Speaker’s Bureau

The American Association of Kidney Patients (AAKP) is the oldest and largest fully independent kidney patient organization in the United States. Founded in 1969 by six dialysis patients. Our Founders advocated for dialysis and transplant treatment coverage for all Americans and their actions led to the creation of the End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Program, saving more than one million lives since 1973. AAKP is dedicated to increasing care choicequality of life and long-term outcomes for kidney patients. We achieve this through educationadvocacy and patient engagement. As AAKP celebrates 50 years of impact on American kidney policy, we are proud of our reputation as a highly credible source of information and independent patient voice.

The AAKP Speakers Bureau, under our Center for Patient Engagment and Advocacy, provides the public, private sector companies and non-profit organizations with highly knowledgeable experts committed to advancing the AAKP mission through personal experiences and expertise. Speakers include AAKP National Board Members and National Ambassadors. Each speaker is well-prepared to talk before large and small audiences. Together, our speakers share a wide range of disease and treatment experiences and their combined professional portfolios include published articles and books, participation in key government initiatives, industry focus groups and clinical trials, and testimony before Federal agencies. The AAKP Speakers Bureau is AAKP’s contribution to the growing movement to generate greater public understanding of kidney disease nationwide, from local towns to the corridors of government in our nation’s capital.

To request a member of AAKP’s Speakers Bureau to participate in an event, speaking engagement or interview, please complete the request form and submit to: Deborah Pelaez, AAKP Marketing and Communication Manager, at dpelaez@aakp.org.

Meet the Members of the AAKP Speakers Bureau

National Speakers

RICHARD KNIGHT

AAKP Board of Directors President (Washington D.C. area)

In-center HD / Transplant Recipient

Interests/Experience: Federal Policy, Executive Branch/Congressional Process & Legislation, Disparities in Care/Transplantation, Home and In-Center Dialysis, Patient Education, Transplantation/Pre-emptive Transplantation, Research/Innovation, Grassroots Organizing

Click here for biography.

PAUL
CONWAY

AAKP Board of Directors Policy Chair, Past President (Washington D.C. area)

Peritoneal Dialysis / Transplant Recipient

Interests/Experience: Federal Policy, Executive Branch/Congressional Process & Legislation, Care Team Education, Dialysis, Patient Education, Disability/Employment, Transplantation/Pre-emptive Transplantation, Research/Innovation, Social Media, Grassroots Action

Click here for biography.

DANIEL
ABEL

AAKP Board of Directors Vice President (West Virginia)

Transplant Recipient

Interests/Experience: Small Business Ownership & Disease Management, Employment/Disability, Patient Engagement/Advocacy, Family/Care Team Awareness, Transplantation

Click here for biography.

EDWARD V. HICKEY III, USMC

AAKP Board of Directors Secretary (California)

Caregiver

Interests/Experience: Federal Policy, Executive Branch/Congressional Process & Legislative Process, Veterans Care, Care Team Awareness, Patient Education/Awareness, Dialysis, Transplantation, Pre-emptive Transplantation, Research/Innovation

Click here for biography.

SUZANNE RUFF

AAKP Board of Directors (North Carolina)

Living Donor, Caregiver

Interests/Experience: Polycystic Kidney Disease, Caregiver Concerns, Organ Donation, Transplantation, Family Coping, Patient Advocacy, Dialysis, Patient Storytelling

Click here for biography.

STEPHEN FADEM, MD

AAKP Medical Advisory Board Chair (Texas)

Nephrologist

Interests/Experience: Federal Policy, Congressional Legislation, Patient Engagement/Education, Slowing Kidney Disease Progression,  Renal Replacement Therapies, Clinical Treatment/Guidelines, Research/Innovation

Click here for biography.

 

Regional and State Speakers

 RISA
SIMON

AAKP Ambassador (Arizona)

Pre-emptive Transplant Recipient

Interests/Experience: Policy, Legislation, Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Transplantation, Pre-emptive Transplantation

Click here for biography.

GABI
MORALES

AAKP Ambassador (Florida)

Peritoneal Dialysis Patient

Interests/Experience: Education/Awareness, Home Dialysis, Pediatric/Adolescent Kidney Disease

Click here for biography.

EDWARD
DRAKE II

AAKP Ambassador (Georgia)

Transplant Recipient

Interests/Experience: Policy, Legislation, Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Dialysis, Transplantation, Pediatric/Adolescent Kidney Disease, Community Health Engagement

Click here for biography.

 

DALE
ROGERS

AAKP Ambassador (Idaho)

Transplant Recipient

Interests/Experience: Policy, Legislation, Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Dialysis, Transplantation, Plant-based Nutrition

Click here for biography.

LANA
SCHMIDT

AAKP Board of Directors (Illinois)

Home Hemodialysis / Transplant Recipient

Interests/Experience: Policy, Legislation, Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Dialysis, Home Dialysis, Transplantation, Pre-emptive Transplantation, Research/Innovation, Employment

Click here for biography.

AUSTIN
LEE

AAKP Ambassador (Maryland)

Transplant Recipient

Interests/Experience: Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Transplantation, Pediatrics, Family Coping

Click here for biography.

SHARRON ROUSE

AAKP Ambassador (Maryland)

Transplant Recipient

Interests/Experience: Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Dialysis, Home Dialysis

Click here for biography.

MELISSA BENSOUDA

AAKP Ambassador (Missouri)

Home Hemodialysis

Interests/Experience: Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Home Dialysis, Disparity Issues in Chronic Diseases, Family Coping

Click here for biography.

MAILE
ROBB

AAKP Ambassador (Nevada)

In-center Hemodialysis

Interests/Experience: Policy, Legislation, Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Dialysis, Transplantation

Click here for biography.

SCOTT BURTON

AAKP Ambassador (North Carolina)

Home Hemodialysis

Interests/Experience: Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Transplantation, Disparity Issues in Chronic Diseases, Community Health Engagement

Click here for biography.

ASHLEY MARTIN

AAKP Ambassador (Ohio)

Family Member/Caregiver

Interests/Experience: Policy, Legislation, Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Dialysis, Home Dialysis, Transplantation, Caregiver, Family Coping

Click here for biography.

BRIAN
HESS

AAKP Board of Directors (Oklahoma)

All modalities/treatments

Interests/Experience: Policy, Legislation, Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Dialysis, Home Dialysis, Transplantation, Pre-emptive Transplantation, Research/Innovation, Employment

Click here for biography.

KENT BRESSLER

AAKP Board of Directors, Ambassador (Texas)

Pre-emptive Transplant Recipient

Interests/Experience: Policy, Legislation, Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Transplantation, Pre-emptive Transplantation, Veterans/Military, Research/Innovation

Click here for biography.

DAVID RODRIGUEZ

AAKP Board of Directors, Ambassador (Texas)

Transplant Recipient

Interests/Experience: Policy, Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Dialysis, Transplantation, Disparity Issues in Chronic Diseases, Family Coping, Employment

Click here for biography.

Digital Photographs

GLENDA ROBERTS

AAKP Ambassador (Washington)

Transplant Recipient

Interests/Experience: Policy, Legislation, Advocacy, Education/Awareness, Disparity Issues in Kidney Disease, Dialysis, Transplantation, Pre-emptive Transplantation, Research/Innovation

Click here for biography.