Board and Staff

Staff

Lynn Slawsky, MPA, PMP, Executive Director

Lynn came to ANAD in 2017 with 15 years of experience working for nonprofit, hospital, university, and state government organizations. She previously served as ANAD’s Director of Community Relations. Her background is project management, in which she is a certified PMP (Project Management Professional). She holds a master’s degree in Public Administration from the John Glenn College of Public Affairs at The Ohio State University, where she was President of her graduate student association. She got her bachelor’s degree in International Studies at Ohio State as well. Lynn volunteers whenever possible, and especially enjoys being part of a chef team at a local soup kitchen that prepares homemade meals for low-income neighbors each week. She also enjoys mentoring young women in their career growth, and hanging out with her toddler.

Giva Ann Wilkerson, MA, MPA, Program Director

A native Philadelphian, Giva is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh and Indiana University, and currently resides in Brooklyn, New York. Having experienced her own eating disorder recovery journey, Giva understands how significant the support of caring and experienced individuals can have on the healing process. Often referring to herself as a “natural big sister,” Giva believes nurturing and mentoring younger women to be her life’s purpose. Thus, she has worked with women and youth the majority of her career, designing educational and leadership programs, as well as providing social and emotional counseling and training. She has also worked as a blogger and entertainment correspondent. She most recently worked at Project HEAL, another eating disorder nonprofit organization. When she is not working, you can find her volunteering with organizations serving underrepresented communities and victims of trauma. The causes closest to her heart include girls’ leadership, racial and reproductive justice and mental health awareness/care. Giva is a trained sexual assault crisis counselor, mental health first aid worker and vinyasa yoga teacher. In the near future she hopes to train to become a yoga therapist, which will allow her to combine her love of mental and physical health with the holistic healing practice of yoga.

Christine Beattie, Director of External Engagement

Christine brings 20+ years of experience as a dynamic, creative and strategic marketing professional who combines corporate discipline with an entrepreneurial mindset.  She has a reputation for driving innovation using a deep understanding of consumer trends and insights to create new brands and revitalize existing ones that deeply resonate with target audiences.  Christine has worked on building global businesses at beauty, luxury and lifestyle companies, including Fortune 500s such as L’Oréal, Coty, Estee Lauder;  and at specialty retailers, start-ups, and non-profits such as Victory Gardens Theater.  She holds a BS in Economics from the Wharton School and a BA in Psychology both from the University of Pennsylvania.  At ANAD, Christine heads up the marketing and communications functions and facilitates development.  When she’s not working, she volunteers with arts, cultural and mental health organizations; enjoys horseback riding and yoga; and loves to hang out with her family, friends, and dachshund, Bella.

Lily Janson, Program Coordinator

Lily recently graduated from DePaul University with a bachelor’s degree in Communication and Theatre Studies. Lily hopes to expand her knowledge of eating disorder recovery and awareness and further her experiences working in nonprofit organizations. She has previously volunteered with organizations such as Girls on The Run and GirlForward and enjoys using her free time to support organizations focused on empowering women and girls. In her free time, you can find Lily spending time with her friends and family and enjoying all that Chicago has to offer!

Angelo Thomas headshot

Angelo Thomas, Digital Outreach Coordinator

Angelo’s background is as a writer, filmmaker, and mental health activist. Since recovering from anorexia in 2018, Angelo has worked with ANAD to give a voice to those suffering from eating disorders in the LGBTQ+ community and beyond. He has also spoken at NEDA walks and conferences across the country. Angelo recently completed “The Incredible Jake Parker,” a book and feature film about a teenage popstar’s battle with anorexia.

Young woman standing in front of a building

Allison Colaianni, Program Intern

Allison is a Master’s student from Adler University in their Couple and Family Therapy Program. With her own first-hand experience of recovering from anorexia in adolescence, she is passionate about working with those with eating disorders within their family systems and relationships. In addition to a hope to specialize in eating disorders, Allison is also interested in pursuing sex therapy and using gender and sexuality psychoeducation as a tool within the therapy room. You can always find Allison listening to funky music or rollerblading in her neighborhood. She also enjoys baking and spending time with her cat, Molly.

Board

Jeanne Keshishian, President 

With a degree in International Business from Eastern Michigan University, Jeanne was also a Rotary Club Scholar, spent at the University of Aix-en-Provence, France.  She spent a year in Paris at the Ecole Superieure de Commerce de Paris with an internship in the marketing department at Renault’s world headquarters. She successfully defended her thesis on “The Socio-Economic Aspects of Robotics” before the Paris Chamber of Commerce.  

