Voting for the 2012 Brain Injury Advocate ended May 31st, 2012. The winner will be announced June 4th 2012.

Nathaniel Mayer MD

“It is a great pleasure and honor to nominate Dr. Nathaniel H. Mayer for consideration for the Anapol Advocate Award. His conceptual development, vision and research served as the foundation to develop the Drucker Brain Injury Center at MossRehab one of the very first centers devoted to the rehabilitation care of patients with traumatic brain injury with a focus on function, family and community reintegration. His work has served as a model for other national and international programs. His research work in the upper motor neuron syndrome effect on function has been widely adopted by many in the field of neurorehabilitation. Nathaniel H. Mayer, MD graduated from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in 1968. In 1973 he completed his residency in PMR at Temple University/MossRehab. During residency training, he was awarded a postdoctoral fellowship from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences for the study of biomedical engineering. Dr. Mayer currently is Emeritus Professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation at Temple University School of Medicine; he is Director of the Motor Control Analysis Laboratory at MossRehab. Dr. Mayer has also served as editor of the Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation for over 15 years. His clinical interests is in the rehabilitation of people with traumatic brain injury with special emphasis on functional problems of movement disorders in such individuals. Dr. Mayer is a renowned lecturer and has shared his knowledge on brain injury rehabilitation around the world. Dr. Mayer has had a distinguished carrier in the field of rehabilitation and is recognized regionally, nationally and internationally as a leader and clinical concept innovator in the field of brain injury rehabilitation. Dr. Mayer has tirelessly has advocated for integrated systems of rehabilitation care for patients with traumatic brain injury with the goal of reintegration to family and the community.”

If Dr. Mayer wins, a $5,000 donation will be given to The Moss Rehab Hospital – Motor Control Analysis Laboratory

Symme Trachtenberg

“In 1994, Symme Trachtenberg, MSW, LSW was the Director of Social Work at Children’s Seashore House, a pediatric rehabilitation hospital, now a part of The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) at the time that her daughter Jocelyn was in a car crash, sustaining a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). She knew that cognitive re-training was critical for her daughter’s recovery. She also knew that parents without her background did not have the benefit of knowing what to do for their children with mild to moderate brain injury. Ever since, Symme Trachtenberg has dedicated her personal and professional life to improving the recovery and quality of life for children with TBI. Symme is currently striving for universal screening for TBI, as well as universal understanding of the critical need for cognitive rest after concussion. Symme currently serves as the Ombudsman for the State TBI Health, Resources, Services Administration Federal grant, is the Advisory Board Vice Chair, and the Co-chair for the Children’s Task Force. She was the past Chair of the Education Committee that encouraged DOH to give mini-grants to schools and sports teams to begin using IMPACT testing to determine an athlete’s baseline status and status after hitting his/her head to determine concussion. In addition, Symme has co-chaired brain safety fairs, presented on brain injury at multiple conferences, consulted with the PA American Academy of Pediatrics, and directs the TBI Transition Program at CHOP, offering services and training to youth 15 to 19 years old with a TBI and their families.”

If Symme Trachtenberg wins, a $5,000 donation will be given to The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

Rebecca Ichord, MD

“Rebecca Ichord, MD is an expert in brain injury and stroke in children. She is dedicated to increasing awareness of childhood strokes, preventing a repeat stroke and minimizing damage from the first one. Dr. Ichord is Director of the Pediatric Stroke Program and Assistant Professor of Neurology and Pediatrics at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). The Pediatric Stroke Program at CHOP is among the first programs of its kind in the US. Under Dr. Ichord’s leadership, the Program provides comprehensive assessment and treatment for children and infants who suffer from strokes and has achieved standards of excellence in all fundamental realms of the program – clinical care, research, education and advocacy. The Program has established acute stroke care protocols, with a 24-7 rapid-response stroke service based in the neurology consultation service. In addition to the acute care program, Dr. Ichord led the development of an out-patient multidisciplinary stroke clinic. Children and families have the benefit of seeing a stroke-oriented neurologist along with a nurse, rehabilitation therapists, social worker, education coordinator and neuropsychologist. Dr. Ichord’s research activities centered on acute brain injury have flourished in parallel with the growth of the clinical program. She and her colleagues have enrolled patients into CHOP’s stroke registry database which is the foundation for a long-term prospective cohort study of childhood stroke of all types. In addition, Dr. Ichord shares her expertise through numerous speaking engagements, serves as a research mentor for up-and-coming clinicians and founded the first pediatric stroke fellowship program in the US.”

If Dr. Ichord wins, a $5,000 donation will be given to The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

Monica Vaccaro

“Ms. Vaccaro has spent two decades helping individuals with brain injury. She has worked as a rehabilitation clinician at MossRehab in both inpatient and community reentry programs, has coordinated research projects conducted at Moss Rehabilitation Research Institute, that have helped to validate new treatments for individuals with brain injury. Since 2005, she has divided her time between these clinical and research activities, and work for the Brain Injury Association of Pennsylvania, organizing support services and advocacy for individuals with TBI living in the community. In her clinical work, she demonstrates enormous insight into the lived experience of her clients, and offers clear goal-directed options to address their problems. In her research, she has helped develop evidence for the impact of stimulant drug treatment on attention problems, and has been involved in studying psychological treatments that can help survivors develop productive activities and manage interpersonal problems. Since 2005 she has also worked for BIA-PA, first helping to organize support groups all over the state of Pennsylvania, and more recently, serving as Program Manager, supporting such critical programs as School Re-Entry for students with brain injury, Brain Injury Education and Training of non-traditional professionals, and programs to assist individuals to access state and federal benefits for which they are eligible. Ms. Vaccaro’s entire work life has been devoted to helping individuals with brain injury and their families maximize their quality of life, through clinical service, research, and advocacy, all carried out with tremendous empathy and intelligence.”

If Monica Vaccaro wins, a $5,000 donation will be given to The Brain Injury Association

Curry Durborow

“Curry is a physical therapist who specializes in Brain Injury Rehab, both inpatient and outpatient therapy. Four years ago, Curry went above her “normal” work duties to organize a 5k race which benefits the Brain Injury Association of PA. She continues to organize the race each year, overseeing all of the fundraising, the race details, and advertising for the race. While working at Bryn Mawr Rehab, Curry has participated in research and education in the area of mild TBI and concussion, and has presented her findings to the APTA. She has also obtained specialized certification in Locomotor training for patients with Brain Injury.”

If Curry Durborow wins, a $5,000 donation will be given to The Brain Injury Association