Board of Directors
Jeffery C. Garvey
Blaine P. Rollins
Joseph C. Aragona
J. Dennis Cavner
Harold P. Freeman, M.D.
Sanjay Gupta, M.D.
David Johnson, M.D.
Craig Nichols, M.D.
Amelie G. Ramirez, Dr. P.H.
E. Lee Walker
Jeffery C. Garvey
Chairman and Founding Chair
Jeff Garvey is the founding and current chairman of the Board of Directors of the 16-year-old LIVESTRONG Foundation. Jeff is a pioneering venture capitalist, nationally recognized philanthropist and active contributor in the Austin community. He helped lead the Foundation’s growth from two employees and $10,000 in 1997 to a successful non-profit renowned for its innovative business approach and global brand and widely credited with changing the way the world views people affected by cancer. Jeff played a key role in recruiting the Foundation’s Board of Directors and launching its first major fundraising initiative, the Founder’s Circle, which served as the organization’s original seed money and allowed it to blaze a trail in the field of cancer survivorship. As a member of the Founder’s Circle himself, Jeff remains one of the LIVESTRONG Foundation’s largest individual donors.
Jeff and his wife of 43 years, Bonita, each lost both of their parents to cancer. Those experiences led him to a deep and abiding belief in the importance of patient-centered cancer care such as support services to help people navigate the financial, emotional and practical challenges that accompany a cancer diagnosis. As Board Chair, he has worked tirelessly alongside the Foundation’s senior leadership to emphasize and continuously improve the quality of the organization’s governance, its accountability to its donors, its transparency with the public and the effectiveness of its programs. These efforts have helped the Foundation earn its reputation as one of the most highly-rated cancer non-profit organizations in the United States, with a four-out-of-four star rating by Charity Navigator.
Jeff is the co-founder of Austin Ventures, one of the largest and most active venture capital firms in the U.S. From 1979-1999, he served as the firm’s first investment professional and a general partner and leader of the company through its first six investment funds, focusing on equity investments in media, communications and health care services. He actively participated as a board member with a variety of portfolio companies, many of which eventually became publicly held entities. Previously, from 1971-1979, Jeff held several senior lending and management positions at PNC Bank, in both Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.
Jeff’s enduring commitment to guiding and supporting a range of causes has earned him many accolades. In 2004, St. Andrew’s Episcopal School awarded him with the “Charles Alan Wright Excellence Award,” which recognizes individuals in the St. Andrew’s community whose lives are distinguished by a quest for excellence. The Association for Professional Fundraisers also presented Jeff with their “Outstanding Volunteer Fund Raiser of the Year” in 2000. In 1999, Prevent Blindness of Texas honored him as its “Person of Vision.”
The organizations in which Jeff has served as board member, adviser or donor over the years include KLRU Public Television, The Center For Childhood Protection, The First Tee of Greater Austin, Helping Hand Home, Children’s Medical Center Foundation, Ronald McDonald House Charities, Settlement Home for Children, The Association for Professional Fundraisers, Gladney Home For Adoption, West Austin Youth Association, St. Andrews Episcopal School, Deerfield Academy and St. Edward’s University.
Jeff and his wife have two children, Gyllian Conner Garvey, a graduate of The University of Texas, and Sloane Miller Garvey, a graduate of St. Edward’s University. Jeff received his B.A. in economics from St. Lawrence University in Canton, N.Y. and graduated from Deerfield Academy in Deerfield, Mass.
Blaine P. Rollins
Blaine Rollins is a testicular cancer survivor since 1998. He is managing director, senior portfolio manager and member of the Investment Committee at 361 Capital and is responsible for manager due-diligence, investment research, portfolio construction, hedging and trading strategies.
Prior to joining 361 Capital, Mr. Rollins was an independent investor from July 2006 to February 2011. Previously, he served as Executive Vice President at Janus Capital Corporation and portfolio manager of the Janus Fund, Janus Balanced Fund, Janus Equity Income Fund, Janus Aspen Growth Portfolio, Janus Advisor Large Cap Growth Fund, and the Janus Triton Fund. He began his career as a financial analyst at AMG Guaranty Trust (formerly Asset Management Group).
A frequent industry speaker, Mr. Rollins earned a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from the University of Colorado, and he is a Chartered Financial Analyst.
