National Leadership Team

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ANN M. PALMER

President & Chief Executive Officer

Ann joined the Arthritis Foundation in September 2013 with more than 30 years of successful nonprofit experience at three large voluntary health organizations: the American Cancer Society, the American Diabetes Association and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

With a BS in education from the University of Delaware, Ann began her career with the American Cancer Society in 1979, holding numerous roles of increasing responsibility over 18 years. In 1997, she joined the American Diabetes Association to oversee increased fundraising for their Mid Atlantic region, and led a nationwide operational restructuring that increased efficiency. During her 12 years at the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Ann’s leadership brought new business systems and a great team of staff and volunteers who annually raised over $100 million net income.

Ann is passionate about her work as the Foundation’s leader: “I see the daily challenges people with arthritis face, and I’m truly inspired by their courage. We’re responsible for helping them meet their most urgent needs. That’s our top priority.”


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MEAGAN FULMER

Chief Development Officer

Meagan has a proven track record in nonprofit leadership – driving strategy, execution and building incredible teams. She’s a graduate of Western Kentucky University, with additional certification from Cornell University. From the state level to nationwide, Meagan has successfully led financial turnarounds at the American Heart Association, the March of Dimes and more recently as president and CEO of the Partnership Against Domestic Violence. As chief development officer of the Arthritis Foundation, she collaborates with 10 regions to fulfill a unified development strategy.

To Meagan, it’s personal. “We need to raise more funds to help people with arthritis live better. I wake up feeling that sense of urgency every day. I also do it for my teenaged stepdaughter who was recently diagnosed.”


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WAYNE GUTHRIE, SPHR

Sr. Vice President, Staff Operations

Wayne joined the Arthritis Foundation in 2011 as vice president of human resources, bringing more than 20 years of HR experience at organizations like Immucor, Inc., and the University System of Georgia. Wayne has worked with executive leadership to orchestrate major organizational change and rapid growth. He’s also experienced in talent acquisition, succession planning and learning management systems. Today he manages the Foundation’s human resources department and oversees facilities, meetings and conferences, as well as strategy planning and implementation.

 “Working for the Arthritis Foundation engages both my head and my heart,” says Wayne. “I see how my and my team’s efforts pay off and make a big difference for the people we serve.”


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KAREN LARSON

Chief Financial Officer

Before joining the national office of the Arthritis Foundation, Karen was the CEO of the Foundation’s Upper Midwest Region. She came to the Foundation after a 20-year career with Cowles Media Company and the Star Tribune in Minneapolis. Karen has an undergraduate degree in accounting from the University of Minnesota, Duluth, and holds an MBA in finance from the University of St. Thomas. She is also a certified public accountant. Karen has been a volunteer board member in several organizations, including the Multiple Sclerosis Society, the Minneapolis Downtown Council and the Children’s Museum of Minnesota.

“I’m inspired by people’s individual journeys,” Karen says. “When I get caught up in the business of the Arthritis Foundation, all it takes is one connection with someone who’s impacted to remember why I do what I do.”


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SANDRA MACKEY

Sr. Vice President, Marketing & Communications

Sandra’s impressive marketing and public relations career spans more than 25 years. At the Arthritis Foundation, she leads national strategic marketing initiatives that support the organization’s mission, including Web and interactive strategy, brand management, marketing communications and creative services. Formerly, she was executive director of market strategy for Emory Healthcare in Atlanta and has spent most of her career in the health care arena, focusing on marketing and business development. Sandra earned her nursing degree from Birmingham University in England and is a graduate of the Woodruff Leadership Academy class of 2014.

“I’m inspired by my mom, who has courageously battled lupus since 1993,” says Sandra. “We believe there will be a cure for arthritis, and until that day comes we will do whatever we can to support all those who are affected by this disease through fundraising and increasing awareness.”


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CINDY McDANIEL

Sr. Vice President, Consumer Health

Through her various roles at the Arthritis Foundation, Cindy has more than three decades of experience understanding, educating and empowering people with arthritis to live better. She was the founding editor of Arthritis Today magazine in 1987 and became publisher in 2001. She also oversees the Foundation’s consumer research initiatives and our nationwide health outreach through numerous tools and channels. Cindy is a 2008 graduate of Leadership Buckhead, serving on its board and as president. In 2009, she was awarded the Clifford M. Clarke Award for Outstanding Leadership, the Foundation’s highest employee honor.

“For the past 30 years, the Arthritis Foundation has been more than a life’s career for me; it’s been a life’s cause,” says Cindy. “Today my commitment is stronger than ever to pursue the ultimate answer that will end the pain of so many.”


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AMANDA NISKAR, DrPH, MPH, BSN

National Scientific Director

As a doctor of public health, Amanda combines her experience in nursing, epidemiology and health policy to successfully bring together crosscutting leaders to make important decisions that turn discoveries into actionable, high-impact programs. She supervises all aspects of the Arthritis Foundation’s scientific program. Amanda is an accomplished author and has received many honors, including international recognition, for research measuring the impact of arthritis on health and well-being. Her accomplishments span the globe, encompassing renowned places such as the Office of the U.S. Secretary of Health, Tel Aviv University and Deloitte Consulting.

Amanda’s goal: “I want to take the science off the shelf and translate it into high-impact results that make a positive difference for people with arthritis. This is an amazing opportunity to make a huge difference in their lives.”


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SANDIE PREISS

Vice President, Advocacy & Access

Sandie brings more than three decades of experience in government relations and health policy, with extensive work in both the federal and state legislative arenas. She has overseen government policy efforts for a broad scope of organizations, including commercial/industrial corporations, physicians, health care associations and pharmaceutical companies. Prior to joining the Foundation, Sandie was director of government relations and advocacy for the American Urological Association and worked at Abbott Labs for 18 years. She holds a BA in government from Suffolk University in Boston and an MA in public administration from the University of Rhode Island.

“I consider it a privilege to represent the interests of people with arthritis with policymakers,” Sandie says. “I know firsthand that an educated and empowered network of citizen volunteers can inform elected officials about their needs and, in turn, shape public policy.”