M. Ramu Annamalai, OMS III
Ramu Annamalai is currently completing his third year of medical school at the Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine. He completed a Bachelor of Arts in Biological Sciences at Northwestern University and served as an instructor at the Urban Teaching Academies in Chicago, IL. Annamalai has an invested interest with neurological disorders, particularly with vascular and critical care neurology. He is an aspiring neurovascular specialist and also has an interest in palliative care medicine and teaching effective communication at the trainee level.
Ganesh Asaithambi, MD
Dr. Ganesh Asaithambi is a vascular neurologist at United Hospital and the John Nasseff Neuroscience Institute. He is experienced in treating all aspects of neurovascular disorders. His research interests include acute stroke treatment, stroke in the young adult, telestroke, and healthcare quality improvement processes. He also has an interest in providing education and has served as preceptor to students in his practice and also participated in community engagements to spread awareness.
Steven Bradley, MD, MPH
Dr. Steven Bradley is an Associate Cardiologist at the Minneapolis Heart Institute (MHI) and a trained epidemiologist and health services researcher with interests focused on understanding the determinants of high-quality and high-value cardiovascular care. Dr. Bradley is an Alpha Omega Alpha graduate of the Medical College of Wisconsin and completed his medical training at the University of Washington. Dr. Bradley is the immediate-past Associate Director of the Veterans Affairs CART Program, which is the national clinical quality program for procedures performed in VA cath labs. Building on this experience, Dr. Bradley now works in the MHI Healthcare Delivery Innovation Center to identify data-driven opportunities to improve patient outcomes and experience, clinical quality, and value of cardiovascular care. In addition, Dr. Bradley serves as the Vice-Chair of Science for the American Heart Association Get With the Guidelines – Resuscitation and as a member of the American College of Cardiology Cath PCI Research and Publications Committee.
Emily Caldwell, BSN, RN, CCRC
Ms. Caldwell has been in resuscitation and interventional research for 10 years. Prior to her work in research, she worked in the ED, Cardiac Units, and Cath lab. She currently manages the Cardiology Research Unit at the University of Minnesota. Notably, she recently received funding to conduct a NIH multi-center trial for patients with out-of-hospital cardiac arrest and early access to the cath lab.
Dr Diane Chappuis, MD, OT
Dr. Diane Chappuis is a Board Certified Physiatrist with a clinical and administrative practice at Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute. She has subspecialties in stroke and neurological rehabilitation, including spasticity management and neuropharmacology. Dr. Chappuis serves as the Medical Director of Stroke Rehabilitation for Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute. Before attending Medical School and Residency at the University of Minnesota, she worked as an Occupational Therapist for 5 years. She completed a program in Physician Leadership at the University of St Thomas. She is passionate about patient and family centered care and optimizing neurologic plasticity both in the inpatient and outpatient settings. Her medical administration mission is to break down silos of care and improve transdisciplinary work. She teaches stroke rehabilitation and spasticity topics at the University of Minnesota residency program. Dr. Chappuis spends time mentoring, teaching and lecturing a wide audience including medical students, therapists, nurses, patients and families.
Marc Conterato, MD, FACEP
Dr. Marc Conterato graduated from Rush Medical College in Chicago in 1986. He completed his residency in Internal Medicine in 1989 at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, followed by a second residency in Emergency Medicine in 1992 at the University of Florida, Jacksonville. During his last year of residency at the University of Florida, Dr. Conterato was a Chief Resident, and also served as a Shuttle Support Physician for NASA at Cape Kennedy. During the same time period, he also served as an independent contractor to the USAF at Patrick Shores AFB in Florida
Dr. Conterato joined North Memorial in July, 1992 and became Associate Medical Director at North Medical Ambulance Service (NMAS) in January of 1993. In January 2013 he joined with Dr. John Lyng and Dr. Pat Lilja to form the Office of the Medical Director for North Memorial Ambulance Service. During this time he received a Meritorious Service Award from the Minneapolis Fire Department, and also served as the Medical Director for the Medical Support Team of the Minneapolis Police Emergency Response Unit (2002-2006).