Mike Sherwin makes his home in Waite Hill Ohio about 15 miles East of Cleveland. Now retired, he spent his working life in the private equity capital investment business. As a result, he served on many corporate boards, both public and private as well as having an active role with several non-profit organizations including a term from 1992 to 1997 president of The Cleveland Museum of Art. Mike attended Lehigh University studying both mechanical engineering and business administration. Following graduation, he obtained his MBA at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School.
Joseph C. Aragona
Executive Committee Member
Joe Aragona is a founder and General Partner of Austin Ventures. AV has over $3 billion under management and is the most active venture and growth equity firm in Texas and among the most established in the nation. Since joining AV in 1982, Joe has focused on information technology and growth equity investing and has worked with software, communications, semiconductor and service companies. Prior to joining Austin Ventures, Joe earned both his MBA and bachelor's degree from Harvard University and worked in the Merchant Banking Group of the Bank of Boston and Chemical Bank
Joe was a member of the Board of Directors of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) from 1999 - 2006, chaired its Research Committee, and served as Chairman of the Board. Joe is also a member of the Board of Directors of Casa Montessori, an early childhood development center.
Candice has been a cancer survivor since 2006 and has been involved with LIVESTRONG since 2008. She was the founding Vice Chairperson of the LIVESTRONG Young Leader’s Council and its current Chairperson, and is together with her husband, Brent, a member of the LIVESTRONG President’s Circle. She is a lifelong runner, sometime beginner cyclist and all-around gym rat who also enjoys yoga, mountaineering and spending as much time as possible with her husband and two rescued dogs.
Candice grew up in Michigan, and graduated from the University of Michigan and the University of Pennsylvania Law School. In 2009, Candice left her law firm partnership, where she led the firm’s corporate governance and litigation practice, to join GE Capital. She is currently a Compliance Leader at GE Capital’s Americas unit. In that role, Candice manages a team responsible for designing and implementing bank regulatory Compliance programs and strategic regulatory initiatives.
J. Dennis Cavner
Dennis Cavner is a principal of Waxman Cavner Lawson, a financial services firm serving high net worth individuals. He has been actively involved with the Foundation since 1999, is a past Chairman of the Board and is a Trustee of the Lance Armstrong Foundation Endowment. Dennis holds both business and law degrees from the University of Texas at Austin and serves on the Advisory Board of the RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service of the LBJ School of Public Affairs at UT. He lives with his wife, Chris, in Austin, Texas.
Fort Worth, TX
Julian C. Day was elected chairman and chief executive officer of RadioShack Corporation on July 6, 2006 by the company's board of directors. Day has successfully served in senior leadership positions at several large publicly traded companies and has earned a reputation for successfully turning around companies that have experienced slow growth.
Day's retailing experience includes leadership positions at Kmart Holding Corporation (formerly the parent company of Kmart Corporation), where he was elected as president and chief operating officer in March 2002 and was promoted to chief executive officer in 2003. Day successfully took the company out of bankruptcy and led the company to substantially exceed its profit plans. Under his leadership, the company's value increased from $1.5 billion to $9 billion.
Prior to joining Kmart, he spent two years at Sears, first as chief financial officer and then as chief operating officer. As COO, he was a member of the Office of the Chief Executive and oversaw finance, logistics/supply chain, store operations, information technology and the company's business-to-business partnerships.
Before joining Sears, Day served as executive vice president and chief financial officer for Safeway, Inc., where he was responsible for financial, technology and real estate operations. While at Safeway, he strengthened the balance sheet and improved the company's credit rating, increased return on capital expenditures while tripling annual spending levels, and re-engineered the real estate development and construction process.
Day holds undergraduate and master's degrees from Oxford University and an MBA from the London Business School.
Harold P. Freeman, M.D.
