Get to know our team and board of directors...
David Steinhorn, MD, Medical Director
Dr. Steinhorn is a graduate of the University of Minnesota Medical School with post-graduate training in Pediatric Hepatology and Critical Care. He was a Bioethics consultant under Arthur Caplan, PhD, at the University of Minnesota Hospitals and Clinics where he was an attending physician in Pediatric Critical Care. Following relocation to the Children’s Hospital of Buffalo in 1991, Dr. Steinhorn undertook post-doctoral clinical training in Hospice and Palliative Care under Dr. Robert Milch. At that time, Dr. Steinhorn became the first medical director and assisted in creating the Essential Care Program in Buffalo. From 1999 until 2012, he was a Professor of Pediatrics at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and served as Medical Director of the Bridges Palliative Care Program at Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago. Dr. Steinhorn was the Medical Director for the Children’s Memorial Hospital Integrative Medicine Initiative for seven years, which undertook research on complementary medicine in children. Dr. Steinhorn served on the Executive Committee and was a founding member of the AAP’s Section on Hospice and Palliative Medicine.
He was on the medical advisory board of Almost Home Kids, a transitional care facility in Naperville, IL, and was the advisor to the Northern Illinois Pediatric Palliative Care Coalition. Dr. Steinhorn has additional training in energy medicine, yoga, meditation, and shamanism. He currently serves as an attending physician in pediatric cardiac critical care at the UC-Davis Medical Center. He is certified by the American Academy of Pediatrics in Critical Care and Hospice and Palliative Medicine as well as by the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Care.
Dr. Steinhorn’s goals are to enhance the availability of palliative and respite services throughout the Northern California region through the development of collaborative coalitions of organizations that care for children with life-limiting conditions. He has been a leader with NHPCO in developing standards of care for pediatric palliative care and hopes to continue developing that work in Northern California. He is the Principal Investigator in a pilot project in Torrance, CA to use telehealth to assess and manage pediatric patients receiving home hospice care.
Alexandra Abrams, MD, Associate Medical Director
Kathy Nicholson Hull, Psy.D, M.A., Co-founder & Vice President of the Board
Kathy has been active in clinical psychology for more than 25 years. For the last ten years, her professional life has been focused on the development of the George Mark Children's House. She is the staff psychologist and vice president of the Board of Directors. Kathy is also an adjunct staff member of Children's Hospital Oakland, where she spent several years as part of an interdisciplinary team that treated young oncology patients and their families. In addition, she has been a staff member at the Ann Martin Children's Center, a local non-profit organization that offers low-fee counseling services to the culturally diverse Oakland community.
She is a member of several professional organizations, including the American Psychological Association, the Northern California Society of Clinical Hypnosis, and the Association of Transpersonal Psychology. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from the University of California, Santa Barbara, a Master of Arts in marriage, family and child counseling from Santa Clara University, and a Doctor of Psychology from the Illinois School of Professional Psychology. Kathy is married to Bill Gisvold and has seven daughters, one son, and eight grandchildren.
Lucy Weiger, MPH, Chief Executive Officer
Lucy Weiger is a Healthcare Executive with over 25 years of experience in healthcare operational management and consulting. Lucy’s background covers three major facets of healthcare leadership: health plan operations, network development and provider contracting; the administration and operational management of hospitals, and the administration and operational management of physician practices. In regards to health plan network development, she has a concentrated expertise in all aspects of product management, network development, provider contracting, negotiations and implementation. Her experience has included risk contracting with large scale medical systems, such as the Partner’s System in Boston, as well as individual hospitals, physician groups and ancillary contracts. She has also led a number of physician recruitment initiatives for health systems and insurance companies. Other areas of her expertise reside in all hospital and physician operations with a focus on supporting ancillaries and new business development.
Lucy provides a unique blend of strategic, operational and financial experience as a result of her multiple executive roles in the healthcare field including Kaiser-Permanente in Northern California, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Patient Choice Health Plan, Sonoma Valley Hospital, and St. Joseph Health system. Highlights of her career include being the CEO of a start-up health plan, Patient Choice, where she directed all aspects of the provider network contracting, as well as over five years as the Director of Hospital and Physician Contracting for the metro Boston region of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Massachusetts. She has over ten years of consulting expertise.
Lucy is a Member of the American College of Healthcare Executives and has a Master’s Degree in Public Health from Yale University, as well as a Bachelor’s from Connecticut College. She also served in the Peace Corps in Ghana, West Africa.
Ken Sommer, Director of Advancement
Ken has more than 25 years of experience working for Bay Area nonprofit organizations in fundraising, marketing and communications, public relations, and special event production. His previous work experience includes positions with Children’s Hospital Oakland, Glide Church and Foundation, San Francisco Opera, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation. Ken grew up in Berkeley and has been a Bay Area resident for over 40 years; he is married to Emily and has two sons, Benjamin and Nathaniel. He serves on the Boards of Directors for Aurora School and North Oakland Community Charter School, both located in Oakland. Ken enjoys sports, gardening, cooking, and music.
Board of Directors - *Independent Voting Members
*Linda Ashcraft Hudak, Esq. - Associate Director of Labor Relations, University of California
Professionally, Linda presently serves as the Associate Director of Labor Relations for the University of California Office of the President, providing labor and employee relations guidance and advice system-wide to ten campuses, five medical centers and one national laboratory. Linda has over 30 years of experience representing private industry, state and local governmental entities, in a variety of matters, including collective bargaining negotiations, labor and employee relations, serving as a Trustee on pension and health benefit plans, and providing guidance on a host of personnel and administrative matters.
