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Multiple Sclerosis Centers of Excellence


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Staff of the Multiple Sclerosis Centers of Excellence

If you would like to contact any of the staff below, go to the Contact MSCoE page for information. 

MSCoE-East Staff

  W. Joel Culpepper, MA, PhD is the Associate Director of Epidemiology for the MS Center of Excellence-East as well as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pharmaceutical Health Services Research at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy. Dr. Culpepper has over 20 years of research experience in a variety of settings to include 11 years working within the Veteran’s Health Administration. He has broad training in research methods and epidemiology. His research has focused on chronic diseases in general and neuroepidemiology of MS more specifically. Additionally, he has specific training and special interests in psychometrics and measurement issues in outcomes research.
  R. Andrew David, MS, MHSA is a Health System Specialist for the MS Center of Excellence-East. Mr. David comes to MSCoE-East from VA Central Office, where he completed an administrative residency in the Office of Nursing Services. During his residency, he worked with the Epilepsy Center of Excellence in San Francisco, CA to help establish TeleHealth clinics. He received his Master's in Health Administration from George Washington University and his Bachelor's in Neuroscience from the University of Virginia.
  Maggie Kazmierski, MSW, LCSW-C, MSCS is a MS Center of Excellence-East Social Worker and the Spinal Cord Injury Coordinator for the Baltimore VAMC. Ms. Kazmierski works to establish the role of social work within MSCoE-East care. She coordinates with Social Workers in VA healthcare facilities east of the Mississippi River (VISN’s 1-11) to provide support for Veterans living with MS. She is a member of the National Association of Social Workers and the National MS Society, where she serves on the Clinical Advisory Committee. Ms. Kazmierski is a Licensed Certified Social Worker-Clinical and a MS Certified Specialist.
  Terry Lee-Wilk, PhD is the Director of Neuropsychology at the VA Maryland HCS (VAMHCS) and a Neuropsychologist for the MS Center of Excellence-East. Dr. Lee-Wilk graduated with a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the University of Maryland College Park. She then completed one year of postdoctoral work at Children's National Medical Center in the Department of Neuropsychology. Subsequently, she completed a two-year Neuropsychology Postdoctoral Fellowship at the VAMHCS/University of Maryland Medical System. She serves as the primary Neuropsychology liaison to the MS Center of Excellence-East. She is also a Clinical Instructor at the University of Maryland, Department of Pediatrics and supports projects related to the early initiation of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) in adolescents who are HIV positive. She serves as the attending Neuropsychologist at the VA's infectious disease clinic. Dr. Lee-Wilk's clinical and research interests include cognitive symptoms associated with MS, infectious disease, and traumatic brain injury.
  Heidi Maloni, PhD, APRN, BC-ANP, CNRN, MSCN, is the MS Center of Excellence-East National Clinical Nursing Director and the MS Clinic Coordinator at the Washington DC VAMC. Dr. Maloni is a Certified Adult Nurse Practitioner, a Certified Neuroscience Registered Nurse, and a MS Certified Nurse. Her duties include MS clinical care, research and education of Veterans with MS, their families, and providers caring for those living with MS. Dr. Maloni represents Veteran interests on the International Organization of MS Nurses advisory board. She facilitates the MS patient advisory board of the National Capital MS Society. Dr. Maloni has an Adjunct Faculty position at Trinity Washington University where she teaches Pharmacology for Nurses and through several local nursing schools and universities, precepts advanced practice students in the clinical setting.
  Lisa Mitchell, RN, MSN, MSCN is the MS Center of Excellence-East National Nurse Coordinator and MS Nurse Case Manager at the Baltimore VAMC. Ms. Mitchell has worked for the Department of Veterans Affairs for 25 years. She is a member of the Greater DC – Maryland Chapter of the National MS Society Healthcare Advisory Committee and the VA Special Interest Group (SIG) and is a MS Certified Nurse. She has had prior certifications in diabetes education and emergency nursing. She received her Master's degree in Nursing Informatics from the University of Maryland.
  Walter Royal, III, MD is the Associate Director of Research for the MS Center of Excellence-East. He is also Director of the Maryland Center for MS Treatment and Research and Professor in the Departments of Neurology and Anatomy and Neurobiology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. Dr. Royal attends on the services at the Baltimore VAMC and at the University of Maryland. His research in the areas of MS focuses on environmental factors that are associated with an increased risk of MS and the neuroimmunological and neurovirological mechanisms that underlie the disease.
  Mitchell Wallin, MD, MPH, is the Director for the MS Center of Excellence-East. Dr. Wallin received his medical degree from the University of Minnesota School of Medicine. He completed his medicine internship at Northwestern University followed by residency in Neurology at the University of Minnesota. He subsequently pursued a Preventive Medicine residency and earned a Master’s of Public Health/International Health at Johns Hopkins University. While in Baltimore in 1996, Dr. Wallin was recruited by John Kurtzke to join the faculty at the VA Medical Center-Washington, DC and the Neurology Department at Georgetown University. Dr. Wallin holds academic appointments as Associate Professor of Neurology at Georgetown University and the University of Maryland School of Medicine. He received the 2010 Wolcott National Award for Clinical Leadership, the highest clinical prize within the VA system. His research interests include MS neuroepidemiology/global health, and neurological infections. Dr. Wallin is widely published, has several active research grants, and serves on many national committees.
Angela Young, MBA, is the National Education and Training Coordinator for the MS Center of Excellence-East. Ms. Young has worked for the Department of Veterans Affairs for 20 years. She advises and consults regularly with MS experts, health care professionals, and leadership to develop multidisciplinary and comprehensive MS education and training products and programs for Veterans with MS, caregivers, family members, and providers. Prior to her current position, she worked as a Program Specialist for national programs and initiatives in the Specialty Care Strategic Health Care group, within the Veterans Health Administration. Ms. Young lives in the Maryland - Washington, DC area with her husband and three children.