Currently, Dr. Conterato continues his role with NMAS, and has developed and implemented guidelines for the administration of hypothermia in the field for resuscitated cardiac arrest patients. He also developed and acts as medical director for the Resuscitative Hypothermia program at North Memorial, which has treated over three hundred and fifty patients since October of 2006. Dr. Conterato currently serves as a Unit Physician for Minnesota Task Force 1, an urban search and rescue unit. Dr. Conterato represents Minneapolis EMS at the Gathering of Eagles Conference, a gathering of metropolitan EMS directors from across the U.S and Britain. He also represents NMAS in the Minnesota Resuscitation Consortium.
Mindy Cook, BSN
Ms. Cook has been with the American Heart Association since September of 2011 where she took on the role of director for the statewide Mission: Lifeline ND grant funded program, which was followed by the Rural MN Mission: Lifeline grant program in 2013. In the spring of 2016 her responsibilities expanded to cover AHA’s Quality and System Improvement programming portfolio for North Dakota and Minnesota with oversight of Wisconsin. Ms. Cook has a bachelor’s of science degree in nursing and has 12 years of clinical nursing experience in the areas of cardiovascular intensive care, cardiology clinical specialist, pacemaker and ICD programming, cardiac catheterization laboratory education, and STEMI network coordination. These clinical experiences contributed greatly to her passion to optimize quality and systems of care.
Germaine Cornelissen-Guillaume, PhD
Ms. Cornelissen-Guillaume received her PhD in Physics from the University of Brussels, Belgium in 1975. One year later, she joined Dr. Halberg’s chronobiology lab at the University of Minnesota. In 2013 she took over direction of the Halberg Chronobiology Center and she serves as a professor for the Department of Integrative Biology and Physiology.
Gwen Cressman, RN
Ms. Cressman has had the opportunity to serve at Essentia Health St. Mary’s Medical Center and Clinic over the past 24 years in a number of different capacities including: Neuroscience ICU Nurse, Post Anesthesia Care unit Nurse, Clinical Nurse Manager for Neurology, Neurodiagnostics, Interventional Pain, Pain Management, Health Psychology and Guest Services. She is passionate about the patient experience & the continuity of their care. She serves on the Stroke Steering Committee, & participates in the Rehab Continuum of Stroke Committee. She is currently a Champion for the MDH Transitions of Care for Stroke Patients pilot project at EH SMMC.
Melissa Freese, BSN, RN, CNRN, SCRN
Ms. Freese has over 16 years’ experience in neurosciences nursing. She has served in multiple roles including staff nurse, charge nurse, NPCU trained, and Neuro and Stroke Case Manager. She have served on various hospital committees including; Pain Task Force, Performance Improvement, Stroke Steering Committee, and Non-Compliant Brain workshop planning committee. Ms. Freese transitioned to the Stroke Care Specialist position at St. Cloud Hospital where she helped develop the stroke program and was instrumental in getting the hospital certified as a Primary Stroke Center in 2011. She has served on several statewide committees aimed at improving stroke care across Minnesota. She is a current member of ASA and AANN and is a Certified Neuroscience Registered Nurse and Stroke Certified Registered Nurse.
Audrey Hansen, BSN, MA, PMP
Ms. Hansen is an Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement (ICSI) Project Manager/Health Care Consultant. Her projects include health care guidelines, clinical decision support, and member relations. Her previous experience includes practice facilitation in the ambulatory clinic settings of primary care, cardiology and oncology, where she led quality improvement, culture change, EMR implementation, and clinical program development. This experience across the health care spectrum enables her to facilitate the development of chronic condition management programs in various clinic settings. Ms. Hansen holds a bachelor’s degree in nursing and a Public Health Nurse certification from The College of St. Teresa in Winona, MN; a Project Management Professional certification; and a master’s degree in organizational leadership from Bethel University in St. Paul.