Linda also was appointed and served as CEO in one of California’s Superior Courts, managing a staff of over 250 employees. Time spend with the Judicial Council and the Administrative Office of the Courts, in the capacity of Manager of Labor and Employee Relations expanded the scope of her duties by working throughout the state of California with trial courts, appellate courts, the Supreme Court, the Habeas Corpus Resource Center and the Commission on Judicial Performance.
Upon receiving her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Montana, she taught school in Oakland then proceeded to obtain her Juris Doctorate from San Francisco Law School and an advanced certificate from Harvard Law School in the field of Labor Negotiations.
Linda has served as Vice President of the Junior League of San Francisco and on the Board of Directors of Florence Crittenton Service in San Francisco, while volunteering in the Walnut Creek and Acalanes School Districts. Linda’s community service has included working with Court Appointed Advocates and as Public Affairs Legislative Liaison.
Linda has been married to Richard for 44 years and together they have two daughters, Schuyler and Whitney.
*Madeline Buty Curliano, Founding Partner, Buty & Curliano LLP
Madeline Buty is a founding partner of Buty & Curliano LLP, a boutique litigation firm in Oakland, CA. During her legal career, Madeline has worked with various medical facilities in California on issues relating to patient health care and compliance with federal and state health care requirements. She provides seminars and training to medical-legal staff on issues involving patient care. Madeline was born and raised in the Oakland area and has been involved in many local, civic and charitable organizations in the Bay Area.
*John M. Goldenring, MD, MPH, JD - Western Regional Medical Director, Care Management, Anthem
John M. Goldenring has been a Pediatrician and Adolescent Medicine specialist for over 30 years and a medical administrator, serving as a medical director for health plans and medical groups, for 17 years. He also has an active consulting practice in medical legal issues, including serving as an expert for the California Medical Board. He has been consultant for pharmaceutical companies and editor for on-line health education materials.
He graduated law school and has been licensed to practice law in California since 2006. He has written and lectured widely in several different fields and holds Board Certification in Pediatrics and Preventive Medicine and has also held sub-specialty certification in Adolescent Medicine. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine and the American College of Legal Medicine.
Dr. Goldenring has also been a policy advocate for many years, since attending Georgetown University for undergraduate and medical education and working on Capitol Hill. He is former member of and parliamentarian for the national board of directors of Physicians for Social Responsibility, and currently sits on the Board of Advisors for the Children’s Advocacy Institute at University of San Diego Law School, and is an active member of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine and the American College of Legal Medicine.
Kathy Nicholson Hull, Psy.D, M.A., Co-founder and Vice President of the Board
(See above information under “Care Team”)
*Katie Kaiser - Vice President, McKesson
Katie Kaiser is the Vice President of Executive Talent and Recruiting at McKesson Corporation in San Francisco. She is also a Member of the Board of Trustees of the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, a non-profit, private operating foundation focusing on health policy analysis and health journalism; Katie serves on both the Investment Committee and the Selection Committee of the KFF Board. Over the course of her career, Ms. Kaiser has held a variety of operational and leadership roles at leading organizations including Walt Disney Pictures, Nike, Yahoo!, the Smithsonian Institution and Korn/Ferry International. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College and an MBA from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business.
*Andrew G.M. Pitcairn - Geo Team, Apple
A senior sales director in the internet technology sector, Andrew joined the George Mark Children’s House Board as a representative of client families. The Pitcairn’s daughter received end-of-life care at the House in 2006. Prior to this, Andrew and his wife, Alex, had considerable experience advocating for their daughter to insure that she received therapy, education, and medical care appropriate to her disability. Andrew was educated and spent the early part of his career in the United Kingdom, and has spent the last 25 years in sales and marketing positions in Bay Area technology companies.
*Karen Snow Hawkins - Founder and Managing Director, Snow Consulting Group, Inc. Since starting her firm in 1998, Karen has helped many clients achieve their business and marketing goals. She has served as interim CMO, provided consultative and QA services on marketing strategy and plans, and led and delivered marketing programs—big and small, some highly focused and some ongoing—for her clients. She is particularly skilled at creating and managing complex global programs.
Prior to starting Snow Consulting Group, Karen led marketing for a variety of Accenture's (previously Andersen Consulting) high-growth global industry programs and priority businesses including Industrial Products, Electronics and High Tech, and Outsourcing. Karen's teams won two annual Thought Leadership Awards for marketing program excellence, selected by an outside panel of judges. She began her career with the company as an information technology consultant, leading systems integration projects in a variety of industries.
Karen earned a Bachelor of Science from the College of Engineering at Texas A&M University in 1984 where she received numerous awards for scholastic achievement, student leadership and contribution to the University. She received further training through The Darden School of Business Marketing Strategy Executive Program and the University of Southern California's Customer-Focused Marketing Executive Program.
Karen is active in community organizations such as The Cancer League, Inc., for which she served as a director and provided marketing and brand advisory services.
Barbara Beach, M.D., Co-Founder & Founding Medical Director
Barbara has been a pediatric oncologist at Children’s Hospital and Research Center Oakland for more than 30 years. As a result of her clinical interaction with Dr. Kathy Hull in the 1990’s, Barbara’s long-held dream of building a pediatric palliative care center was realized with the opening of George Mark Children’s House in 2004. Barbara received her Bachelor of Arts in sociology with honors from the University of California, Berkeley and her Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Southern California. She completed her pediatric residency at Children’s Hospital Oakland and her pediatric hematology oncology fellowship at the University of California, San Diego. She also has served as medical advisor for Hospice for Young People and Comfort for Kids. Barbara also has volunteered with the International Committee for the Red Cross and previously served as a board member at the Robert Sturhan Foundation. Barbara is married to Geoffrey Kotin, M.D. and has three sons.