & Hospital System in Dallas, Texas. She has a long history of exemplary trauma leadership at the state, regional, and national level, including: President of the Texas EMS, Trauma, and Acute Care Foundation; Vice-Chair of the Governor’s Emergency/Trauma Advisory Council’s Trauma System (Texas); Chair of the Texas Hospital Association’s Policy Committee on Trauma and Emergency Services, and Chair of the Texas Hospital Association’s Trauma Technical Advisory Group. Jorie Klein is a past president of STN, and has also served on numerous STN committees, from the Annual STN Conference Committee (which she chaired from 1998 – 2004), to ATCN Regional Chair, and State Chair for Texas. She has received many awards for her service to the trauma community, most recently Governor’s EMS / Trauma Council’s Journey of Excellence Award (2009).

Jorie Klein has authored papers, book chapters, and courses on emergency preparedness, disaster management, mechanism of injury, decision-making in trauma care, and preparing for a trauma site visit, among others. She has been frequent invited speaker on a vast array of trauma topics for both national and international audiences.

Amy Koestner, MS, RN

Trauma Program Manager, Spectrum Health, Grand Rapids, MI
Amy Koestner is the Trauma Program Manager at Spectrum Health, a level 1 Trauma Center in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Amy has a nursing career of over 30 years, with experience spanning the bedside in pediatric ICU, regional pediatric education, flight nursing, adult ICU bedside care, and the past 15 years in the role of trauma program manager. She has led multiple trauma centers through five ACS verification visits. Amy earned her BSN from Nazareth College, and her masters from Wayne State University.

Amy has been active in the Society of Trauma Nurses (STN) for over 10 years, serving in a variety of leadership roles, including past president in 2008. Her involvement in STN has included participation as an original author/ faculty member for the Optimal Trauma Center Organization & Management Course, as one of the key authors of the Senior Lifestyle & Injury Prevention (SLIP) course, as national & international faculty for the Advanced Trauma Care for Nurses (ATCN) course. She is the appointed STN chair liaison to the Committee on Trauma and a nurse reviewer for the ACS. Amy remains active as faculty for ATCN, the Trauma Nurse Core Course (TNCC), Rural Trauma Team Development Course (RTTDC), and speaks on trauma topics on a state and national level. Amy has been involved in trauma system development in Michigan through her leadership role in the Michigan Trauma Coalition and Regional Trauma Advisory Committee in West Michigan.

Amy Kritchen, BSN, RN, CEN

Director of Accreditation, Pennsylvania Trauma Systems Foundation
Amy Krichten RN, BSN, CEN is the Director of Accreditation for the Pennsylvania Trauma Systems Foundation. Prior to this, Amy served as the Trauma Program Manager for WellSpan Health ~ York Hospital, a Level-1 Trauma Center. She has been a consultant and site surveyor for state trauma systems and has spent her twenty-plus years of nursing in the trauma spectrum. She graduated from Lancaster General Hospital School of Nursing, and received her BSN from Regis University in Denver Colorado. She currently is the co-chair of the STN-Leadership Institute Committee and is faculty for the STN-TOPIC course. In addition, Amy is an ATCN Instructor and a Certified Emergency Room Nurse.

Stanley J. Kurek, Jr. DO, FACS

Professor of Surgery, University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine
Professor of Surgery at Florida State University College of Medicine
Chief of Trauma, Surgical Critical Care and Acute Care Surgery at Lawnwood Regional Medical Center, Ft. Pierce, Florida

Previously Dr. Kurek was the Chief of Trauma and Medical Director of Surgical Critical Care at the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville, TN. He also served as the Medical Director of the Surgical Critical Care Fellowship and was an Associate Professor of Surgery at UTMCK. Dr. Kurek has also worked for the Medical University of South Carolina as an Assistant Professor of Surgery, Trauma/Surgical Critical Care Attending, Medical Director of the Surgical Intensive Care Unit, Medical Director of Surgical Quality, Safety and Clinical Effectiveness and the Program Director of the Surgical Critical Care Residency program.

Dr. Kurek received his undergraduate degree in Biology from St. Vincent College in Latrobe, PA and received his medical degree from the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine. A residency was completed at Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center/Temple University and a Surgical Critical Care Fellowship at Lehigh Valley Hospital. While at Lehigh Valley Hospital he was an Assistant Professor of Surgery and the Chief of the Division of Pediatric Trauma.

