Ohio — Volunteers and staff from the Northeastern Ohio Chapter visited the Youngstown district office of Congressman Tim Ryan – D-17th on August 6, 2007 to thank him for co-sponsoring Arthritis Prevention Control and Cure Act, answer his questions about arthritis, introduce him to affected individuals – our “faces” of arthritis, and provide information about the work of the chapter in his district.
From left, Kelly Donahue, public awareness liaison, Arthritis Foundation, Northeastern Ohio Chapter; volunteer Terry Manville, member, Board of Directors, Northeastern Ohio Chapter, who has RA; volunteer Brittany Schimpf, 20, a constituent with JA; volunteer Paula Philips, who also has RA; and Nancy Cox, chapter program field representative serving the Congressman’s district.
Pennsylvania — On August 18, 2007, local Philadelphia TV station MYPHL 17 aired a 30 minute show, In Focus, devoted to arthritis. Featured on the show were Cheryl Lutz, Community Development Director with the Eastern Pennsylvania Chapter; Maria Lefchak, an 11 year-old diagnosed with juvenile arthritis (JA), and her mother, Donna Trigone; and Dr. David Sherry, a pediatric rheumatologist at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. The panel shared their perspectives of JA and discussed the need for an improved juvenile arthritis research platform through the Arthritis Prevention, Control, and Cure Act.
U.S. Representative Joe Sestak had given his constituents Maria and Donna a verbal commitment to co-sponsoring the Arthritis Act at the Advocacy Summit in February. Despite several months of reminder calls and letters, he still had not officially cosponsored the Arthritis Act. In preparation for the show, anchorman Steve Highsmith called Sestak’s office to ask why he had not endorsed the legislation. Sestak signed-on to the Act within a day!