Speakers

We've assembled some of the industry's leading experts to present the latest trends in pediatric hematology/oncology nursing practice. We are certain you'll gain valuable information and education while improving your professional development. Click on each speaker's name to view their full bio and list of sessions they are presenting.

Colleen Nixon, MSN RN CPHON®--Hematology/Oncology Clinical Educator

Colleen Nixon, MSN RN CPHON®Hematology/Oncology Clinical Educator

Colleen Nixon is from Boston Children's Hospital and has been caring for pediatric oncology and hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT) patients since 1987. In 1995 Ms. Nixon assumed the role of the clinical coordinator on the oncology/hematology unit and is responsible for the daily running of the 19-bed unit.

Staff Development Specialist

Janice Nuuhiwa, MSN APN/CNS CPHON®Staff Development Specialist

Janice Nuuhiwa is a staff development specialist in the departments of Clinical & Organizational Development and Hematology/Oncology/Neuro-oncology/Transplantation at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago. Her specialty is nursing professional development.

Session(s)
The Self-Care Connection: Resiliency, Health and Wellness (005)
Roundtable: Professional Boundaries (RT3)
Facility
Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago
Location
Chicago, Illinois
Julia Kearney, MD--Director of Pediatric Psycho-Oncology

Julia Kearney, MDDirector of Pediatric Psycho-Oncology

Julia Kearney M.D. is Director of Pediatric Psycho-Oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, where she treats the psychiatric needs of patients with pediatric cancers and their parents. She also currently serves as Interim Director of the Pediatric Pain and Palliative Care team and is board certified in pediatrics, psychiatry, child and adolescent psychiatry, consultation-liaison psychiatry.

Session(s)
General Session: Communicating with Adolescents at End of Life: Ethical Dilemmas and Practical Solutions (104)
Facility
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Location
New York, New York
Kathy Perko, MS CPNP CHPPN CPLP CPON®--Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Kathy Perko, MS CPNP CHPPN CPLP CPON®Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Kathy Perko received her BSN from the University of Portland, Oregon and started her nursing career at the Children’s Hospital in Seattle. She spent eight years there-focusing in pediatric oncology with a special interest in children with brain tumors. She received her MS/PNP from University of California-San Francisco with a focus on supporting children and families through the end of life.

Kathy returned to the Pacific Northwest and has been working in Portland for the past 19 years. She transitioned from pediatric oncology to palliative care over the past years and was a founding member and is the Program Director of Bridges Palliative Care Program at Doernbecher Children’s Hospital. The Bridges Program sees patients from pre-natal diagnosis through young adulthood.

Kaye Schmidt, MA RN CPNP CPON®--Senior Director — Pauline Allen Gill Center for Cancer & Blood Disorders

Kaye Schmidt, MA RN CPNP CPON®Senior Director — Pauline Allen Gill Center for Cancer & Blood Disorders

30 years nursing leadership in pediatric hematology-oncology nursing. Active member in APHON for many years, including recently completing 3 year term as Editor of APHON Counts; 4 years Asst. Editor, 3 years, column editor, 3 years Steering Council member. I have presented many times at APHON as a speaker at concurrent sessions, as a plenary speaker, and have presented several posters. I am currently the Senior Director of the Center for Cancer & Blood Disorders at Children's Health in Dallas, and have been in this position for 14 years.
Session(s)
Roundtable: Professional Boundaries (RT3)
Facility
Children's Health; Children's Medical Center Dallas
Location
Dallas, Texas
Rita Secola, PhD RN FAAN--Clinical Services Director

Rita Secola, PhD RN FAANClinical Services Director

Rita Secola is the Clinical Services Director for the Hematology-Oncology Service Line at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA). She has over 30 years of pediatric nursing experience. She obtained her BSN from Carlow College and MSN from the University of Pittsburgh, both in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and her PhD from the School of Nursing at the University of California Los Angeles. She was inducted into the American Academy of Nursing in October 2013.