Dr. Kurek is a member of numerous professional organizations and is presently President of the Eastern Association for the Surgery of Trauma. He previously was Vice Chair of the Tennessee Committee on Trauma. He has received numerous honors and awards, as well as, many publications related to Trauma Surgery and Surgical Critical Care.

Robert W Letton, Jr, MD, FAAP, FACS

Director, Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) Center, Women's and Newborn Pavilion, OU MEDICAL CENTER
Robert W. Letton Jr., M.D., Professor, joined the Section of Pediatric Surgery in June 2006. Dr. Letton was born in Alabama, but grew up in Kentucky. He received his pre-medicine degree at Davidson in N.C. and his M.D. from the University of Kentucky College of Medicine. After completing his general surgery residency, including a year as the Bradshaw Research fellow, at Wake Forest University School of Medicine (formerly Bowman Gray School of Medicine) in Winston-Salem, N.C., he spent an additional two years of training in pediatric surgery at the University of Oklahoma. Dr. Letton served on the faculty at Wake Forest University School of Medicine and West Virginia University - Charleston Division before joining our faculty. Dr. Letton is board certified in both surgery and pediatric surgery.

Dr. Letton recently received an honorable discharge from the U.S. Army Reserve after sixteen years of reserve duty, serving two tours of duty overseas under Operation Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom. He is currently serving as the Director, Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) Center, Women's and Newborn Pavilion of the OU MEDICAL CENTER. Dr. Letton's clinical and research interests include pediatric trauma and critical care, especially the metabolic response of children to injury and illness and their response to nutritional support.

Molly Lozada

Administrator, Trauma Verification Program, American College of Surgeons
Molly Lozada has been with the American College of Surgeons for over two decades. In the early stages of her career with ACS, she served as technical support for the National Trauma Data Bank registry software. Several years ago, Lozada transitioned to the role of ACS Verification, Review, & Consultation Program Administrator. She has been integral to the growth of the Optimal Trauma Center Organization & Management course that is offered collaboratively by the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma (ACS-COT) and the Society of Trauma Nurses (STN).

Gary Thomas Marshall, MD, FACS

Assistant Professor of Surgery at New York University School of Medicine, Attending Physician of Trauma, Acute Care Surgery and Surgical Critical Care at Bellevue Hospital Center and Tisch Hospital of NYU Langone Medical Center, and Medical Director of the Bellevue Surgical ICU
Marshall completed his General Surgery Residency at Virginia Mason Medical Center and his fellowship in Trauma, Surgical Critical Care and Acute Care Surgery at Vanderbilt University. He has a research and clinical interest in Geriatric Trauma, and has numerous publications on trauma in the elderly patient, specifically on head injury and anti-platelet agents in the elderly and the impact of age on outcomes in trauma. He has received educational grant support through the Geriatrics for Specialists Initiative of the Hartford Foundation and American Geriatric Society. He has served on Geriatric Trauma Committees at the state and national level, and assisted in the development of guidelines for geriatric trauma patients for the Eastern Association for the Surgery of Trauma and the Trauma Quality Improvement Project of the American College of Surgeons.

Mary Alice McCubbins, CPNP-PC, RN

Trauma Nurse Practitioner, St. Louis Children’s Hospital
Mary Alice is the Trauma Nurse Practitioner at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. She directly manages and coordinates multiservice and rehabilitative care from admission to discharge for polytrauma patients and provides direct care to patients in the Pediatric Ambulatory Wound Clinic (PAWS) where both inpatients and outpatients are seen for burn and other wound management. Mary Alice actively served in the US military for 22 years and retired from the Air Force in 2008. In addition to multiple deployments during her military career where she participated in and directed the care of wounded soldiers and host country nationals, Mary Alice obtained extensive pediatric primary care experience while managing base pediatric clinics and providing direct care to thousands of military children, This primary care experience has proved invaluable in Mary Alice’s current role not only as she collaborates with primary care providers to transition victims of trauma back to their healthcare home but also to help take a holistic approach to the pediatric trauma patient instead of just addressing the traumatic injuries.

