TEDMED Team

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Jay Walker
Curator and Chairman
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TEDMED's Curator and Chairman Jay Walker is also a longtime TED supporter. Beyond his role at TEDMED, he also chairs Walker Digital, a private invention lab based in Stamford, Connecticut. Founder of three companies that each serve more than 50 million customers, Jay is the world’s 11th most patented living inventor, with his name on 700 U.S. patents across a dozen different industries. Best known as the founder of Priceline, Jay is also the founder and curator of the world’s only Library of the History of Human Imagination.


See Jay's Full Bio

Jay Walker
Curator and Chairman
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Courtney Olean Paige
Director of Marketing Operations
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Courtney Olean Paige joined TEDMED in March, 2012 as Director of Marketing Operations, managing event marketing, email communication strategy, social media planning, and PR/press support.  She also supports the CMO with overall content and branding strategy for the organization.

Prior to joining TEDMED, Courtney was responsible for digital branding, marketing and advertising efforts for Stamford Hospital. Courtney is known to spill things often, lives to run long and far, loves a good warrior pose, and regularly country hops with her two partners in crime - her husband and six year old daughter.

Courtney Olean Paige
Director of Marketing Operations
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Wayne Bryant
Creative Director
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Wayne Bryant is the Creative Director of TEDMED, LLC and an enthusiastic member of the TEDMED community. A graduate of Syracuse University, Wayne has over 25 years of design expertise in building, supporting and developing new business enterprises. Wayne's former incarnations include creative and strategic roles at Educational Dimensions Corporation, Xerox Learning Systems, Catalog Media, NewSub Services, Synapse Group/TimeWarner and Walker Digital.
Wayne Bryant
Creative Director
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Michael MacFall
Production Coordinator
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A 30-year veteran of the graphic arts industry, Michael started out as a typesetter in the early ‘80s in New York. Prior to TEDMED, Michael was a Senior Systems Analyst at MFS Investment Management in Boston. Michael coordinates outside and internal printing, lends his eye to proofreading and copy editing, and makes sure most everything we print and post looks good. In addition, he provides technical support for other TEDMED employees, and makes sure everyone’s computer keeps working. He also handles badging for the event.
Michael MacFall
Production Coordinator
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Shirley Bergin
Chief Operating Officer
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Shirley Bergin is a Partner, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Marketing Officer of TEDMED. She is an accomplished business leader with experience working with leading digital enterprises such as AOL, InterActiveCorp and Priceline.com, and with global brands including Johnson and Johnson, GE, Unilever and Nestle. Shirley has developed and executed innovative business and marketing strategies across a variety of verticals for start-ups and established firms alike, successfully reinventing and introducing brands and building large online communities.  As COO/CMO of TEDMED, Shirley is responsible for leading the day- to- day operations – including all marketing and brand building responsibilities. She is also responsible for the design and implementation of the Great Challenges Program and The Hive.
Shirley Bergin
Chief Operating Officer
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Grace McElroy
Director of Partnership Development
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Grace McElroy heads up Partnership Development at TEDMED. For over 20 years, Grace has balanced a mix of creative and business pursuits in a wide range of industries. Formerly a script writer for a Grammy Award winning producer,  a publisher for regional magazines and an executive of a national health system, Grace has the  kind of multi-disciplinary experience that is fitting for a TEDMED team member. At TEDMED, her main responsibilities include developing sales strategies, enhancing existing partner relationships and building new ones. Some of Grace's non-work passions: her daughter Kate; music; cooking; and running.
Grace McElroy
Director of Partnership Development
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Whitney Zatzkin
Great Challenges Program Manager
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Whitney Bowman-Zatzkin is the Great Challenges Program Manager at TEDMED. Believing in the growth of inspiration through shared experiences, she comes to TEDMED after working in health and higher education policy in Washington, DC. A noted voice in health and social media, Whitney is a writer and editor for Disruptive Women in Health Care. She graduated from the University of Connecticut with a Master of Public Administration, focusing on health policy, and Master of Survey Research, focusing on generational trends in new media use. Her publications include work on health workforce demand, new models for primary care, health insurance exchanges, and community advocacy for health professionals.
A self-proclaimed NASA geek, she lives outside of Washington, DC with her husband, Jake, whom she met through Space Camp. 
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Whitney Zatzkin
Great Challenges Program Manager
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Nicole Bumpus Finn
Event Manager
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Nicole Bumpus Finn founded c to c events at the request of a longtime client in 2008.  Nicole’s creativity, eye on the budget and personal attention to detail are the keys to her success. She has produced hundreds of events for over 15 years and in over 35 cities worldwide from small dinners for 50 guests to large-scale productions for over 50,000 attendees.  Nicole’s clients have included Hogan Lovells, Johnson & Johnson, IBM, and many other international law firms, Fortune 500 entities and local companies.  In addition, she has planned events in conjunction with the International Trademark Association, the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property, the Biotechnology Industry Organization, the American & International Bar Association, the Licensing Executives Society International, and the Democratic & Republican National Conventions.
Nicole Bumpus Finn
Event Manager
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Jose Suarez
Chief Executive Officer
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Jose Suarez is a partner and CEO of TEDMED. A long-time partner with Jay Walker in several ventures, Jose served as President and COO of Walker Digital for eight years, where he managed the creation of more than 1,000 innovations. During his tenure at Walker Digital, Jose brought many of these innovations to market through licenses and strategic partnerships. Jose is CEO & founder of Suarez & Associates, LLC, a business advisory and investment firm, and yappr.com, a free, online learning site. Jose is an avid ultrarunner, who earned a Silver Buckle in 2010 finishing the Western States 100 Mile Endurance Run in 23 hours.