Session(s)
HSCT Complications: A Case-Based Approach to Diagnosing and Treating Veno-Occlusive Disease: Non-CNE Breakfast Symposium (SY1)
Facility
Children's Hospital Los Angeles
Location
Los Angeles, California
Lori Wiener, PhD DCSW--Staff Scientist Pediatric Oncology Branch

Lori Wiener, PhD DCSWStaff Scientist Pediatric Oncology Branch

Dr. Lori Wiener is co-director of the Behavioral Health Core and Head of the Psychosocial Support and Research Program at the pediatric oncology branch of the National Cancer Institute (NCI). As both a clinician and behavioral scientist, Dr. Wiener has dedicated her career to the fields of oncology and pediatric HIV/AIDS.
Session(s)
General Session: Communicating with Adolescents at End of Life: Ethical Dilemmas and Practical Solutions (104)
Facility
Center for Cancer Research National Cancer Institute
Location
Bethesda, Maryland
Suzanne Smolik, MSN RN CPNP CPON®--Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Suzanne Smolik, MSN RN CPNP CPON®Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Suzanne Smolik is a pediatric nurse practitioner at the Children's Hospital Colorado in solid tumor oncology. She has worked there for the last 7 years. She has worked in hematology/oncology/BMT for 16 years; 12 years as a PNP.
Stacy Stickney Ferguson, MSW LICSW--Manager — Education and Outreach

Stacy Stickney Ferguson, MSW LICSWManager — Education and Outreach

Stacy Stickney Ferguson has been with National Marrow Donor Program, Be The Match (NMDP) since 2005. In her current role as Manager, Education, and Outreach she works to improve access for all patients in need of hematopoietic cell transplant (HCT) therapies.

Session(s)
Improving Access to Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation Clinical Trials for Patients with Sickle Cell Disease (214)
Facility
National Marrow Donor Program/Be The Match
Location
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Erik Rees--CEO & Founder

Erik ReesCEO & Founder

For more than 25 years, Erik Rees has dedicated himself to empowering people to find and fulfill their purpose in life. Rees began his career as a leader, strategist, and trainer at world-renowned Saddleback Church, where he helped grow the congregation from 3,000 to more than 30,000 followers over a 20-year period. During this amazing time, Rees helped train church leaders. In addition, he wrote several best selling's books: SHAPE: Finding & Fulfilling Your Purpose In Life; Only You Can Be You: 21 Days to Living Your Purpose and Tilt: Small Leadership Changes for Big Results.

Session(s)
Opening Keynote: Never Ever Give Up! (101)
Facility
Jessie Rees Foundation
Location
Orange County, California
Terri Boyce, DNP APRN CPNP-AC CPHON®--Acute Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Terri Boyce, DNP APRN CPNP-AC CPHON®Acute Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Terri earned her BSN from the University of Portland in 2002, MSN from Duke University in 2008, and DNP from the University of Portland in 2016. She is currently an acute care pediatric nurse practitioner on the inpatient hematology/oncology/stem cell transplant unit at Doernbecher Children's Hospital at OHSU in Portland Oregon. She has served APHON in multiple capacities including >5 years as the San Antonio Chapter President and multiple terms on both the Steering Council and Chapter President's liaison.

Caroline Anderson, MSN RN CPHON® --Clinical Practice and Advanced Education Specialist I

Caroline Anderson, MSN RN CPHON® Clinical Practice and Advanced Education Specialist I

Caroline Anderson serves as the staff educator for the Hematology/Oncology Department at Cook Children's Medical Center. She loves finding creative ways to make the classroom fun, supporting nurses as they grow, and serving patients and families.
Session(s)

Changing the game: New updates and innovative approaches for Chemotherapy-Biotherapy Provider Course Instructors (007)
Town Hall: Clinical Educators (TH7)
Connecting Fun with Purpose: Interactive Teaching Strategies to Improve Bedside Care (225)

 

Changing the game: New updates and innovative approaches for Chemotherapy-Biotherapy Provider Course Instructors