Judy Mikhail, MSN, MBA, RN

Program Manager, Michigan Trauma Quality Improvement Program (MTQIP), Department of Surgery, University of Michigan Health System, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Judy Mikhail is currently the Program Manager for the Michigan Trauma Quality Improvement Program (MTQIP), which is based at the University of Michigan Health System, Ann Arbor. She has over 30 years of progressive trauma nursing experience, most recently as the administrator for Trauma, Bariatrics, and Neuroservices at Hurley Medical Center, a Level-1 Trauma in Flint, Michigan. She began her nursing career in the Burn Unit at Hurley, and progressed from surgical ICU staff nurse to clinical nurse specialist and ultimately a trauma program manager and trauma administrator. Judy earned her diploma in nursing from Hurley Medical Center School of Nursing, her BSN from the University of Michigan, and MSN from the University of Texas. In 2003, she completed work on her MBA from Colorado State University. Judy Mikhail is currently a full-time doctoral nursing student at the Medical University of South Carolina. She has been active in many professional organizations, including the Eastern Association for the Surgery of Trauma (EAST), the American Burn Association (ABA), the American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE), the Emergency Nurses Association (ENA), the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN), and the Society of Trauma Nurses (STN).

Judy Mikhail is a nationally recognized speaker in trauma care and has been an active educator and course director for PreHospital Trauma Life Support (PHTLS), Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS), Advanced Trauma Care for Nurses (ATCN), the Trauma Nurse Core Course (TNCC), Course in Advanced Trauma Nursing (CATN), Fundamental Critical Care Support (FCCS), and Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS). She serves as an adjunct instructor for the University of Michigan-Flint, School of Nursing. She has authored over 18 publications in trauma, including the evaluation and treatment of abdominal trauma, the use of midlevel providers in trauma centers, injury severity scoring, resuscitation endpoints in trauma, and care of the burn patient. She has won three local research awards. Judy Mikhail has served as President and Treasurer of the board of directors of STN. She has been involved in trauma system development in Michigan, including serving as President of the Michigan Trauma Coalition, and currently serves on the State of Michigan Trauma Advisory Committee.

Frank “Tres” Mitchell, III, MD, MHA, FACS

Medical Director of Trauma & Surgical Critical Care, Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn Medical Center, Scottsdale, AZ
Dr. Frank “Tres” Mitchell is the Medical Director of Trauma and Surgical Critical Care at Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn Medical Center. Dr. Mitchell has a long history in the trauma community and is highly visible at the national level. Dr. Mitchell graduated with a BA from the University of Missouri and earned his medical degree from Tulane University School of Medicine in New Orleans. He went on to complete his General Surgery Residency at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, Texas. He is board certified in General Surgery and in Surgical Critical Care. Dr. Mitchell has been a member and officer of the National ATLS Committee and a Region Chief for the Committee on Trauma. He has served as an ACS Committee on Trauma Site Reviewer since 1999. He is a member of the Committee on Trauma Verification Review Committee, and most recently, he completed serving as its Chair. He is active in many professional organizations, including the American Medical Association, the American Society for Bariatric Surgery, the American Association for Surgery of Trauma, the Society of Critical Care Medicine, the Western Trauma Association, and the Society of Law, Medicine & Ethics.

Kim Muramoto, RN, BS

Director of Trauma Programs, Centura Health Littleton, Castle Rock and Porter Adventist Hospitals
Kim Muramoto, RN is a Trauma Director for three trauma centers in the Denver metro area, one Level II and two Level III centers.  She has experience with ED, ICU, flights and education.

Julie Nash MSN, RN

Trauma and Acute Care Surgery Manager, Barnes-Jewish Hospital, St. Louis, Missouri
With 23 years of nursing experience, Julie has served in a variety of areas including emergency medicine, occupational health, case management and trauma management. She currently serves as the Trauma and Acute Care Surgery Manager at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri. Barnes-Jewish Hospital is a Verified Level I American College of Surgeons Trauma Center and a designated Level I Trauma Center for the States of Missouri and Illinois. In addition to her administrative responsibilities, Julie serves on multiple regional, state and national trauma and EMS committees.

Kristen Ray, RN, MSN

Senior Clinical Nurse II, R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center, University of Maryland Medical Center
Kristen Ray has more than 3 years clinical experience caring for trauma patients at the University of Florida and Shands Jacksonville Level I  Trauma Center, which has more than 4,000 trauma admissions per year. She also has 5 years experience at R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center, a PARC trauma facility that sees over 6,500 trauma admissions per year and that conducts ground breaking research in trauma care. Ray is a Masters prepared RN with focus on education and research in trauma care and outcomes improvements.



