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Sateria Venable is the Founder and CEO of The Fibroid Foundation, a global, patient advocacy organization. The Fibroid Foundation develops programming to support its community of over 26,000 women. Ms. Venable began her advocacy efforts in 2007. Since that time, the organization has developed a substantial global network.
Ms. Venable, who holds a Bachelor of Architecture from Carnegie Mellon University, has co-authored several scientific papers on fibroid research. She is the inventor of an undergarment inspired by her journey, which she hopes will transform intimate apparel for all women. A sought-after speaker, she has been featured in print and radio media, and has presented at gynecologic conferences worldwide.
Tanika Gray Valbrun
Tanika Gray Valbrun is an award-winning journalist, educator, and nonprofit founder with a passion for women’s health. After her personal struggles with uterine fibroids including two myomectomies, Ms. Gray Valbrun created The White Dress Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing support for women suffering from fibroids and to raising awareness and education around fibroids. She has worked with doctors, health advocates, and elected officials across the country to get legislation passed declaring July as Fibroids Awareness Month.
Recognized as a thought leader and patient advocate for uterine health, Ms. Gray Valbrun has also spoken around the world encouraging women to be their own best health advocate. Many women with symptomatic fibroids never dream of wearing white, because of their heavy menstrual bleeding or bloating. The white dress is a “symbol of hope” that women with fibroids can feel supported and know that they do not have to suffer in silence. In addition to encouraging women to be their own health advocates, Ms. Gray Valbrun works as a senior content producer for a global news organization, where she has been awarded three coveted Peabody Awards for her contributions in journalism.
Jessica Shepherd, MD, MBA, FACOG
Dr. Jessica Shepherd is an OB/GYN and women’s health expert and also the founder of Her Viewpoint, an online women’s health forum that focuses on addressing taboo topics in a comfortable setting. As an OB/GYN, she practices at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas.
Dr. Shepherd is an engaging and well-known media personality who is seen regularly as an expert on Good Morning America, The Today Show, Dr. Oz, Steve Harvey, CBS News, and FOX news (NY, LA, Chicago and Dallas). She has written in various publications including Cosmopolitan, Teen Vogue, Women’s Health Magazine, Women’s Day, Self, Family Circle, Parents, Best Health, Essence, and Healthline.
Her passion for women’s health has allowed her to be an advocate for conditions such as fibroids, endometriosis, and health care disparities. In addition to radio programs nationwide such as Doctors Radio, NPR and Tom Joyner, Dr. Shepherd also gives lectures nationally and internationally on health issues.
Erica Marsh, MD, MSCI, FACOG
Dr. Erica E. Marsh is the S. Jan Behrman Collegiate Professor of Reproductive Medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School and Chief of the Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility in the Department of OBGYN. She is the Founder and Director of the Women’s Health and Reproductive Disparities Collaborative (onWHARD) and the Director of Community Engagement for the Michigan Institute for Clinical and Health Research at UM.
Dr. Marsh graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College and cum laude from Harvard Medical School. She completed her residency at the Integrated OBGYN Residency at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital followed by an REI fellowship at Northwestern University. Dr. Marsh’s research focuses on developing a holistic understanding of fibroids, abnormal uterine bleeding, and ovarian reserve. Dr. Marsh is a committed community advocate, scientific mentor, and proponent of community-engaged research.
Tammy Boyd, JD, MPH
Tammy Boyd has extensive experience in creating and executing federal legislative policy strategy and facilitating outreach to members of the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate. Before joining BWHI, Ms. Boyd served as managing partner for TKB Global Strategies LLC/Watts Partners, where she executed government affairs strategies through engagement with the House, Senate, and federal agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS), and Department of Veteran Affairs (VA).
Kathryn G. Schubert, MPP
Schubert previously worked for the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM), where she served as the organization’s chief advocacy officer, growing SMFM’s role nationally and building its reputation in women’s health.
As a member of SMFM’s executive team, Schubert played a critical role in the development of SMFM’s budget and strategic plan. She also acted as a trusted leader and consensus builder among women’s health stakeholders, particularly in the policy arena.
Prior to SMFM, Schubert served as senior vice president at CRD Associates, where she advised clients — including nonprofit patient advocacy groups, medical professional organizations, and private companies — on government relations and public policy related to health and biomedical research issues, among others. Schubert has also spent time working in legislative roles on Capitol Hill. She received her BA from Mary Washington College and her Masters of Public Policy from George Washington University.