Kim Harkins, B.S. Education, NREMT, MPH
Ms. Harkins is the Minnesota Resuscitation Consortium program director at the University of Minnesota. She holds a Masters of Public Health degree from the University of Minnesota and Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Crown College (St. Bonifacius, MN). She is also a nationally registered EMT and MN state firefighter. Ms. Harkins has instructed CPR/first aid and emergency medical service since 1997 and was a past volunteer firefighter and ambulance care provider. In addition, Kim has been an AHA regional faculty and was on the EMS Educators State Advisory group. She currently volunteers for the MN Sudden Cardiac Arrest Survivors Network, American Heart Association, Play for Patrick and various projects such as Heart Safe Communities, Take Heart MN, Young Adult Heart Foundation and Children First. Her focus includes improving awareness related to preparedness for sudden cardiac emergencies.
Timothy Hehr, RN MA SCRN
Mr. Hehr is a Stroke Center Certification Auditor at DNV- GL Healthcare. He has over 30 years of nursing experience in a variety of ICU, ED, Cath Lab, and Stroke program positions. Mr. Hehr earned his Bachelors of Science degree in Nursing from Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa and a Masters of Arts in Management from Webster University in St. Louis, Missouri. He earned his Master’s Degree while serving as a Captain in the USAF Nurse Corp. He holds certification as a Stroke Certified Registered Nurse (SCRN) and is a Critical Care Registered Nurse (CCRN) Alumni. Additionally, he sits on the American Board of Neuroscience Nurses Test Development Committee for the SCRN exam.
Lucinda Hodgson, BA, EMT-P
Ms. Hodges has 10 plus years working in the field of cardiac arrest data, both for large NIH funded clinical trials and with a cardiac arrest registry. She has dedicated five years at the Minnesota Resuscitation Consortium, working to bring the entire state on board with Out of hospital cardiac arrest data collection through the CARES registry. She is involved in all aspects of the MRC’s work, including current research, publications, and working closely with EMS agencies and hospitals to ensure high utilization of their data.
Kasia M. Hryniewicz, MD
Dr. Hryniewicz has special interests in cardiac oncology, advanced heart failure, heart transplantation, and mechanical circulatory support, particularly extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO). She is actively involved with the Extracorporeal Life Support Organization and the ECLS Registry. Dr. Hryniewicz completed medical school and her residency at Warsaw University. She also completed her research fellowships at Columbia and Yale Universities, and a clinical fellowship at Yale – New Haven Hospital. She is board certified in cardiovascular disease, echocardiography, and advanced heart failure. She is the current Medical Director for Heart Failure, Transplantation, and Mechanical Circulatory Support, Director of the Heart Transplant Program, and Co-Director of the ECMO Program at the Minneapolis Heart Institute at Abbott Northwestern Hospital.
Haitham Hussein, MD, MSc
Dr. Hussein attended medical school and part of his postgraduate training in Cairo, Egypt. He finished his training in the U.S. and became subspecialized in cerebrovascular diseases. He chose neurology because the nervous system is so precious! A tiny lesion in the brain can take away someone’s independence. I want to help people avoid that from happening to them, and I want to be there to help them recover if it does happen. Stroke is his primary focus, but he enjoy the whole breadth of neurology. Dr. Hussein enjoys teaching and participating in clinical research and has coauthored many articles and textbooks chapters, and he is also an editor and reviewer for several medical journals. When he’s not working, he enjoys spending time with his family, listening to music, reading, cooking and playing soccer.
He is a member of the following professional associations: American Medical Association (AMA), American Academy of Neurology (AAN), American Heart Association, American Society of Neuroradiology (ASNR).