Benjamin Reynolds, MPAS, PA-C

Director, Office of Advanced Practice Providers, University of Pittsburg Medical Center
Ben Reynolds is a certified physician assistant and the director of UPMC’s Office of Advanced Practice Providers, which oversees the operational readiness and practice advancement of nearly 2,000 physician assistants, nurse midwives, nurse anesthetists and nurse practitioners throughout the UPMC’s nearly 500 practices and 22 hospitals. Ben is also heavily involved in the development of new models of care, expanding opportunities with UPMC to use the maximum skill sets of physician assistants and other health care professionals to increase access, improve outcome and decrease costs.

An advocate for interprofessional integration, Ben has championed and led a number of projects in collaboration with the University of Pittsburgh which put these new models of care into clinical practice. Ben is a recognized national leader of advanced practice providers, advocating on their behalf to professional organizations, state and federal leaders to expand scope of practice and remove unnecessary barriers to safe and effective care. As a faculty member with the University of Pittsburgh, he teaches Fundamentals of Surgery for the physician assistant program and clinically precepts students in the management of trauma, critical care and general surgery as a practicing physician assistant at UPMC Presbyterian. Ben’s office oversees the placement of nearly 600 advanced practice providers students in nearly 2,000 clinical rotations throughout UPMC from 38 different academic programs. Additionally, Ben serves as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Surgery for the University of Pittsburgh Medical School and University of Pittsburgh School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences and holds academic appointments with the Pitt School of Nursing as well as Chatham University. Ben served in the United States Navy prior to pursuing a career in the physician assistant field and is a member of the Eastern Association for the Surgery of Trauma, Pennsylvania Society of Physician Assistants, American Academy of Physician Assistants, and American Association of Surgical Physician Assistants.

Babak Sarani, MD

Chief of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, Associate Professor of Surgery, George Washington University, Washington, DC
Babak Sarani, MD, is the chief of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery at The GW Medical Faculty Associates. He is also an associate professor of surgery at The George Washington University School of Medicine & Health Sciences. Dr. Sarani completed medical school and training in General Surgery at The George Washington University School of Health & Sciences. He then completed a fellowship in trauma surgery and surgical critical care at the University of Pittsburgh. He worked at the University of Pennsylvania from 2005-2011 in the Division of Trauma Surgery, Surgical Critical Care, and Emergency Surgery. While there, he also helped establish their rapid response system. He is a member of the leading societies related to general surgery, trauma surgery, and critical care.

Dr. Sarani has received numerous invitations to lecture on topics related to trauma surgery, critical care, and rapid response systems in the United States and Europe. He is also widely published in these fields and has authored several chapters related to these topics. Dr. Sarani's commitment to teaching is evident in the numerous teaching awards he has received from GW, the University of Pittsburgh, and the University of Pennsylvania. He is currently the moderator of the Eastern Association for the Surgery of Trauma Traumacast podcast. His research interests include diagnosis and management of coagulation disorders following trauma, delirium in the ICU, and optimal design of rapid response systems.

Christine Schulman, MS, RN, CNS, CCRN

Critical Care Clinical Nurse Specialist, Legacy Health
Chris Schulman is a trauma and critical care clinical nurse specialist who has worked at all 3 Level 1 Trauma Centers in the Pacific Northwest.  She has presented at numberous regional and national conferences, including AACN's National Teaching Institute, the ENA National Education Symposium, and the Society of Criticial Care Medicine Annual Education Conference.  She has published several articles in critical care journals on a variety of clinical topics and professional development.  She currently serves a 3 year term on the AACN Board of Directors.

Elizabeth Seislove, MSN RN

Elizabeth Seislove has been in trauma for the past 24 years. She started out at as a trauma ICU nurse, followed by the APN for the Trauma ICU. Elizabeth transitioned into the Pediatric Trauma Coordinator position, followed by the Program Manager and now the Director of the program. She is an active member of the Society of Trauma Nurses and has held several position within the society: Chair of Neuro Sig, ATCN Chair, and currently national faculty for the ATCN program, president of the society and planning committee member for the EAST/STN collaborative efforts. Elizabeth has spoken locally, regionally, nationally and internationally on various trauma topics.

David Skarupa, MD

Assistant Professor, University of Florida College of Medicine - Jacksonville
Dr. David Skarupa is an Assistant Professor of Surgery at University of Florida – Jacksonville in the Division of Acute Care Surgery.  He graduated from Ohio State University College of Medicine.  He completed general surgery residency at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, MI, and his trauma and critical care fellowship at University of Maryland R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center.  Dr. Skarupa has been a physician liaison for nurse practitioners and physician assistants.  He is a member of the American College of Surgeons, Eastern Association of Trauma, and Society of Critical Care Medicine.