New York, NY
Harold Freeman, M.D. is senior advisor to the director of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), Bethesda, Maryland. Dr. Freeman is also president and founder of the Ralph Lauren Center for Cancer Care and Prevention in New York, New York. He has been a professor of clinical surgery at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, also in New York. For twenty five years (1974 - 1999), Dr. Freeman was director of surgery at Harlem Hospital in New York. Dr. Freeman served as chairman of the US President's Cancer Panel for an 11 year period under both President George H. W. Bush and President Bill Clinton. Dr. Freeman served as national president of the American Cancer Society from 1988-1989. He is the chief architect of the American Cancer Society's initiative on Cancer in the Poor and is a leading authority on the interrelationships between race, poverty, and cancer. The Society established the "Harold P. Freeman Award" in 1990 to recognize his work in this area. This award is presented annually by American Cancer Society divisions throughout the U.S. to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the fight against cancer in the poor. Dr. Freeman pioneered the "Patient Navigation Program" which addresses disparities in access to treatment, particularly among poor and uninsured people. This program is designed to assist medically underserved patients in navigating their way through a complex health system by overcoming barriers to timely diagnosis and treatment of cancer. The success of Dr. Freeman's "Patient Navigation Program" has led many other health care organizations to adopt similar initiatives. Based on this model the Patient Navigator and Chronic Disease Prevention Act was signed into law by President Bush in June 2005. As a graduate of Catholic University of America, Dr. Freeman received the Harris Award for "Outstanding Scholar, Gentleman, and Athlete and was later inducted into the Athlete's Hall of Fame of the University.
Sanjay Gupta, M.D.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta is the Emmy®-award winning chief medical correspondent for the Health, Medical & Wellness unit at CNN. Gupta, also a practicing neurosurgeon, plays an integral role in the network's lead reporting on breaking medical news, regular health reports for American Morning and Anderson Cooper 360°, anchoring the weekend medical affairs program Sanjay Gupta, MD, and reporting for CNN documentaries. Gupta also contributes to CNN.com and CNNHealth.com, co-hosts "Accent Health" for Turner Private Networks, and writes a column for TIME magazine.
Gupta's passion for inspiring Americans to lead healthier, more active lives led him to launch "New You Resolution" and later "Fit Nation," CNN's multi-platform grassroots anti-obesity initiatives. In 2010, "Fit Nation" follows the progress of Gupta and several CNN viewers as they inspire each other towards better fitness, culminating in triathlon events in New York and Washington, DC.
In addition to his work for CNN, Gupta is a member of the staff and faculty at the Emory University School of Medicine. He is associate chief of neurosurgery at Grady Memorial Hospital and regularly performs surgery at Emory University and Grady hospitals. He is a member of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, Congress of Neurological Surgeons, and the Council on Foreign Relations. He serves as a diplomat of the American Board of Neurosurgery and is a certified medical investigator.
Before joining CNN, Gupta served in separate neurosurgical fellowships at the University of Tennessee's Semmes-Murphy clinic and the University of Michigan Medical Center. In 1997, he was selected as a White House Fellow, serving as a special advisor to First Lady Hillary Clinton.
Gupta received his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan and a doctorate of medicine from the University of Michigan Medical School.
David Johnson, M.D.
Executive Committee Member
Dr. Johnson is the Donald W. Seldin Distinguished Chair in Internal Medicine and Chairman of the Department of Internal Medicine at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, Texas. He is a member of the ABIM Board of Directors and serves as the Chair of the ABIM Subspecialty Board for Medical Oncology. From 1983 until 2010 Dr. Johnson was a member of the faculty at the Vanderbilt University Medical School where he held the Cornelius A. Craig Chair of Medical & Surgical Oncology and served as the Director of the Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology and Deputy Director of the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center.
Dr. Johnson's research interests involve the study of the biology of lung cancer and improving the treatment of this and other solid tumors. He played a key role in the development of the new targeted drugs bevacizumab (Avastin®) and erlotinib (Tarceva®) both of which are now FDA-approved for the treatment of lung cancer. He has authored over 330 peer reviewed articles, 40 book chapters and edited four oncology textbooks. In 2004-2005, Dr. Johnson served as President of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) during which time he helped advance ASCO's quality of care activity known as the Quality Oncology Practice Initiative (or QOPI®). QOPI® was subsequently adopted as a Practice Improvement Module for diplomates seeking to maintain their certification in medical oncology. He was instrumental in establishing ASCO's Cancer Survivorship Program. Dr. Johnson also has served on the Food and Drug Administration's Oncology Drug Advisory Committee, as chairman of the Thoracic Committee of the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group and on the Board of Directors of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) and the LIVESTRONG Foundation.