Matthew P Lillyblad, PharmD, BCPS-AQ Cardiology
Mr. Lillyblad graduated from the University Of Minnesota College of Pharmacy in 2010 and subsequently completed a general pharmacy practice residency in 2011 and a second year pharmacy specialty residency in cardiology in 2012, both at Abbott Northwestern Hospital. Upon completion of post-graduate training, Matt has worked as a clinical pharmacist in cardiology across the spectrum of care, from the intensive care unit to the clinic, with focus on patients with acute coronary syndrome or heart failure. Currently, Matt is the Clinical Pharmacy Coordinator for Cardiology and Critical Care at Abbott Northwestern Hospital. His responsibilities include leading initiatives to create or improve policies, procedures, protocols and guidelines for the management of patients with cardiovascular disease at Abbott Northwestern and Allina Health. Matt also supports patient care for the Advanced Heart Failure team and is the residency program director for the PGY2 pharmacy residency in cardiology. He obtained his Board of Pharmacy Specialties Board Certification in Pharmacotherapy in 2013 and achieved Added Qualifications in Cardiology Pharmacotherapy in 2016.
Michael R. Mooney MD, FACC, FAHA, FSCAI
Dr. Mooney has special interests in minimally invasive valve replacement (TAVR), and the treatment of cardiac arrest, particularly therapeutic hypothermia and extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO). Teaching and clinical research has also played an important role in his professional life. He is currently involved with several trials and registries that range from interventional cardiology and stent development to resuscitation science and the treatment of post cardiac arrest patients. Dr. Mooney attended medical school at Georgetown University and completed his residency Dartmouth Medical Center, with fellowships at Dartmouth, San Francisco Heart Institute, and the University of Minnesota. He is board certified in cardiovascular disease and interventional cardiology. He is the current Director of Interventional Cardiology at the Minneapolis Heart Institute at Abbott Northwestern Hospital.
Richard Mullvain RPH, BCPS (AQC), CCCC
Mr. Mullvain is a clinical pharmacist who was born in raised in Minnesota. He graduated from the University of Minnesota – College of Pharmacy in 1992. He then moved to Duluth, and is now both the STEMI Program Manager and Chest Pain Center Coordinator at Essentia Health St. Mary’s Medical Center. Richard was the first pharmacist in Minnesota to be awarded Board Certification in Pharmacotherapy with Added Qualifications in Cardiology. He was the first pharmacist in the nation to become a Certified Cardiovascular Care Coordinator. He serves as Co-Chair for the Minnesota Mission Lifeline Rural STEMI Project and has had 8 publications related to STEMI Care. Richard is a well-known STEMI educator in the state, and continues to have passion for improving STEMI care and outcomes. He also has a fishing problem, and can often be found out on Lake Superior wetting a line.
Chad Olinger, D.O.
Dr. Olinger enjoys being active; Hunting, skiing, running, and going to the gym. High active lifestyle makes up for his love of food! Dr. Olinger is a native of South Dakota and loves the upper Midwest where all of his training was completed. Dr. Olinger attended the Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine and completed his Internal Medicine residency at the University of Minnesota, along with a Cardiovascular Disease Fellowship from Loyola University Medical Center. He is passionate about practicing in healthcare and works in conjunction with his partners at the Metropolitan Heart and Vascular Institute at Mercy Hospital to provide the right level of management in each cardiac situation.
Kari Olson, MSN, APRN, ACNS-BS
Ms. Olson has been an Advance Practice Nurse Leader at Fairview Southdale since 2012. She completed her undergraduate degree from Minnesota State-Mankato and her master’s degree from the University of Minnesota. Since starting her nursing career at Fairview Southdale in 1991, she has held a variety of clinical, administrative and programmatic leadership roles. The majority of her career focus has been on the care of neuroscience and stroke patients including the development of The Joint Commission certified Primary Stroke Center and most recently the DNV certified Comprehensive Stroke Center at Fairview Southdale. In addition, Kari has 5 years of experience as an advance practice provider on the Palliative consult service and sits on the Ethics Committee at Fairview Southdale.
James Peacock, PhD, MPH
Dr. James Peacock is an Epidemiologist with the Cardiovascular Health Unit at the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH). Dr. Peacock monitors state and local trends in cardiovascular disease and stroke and related risk factors utilizing hospital discharge data, clinical registry data, and public health surveillance data. He leads strategies around team-based care and health care extenders to support the identification and control of high blood pressure in support of the US Department of Health & Human Services’ Million Hearts campaign to prevent one million heart attacks and strokes by 2017. In addition, he supports data collection, analysis, and reporting to support the Minnesota Stroke Program and provides leadership on the development of systems of care for STEMI and sudden cardiac arrest at the MDH. Prior to joining MDH, Dr. Peacock worked for 5 years as a Research Associate in the Division of Epidemiology & Community Health in the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health. He is trained in cardiovascular disease and genetic epidemiology.