Lynn Gerber Smith, RN, MS

Senior Clinical Nurse II, R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center
Lynn has been a nurse at the University of Maryland for 38 years. For 36 of those years Lynn has worked at the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center in the Trauma Resuscitation Unit (the TRU). Lynn has her Masters Degree in Nursing Education and enjoys traveling across the US and the UK to speak. She has presented in 40 states and 4 countries.  Lynn currently coordinates nursing education and process improvements in the TRU. In addition, Lynn has more than 15 publications, the most recent in a British pre-hospital text.

Deb Syverson, BSN, RN, EMT

Trauma Program Manager, Sanford Health - Fargo, Fargo, ND
Deb Syverson is the Trauma Program Manager at Sanford Health – Fargo, an American College of Surgeon’s verified level II Trauma Center in Fargo, North Dakota. Deb has a nursing career of 25-plus years, caring for adults and pediatrics in critical care, emergency nursing, and flight nursing. She has also been an educator for Prehospital Trauma Life Support (PHTLS), Advanced Trauma Care for Nurses (ATCN), Course in Advanced Trauma Nursing (CATN), Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS), and Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS), and many “home-grown” trauma courses for the rural trauma centers in the region.

Deb has been an active participant and leader in the inclusive North Dakota state-wide trauma system for the past 15 years, including functioning as a site-reviewer for the Level IV & V trauma centers. Additionally she has maintained an active role in the MN state-wide trauma system, as the chairperson for the WESTAC (Western MN Regional Trauma Committee). Deb has been a member of STN for 14 years, and has been involved with the Rural Special Interest Group for 10 years.

Oszkar Szentirmai, MD, FACS

Faculty and Assistant Professor, Department of Neurosurgery, University of South Florida (USF) and Chief of Neurosurgery, Lawnwood Regional Medical Center
With his partners and colleagues at USF and in Ft. Pierce, Dr. Oszkar Szentirmai is building a comprehensive neuroscience program on the Treasure Coast. He is the only Endoscopy Fellowship trained neurosurgeon and the only surgeon offering Robotic Minimally Invasive Spine and Brain surgery with the state-of-the-art Mazor Robotics Renaissance System on the Treasure Coast. He is on staff at both Lawnwood Regional Medical Center & Heart Institute as well as St. Lucie Medical Center.

Throughout his career, Dr. Szentirmai has pioneered new surgical techniques and technologies to advance the treatment of cranial and spine conditions. He has published more than a dozen peer reviewed scientific papers and two book chapters. His current research is focused on advancing minimally invasive robotic spine and brain surgery, spinal cord injury as well as brain tumor research. Dr. Szentirmai works with his colleagues at the University of South Florida to be able to offer the highest level of care to his patients with brain tumors and movement disorders on the Treasure Coast.

Dr. Szentirmai earned his medical degree at Semmelweis University in Budapest in his native country of Hungary. He completed his neurological surgery internship and residency training at the University of Colorado in Denver. During his training he spent dedicated time in minimally invasive as well as complex spine surgery, peripheral nerve surgery, and more focus in the last two years of his training on the management of brain tumors and aneurysms with vast exposure to stereotactic procedures –such as Stereotactic Radiosurgery with Gamma Knife or Cyber Knife and Deep Brain Stimulation for Parkinson’s Disease and Essential Tremor-, “awake” brain surgeries, and pituitary tumor resections.

During Dr. Szentirmai’s training at Denver Health and the University of Colorado Spine Center, he gained extensive experience in neurocritical care for brain and spinal cord injury patients as well as both minimally invasive and complex spine surgery. His training in the Neurosurgical Intensive Care Unit at the University of Colorado Hospital –one of the few centers in the United States with Fellowship training program in Neurocritical Care- allowed him to gather extensive experience over 7 years in the management of the critically ill neurosurgical patients. He also completed fellowships in neurosurgery at both Cornell University at New York Presbyterian Hospital in New York and Harvard Medical School at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.

He is a member of the American College of Surgeons, Congress of Neurological Surgeons, the American Association of Neurological Surgeons and the American Medical Association.

When not caring for patients, Dr. Szentirmai is spending dedicated time in advancing his research activities. For fun he enjoys spending time with his family exploring the Indian River Lagoon and Atlantic Coast marine life on the Treasure Coast as well as outdoor sports.

Joseph J. Tepas III, M.D.