Dr. Johnson earned his medical degree from the Medical College of Georgia and obtained his medical oncology training at Vanderbilt University. He is board certified in internal medicine and medical oncology.
For 25 years, Mark McKinnon has been helping solve complex strategic challenges for causes, companies and candidates, including President George W. Bush, Senator John McCain, Governor Ann Richards, Congressman "Good Time" Charlie Wilson, Lance Armstrong and Bono.
McKinnon is an award-winning media producer and communications strategist who has served as principal media advisor for hundreds of corporate and political campaigns around the world. McKinnon has helped engineer five winning presidential primary and general elections. He has been awarded more than 30 Pollie and Telly awards, honoring the nation's best political and public affairs advertising.
According to Broadcasting and Cable magazine, McKinnon is one of "a handful of players behind every big decision, consensus or roadblock in Washington... putting a unique, sometimes hidden stamp on the outcome of today's debates." Politics Daily writes: "He's known for his originality in a field typified by copy-cats, a mellow personality in a world populated with high-strung brutes, and ecumenical urges in a profession dominated by its unadulterated partisans."
"McKinnon is evidence that principled centrism is not an oxymoron," wrote John Avalon in a Daily Beast column about the 25 Best Centrist Pundits. "McKinnon piloted John McCain's 2008 primary campaign to victory. But he announced in advance that if Barack Obama won the Democratic nomination, he would ride off into the sunset rather than participate in the negative attacks he knew would be required. This is unheard of in the world of modern politics, where partisanship trumps principle as a matter of course."
Former President Bush says of McKinnon, "I was really impressed by Mark's creativity, and I was particularly impressed by his honesty." Senator John McCain, in his typical straight talk fashion, says, "He's almost a genius." And President Obama calls McKinnon "a class act."
McKinnon is co-chair of Arts+Labs, a collaboration between technology and creative communities that have embraced today's rich internet environment to deliver innovative and creative digital products to consumers. President Bush appointed McKinnon to serve as a member of the Broadcasting Board of Governors. He currently serves on the boards of the LIVESTRONG Foundation and Change Congress, an organization dedicated to campaign finance reform, and lectures at the JFK School of Government at Harvard University and the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin.
McKinnon attended UT Austin and served as editor of the award-winning university newspaper, The Daily Texan. He spent several years in Nashville working as a song-writer with Kris Kristofferson. And was wildly unsuccessful. McKinnon also is a two-time Ironman finisher. His quality of life is exceptionally enhanced by the enduring love and patience of his wife, Annie (whom he met before he could drive), and his daughters, Brita, 25 and Kendall, 22.
McKinnon is a weekly columnist for The Daily Beast.
Craig Nichols, M.D.
Craig Nichols, M.D., is a world-renowned physician and researcher with special experience and expertise in treating patients with Hodgkin's disease, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and testicular cancer.
In his role as director of clinical program development at Providence Cancer Center, Dr. Nichols assembles multidisciplinary teams of researchers, physicians, nurses and support people to improve outcomes and the standard of care for other cancers as well. Highly specialized clinical expertise, groundbreaking research, and patient outreach and education are the hallmarks of these programs. Before joining Providence Cancer Center in 2007, Dr. Nichols served at Oregon Health & Science University as professor of medicine, the DeArmond Chair of Clinical Cancer Research, head of the Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology, and associate director of the Cancer Institute.
He previously served at Indiana University, obtaining the rank of professor of medicine. Dr. Nichols received his medical degree from OHSU. After completing his internal medicine residency at Alton Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans, he received fellowship training in hematology and oncology at Indiana University.
Amelie G. Ramirez, Dr. P.H.
San Antonio, TX
Amelie G. Ramirez, DrPH, is a Professor of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, where she also is founding director of the Institute for Health Promotion Research (IHPR). She also is the Dielmann Chair in Health Disparities Research and Community Outreach and the Max and Minnie Tomerlin Voelcker Endowed Chair in Cancer Healthcare Disparities and Outreach at the Cancer Therapy & Research Center (CTRC) at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. She also is Co-Associate Director of the Cancer Prevention and Population Science program at the CTRC. Over the past 25 years, Dr. Ramirez has directed many research programs focused on human and organizational communication to reduce chronic disease and cancer health disparities affecting Hispanics/Latinos and other populations. In 2007, Dr. Ramirez was elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies and was named a Professor of Survivorship by Susan G. Komen For the Cure. She chairs the CDC's Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection and Control Advisory Committee and Komen's National Hispanic/Latino Advisory Council, and is a member of Komen's Scientific Advisory Board, Avon Foundation Breast Cancer Crusade Scientific Advisory Board, the LIVESTRONG Foundation's Board of Directors and the Institute of Medicine Roundtable on Translating Genomic Based Research for Health.
