Lary Robinson, MD
Lary Robinson, MD, is one of the nation's most highly recommended thoracic surgeons. Upon completion of his medical degree from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri, Dr. Robinson continued his education with general and thoracic surgery residencies at Duke University as well as a fellowship in cardiac research and clinical cardiac surgery at St. Thomas' Hospital in London, England. He is currently practicing thoracic Surgical Oncology at Moffitt Cancer Center. He is author of over 120 medical publications, 19 book chapters, and editor of a textbook, most of which involve thoracic oncology. Throughout his years as a medical professional, Dr. Robinson has been directly involved in 8 clinical cancer research programs relating to lung cancer and mesothelioma. Throughout his career, thousands of patients have been treated successfully with Dr. Robinson's clinical expertise and compassionate care.
Maureen Riser has worked in the health care industry for more than 24 years; the majority of that time was spent at Florida’s Moffitt Cancer Center working as an inpatient nurse, outpatient clinic nurse, case manager, financial analyst, operations manager and a department administrator overseeing hospital and physician practices in multiple departments. Riser also was employed as a regional director for a local hospice and as an administrator for a national home health company. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing and a Master’s degree in Business Administration.
Maureen had a desire to share her previous experiences with her community and decided to venture into the senior care industry. Her primary goals are to grow a successful business, which is measured by exceptional satisfaction experienced by both clients and employees, and to develop a partnership within Hernando County that empowers seniors to strive for the best life possible.
Christie Pratt-Pozo is the program administrator for the Department of Thoracic Oncology and program coordinator for the Lung and Thoracic Tumor Education (LATTE) program at Moffitt Cancer Center. Christie earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Florida, a Master's degree in Gerontology from the University of South Florida, and a Doctorate of Health Science from Nova Southeastern University. Prior to joining Moffitt in 2008, Christie worked for more than five years in the non-profit sector, where she discovered the value and importance of advocate integration into program development. She currently serves as a patient advocate for multiple national committees. Having worked diligently on the implementation of Prelude to a Cure, Inc., Christie is excited to be planning the organization's upcoming events.
Martha Hackett has been a Moffitt employee since 2002, working in the Cell Therapies Facility. She is an alumnus of the University of South Florida (USF) where she graduated with a Master’s in Public Health in Epidemiology and Biostatistics. She completed her undergraduate studies in her native city of Bogotá, Colombia graduating as a Microbiologist. Martha was touched by lung cancer when her mother was diagnosed with the disease in May of 2010 and passed away in May of 2011. Shortly after, she became a member of the Lung and Thoracic Tumor Education (LATTE) forum as a research advocate; collaborating with the spread of scientific information to the general community. Her interest in expanding her participation as an advocate led her to volunteer with fundraising activities for Prelude to a Cure.
“I support Prelude to a cure because it is the perfect venue to raise awareness and funding for lung cancer research at one of the top Cancer Research Centers of the country. I can’t think of a better way to heal my soul, stay alert with what goes on in my own body and contribute to help lung cancer patients and families spend more and better time together”.
Deanna Grubbs graduated from Rutgers University PA Program and has been a Physician Assistant for 25 years with experience in OB/Gyn, family practice, and Gyn Onc prior to coming to Moffitt Cancer Center in 2004 to work in Thoracic Surgery. She has given presentations on Pancoast Tumors and Lung Cancer Screening. Two of her uncles passed away from lung cancer so she has seen personally and professionally the effects of lung cancer on patients and their families. The strength to do her job comes from the hugs and smiles of patients especially those that come for years after their diagnosis and treatment, but sadly there is not enough of those hugs and smiles.
More research for lung cancer is needed to improve treatments and survival. Prelude to a Cure provides research funding for innovative research for Lung Cancer and I believe that is the only way we will ever improve our rate of survival and treatment options. I am proud to be a part of this "out of the box thinking" non-profit.
Kathryn King-Greene is a visionary who identifies people with common goals and puts them together like a puzzle. Kathy graduated from the University of Florida's College of Journalism and Communications with a degree in Public Relations. She worked with the non-profit Pier Aquarium for eleven years starting as a volunteer and eventually becoming the Executive Director. This project linked the City of St. Petersburg, USF's Department of Marine Science, and a consortium of educational, environmental and cultural organizations together to support a marine discovery center and tourist destination at The Pier. Her role included building relationships with key partners in the community, exhibit/program design, fundraising, organizing volunteers and grant writing.
Several years ago Kathy received her certification in Visual Coordination and started The Balanced Room. Her desire is to design interesting, functional spaces that are a reflection of the people who live and work in them. She enjoys collaborating with a team of talented professionals to transform homes one room at a time. In addition, her passion for non-profit work is still alive and driven by the mission, need and substance of the cause.
Kathy is honored to be one of five women who created "The White Ribbon Soiree" to benefit Prelude to a Cure. The "Soiree Ladies" started out as acquaintances with a common cause and have become dear friends and allies in the fight against Lung Cancer. She believes in the mission of Prelude to a Cure and the passion of the team behind it.
Rosie has been an active supporter of the Prelude to a Cure organization for almost 3 years. Rosie's passion to join the fight against the devastating effects of lung cancer is primarily due to her personal experience losing several dear friends to lung cancer. Having been a full time mother and homemaker for the last 20 years, Rosie brings a practical local community perspective to the organization. She has volunteered in many different capacities throughout her community. A proven fundraiser equally adept at engaging small business owners and individual contributors, Rosie also is an energetic member of the White Ribbon Soiree Committee.
Debbie was the Southeastern Event and Sports Marketing Manager representing Gatorade for eighteen years. During her career she developed countrywide youth programs with the National Football League and negotiated sideline contracts with professional sports teams and college sports. She and her team worked with many sports legends along the way and when coaxed shares some of her favorite encounters. She retired from Gatorade in 2006 to pursue her love of art and design. Debbie’s passion for finding beautifully designed, well-crafted home décor, art and accessories is in her DNA. In fact, her family has specialized in sourcing handmade, one of a kind pieces for more than three decades. Debbie followed her family’s footsteps by opening the doors to Orange – a chic gallery filled with the eclectic color, artistry, elegance and whimsy of top-quality uncommon designs.
Still connected to her roots in marketing she chooses to support local non-profits in the community by hosting fundraisers at Orange and serving on several boards. She was approached by friends in 2012 to co-chair and create “The White Ribbon Soiree” to raise funds for lung cancer research. Ironically her neighbor and dear friend was battling lung cancer and she wanted to become involved in something that would make a difference and honor Joel. She believes Prelude to a Cure is the perfect grass roots organization to create awareness and raise funds for lung cancer research.
Tonja has worked as a paralegal and office manager in Tampa Bay area law firms over the past 30 years, including some with tobacco litigation departments. She always associated lung cancer with smoking, but her thinking changed when within months, first a brother, then a friend who had never smoked, developed lung cancer. Both had families and careers until lung cancer claimed their lives.
These twin tragedies galvanized Tonja into action. Something had to be done to raise awareness of the problem and end the stigma associated with lung cancer as a “smoker's disease”. She discovered that lung cancer research receives the least amount of funding of any of the major cancers. Together with her friends, she helped found the “White Ribbon Soiree” which sponsored two events in 2013 and 2014 to raise money for Prelude to a Cure.
Tonja shares Prelude's goal to eliminate lung cancer and hopes to help achieve this goal in our lifetime.