NSFC Board of Directors
Our Board of Directors governs and advises us in our endeavors to save lives, empower families, advance stomach cancer awareness and education, and lead our efforts to fund the most promising research to make the greatest impact. Many of our Board members are survivors of stomach cancer or caregivers to a stomach cancer patient. Their personal experiences are what drives them to give selflessly to our cause, and at times putting other's health and wellbeing before their own.
Terri is humbled and honored to be a part of the NSFC Board. Stomach cancer hit her family in July 2014 when her father was diagnosed with stage 2 gastric cancer. He underwent surgery and chemotherapy in Baltimore, MD. After discussing his family cancer history and learning that three members had lobular breast cancer, doctors decided to test for the CDH1 gene, and he was positive.
Terri tested positive for the CDH1 gene in April 2015 and had a total gastrectomy in July 2015. Throughout the process, NSFC was a constant resource and provided invaluable support for Terri and her family. Since her surgery, she has been actively involved in raising awareness and funds for research for NSFC in her hometown. As a board member, she is highly motivated to expand these efforts on a broader scale in hopes of finding new options for her children (who will eventually be tested) and other cancer patients. She looks forward to supporting and helping others navigate through this terrible disease.
Terri lives in Urbana, MD, with her husband Pete and two children. She is a former elementary school teacher who now works as an event planner at St. Andrew's Episcopal School in Potomac, MD.
Terri Beach joined the board of NSFC in January 2016.
In 2005 Laura's aunt was diagnosed with stomach cancer. Surgical observations indicated she had diffuse gastric cancer, a form of cancer that can be inherited. Years earlier, Laura's grandfather and another aunt had also died from stomach cancer. Through genetic testing, it was revealed that the family was a carrier of the CDH1 gene mutation. While her aunt passed away from the disease, she left her family with valuable information that would help further generations. Genetic testing done on the extended family revealed that Laura, along with other family members, tested positive for the gene mutation. Faced with statistics that indicated inadequate surveillance methods and a bleak survival rate for those diagnosed with hereditary diffuse cancer, Laura chose to undergo a total gastrectomy in October 2006. Other affected family members decided to do the same. With very little clinical information or support available at the time, it was the support of the small community of people also impacted by CDH1 and the total gastrectomy procedure that helped Laura and her family through such a difficult time. She hopes to further the mission of No Stomach for Cancer by providing support to the stomach cancer community and promoting awareness and research efforts. She lives in Libertyville, IL, with her husband and two girls and is a Corporate Controller of Argon Medical Devices in Lake Forest, IL.
Laura Ciezadlo joined the board of NSFC in August 2015.
Dylan Davison, MBA
After losing two relatives to stomach cancer, Dylan and his mother learned, in 2017, they had the CDH1 gene mutation. Before passing, their relatives were faithful to contact his mother and encourage the two of them to get tested for the gene mutation. From the moment Dylan learned his mother, and he had the CDH1 gene mutation, he spent most of his early days reading the content on No Stomach For Cancer's website and helping his mother decide on a surgeon.
After two successful prophylactic total gastrectomy's, they both learned each had stage one stomach cancer that was undetected before surgery. He is forever thankful for the work that No Stomach For Cancer has done and is honored to join the board to help with fundraising, advocacy, and strategy as NSFC continues to help those affected by stomach cancer.
Dylan has worked with non-profits for over 13 years and holds an MBA from Auburn University. He currently works for a software company that is the leading cloud software provider for the non-profit community. Although he has no stomach, he still competes in triathlons and is dedicated to helping those affected by stomach cancer live the best lives possible. He is married and has three children.
Dylan Davison joined the board of NSFC in March 2018.
Melanie Torborg, CMA, MBA
Melanie's husband, Tom, died of stomach cancer in 2012 and carried the CDH1 gene mutation. Since his diagnosis, ten members of his family (siblings and cousins) have had their stomachs removed. He saved many lives, and Melanie wants to contribute her talents to No Stomach For Cancer as her way of helping others who are struggling with this disease.
Melanie is the Program Director of the Accounting Programs at Saint Mary's University in Minneapolis. She has a Bachelor's Degree in Finance and a Masters Degree in Business. She is also a Certified Management Accountant with over 20 years of experience in corporate accounting. Her favorite areas of accounting are budgeting, strategic planning, and financial statement analysis.
Jon joined NSFC in the Spring of 2015. He comes from a diverse background in marketing and customer service. His most important goal as the Executive Director is to bring stomach cancer to the forefront of the public view and increase the media's attention to the disease. This is no small task, as stomach cancer is often disregarded as a public health issue, although there are one million new cases diagnosed each year.
Karen E. Chelcun Schreiber
Board Service 2009-2015
Following a 31-year career in accounting, law firm administration, and technology, Karen celebrated her early retirement in 2005. Two years later, her brother's stage IV stomach cancer diagnosis started Karen down an unexpected path. Having lost her mother to the same disease 25 years earlier, her quest for information led to the discovery of the CDH1 gene mutation in her family that causes Hereditary Diffuse Gastric Cancer (HDGC). While planning for her preventive total gastrectomy, she established the Chelcun Family Fund for Stomach Cancer Research and launched the first version of this website in July 2008, known at the time as "Be Strong Hearted." This call to action grew out of concern for her family's stomach cancer story; it quickly became about every family's stomach cancer story.
Karen's brother Greg lost his battle in early 2009. The lack of awareness of stomach cancer, funding for research, resources, and support for those affected by the disease, and the grim survival rates highlighted the need for an organization dedicated to fighting this disease. Already a leading resource for those affected by stomach cancer throughout the world, it was time to move beyond the family.
Karen founded No Stomach For Cancer in 2009. She was instrumental in the growth of the organization throughout the years and served in many capacities, including Board Chair. She remained actively involved in the organization until turning over the reins in 2015. Karen's commitment to supporting HDGC families and research is as strong as ever with the creation of HereditaryDiffuseGastricCancer.org. Karen is a valued resource for No Stomach For Cancer and CDH1 families worldwide.