Board of Directors
The Board of Directors of our Foundation is made up of patients, caregivers and/or professionals who have worked in the health care industry. We will always have the patient as a focus of what we do and how we go about handling the affairs of ECEF. The mission of our Board is to oversee the activities of ECEF. It has developed our mission statement and goals and it will review all we do with that direction in mind.
I retired from the Vice Chairman and CEO position of Chiltington International a worldwide insurance and reinsurance consulting firm on December 31,2007. This culminated 46 years of service in the Insurance and Reinsurance Industry. I was told in December of 1999 that I had a stage III esophageal cancer tumor and proceeded to have Chemotherapy Radiation therapy and Surgery and since then I have been without evidence of this disease. As President of the Esophageal Cancer Education Foundation my goal is to achieve ECEF’S Mission Statement.
I have been married to Bart since October of 1963 and we have two daughters and seven grandchildren. We have taken on the challenge of this dreaded disease and as a team we have worked together to get through this disease. Being a caregiver is a challenge unto itself and we have journeyed through the years of recovery from Bart’s initial diagnosis in December of 1999
Our goal is to help make the public become aware of this disease. In addition we have been available to respond to questions that patients pose as quality of life issues as their journey continues through this disease. I have co chaired our fund raising event Day at the Races. It has been the backbone of our fund raising efforts since our first event in 2003.
Born and grew up in Brooklyn, New York, Annbeth raised her family in Northern New Jersey, and now calls New York City and Stockbridge, Massachusetts home. A graduate of Hunter College (BA) and Pace University (MBA) she spent most of her professional career working as a Human Resource executive for a number of major corporations. In May 2003, her husband Gerry was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer of the GE Junction (Esophages/Stomach). Knowing little about the disease, the family began the task of educating themselves, trying to understand why a supposedly healthy 65 year old man could suddenly have terminal cancer. The more they learned, the more they realized that Gerry, like so many others, had ignored for years many of the symptoms of this dreaded disease. Hoping to somehow do good from such a tragic loss, the family had raised money for research during Gerry’s illness. Gerry passed away in July 2004, at which time Annbeth and her family became convinced that the most important thing they could do moving forward was to educate and raise the awareness of the public and the professionals to the warning signs of esophageal cancer . Having been introduced to Bart and Ginny in 2006, it was immediately obvious to everyone that we held similar goals and commitment to fighting this disease. Joining forces with ECEF, it is our sincere hope that we can truly make a difference, and bring us one step closer to a cure. “When God gives you lemons, make lemonade!”.
Joanne Nicholas learned the harsh facts about esophageal cancer while working on a project for NBC News as media relations manager for Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. NBC wanted to do a piece for Nightly News and The Today Show about the alarming rise in one type of esophageal cancer. The survival rates were dismal – in part because most patients were unaware that their symptoms of heart burn or difficulty swallowing were the signs of a serious disease. While the expert physicians at Sloan-Kettering taught me about the disease, I learned about the quality of life issues from Bart Frazzitta who was our patient for the filmed piece. Working with Bart and then Ginny on subsequent media opportunities, I also learned how this disease affects not only the patient but their loved ones. The change in eating patterns, sleeping patterns and the unspoken fear of recurrence are a constant challenge for them. Unfortunately, I not only know about esophageal cancer now but have since lost friends and acquaintances to it with most diagnosed at an advanced stage. I have advised with Bart and Ginny on some of their efforts to help educate esophageal cancer patients so I did not hesitate to join the ECEF board. I believe that the foundation’s mission to educate the public about this disease is one of the best weapons in diagnosing patients at a curable stage.
Kimberly Guilfoyle joined FOX News Channel (FNC) in January 2006 as the host of the one-hour crime-based program, “The Lineup,” which covers major breaking news including politics and entertainment with an emphasis on legal affairs. She currently co-hosts The Five, a one hour talk/debate show that airs at 5 PM EST on FNC. Guilfoyle serves as a legal analyst for the channel, appearing regularly on O’Reilly, Hannity, and other shows. She is also a host for FoxNews.com Live.
Formerly of Court TV, which she joined in January 2004 as co-host of “Both Sides,” Guilfoyle also served as a legal analyst for ABC News featured regularly on ABC’s “Good Morning America,” as well as CNN’s “Larry King Live” and “Anderson Cooper 360.” She has covered major cases such as O.J. Simpson, Scott Peterson, JonBenet Ramsey, Natalee Holloway, Kobe Bryant and Michael Jackson. In February 2004, Guilfoyle had a movie role as a public defender opposite Emmy Award winning actor Ed Asner in “Happily Even After,” also starring Fay Masterson, Jason Behr and Marina Black, which was featured at the Tribeca Film Festival.
Prior to her broadcasting career, she served as an assistant district attorney at the San Francisco and Los Angeles District Attorney’s Offices. As managing attorney of the trial division in San Francisco, she was co-prosecutor in the case “People v. Noel and Knoller,” a second-degree murder trial involving a dog mauling, which received national and international attention and was chronicled on NBC’s “Dateline,” A&E’s “American Justice,” and, most recently, on Animal Planet’s “Animal Witness.” Guilfoyle also received an award for being “Outstanding Woman of the Year” from the City of San Francisco. During her legal career, Guilfoyle spent four years as a deputy district attorney in Los Angeles where she received several awards, including “Prosecutor of the Month.”
In 2005, Guilfoyle was named USO Entertainer of the Year. New York City has also awarded her with a “Special Civil Rights Award” in 2004. Guilfoyle is a magna cum laude graduate of University of California, Davis and attended the University of San Francisco School of Law and Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland, where she studied and was published for her research in international children’s rights and European Economic Community law. Guilfoyle presently serves as an active board member of The Gastro Esophageal Cancer Foundation and on the advisory panel for the American Bar Association. She resides in New York City with her son, Ronan Anthony Villency.
Scudder Fowler is Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of Liminal Group. Earlier he led new business development initiatives at Semaphore Partners, the marketing technology arm of $4.5B advertising and communications holding firm, Publicis. Before Semaphore, he managed the New York sales division of a world-leading executive conference company. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Columbia University.