Facility
Cook Children's Medical Center
Location
Fort Worth, Texas
Nancy Bates, BSN RN--Registered Nurse

Nancy Bates, BSN RNRegistered Nurse

Nancy graduated with her BSN from the University of Portland in 2010. She started in a new grad program at Primary Children's Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah on the Hematology/Oncology/Bone Marrow Transplant Service Line.
Meghan Belongia, MSN RN CPNP--Nurse Practitioner

Meghan Belongia, MSN RN CPNPNurse Practitioner

Meghan Belongia is a pediatric nurse practitioner within the MACC Fund Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. Meghan’s clinical role includes direct care of patients with a central nervous system (CNS) tumor.
Rachel Bright--Nurse Leader Pediatric Ambulatory Care Center

Rachel BrightNurse Leader Pediatric Ambulatory Care Center

Nursing Sigma Theta Tau International. Rachel transitioned from clinical nurse to Nurse Leader in the Pediatric Ambulatory Care Center at Memorial Sloan Kettering in 2017. Before coming to MSKCC in 2013, Rachel worked as a clinical nurse on the inpatient pediatric oncology and BMT unit at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and at Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego as an inpatient pediatric hematology/oncology nurse.
Session(s)
Roundtable: Patient Acuity (RT5)
Facility
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Location
New York, New York
Annie Brouwer, BSN RN CPHON®--Sickle Cell and Hematology Program Nurse

Annie Brouwer, BSN RN CPHON®Sickle Cell and Hematology Program Nurse

Annie is a hemoglobinopathy program nurse at Children's Hospital Colorado. She has 10 years of experience in pediatric hematology/oncology; 3 years at Children's Hospital Colorado and 7 years at Helen Devos Children's Hospital in Michigan. She has additional experience in adult oncology and medical/surgical travel nursing. She has a BSN from Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan. This is her 3rd APHON conference and first time presenting.
Session(s)
Comprehensive Care for Thalassemia (226)
Facility
Children's Hospital Colorado
Location
Aurora, Colorado
Lauren Brown, MSN CPNP-AC--Pediatric Hematology Oncology Nurse Practitioner

Lauren Brown, MSN CPNP-ACPediatric Hematology Oncology Nurse Practitioner

Lauren Brown works as an Inpatient Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Nurse Practitioner at Levine Children's Hospital in Charlotte, NC. She graduated from University of Virginia School of Nursing in 2000 and started her career as a bedside nurse in the pediatric hematology-oncology unit.
Susan Burke, MA RN CPNP CPHON®--Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Susan Burke, MA RN CPNP CPHON®Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Susie Burke has over 35 years of experience as a pediatric oncology nurse and has worked in various roles throughout her career including clinical practice, education, and administration. She received her BSN from Creighton University in 1981 and her Masters in Nursing from the University of Iowa in 1992. She is currently practicing as Nurse Practitioner in the Leukemia/Lymphoma program at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin in Milwaukee.
Session(s)
A Tale of Two MABs: Blinatumomab and Inotuzumab in COG Clinical Trials for Relapsed B ALL (C211)
Facility
Medical College of Wisconsin
Location
Milwaukee, WI
Colleen Callahan, MSN CRNP--Nurse Practitioner — Cancer Immunotherapy Program

Colleen Callahan, MSN CRNPNurse Practitioner — Cancer Immunotherapy Program

Colleen Callahan MSN, CRNP is a nurse practitioner in the Oncology Division at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. She has worked in pediatric oncology for 23 years and has been a nurse practitioner in the oncology for the past 18 years. She has worked in the Cancer Immunotherapy Program for the past 5 years caring for patients pre, during, and post CAR T cell therapy in the outpatient setting. She follows these patients from their initial referral to the Immunotherapy Team, through their T cell collection, T cell infusion, and then after infusion monitoring for side effects, adverse events, and long-term effects and responses.

