Our Staff

SUPPORTING PATIENTS.FUNDING CARE.PROVIDING HOPE.

Meredith Mendelson

Executive Director
Meredith joined the Ellie Fund staff as Executive Director in 2018 and considers this position to be the height of her professional career. She received her law degree from Lewis & Clark College and her undergraduate degree in Communications from The University of Rhode Island. After law school, Meredith worked in Development and Communications for a number of beloved non-profit organizations in Boston including The Home for Little Wanderers where she served as Vice President for Development, Communications and Advocacy. Meredith, who stood alongside her mother as she lived with metastatic breast cancer for 8 years, is drawn to the Ellie Fund’s mission of supporting patients and funding care after seeing firsthand the effect that a cancer diagnosis can have on a family. Her goal is to continue the wonderful work that the Ellie Fund is known for and determine new and innovative ways to reach more patients and their families.

Danna Remen

Director of Development & Operations

Danna joined the Ellie Fund team in 2019 as Director of Corporate & Foundation Philanthropy, after five years running another cancer nonprofit, Global Oncology (GO), supporting underserved communities globally. Danna was the first employee at GO, served as Interim Executive Director most recently and still continues to serve on their Board of Directors. Previously, Danna was on the leadership team of Generate4Schools, a for-profit startup developing novel revenue streams for nonprofits nationally. For a number of years, Danna worked in roles supporting the Public Schools of Brookline, MA, including Assistant Director of the Brookline Education Foundation for 4 years. Early in her career, Danna held positions at several technology startups and engineering firms, including Lycos. Danna received her Master of Environmental Health Science from the Harvard School of Public Health and Bachelor of Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 

Nekia clark

Director of Patient Services and Outreach

Nekia joined the Ellie Fund team in 2022 as the organization’s first ever Director of Patient Services and Outreach. She pivoted from her 15-year career in Human Resources to use her relationship building skills and recruiting skills to build statewide relationships between Ellie Fund, hospitals, community health centers, and other local institutions. Nekia is a breast cancer survivor and former patient of the Ellie Fund. After her positive experience with the organization, Nekia volunteered before officially joining as an employee.

Kathy Wynters

Community Relations & Event Manager

A year after graduating from Providence College, and three years after her mother’s diagnosis, Kathy was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1983.  Since then, she has dedicated much of her life to supporting breast cancer charities. As Associate Commissioner of Hockey East, Kathy started the “Skating Strides Against Breast Cancer” initiative in 2007. Since its inception, Skating Strides has raised nearly $400,000 for breast cancer charities throughout New England – with the Ellie Fund as a beneficiary since 2012.  Kathy retired in 2020 after a 30+ year career, but kept Skating Strides alive through the Ellie Fund as a volunteer and development committee member. The program has since expanded to include hockey teams across Massachusetts at all levels. Kathy came out of retirement to join the Ellie Fund team as Development Manager in July 2022. She looks forward to growing Skating Strides, as well as working with Students for Hope and other Ellie Fund signature events.

Cheryl Whetstone

Patient Grants Manager

Cheryl joined Ellie Fund in 2022 as a Patient Grants Specialist after volunteering for the organization. She has donated her time as an active volunteer for well over a decade using her translation skills as a native Spanish speaker to help women and families in need. Cheryl taught introductory Spanish at the Inly School in Scituate. Early in her career, after attending Northeastern University, she was the Special Events Manager at the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children. She is excited to be part of a strong team that is directly impacting those with breast cancer regardless of their race, language, or socioeconomic circumstances.

Vicky sanchez merino

Director of Special Events 

Vicky joined the Ellie Fund team in February 2023 after being a tireless volunteer for the Patient Services Department. It was the moment to take action and honor the memory of her closest friend who passed away from breast cancer at the age of 38. With a background in event planning management, she is looking to make her mark supporting patients with deep commitment and compassion. Vicky is thrilled to support the Ellie Fund, “I feel sincerely encouraged by the Ellie Fund team. From the first moment I met these amazing women who are passionate about this cause, I was conscious that the services allow the patients the space they need to heal. We are making a difference in patients’ lives and that is crucial for them”. Vicky has a Bachelors Degree in Tourism and Hotel Management, a Masters Degree in Communication, Event Marketing & PR, and Bachelors degree in Fashion Design at Mass School of Art.