He graduated valedictorian from Virginia Tech with a B.S. in Industrial Engineering & Operations Research and has an MBA from The Wharton School.

Jose Suarez
Chief Executive Officer
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Marcus Webb
Chief Storytelling Officer
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Marcus Webb is Chief Storytelling Officer for TEDMED, LLC and Walker Digital, LLC.  Marcus works closely with TEDMED chairman Jay Walker on his speeches and other presentations. He also assists TEDMED speakers to develop and refine their talks, and serves as liaison between presenters and the TEDMED Speakers Coaching Network.  His responsibilities range from speechwriting to creation of marketing collateral including brochures, booklets, decks, video scripts, website copy, press releases, research documents, white papers, correspondence, etc.  As an integral member of the TEDMED and Walker Digital management teams, Marcus participates in business management and invention sessions, contributing ideas and tactics for strategy and execution of a wide variety of projects and ventures.


Marcus Webb
Chief Storytelling Officer
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Katie Hanson
Director of Partner Relations
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Fueled by a lifelong passion for driving change in health and medicine, Katie forges connections between TEDMED partners and entrepreneurs to create impactful programming and experiences for the TEDMED community. These collaborations catalyze imagination and fresh dialogue within the global medical community, producing actionable results that inspire forward-thinking transformation and advancement of its constituent industries. 

Katie is a visionary, innovative business leader with strategic sales/marketing communications experience. Working closely with organizations such as Abbott, AbbVie, Accenture, Mallinckrodt, and Takeda, she has galvanized teams to create powerful, innovative programs that engender passionate brand advocacy amongst participants. Katie excels at creating unconventional partnerships, which arouse emotion, change minds, and ultimately... spark the development of compelling, collaborative leadership and action.
Katie Hanson
Director of Partner Relations
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Evan Walker
Marketing Manager
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Evan Walker has been part of the TEDMED marketing team since 2011. He is also a key member of the Walker Digital invention team, where he has worked on a variety of startups ranging industries from health to English as a second language (ESL) to text-based cellphone services. Currently he is busy launching a startup that will help millions of people better manage their weight without going on a diet or giving up their everyday foods by using a simple mobile app or website.  Prior to joining Walker Digital, Evan served on the marketing team that helped launch the first annual World Science Festival in 2008. He is an avid reader of non-fiction, studied history at Cornell University, and enjoys playing around with formulas and numbers on Microsoft Excel.

Evan Walker
Marketing Manager
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Nassim Assefi
Director of Stage Content
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Nassim Assefi is a doctor, novelist, civic activist, TED Fellow and active member of the TED community. An internist specializing in global women’s health, she cares for vulnerable urban patients in the US and tackles maternal mortality when working in low-income and post-conflict countries (most recently in Afghanistan).  She is the author of Aria and Say I Am You (forthcoming). She serves as an advisor to non-profit organizations and companies--from Hedgebrook to ZocDoc--and has curated many events—including a guest session at TEDGlobal in 2013.  A second generation Iranian-American, bridge-builder and global-nomad, she has traveled to more than 50 countries and speaks and sings in five languages.  Recent honors include a Jack Straw Writing Fellowship, a Woman of Courage award by the University of Washington, Top 40 Under 40 Feminist by Feminist Press, and being named one of the best doctors by Seattle Metropolitan Magazine. 