Session(s)
Town Hall: CAR T-Cell Therapy (TH9)
Facility
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Location
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Susan M. Carson, MSN RN CPNP--Nurse Practitioner — Thalassemia and Chronic Transfusion Program

Susan M. Carson, MSN RN CPNPNurse Practitioner — Thalassemia and Chronic Transfusion Program

Susan Carson is the Nurse Practitioner for the Thalassemia and Chronic Transfusion Program at Children's Hospital Los Angeles ( CHLA). She has specialized in Thalassemia and Chronic Iron Overload for over 20 years and is a nationally and internationally known expert in the field. She has been asked to speak at conferences around the world and is well published on the topic.

Session(s)
Iron Overload: Implications in Hematology, Oncology, and HSCT Patients (207)
Facility
Children's Hospital Los Angeles
Location
Los Angeles, California
Brooke Cherven, MPH RN CPON®--Nursing Researcher/EBP Coordinator

Brooke Cherven, MPH RN CPON®Nursing Researcher/EBP Coordinator

Brooke Cherven is a full-time doctoral student and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Future of Nursing Scholar at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Nursing. She also has a Master’s in Public Health from Emory University and has spent over fifteen years working in pediatric oncology nursing at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. She has been a volunteer with Camp Sunshine for 10 years. Her research interests include health outcomes and fertility preservation in adolescents and young adults with cancer.
Caroline A. Costello, MBA BSN RN BMTCN® CPON®--Nursing Clinical Education Coordinator

Caroline A. Costello, MBA BSN RN BMTCN® CPON®Nursing Clinical Education Coordinator

Caroline is a Clinical Nurse Educator on the HSCT Unit at Boston Children's Hospital. She has worked as an RN for 31 years and as an HSCT RN for 22 years, 18 of them at BCH and 12 years as the Educator. Caroline is also a Chemotherapy and Biotherapy Instructor providing classes twice yearly, She also coordinates staff education, orientation, and continuing education programs. In addition, Caroline encourages staff awareness and use of integrative therapies and most recently began offering Reiki attunement class to the staff nurses.
Session(s)
Town Hall: Stem Cell Transplant (TH11)
Facility
Boston Children's Hospital
Location
Boston, Massachusetts
Stephanie Cox, MN NP--Nurse Practitioner Pediatric Hematology/Oncology

Stephanie Cox, MN NPNurse Practitioner Pediatric Hematology/Oncology

Stephanie Cox has been practicing as a pediatric nurse practitioner in pediatric hematology/oncology for 13 years at McMaster Children's Hospital in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. She is an active member of the Children's Oncology Group for the past 15 years. She is currently the disease committee nurse on the AML subcommittee, institutional nursing responsible investigator, and institutional cancer control responsible investigator. She is active in quality improvement and nursing initiatives regarding supportive care for children with pediatric cancers.
Mary Elizabeth Davis, MSN RN AOCNS--Clinical Nurse Specialist

Mary Elizabeth Davis, MSN RN AOCNSClinical Nurse Specialist

Mary Elizabeth is an Oncology Clinical Nurse Specialist from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, New York. Her role includes modeling professional practice to the nurses of the services for which she has responsibility including mentoring and precepting nurses who are new to a practice, coordinating and evaluating their clinical experiences, and overseeing their development in the oncology nursing specialty and the clinical practice role.

Session(s)
Management of Retinoblastoma in 2018: A Nursing Perspective (201)
Facility
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
Location
New York, New York
Shannon N. Davis, MSN FNP-C CPHON®--Pediatric Hematology Oncology Nurse Practitioner

Shannon N. Davis, MSN FNP-C CPHON®Pediatric Hematology Oncology Nurse Practitioner

Shannon Davis has provided care to Pediatric Hematology/Oncology patients throughout her 14 year nursing career. Since 2010, she has practiced as a Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Nurse Practitioner at Levine Children's Hospital. Her primary time is spent inpatient, however, rotates to the outpatient infusion clinic as well, managing infusion reactions and sick visits.