Jeanne’s first industry experience was in the automotive marketplace in Detroit, working in inventory control, international supply chain and technical document translations. In 1990, she left the automotive industry and moved to the Insurance industry, where she earned her Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) professional designation, as well as Securities, Life/Health and P&C licenses.  Beginning in retail sales, she progressed into third-party distribution as a wholesaler, to regional wholesaling management and as the National Sales Vice President at a Fortune 500 insurance company.  She was responsible for new product development, marketing collateral and sales development. With the 2008 financial meltdown, she next served as President of a broker/dealer’s insurance agency, creating new business processes, ensuring access to suitable products from financially sound carriers and suitability review of new business.

In 2018, Jeanne relocated to Chicago and joined a living green wall manufacturer as VP of Sales.  She was first charged with creating processes for sales through Steelcase dealers, made them scalable and quadrupled the number of dealer-resellers after joining the team.  Upon completing the roll-out, she began new business development on the East Coast.

Jeanne also served a 2-year term on the Board of Rotary One, the first service club in the world, and enjoys gardening, yoga, reading and needlework.

Matt DeBoer, CFP®, Treasurer and Secretary

After earning his degree in Accounting from Illinois State University in 2014, Matt began working as a Corporate Accountant for a mutual fund company in the suburbs of Chicago. Pursuing his dreams, to work directly with people, Matt was promoted to the sales desk where he worked closely with other financial professionals. Still feeling that he could make a greater impact in people’s lives he made the switch in 2017 to work directly with a select group of clients and joined DeNardo Financial Group, of Wells Fargo Advisors. In this role, as a financial advisor, he is able to work directly with individuals and families and focuses on creating solid investment plans to assist them in reaching their goals.

Matt joined ANAD to further his dream of making a real difference in people’s lives. He works closely with the ANAD board to create annual financial documents and conducts financial reviews to ensure the longevity of ANAD so that the organization can continue to effect positive change in the world.

Wells Fargo Advisors is a trade name used by Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC. Member SIPC.

Patricia Santucci, MD, FAED, FAPA, Medical Director

Patricia Santucci received her medical degree from Loyola Stritch School of Medicine. She is a board certified psychiatrist and practiced in the western suburbs of Chicago focusing on women’s issues, adolescents and eating disorders. In addition to her private practice, she served as an Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatric at Stritch School of Medicine.  She was recognized as a Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, founding member and Fellow of the Academy for Eating Disorders and board member and past Volunteer Medical Director for Our Children’s Homestead, a non-profit organization based on the Boy’s Town model for traumatized foster children. Her hospital based activities included medical directorships of adolescent units and development of eating disorder programs. After serving as Director of Mercy Center and later the Linden Oaks Eating Disorder Program she became Medical Director of Edwards- Linden Oaks Hospital in Naperville, Illinois.

Her interest in ANAD began soon after the organization was launched. She has served as a Board Member since 1977 and held office as Executive VP and President.  Much of her career has been devoted to developing curriculum and training for medical and mental health professionals. As an active advocate for the field, she has testified before Congress and the National Institute for Mental Health on several occasions. Additional contributions include the initiation and launching of the Academy for Eating Disorders and the Coalition for Eating Disorders, Harvard Eating Disorder Task Force, Editorial Board Eating Disorder: Journal of Treatment and Prevention, National Eating Disorder Screening Program and APA Guidelines for Eating Disorders.

Maria Rago, PhD, Immediate Past President

Maria is the clinical director and founder of Rago & Associates. She has extensive experience in individual, marital and family therapy, eating disorders, supervision and professional consultation. Her leadership has been important across inpatient, outpatient and residential settings. She was instrumental in founding the eating disorders program at Linden Oaks, in Naperville, Illinois.

Maria was the president of ANAD from 2016 to 2020. She was involved with ANAD for years before that as well; in 2012 she was awarded ANAD’s Vivian Meehan Lifetime Achievement Award for excellence in her service and commitment to people with eating disorders and their loved ones.  She helped to start some of ANAD’s most memorable programming such as Candlelight vigils and “Recovery Night” ANAD meetings. She has been a passionate and outspoken leader in the field of eating disorders, obesity and body image, and she has spoken across the nation and in Europe to help change people’s unfair assumptions and views. Her book, “Shut Up, Skinny Bitches” (2010) encouraged readers to love food and their bodies.