 MSCoE-West Staff

  Dennis Bourdette, MD, FAAN, FANA is the Co-Director and Associate Director of Research for the MS Center of Excellence-West and Chair of the Department of Neurology at Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU). Dr. Bourdette is also the Roy and Eulalia Swank Family Research Professor and Executive Director of the OHSU MS Center. He directs a team dedicated to curing and treating diseases such as MS, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, stroke, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). His team has attracted grants and funding from the National Institutes of Health, NINDS, VA, National MS Society, The Race to Erase MS foundation, private donors, and numerous pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. Dr. Bourdette received his medical degree at the University of California-Davis Medical School. He completed his medicine residency at the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center in San Jose and his Neurology residency at OHSU, followed by Neuroimmunology Fellowship at the VA Portland HCS under the direction for Drs. Frederick Seil and Arthur Vandenbark.
  Michelle Cameron, MD, PT is a Neurologist at the VA Portland HCS and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurology at Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU). She received a VA Career Development Award for her research project "Mechanisms of Imbalance and Falls in MS" in 2010. Dr. Cameron received her Medical Doctor and Physical Therapy degree from the University of California, San Francisco and completed her Neurology residency followed by an MS Fellowship at OHSU.
  Jodie K. Haselkorn, MD, MPH is Director of the MS Center of Excellence-West and an Epidemiologist in the VA Puget Sound HCS. Dr. Haselkorn is board certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and has more than 20 years of direct clinical experience within the Veterans Health Administration in the broad field of musculoskeletal and neurological rehabilitation medicine, specializing in recent years in the care of Veterans with MS. Dr. Haselkorn is a Professor in Rehabilitation Medicine, Adjunct Professor in Epidemiology, as well as an Affiliate Professor in Medical History and Ethics at the University of Washington. Dr. Haselkorn has been grant funded by national sources such as the VA, NIH, and CDC and has published numerous research articles on MS. In addition, Dr. Haselkorn is invested in translating research findings to the bedside and regularly develops and participates in interdisciplinary MS health professional education at local, regional, and national levels. Dr. Haselkorn received her Medical Doctor degree from Louisiana State University Medical Center-New Orleans and completed her rehabilitation residency at the University of Washington-Seattle.
  Jaimie Henry, MPA is the Co-Administrative Officer and Training Specialist for the MS Center of Excellence-West. Her primary duties include education and outreach to Veterans with MS and VA health care providers. Ms. Henry received her Bachelor's degree in Political Science from Western Oregon University and Master’s degree in Public Administration from Portland State University.
  Steven Leipertz, PhD is the Associate Director of Informatics for the MS Center of Excellence-West. Dr. Leipertz manages the MS repository and supports numerous clinical and research projects related to data analysis. Dr. Leipertz has held previous positions within the University of Washington School of Fisheries, National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, Ichthyology Department at the American Museum of Natural History, NYU Graduate Business School, and Corbis. He received his Doctorate degree from the University of Washington.
  Lani Pitofsky is the Administrative Specialist for the MS Center of Excellence-West. She actively and expertly supports administratively all MSCoE functional cores. Her VA career began in 1998 as the Oncology Department’s Administrator at VA Puget Sound HCS. She supported the Directors of the Marrow Transplant Unit and Oncology Department and served as a member of the Cancer Program Committee. In 2007, she was promoted to a Specialist position in Neurology where she provided administrative support to the Director and staff, and supervised the Medical Team and Medical Support Assistants. She is highly skilled in System Redesign and improved clinic flow, patient satisfaction, and missed opportunities in the Hospital & Specialty Medical Service. Ms. Pitofsky studied Communications at Northwest University in Kirkland, WA and participated as the Music Director and DJ at the University’s radio station where she developed journalistic and broadcast media skills.