San Diego, CA & Shanghai, China
Mr. Jeremiah Robins is Chairman & CEO of Great Pond Management Company, LLC – a US based Private Equity firm specializing in the acquisition of controlling positions in, and the redevelopment of, underperforming middle market manufacturing companies. Founded in 1979, GPMC has successfully invested across a broad industrial spectrum including enterprises in the Brass, Iron, Steel, Specialty Chemical, HVAC, Semiconductor Packaging, Coated and Specialty Optics and Medical Device markets. Mr. Robins & GPMC began operating in mainland China in early 1990 and the firm has had a continuing presence in the PRC since that time. At present, GPMC maintains a spectrum of investments each with their own very significant presence in China. These include Rotation Dynamics Corporation, a manufacturer of specialty materials for industrial applications, China Centric Associates, a consultancy specializing in US-China transactions, and PharmaLegacy, a provider of in-vivo laboratory services for the Pharmaceutical industry. A US citizen, Mr. Robins divides his time equally between the USA and China and maintains a home and office in each country.
Mitch is a veteran nonprofit executive with over 26 years of experience. Mitch has led a number of impressive organizations including Safe Kids Worldwide and The Marrow Foundation, where he provided the strategic vision and leadership necessary to strengthen the fundraising and recruitment potential of The National Marrow Donor Program, which maintains a registry of more than six million volunteers. Mitch also has served as the president and chief executive officer of the LIVESTRONG Foundation, where he was responsible for leading one of the fastest growing nonprofit organizations in the field of cancer survivorship. Among other things, Mitch implemented a paradigm-changing program in the nonprofit world by introducing the LIVESTRONG wristband campaign. In his role as president and chief executive officer of the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation, Mitch dramatically increased the funding and created the Dana and Christopher Reeve Quality of Life program, which has invested millions to the disability community every year. Mitch has a Bachelor of Science degree from Frostburg State University and a Master of Arts degree in philanthropy and development from Saint Mary's University of Minnesota. He serves on the board of directors of the LIVESTRONG Foundation and The Players Development Academy. He has been married to Sheri for 30 years and has two daughters, Betsy and Lauren.
E. Lee Walker
Raised in Three Rivers, Texas, Lee Walker graduated from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor's of Science in Physics (class of 1963) graduating Phi Kappa Phi (top academic 5% of his class), receiving NASA and National Science Foundation (NSF) funding for his post graduate work in nuclear physics (theoretical cosmic ray research). He was named Honorable Mention All Southwest Conference Basketball Team his senior year. Lee received his MBA from Harvard Business School in 1967. He served as the President of Dell Computer Corporation through its formative years. After leaving Dell in 1990 for health reasons, Lee was asked to teach at the University of Texas at Austin. The success of his "Elements of Entrepreneurship" and "Not for Profit Excellence" courses in the Graduate School Business Management Department earned him best teaching award three times. Lee teaches a freshman course entitled "Community and Place" in the Plan II Honors Program. The Austin Chamber of Commerce recognized Lee as their 1998 Austinite of the Year. In 2000 Lee was a founder of Envision Central Texas. In 2004, Lee received the Texas Nature Conservancy Lifetime Achievement award. In 2006 Lee and his wife Jennifer Vickers received the AFP's Outstanding Philanthropists of the year. Lee was elected as one of the 200 members of the Philosophical Society of Texas in 2005. In 2005 the LIVESTRONG Foundation created The E. Lee Walker Imagination Award, an annual grant up to $500,000 to researchers in cancer survivorship. Lee lives in Austin with his wife Jennifer and their two daughters, Gabriella and Giulia. In addition, Lee has two older daughters, Amanda and Suzanna Walker and a grandson, Sam, who also reside in Austin.