Stephanie Covington Armstrong, Board Member

A Brooklyn native, Stephanie is an author, playwright, screenwriter, eating disorder recovery advocate and speaker. In 2009, Stephanie became the first African-American to detail her experience with an eating disorder with the release of her memoir, Not All Black Girls Know How to Eat: A Story of Bulimia. Since then, she has become a sought-after speaker and lecturer, helping to bring attention to eating disorders in marginalized communities. She has collaborated with NEDA, presented at ICED, is a regular keynote speaker, and is a member of the steering committee formed to create World Eating Disorders Day in 2016 to bring global awareness to those who struggle. Using her voice to raise awareness about eating disorders, Stephanie continues to use her platform to raise awareness about eating disorders and is regularly featured in magazines and on television, radio, and podcasts.

Al Augustine, JD (ret.), Board Member

Originally from Lithuania, Board Member, Al Augustine, quickly made Chicago his home when he immigrated there in 1947. After spending his early youth at St. Rita High School, Notre Dame University, and the Illinois Law School, he began work in a corporate and banking firm in 1969, then spent the following 5 years as the Chief Prosecuting Attorney for the Illinois agency that licenses and disciplines most professions in Illinois including: doctors, nurses, psychologists, accountants, and others. In 1979, Al began his firm and retired in October 2015.

Al still consults as a retired attorney and has represented professionals across the country especially those providing integrative medical and dental care. Al brings his decades of legal expertise within the medical community to ANAD and will co-chair ANAD’s Governance Committee.

Warren Denardo, Board Member

Robin Nelson, MHS, Board Member

Robin Nelson is committed to making the world a better place through her actions and is honored to serve on the board of ANAD. A native San Diegan, Robin has worked for over 45 years as a teacher for at-risk youth, school administrator, Literacy Peer Coach/Staff Developer, Beginning Teacher Support Provider, Gifted and Talented Education Resource Specialist, Health Educator and Dean of Students with John Hopkins Center for Talented Youth. Robin currently teaches and volunteers with the San Diego Brain Injury Foundation, AIDS LifeCycle annual 545 mile bike ride from SF to LA, and serves on the educational committee of the Anti Defamation League, San Diego. She was awarded both the San Diego Unified School District and San Diego County Teacher of the Year awards as well as the Rockefeller Foundation’s Outstanding Teacher Leader Award. Robin received her BA from UCLA and a masters of health science from San Diego State University. Robin has certification in Nonprofit Management through the University of San Diego and is a certified mediator through The National Conflict Resolution Center. 

ANAD holds a special place in Robin’s heart. As a long distance runner and competitive athlete most of her life, she suffered from an eating disorder and understands the everyday challenges associated with eating disorders. Robin believes that, along with the individual journey a person must travel with their disease, one needs to see vibrant, productive role models who demonstrate that recovery is possible. With ANAD, Robin’s desire is to expand knowledge of eating disorders, share resources, foster understanding and create relationships that nurture and encourage those impacted by eating disorders to move forward with hope.

Anna K. Orland, DDS, Board Member

Anna K Orland D.D.S. is a practicing dentist in Wheaton Illinois for the last 27 years. She graduated from Loyola University where she was awarded the Public Health Award for volunteerism. She has been interested in Eating Disorder complication in Dentistry and has been an advocate for diagnosis of Eating Disorders in dental patients. She has lectured in this area at National Louis University and local schools. She is the program dinner chair for the West Suburban Dental Society and course chair for the Chicago Dental Society Midwinter Meeting. Anna had volunteered for the Oak Park Infant Welfare for 7 years. She has provided educational programs for Head Start and volunteers for the Chicago Dental Society Foundation Dental Clinical Wheaton. Being fluent in various Slavic Languages, she enjoys travel and physical fitness. She lives with her husband in Wheaton and has three grown children.

Kristen Portland headshot

Kristen K. Portland, MA, Board Member

Kristen graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 2011, just before moving to Chicago. Once there, she began her professional career in marketing management before transitioning to her passion: the world of nonprofits. She worked for the YMCA and volunteered with a variety of organizations including the Anti-Cruelty Society, the National Abortion Rights Action League, Girls on the Run, the Chicago Area Runners Association, and community libraries.
Kristen began working for ANAD in 2018. As part of a two person team, Kristen ran programming, helped with conference planning and execution, organized webinars, managed the website, and so much more. The project she is most proud of is implementing Beekeeper, a platform connecting volunteers, staff, and other ANAD affiliates. In 2020, Kristen stepped down from her staff role at ANAD in order to care for her new baby girl with the help of her husband Grant, their two dogs & cat. She is also an avid reader, runner, and ANAD supporter!