Alicia Sloan, MPH, MSW, LICSW is a core Research and Projects Coordinator with the MS Center of Excellence-West. She has worked at the Seattle VA for 10 years, and the last 8 years with MSCoE-West. She earned a Master's of Public Health in 1997 and a Master's of Social Work in 2001 from Tulane University. She coordinates a number of health services and clinical intervention studies and serves on the MS Center of Excellence Education Committee for developing continuing education courses for MS providers in the VA system. She is a founding member and co-leader of the VA MS Social Work Collaborative for VA Social Workers nationwide who work with Veterans with MS. She is also a founding member of the MS Social Work Collaborative of Washington, a professional networking group of Social Workers working with MS in the community. Ms. Sloan has a passion for developing MS social work continuing education and implementing evidence-based MS research into social work practice and program development for Veterans with MS and their caregivers. She has presented at national MS conferences on Social Work Best Practices for MS Caregivers and has co-authored several research papers and posters on access to MS specialty care, patient self-management, MS medication adherence, and home telehealth.
  Rebecca Spain, MD, MSPH is the Associate Director of Clinical Affairs for the MS Center of Excellence-West and an Assistant Professor of Neurology at Oregon Health and Science Univerisity (OHSU). She received her Medical Doctorate degree from Case Western Reserve University in 2002. After her medical internship at Brown University, she completed her neurology residency at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia. She continued at Jefferson for a two year MS fellowship studying the effects of MS on the retina of the eye. She joined the clinical faculty at the VA Portland Health Care System and OHSU in 2008. Her research focuses on treating progressive forms of MS and wellness approaches to treating all forms of MS.
  Jan Spencer, MSW, LCSW is the social worker for the MS Center of Excellence-West as well as the Epilepsy Center of Excellence-Northwest. She provides counseling, case management, advocacy, education, and facilitation to Veterans and their families. Ms. Spencer received her Bachelor’s degree in both Psychology and Family Studies from Corbin University and Master’s degree in Social Work from Portland State University. Prior to coming to the VA, she worked as a certified oncology social worker. Her experience working with the chronically ill affords her empathy and understanding for the many challenges Veterans face when living with MS. She volunteers for the non-profit Give an Hour, offering counseling to Veterans and their families.
  Aaron Turner, PhD is the Co-Associate Director of Research for the MS Center of Excellence-West. He is also the Director of Rehabilitation Psychology at the VA Puget Sound Health Care System in Seattle, WA and is an Associate Professor in the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine at the University of Washington. Dr. Turner maintains an active research program examining health behavior change and psychosocial determinants of quality of life among Veterans and individuals with disabilities. He received his Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the University of Washington.
  Vijayshree Yadav, MD, MCR, is the Assistant Associate Director for Clinical Care for the MS Center of Excellence-West and Associate Professor of Neurology and Clinical Director of the MS Center at Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU). Dr. Yadav completed her Neurology residency in 2001 and thereafter completed her post-doctoral fellowship in Neuroimmunology and MS from the VA Portland HCS. She obtained her Masters in Clinical Research degree in 2008 and has been involved in clinical research conduct since 2001. She has been PI for a number of studies that have been funded by NIH, VA, National MS Society, Private Foundations, and Pharmaceutical Companies. Dr. Yadav’s interest and research in Complementary and Alternative (CAM) therapies for MS has been recognized nationally and she is the lead author on a manuscript describing Clinical Practice Guidelines for neurologists developed under the guidance of the American Academy of Neurology Therapeutics and Technology Committee on the use of CAM therapies in MS.


Last Updated: April 2017