Neuro Challenge Foundation Staff

Robyn Faucy-Washington, MS Management

Organization and Leadership Effectiveness

Chief Executive Officer

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Robyn Faucy-Washington is honored to serve as the Chief Executive Officer of the Neuro Challenge Foundation for Parkinson's. The Foundation is dedicated to providing education, support and information to persons affected by Parkinson’s Disease and their caregivers. Robyn has held leadership roles with American Cancer Society, Sylvan Learning Centers, and most recently the Education Foundation of Sarasota County.

Robyn comes to the organization with an impressive mix of academics, leadership and organizational leadership that includes fundraising, capacity-building, and synergistic partnership development. She is a member of the Sarasota Chamber of Commerce’s 2016 Leadership Sarasota program. Outside of work Robyn enjoys being near the water, living an active lifestyle and spending time with her loved ones. Her greatest accomplishment and pride and joy is her son Armando who is, in her words, her athletic scholar.

Mary Jo Heider

Development Director

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Mary Jo brings a passion for nonprofit service and decades of fundraising experience to The Neuro Challenge Foundation as the organization's first Development Director.

Drawing on her years as a nonprofit leader, Mary Jo connects The Foundation to community members and corporate philanthropists who will invest in and support our mission, making progress and lasting change for people with Parkinson’s and their caregivers.

Prior to joining The Neuro Challenge Foundation, Mary Jo held local and national senior development positions with The Circus Arts Conservatory, Children’s Miracle Network, Freeman Healthcare Foundation, The National Association of Manufacturers and The Metropolitan Economic Development Association.

She attended Florida State University and Missouri Southern State University, is an alumna of Leadership Minneapolis, a member of The Association of Fundraising Professionals and serves as an Advisory Board member for The Life of Riley Foundation. She is the mother of two college students, enjoys travelling with her family and recently discovered a new passion for growing orchids.

Kristen Lessig-Schenerlein

Program Director

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Kristen’s determination, perseverance, and commitment to improve the communities in which she lives drive her work every day and will serve as the foundation in her role as Program Director for Neuro Challenge Foundation.

With more than 14 years of not-for-profit management experience and community engagement in the health and human services industry. Kristen brings superior knowledge of partnership development, staff and volunteer leadership and financial management to the foundation.

Kristen received her bachelor’s degree in recreation and sports management with a minor in psychology and a therapeutic recreation concretion from Virginia Commonwealth University where she later taught Nonprofit Management as a member of their adjunct faculty in the sports leadership graduate program. She has earned certificates in nonprofit management and as an emerging nonprofit leader, while also being an alumni of the Manatee Chamber of Commerce Leadership Manatee Program 2017-2018.

Kristen is excited to reconnect with her passion in working with special populations and will aim to continue to inspire the Parkinson’s community to overcome their daily challenges and enhance their quality of life through best in class programming and services.

When not busy making a difference in the lives of those she serves through her work in the nonprofit community, Kristen is spending time reading, cooking, running, taking a yoga class, or enjoying the beach with her family.

Traci Willingham

Office Manager

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Traci joined the Neuro Challenge Foundation team in 2018 as the Office Manager. Prior to this appointment she worked at a large non-profit in event and volunteer management. She brings administrative skills as well as fundraising experience to the NCF team. She is excited to be part of this team and be able to support the Parkinson’s community.

In her spare time Traci enjoys spending time with her husband, daughter and growing family. She enjoys seeing her many nieces and nephews and taking family vacations with them to Walt Disney World.

Lionel Cohoone

Marketing and Communications Manager

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Before joining the Neuro Challenge Foundation for Parkinson’s in 2020 as the Marketing and Communications Manager, Lionel worked as a Public Relations Account Manager for the fashion and product development industries in Miami.

Lionel received his bachelor's degree in Public and Cultural Communications from the University of South Florida. He briefly attended St. Thomas University's Graduate program in Electronic Media. Being one of the few Sarasota natives, Lionel is excited to bring his knowledge of the community, talents, and experience to the Neuro Challenge Foundation for Parkinson’s.

Informing the world is Lionel’s passion. Being compassionate during difficult times is Lionel’s goal. Lionel looks forward to bringing his creativity, passion, and experience to an organization that not only talks about it but is impacting the community, today.

Ellen Schaller

Care Advisor

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Prior to joining Neuro Challenge as a Care Advisor, Ellen’s spent over thirty years as a physical therapist. She began her career at Sarasota Memorial Hospital and most recently, managed the rehabilitation services department at a life care community outside Chicago.

Ellen’s career has been dedicated to gerontology and helping others achieve wellness through her positive can do attitude.

In her spare time, Ellen plays in the handbell choir and enjoys tap dancing. She is also a Deacon and Stephen Ministry Leader at her church.

Chelsea Dooley

Care Advisor

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Chelsea joined the Neuro Challenge Foundation in 2019 as Care Advisor for south Sarasota and Charlotte counties. Chelsea received a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology from the University of Central Florida and a Master's Degree in Mental Health Counseling from the University of South Florida. She brings with her several years of experience working with seniors and caregivers in our community. Prior to her appointment as Care Advisor, Chelsea spent several years as a Long Term Care Case Manager for a nation wide insurance company and as a Resident Relations Coordinator for a family owned assisted living facility.

As a native of Sarasota, Chelsea is excited to bring her talents and experience to this amazing organization. In her spare time Chelsea enjoys volunteering with Tidewell Hospice, camping, family trips to Disney World and spending time with her husband, daughter and extended family.

Photo Credit: Lynn Elkes/Selwin Photos, Inc.

Administrative Office and Mailing Address: 722 Apex Rd. Suite A, Sarasota, FL 34240

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