Who We Are
Photos and professional summaries of our Leaders, ROW Foundation Board, and Staff
Meet our Board, Advisers and Staff
Scott has been in the pharmaceutical industry since graduating from college. His education includes a B.S. in Business Administration and Management from Morningside College. He has led multi-million dollar sales and marketing efforts for numerous branded drugs for Abbott and Bristol-Myers Squibb. Scott is the founder of OWP Pharmaceuticals, the partner with the ROW Foundation in working to improve the lives of people with epilepsy and associated psychiatric disorders in under-resourced areas of the world.
Mark Petersen, MBA
Mark earned an Executive MBA in Pharmaceutical Marketing from St. Joseph University. He has more than 20 years of experience in pharmaceutical sales and management, including experience as a Director of Communication and Coordination with Astellas Pharma. Away from the job, Mark is involved in volunteer work and serves on the board of directors of a nonprofit serving at-risk youth in inner city Chicago.
Bruce Duncan, JD, CPA
Bruce is a Certified Public Accountant and has a law degree from Case Western. He has more than 30 years of experience at the C-level in accounting and tax management, including a decade at a Big 4 accounting firm and a decade managing the tax department of a Fortune 500 company. Bruce is one of the co-founders of the ROW Foundation.
Ruth Boyer, RN
Ruth has worked as a registered nurse for more than 35 years. She has spent time in oncology, emergency room, surgery, and home health care. She’s an active member of Willow Creek Community Church and does volunteer work with the Willow Creek Care Center, Northern Illinois Food Bank, and Feed My Starving Children ministry. Along with her husband, Scott, she was an integral part of starting OWP Pharmaceuticals.
Patricia A. Gibson, MSSW, DHL, ACSW
Patricia is an Associate Professor in the Department of Neurology at Wake Forest University School of Medicine. She also serves as Director of the Epilepsy Information Service, a nationwide telephone information line for patients and their families. Ms. Gibson has organized numerous state, regional, national and international conferences on epilepsy as is the recipient of national and international awards for her work to improve the care of those with epilepsy.
Marvin A. Rossi, MD, PhD
Dr. Rossi is a neurologist and epileptologist with a doctorate in molecular biophysics. He has more than 25 years of experience within regional NAEC-affiliated specialized epilepsy centers. Dr. Rossi serves as Associate Professor and Co-Director of the Multimodality Neuroimaging & Neuroengineering Laboratory, and as Associate Director of Translational Research of the Rush Epilepsy Center at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.
Emilio Perucca, MD, PhD
Dr. Perucca is Professor of Pharmacology at University of Pavia (Italy) Medical School and Director of the Clinical Trial Centre at IRCCS C. Mondino Foundation’s National Institute of Neurology in Pavia. He has contributed to several advocacy initiatives to improve epilepsy services and funding for epilepsy research in Europe and beyond. Emilio has served many roles with the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE), including four years as President.
Kurt Florian, JD
With a law degree from Duke University, Kurt was previously a partner at Lord, Bissell & Brook and Katten Muchin Rosenman law firms before moving to Vanderbilt Capital Advisors. He was on the board of the Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Chicago for more than 20 years and served as President/CEO from 2012 to 2017. His childhood experiences with seizures, as well has his daughter’s epilepsy, have inspired his commitment to the epilepsy community.
Samuel O. Okpaku, MD, PhD
Dr. Okpaku is the Founder/President of the Center for Health, Culture and Society in Nashville. He is a graduate of Edinburgh University Medical School and holds a Ph.D. in Social Research and Welfare from Brandeis University, Waltham, MA. He has been on the faculties of the University of Pennsylvania Medical School, Yale University, Vanderbilt University Medical and Meharry Medical School Nashville. He’s a Fellow of the College of Surgeons and Physicians Canada and a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association.
Aashit Shah, MD
Dr. Shah earned his medical degree from Smt. NHL Municipal Medical College at Gujarat University in India and completed his residency and a fellowship in clinical neurophysiology at Wayne State University and Detroit Medical Center. He is the Chief of Neurology for Carilion Clinic in the Roanoke, VA area. Dr. Shah has dedicated his professional life to the research, diagnosis and treatment of epilepsy.
Serge Pierre-Louis, MD
Dr. Serge Pierre-Louis attended medical school at the State University of Haiti. He trained in Internal Medicine and Neurology in Cleveland, then in epilepsy in Chicago. He is Associate Professor of Neurology at Rush University Medical Center and Director of the Epilepsy Clinic & the Clinical Neurophysiology Lab at John H. Stroger, Jr. Hospital in Chicago.
Acting President / Director of Global Programs
Ken has more than 25 years of experience with international nonprofits, both on staff as well as in a consultancy role. He holds a dual major MBA in International Business and Finance. For Ken, the ROW Foundation is a perfect fit as he was diagnosed with epilepsy at a young age, which has been effectively controlled by medication. He knows the critical importance of effective diagnosis and treatment and the life-changing impact they can have on individuals and families.
Lori earned her degree in Applied Psychology/Business from North Central College in Naperville Illinois. Since graduating, she has been professionally involved in adult education, community education, social services and refugee relief. As Program Developer for ROW, Lori works with all facets of the foundation, focusing on grant-making, organizational relations and social media. Her great joy is equipping others to overcome obstacles and gain self-sufficiency.
Communications Director / Writer
Mike has been a full-time writer since 1996 and has authored more than 20 books as well as hundreds of online and print articles on a wide variety of topics. Genres include business, faith, juvenile fiction and autobiography. He’s been writing and editing for ROW since its inception. Mike’s an avid reader, amateur winemaker, aspiring ballroom dancer and five-time cancer survivor who tries to make the most of every day.
President (Former and Future)
Paul Regan, President of the ROW Foundation from 2014 onward, is on a leave of absence to serve as Chief Operating Officer of OWP Pharmaceuticals, where he is helping build the infrastructure needed to support their rapid growth. He anticipates returning to his role as president in 18-24 months. In the meantime, Ken Koskela is serving as Acting President.