Board of Directors

President – Nick Consiglio

Nick Consiglio is a founding member of LRL and his very personal motivation for putting so much energy into the organization is simple and yet profound: In 1979 Nick’s best-friends Paul & Sharon Dragan’s 4-year old son P.J. was diagnosed with cancer. “I made a personal promise to young P.J. that I would never give up until the day I died in trying to find a cure for childhood cancer. P.J. died one week after celebrating his 8th birthday,” Nick explains, “I recommitted my vow to him that I would do everything in my power to find that elusive cure.”
Nick has worked tirelessly for over three decades in search of that cure and remains as committed as ever to the Kids Without Cancer mission to eradicate childhood cancer.
Nick currently works for Johnson Controls in Plymouth, Michigan as Corporate Manager, Supply Chain Logistics. He has held similar positions over the past 38 years with The Stroh Brewery Company, Ryder Transportation Management, and Plastech Engineered Products.  Email: nick@kidswithoutcancer.org

Vice PresidentChris Olzem

Treasurer – Lori Dertouzos

Lori and her family have been involved with KWC for several years. Having lost a childhood friend to leukemia, the cause has a special place in her heart. She is honored to be part of an organization that has been committed to raising funds for pediatric cancer research for over thirty years. Lori has worked for nine years in various financial reporting roles at Metaldyne. Previously, she worked as an auditor for Ernst & Young. She is a CPA and graduate of Albion College.  Email: lori@kidswithoutcancer.org

 

Assistant Treasurer – Joe Dertouzos

Joe Dertouzos is a scientist and manager at General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems, specializing in the design of optical systems for the defense industry. Previously, he worked as an engineer for Sensicore and as a consultant. Joe holds a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Michigan. Working with KWC is a chance to give back for the many blessings in his life.  Email: joe@kidswithoutcancer.org

 

 

Recording Secretary – Susanne Consiglio

When Susanne moved to Michigan in 1996, she was introduced to LRL by Nick, her husband-to-be at the time. Susanne had always been healthy, no illness in her family, and she wanted to find a way to give back to a worthy organization – one whose mission focused on research. Visits to the oncology unit at Children’s Hospital in Detroit affected her most – listening to young moms and dads telling their stories, learning that their child had been diagnosed with cancer and how this suddenly changed their lives forever. These stories compelled her to do more and to remain committed to LRL. “Having seen toddlers that were once diagnosed with cancer and who were now teenagers in complete remission is what makes it all worthwhile for me”, says Susanne.
Susanne is a registered dietitian in private practice counseling clients to improve their quality of life, and is also the Executive Director of the Michigan Dietetic Association.  Email: susanne@kidswithoutcancer.org

 

Corresponding Secretary – Mary Ellen Klein

Mary Ellen Klein is a founding member of LRL – she began her crusade against pediatric cancer when, in 1981 her son Danny was being treated for Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL). “The urgency that you feel as a parent for everything possible to be done for your child is beyond description and this feeling is what inspired me and my husband, Mike, to join resources and ideas with other like parents to make a difference! Although the mission statement of LRL is to eradicate childhood cancer by supporting pediatric cancer research, my personal mission has been to help provide hope to parents going through the experience of a child with cancer knowing that this little army of volunteers cares deeply about improving the future for their child.  Email: maryellen@kidswithoutcancer.org

 

Director of Community Relations – Dana Hesano

My name is Dana Hesano and I joined this organization in May 2004. At that time, I was looking to get involved with volunteering at Children’s Hospital and after some research I came across the Leukemia, Research, Life / Kids Without Cancer website. I was very interested in this organization because the work they do goes directly to fund childhood cancer research. I was very impressed by the mission, its members, and all of the work that they do for pediatric cancer research.
In 2005 I found out one of my closest friends was diagnosed with Leukemia. Today she is cancer free but still struggles daily with the side effects from her treatment. Now, more than ever, I am committed to this organization and its mission to find a cure for childhood cancer. I believe in the cause and in the members and I am honored to be a part of this wonderful charity.
My mother, Vicki Hesano, is also a volunteer with me. She has such compassion and dedication to this cause, and helps with our annual fundraising event every year.
Dana Hesano is an Advertising Specialist at Domino’s Pizza in Ann Arbor, MI.  Email: dana@kidswithoutcancer.org

 

Director of Volunteers – Sue Sargent

In June of 1993, our world changed forever when our beautiful 12 year old daughter Chrissy was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. The next three months were a roller coaster that no one should have to endure. Chrissy lost her battle less than three months later. Needless to say, we were devastated. I began attending the grievance support group at Children’s Hospital of Michigan where another family mentioned Leukemia, Research, Life (LRL). My husband, Jim, and I first attended an LRL Evening of Hope Event in 1996 and have continued to attend ever since.
Initially I felt I had nothing to offer since I had no prior volunteer experience. I could not have been more wrong. I started out attending occasional meetings and now I serve as the Director or Volunteers. I feel very satisfied that I can help raise awareness and funds to eradicate pediatric cancer. We held a fundraiser “Comedy for a Cause” in memory of Chrissy on her 30th birthday; it went so well that it is now an annual fundraiser.
I am amazed at how many people, including many of my family and friends, share the vision of KIDS WITHOUT CANCER and are helping us to make it happen!
Sue Sargent lives in Livonia, Michigan with her husband Jim and has a daughter Jill and two grandchildren. Sue has worked for Comerica Bank for 30 years.  Email: sue@kidswithoutcancer.org

Director-at-Large – Mike Klein

Email: mike@kidswithoutcancer.org

 

Executive Director  - Christina Vandenberg

In August of 2007 Christina and her husband received the frightening news that one of the couple’s three daughters had Stage IV Wilms Tumor.  Also known as nephroblastoma, Wilms Tumor is a type of kidney cancer that affects children. Chris came to know firsthand the level of care and expertise available at Children’s Hospital of Michigan, as well as seeing how essential advanced treatments were to successfully fighting this disease.  In her own words, “I had always been a supportive volunteer of various cancer organizations, and as a teacher, I even home schooled a number of children with cancer who were unable to attend school. But none of my experiences or empathy for the families had prepared me for the reality of going through it myself. The indebtedness I feel towards Children’s, along with all of their staff and volunteers, is immeasurable.” Chris’ daughter is a survivor, and Chris wanted to join the battle to help other children survive it too.  Knowledge is power and Chris feels that Kids Without Cancer is the perfect organization, helping to provide the doctors and researchers at Children’s Hospital of Michigan with the necessary funds to do the much needed research.

Christina became the Executive Director of Kids Without Cancer in November, 2011.

Email: execdirector@kidswithoutcancer.org

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