Guillermo R. De Angulo, MD--Director of Cellular Therapy and Associate Director of Bone Marrow Transplant and Clinical Associate Professor of Pediatrics

Guillermo R. De Angulo, MDDirector of Cellular Therapy and Associate Director of Bone Marrow Transplant and Clinical Associate Professor of Pediatrics

Dr. De Angulo received his medical degree at the Escuela de Ciencias Medicas/Universidad Autonoma de Centro America in San Jose, Costa Rica. He completed his residency in pediatrics at Driscoll Children’s Hospital/Texas A&M University College of Medicine and a fellowship in pediatric hematology-oncology at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas.

Session(s)
ALL Treatment and Considerations Around Asparaginase Hypersensitivity, A Case-Based Approach: Non-CNE Lunch Symposium (SY2)
Facility
Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine, Florida International University, Miami Children's Hospital
Location
Miami, Florida
Janet DeFrancesco, MSN RN CPON WCC--Nurse Manager, Center For Cancer and Blood Disorders

Janet DeFrancesco, MSN RN CPON WCCNurse Manager, Center For Cancer and Blood Disorders

Pediatric Nurse Hem/Onc nurse for over 30 years in various roles including staff RN, ANM, Nurse Educator and Nurse Manager. Currently nurse manager and service line lead for the Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorders at CT Children's Medical Center. Additionally adjunct faculty for Quinnipiac University Nursing program and University of CT Nursing program. PALS instructor, BLS instructor, wound care certified, Chemotherapy/Biotherapy Instructor. Currently President of local APHON CT Chapter.
Session(s)
Town Hall: Outpatient Nursing (TH3)
Facility
Connecticut Children's Medical Center
Location
Hartford, CT
Linda Del Vecchio-Gilbert, DNP CPNP-PC ACHPN--Pediatric Nurse Practitioner/Professor

Linda Del Vecchio-Gilbert, DNP CPNP-PC ACHPNPediatric Nurse Practitioner/Professor

Linda Del Vecchio-Gilbert is a doctorally prepared pediatric nurse practitioner and is board certified in Primary Care Pediatrics, Advanced Hospice and Palliative Nursing, and Pain Management. She has over 21 years of experience caring for children with complex chronic conditions. Her area of expertise is pain and symptom management. She opened Magnolia Pediatrics, which is an independent nurse practitioner private practice in Rhode Island, which focuses on community-based pediatric palliative care.

Session(s)
Roundtable: Establishing an Independent Nurse Practitioner Practice (RT2)
Facility
Magnolia Pediatrics; Simmons College; New England Institute of Technology
Location
Cranston, RI
Sarah Dobrozsi, MD MS--Assistant Professor of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology

Sarah Dobrozsi, MD MSAssistant Professor of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology

Dr. Dobrozsi is a board-certified pediatric oncologist at the Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin specializing in the care of children with solid tumors. Dr. Dobrozsi also has clinical and academic interest in health outcomes for children with cancer. She is an active member of the Children’s Oncology Group Patient Reported Outcome Committee whose focus is to learn more about how different cancer treatments impact physical, emotional and social health from the perspective of the patient.

Kelly Drake, MSN CPNP--Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Kelly Drake, MSN CPNPPediatric Nurse Practitioner

CPNP in the Bone Marrow Transplant program at Children's Hospital Colorado with a special interest in Palliative care in the BMT population. Kelly graduated from the University of Michigan with her BSN and the University of Colorado with her MSN.
Lindsey Eibeler, BSN RN CPHON®--Office Practice Nurse

Lindsey Eibeler, BSN RN CPHON®Office Practice Nurse

A 2002 graduate of Rutgers University, I began my nursing career at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center on the inpatient Pediatric Unit. With more then15 years of pediatric hematology-oncology experience, I have worked in both the inpatient and outpatient setting and currently work in the Pediatric Retinoblastoma clinic at MSK.

Session(s)
Management of Retinoblastoma in 2018: A Nursing Perspective (201)
Facility
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Location
New York, New York