 

Susan Gilmore

Business Manager

Susan joined the Ellie Fund as the Business Manager in July, 2023.  A resident of Back Bay since 1984, Susan is a graduate of Boston College. She previously worked at Ernst & Young in Audit before joining ITT Sheraton. While at ITT Sheraton, Susan traveled the globe for four years visiting Sheraton Hotel properties in an audit capacity and then joined the Development team, identifying locations for new hotel properties. Following ITT Sheraton, Susan worked at Fidelity on their Corporate Real Estate team and at John Hancock in various capacities in Finance and Real Estate. Susan is a strong advocate for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging and in 2016 co-founded and co-chairs the Financial Services Women’s Executive Alliance with the purpose of making game-changing progress on DEI in the financial services industry. Susan is involved as a volunteer with the Boston Marathon, the Head of the Charles Regatta and The Vincent Club.

 

Chloe Smith-Sokol

Executive Assistant

Chloe joined the Ellie Fund as an Executive Assistant shortly after graduating from UMass Amherst. For her senior year capstone, Chloe investigated the use of Social Emotional Learning in afterschool programs as a tool to respond to opportunity gaps present in public education. She also spent a summer working with Tech Goes Home, a Boston based non-profit with a mission of decreasing the digital divide present in underserved communities. Chloe holds a deep connection to Ellie Fund’s work as her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer when she was young, and later passed from it in 2014. She feels driven by her empathic connection to the patients touched by the Ellie Fund and is excited to be joining such a strong team in their mission to help others going through similar experiences.

Lindsey Briggs

Digital Media Consultant

Lindsey Briggs is a Digital Storytelling and Media Strategist. She loves creating digital content that embodies depth serving as a catalyst for life-changing conversations + community building.  Being vulnerable and creating authentic content online has positioned Lindsey as a Thought Leader in cultivating transparent spaces for stories to thrive. She is a native of Boston Massachusetts and a double graduate from Syracuse University in Information Management Technology and Broadcast Digital Journalism. She serves as the host of the Entrepreneur Digital series Start Now by Syracuse University- interviewing founders and innovators in the tech and media industries. Lindsey founded Social U Digital in 2012 and has performed a vast range of services within social media marketing, multimedia  production, and storytelling consulting in Boston, Central NY and across the northeast region. In 2020, Lindsey started Mommy Mondays (powered by Social U Digital), a live-streamed show interviewing Moms on their Motherhood journey.  Being a Mom, Friend and Women of Faith and Wellness Enthusiast is most near and dear to her as she captures each intentional moment of them all.

Bridget Flynn

Development Operations Associate 

Bridget joined the Ellie Fund in April 2024 as the Development Operations Associate after graduating from Umass Boston with a psychology degree. It was her personal experience with cancer that truly ignited her dedication to the Ellie Fund. Bridget’s father passed away in 2020 from cancer and although his battle was different, it instilled a profound empathy and determination in her to support individuals and families facing similar challenges. When asked what drew Bridget to the Ellie Fund, she responded “I have seen first hand what cancer can do to someone, as well as their family, and I understand how impactful and crucial it is to receive help and resources”. She is thrilled to join such a powerful team in addition to contributing her own knowledge and passions towards the Ellie Fund’s mission of supporting breast cancer patients and their families. 

Araci Sequeira

Patient Services Specialist 

Araci joined the Ellie Fund in April 2024 as a Patient Services Specialist who speaks three languages: English, Portuguese, and Cape Verdean Creole. She has always had a passion for helping others. Araci previously worked with women in need that were new to the country with language barriers. She herself has had close experiences with cancer as her grandmother and close friend both passed away from it. What drove her to be part of the Ellie Fund team was her need to help others. Araci is very excited to be working alongside such a wonderful team as well as being able to contribute her skills and compassion to our mission of providing support and raising awareness for breast cancer!

Andrew Brownsword

Director of Development Operations 

After nearly 30 years in business, Andrew (Drew) joined the ranks of the non-profit world.  He started his non-profit career as Director at the Travis Roy Foundation where he focused on strategic planning, participative fundraising event execution, development operations and bookkeeping. Next, Drew worked as Bookkeeper / Human Resources Specialist for Bikes Not Bombs in Jamaica Plain, In that role, he built and executed all new accounting, payment and control procedures and he was the point person for all human resources-related activities. Drew also serves as Board Treasurer for Beautiful Day, a Providence, RI-based non-profit helping refugees and their families gain language and job skills while producing and selling delicious granola.  In his spare time, Drew tries to keep up with his four kids, referees soccer games at all levels, cooks and travels with his wife, Beth.