Nassim Assefi
Director of Stage Content
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Alyssa Picchini Schaffer
Scientific Director
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Alyssa Picchini Schaffer is a marathon-running, novel-reading, coffee-drinking, afternoon-nap-loving scientist.  She is passionate about addressing significant problems in health and medicine by combining broad perspectives and attention to detailed scientific inquiry.  She is also a Columbia University Alumna, earning her PhD from the Pharmacology Department. Her research passion lies in understanding the biological basis of psychiatric disease.  While at Columbia, Alyssa investigated the cell biology, fate specification, and environmental regulation of neural stem cells in the adult brain. Following a post-doctoral fellowship, Alyssa completed a AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellowship at the US Department of Health and Human Services focusing on federal health policy. When not dabbling in Italian, she loves to focus her energy on empowering underprivileged teens, salsa dancing, and yoga. 
Alyssa Picchini Schaffer
Scientific Director
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Melanie Howley
Manager of Delegate Relations
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Melanie Howley is TEDMED’s Manager of Delegate Relations and Event Registration.  As a member of the application review team, she is fully committed to making TEDMED a positive and rewarding experience for Delegates and Scholars alike. Among her other responsibilities, she is in charge of Delegate relations, TEDMED event support, and is the operations director for event registration.  As an original staff member of Jay Walker’s initial startup (NewSub Services), she helped with its transition into Synapse Group, Inc, a direct marketing subsidiary of Time Warner Inc.  In her personal life she is a dedicated runner with a passion for a healthful lifestyle.
Melanie Howley
Manager of Delegate Relations
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Marissa Caan
Speaker Concierge
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Marissa Caan joined the TEDMED team in October 2013. As the Speaker Concierge, she assists the onstage content team with researching potential speakers and coordinating logistically with confirmed speakers in preparation for their TEDMED talks in Washington, D.C. Marissa graduated from Yale College in May 2013 with a B.A. in History, and will begin medical school in the Fall of 2014 at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, where she was admitted through the Humanities and Medicine program as a sophomore in college. She is interested in medicine both as a hard science and as an art of interpersonal interactions, and she is excited to learn from all of TEDMED’s amazing speakers. If she’s not hard at work, you can find Marissa either at Equinox or in a foreign country.  

Marissa Caan
Speaker Concierge
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Jon Ellenthal
President
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Jon Ellenthal is also Chief Executive Officer of Walker Digital, and is responsible for the P&L of all business operations, research and development, and IP portfolio licensing. Jon has 25 years' experience building and leading early stage companies with transformational business concepts to positions of industry leadership and large-scale customer bases. Prior to joining Walker Digital, Jon was the CEO of Synapse Group, Inc., a direct marketing subsidiary of Time Warner responsible for more than 30 million customers.

Jon Ellenthal
President
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Zac Smith
Director, Website Operations
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Zac Smith is part of TEDMED’s marketing team, managing many of TEDMED’s digital projects including website development, mobile app development and marketing email delivery.  Prior to joining TEDMED a year ago, Zac spent the previous five years working with many on the TEDMED team for Walker Digital Management and a variety of WDM’s start-up companies.  As such, he is a named inventor on numerous existing and pending patents for ideas that have come out of the Walker Digital lab.  In May of 2006, Zac received a BA degree from the University of Mary Washington.  When not working, Zac may be found playing a variety of sports.  He is president of the Newtown Sandy Hooks Vintage Base Ball Team and an avid snowboarder.
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Zac Smith
Director, Website Operations
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Randy Ramusack
Managing Director, Strategic Partnerships
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A long-time TED Attendee/TEDster and TED Host, Randy Ramusack brings his passion for the TED mission to TEDMED where he contributes to the organization’s strategic partnerships.  Randy is an accomplished leader in developing multifaceted collaborations with international organizations, governments, NGOs, foundations and corporations.  Randy comes to TEDMED following a 15 year career at Microsoft where, for 7 years (2005-2012), he was responsible for worldwide partnerships and policy engagements the with United Nations (including WHO), World Bank and International Red Cross. The unique opportunity gave Randy rare access and insight into the operations, decision-making and deep-field challenges encountered across international development and finance institutions.

Randy is also a global technology leader, social entrepreneur and humanitarian fundraiser. In these capacities he connects social change makers to world changing ideas + resources through intellectual and financial capital matchmaking and business mentoring.  Here his efforts are focused on start-ups, non-profits and innovative growth companies in the areas of urban information technology, environmental sustainability, impact investing and humanitarian solutions.

Randy Ramusack
Managing Director, Strategic Partnerships