Associate Dean for Clinical Informatics; Chief, Division of Pediatric Surgery; Chief Medical Information Officer, UF Health Jacksonville
Dr. Tepas is an Associate Dean for Clinical Informatics; Chief, Division of Pediatric Surgery; Chief Medical Information Officer, for UF Health Jacksonville. He specializes in Pediatric Surgery, Surgery and Surgical Critical Care and holds board certifications in Pediatric Surgery and Surgical Critical Care. He completed his Professional Education at the Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, DC, his residency in surgery at Naval Medical Center (Portsmouth), Portsmouth, VA, and Fellowship in Pediatric Surgery at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD. His special interests include: Pediatric surgery, neonatal surgery, pediatric trauma, pediatric congenital anomalies, and pediatric surgical critical care with special emphasis on comprehensive pain management.



Glen Tinkoff, MD, FACS, FCCM

Associate Vice of Surgery for Emergency Surgical Services, Christiana Care Health System
Glen Tinkoff, MD, FACS, FCCM is the Associate Vice of Surgery for Emergency Surgical Services at Christiana Care Health System in Newark, DE. Dr. Tinkoff also has an appointment at the Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania as a clinical professor of surgery. He received his medical degree from the University of Cincinnati, School of Medicine, and completed general surgery residency at Lankenau Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania as well as fellowships in surgical critical care at State University of New York at Stony Brook and trauma research at Lehigh Valley Hospital in Allentown, PA. He was recruited in 1992 to Christiana Care Health System as the medical director of the trauma program, a position in which he served until 2008.

Dr. Tinkoff has recently completed 18 years on the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma during which he served on its region committee as state chair and region chief, executive committee, and most recently, as chair of the performance improvement and patient safety committee. He remains clinically active in trauma care and serves the Delaware Division of Public Health’s as the medical advisor to the state trauma system. He recently was awarded the National Safety Council’s Surgeon’s Award for Service to Safety. He has numerous peer reviewed publications and has provided invited lectures on clinical issues in acute care surgery, trauma center and systems administration and management, trauma-related performance improvement and peer review, and surgical education.

Brian Van Ness, PA-C

Physician Assistant, Surgical and Trauma ICU, Hackensack University Medical Center
Brian Van Ness, MS, PA-C currently works as a full time Physician Assistant in the Surgical and Trauma ICU at Hackensack University Medical Center and part time as a Physician Assistant for the Surgery, Trauma and Neurosurgery Service at Jersey City Medical Center. Mr. Van Ness graduated from the Physician Assistant program at Seton Hall University and the University of Medicine and Dentistry in NJ in 2002. Prior to graduating PA school, Mr. Van Ness was a Registered Nurse for 10 years working in the ER/Trauma Resuscitation and the Surgical and Trauma ICU at Morristown Medical Center in NJ. Currently Mr. Van Ness is also an adjunct professor at the Physician Assistant programs at Seton Hall University in NJ and Mercy College and Wagner College in NY. He was an invited speaker at the EAST annual conference in 2015 and the NJ State Society of Physician Assistants annual 2015 conference, speaking about Surgical Critical Care. Mr. Van Ness was honored as the NJ State Physician Assistant of the Year in 2013.

Stephen T. Wegener, PhD

Associate Professor and Director, Division of Rehabilitation Psychology and Neuropsychology, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine
Dr. Wegener has 25 years experience providing clinical services to persons with traumatic injury. His research program is supported by NIH, DOD, CDC, PCORI.

Ian Weston, MPP

Executive Director, American Trauma Society
Ian Weston serves as Executive Director of the American Trauma Society.  He is focused on the development of trauma systems, regionalized systems of care, and resources for trauma patients and their providers. Prior to joining ATS, Ian served as the director of the HHS EMSC-National Resource Center at Children’s National Medical Center, and as a health legislative adviser to U.S. Congressman John Sweeney. Ian holds a Masters Global Medical and Health Policy from George Mason Univ. and received his B.A. in Public Policy & Political Science from Syracuse University.

Cassandra Winter, MPAS, PA-C

Senior Physician Assistant, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
Graduated in 2009 from Gannon University with a Masters in physician assistant science. Currently employed at the University Of Pittsburgh Medical Center in Pittsburgh, PA in the Trauma and Acute Care Surgery department. She is a clinical assistant professor at Chatham University actively precepting physician assistant students on a regular basis. She has a special interest in education and enjoys preparing lectures for her students, advanced practitioner residents and also for conferences such as EAST this past year.