Dr. Peacock holds both a Ph.D. and an M.P.H. degree in Epidemiology from the University of Minnesota, and a B.A. in Biology and German from Earlham.
Janna Pietrzak, RN, BSN, CCCC
Ms. Pietrzak is the Cardiac Program Coordinator at Sanford Medical Center in Fargo, North Dakota. Janna has been a nurse in the Meritcare/Sanford Health system since 2000, and has worked in cardiology for the last 12 years. She has a passion for improving the quality and efficiency of emergency cardiovascular care, especially in rural areas. Janna assisted Sanford Medical Center Fargo in obtaining Chest Pain Center and Mission:Lifeline Accreditation and participates on the MN Mission:Lifeline and North Dakota Cardiac System of Care taskforce committees.
Rwoof A Reshi, MD
Dr. Reshi has been caring for patients in Minnesota since 2001 and teaching at the University of Minnesota Medical School since 2005. He became the Neuro Critical Care Fellowship Program Director in 2013 and has served as the Hennepin County Medical Center Stroke Medical Director since 2016. Dr. Reshi is trained to teach management of ENLS (Emergency Neurological Life Support) and also is a member of ENLS committee at Neuro Critical Care Society.
Diane Roach, MS, APRN, ACNS-BC
Ms. Roach graduated with an Advanced Practice Nursing Degree from the College of Saint Scholastica. She has dedicated over 20 years of her career serving the neurology, neurosurgical and trauma populations. She has a special passion for caring for stroke patients and takes pride in performance improvement efforts, from staff education to patient empowerment. Ms. Roach currently works as the Stroke Program Manager and cares for patients in the stroke clinic in Neurology at Essentia Health St. Mary’s Medical Center in Duluth.
Stan Sadenwasser, RN, BSN, CFRN
For over 30 years, Mr. Sadenwasser has been an integral part of providing health care in the Northeast region of Minnesota. He has served in a variety of roles, including First Responder, Paramedic, Emergency and ICU Nurse, Flight Nurse, Trauma Manager and Emergency Services Manager. In these roles, he has gained a vast array of experiences in both pre-hospital and clinical settings. Mr. Sadenwasser currently participates in related regional system development, and sits on the board of directors for Arrowhead EMS and the advisory board for Mesabi Range College–Paramedic Program. He currently serves as the Cardiovascular Service Coordinator for St. Luke’s Hospital in Duluth, which keeps him actively involved in STEMI and Stroke systems of care. Notably, he was a leader in St. Luke’s achieving its Primary Stroke Center Certification.
Stacy Shamblott, CTRS
Ms. Shamblott established the SHARE program in 2013 for Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute. She has been in the therapeutic recreation field for over 20 years serving people of all ages and disabilities. Stacy believes that all people should have leisure and recreation no matter what their disability or illness. “You just have to think outside the box.”
Dr. Sicora is the Medical Director of 3 nursing homes, including St. Therese New Hope, St. Therese Oxbow and St. Therese TCU at North Memorial. He has served as the Chair of the Ethics Committee at North Memorial for the last 6 years and has been employed by North Memorial his entire career. Dr. Sicora graduated from the University Of Minnesota Medical School in 1985 and completed his family medicine residency at the University of Minnesota and North Memorial. He is board certified in family medicine, geriatrics, hospice and palliative care. He is currently the Medical Director of Home and Community services at North Memorial Healthcare, which includes Hospice, Palliative, Geriatric nursing home practice and Advanced care planning.
Joan Somes, RN-BC, PhD, CEN, CPEN, FAEN, NRP
Dr. Somes worked as emergency dept. staff nurse and department educator for 40 years at HealthEast hospitals. She worked part time for last 23 years as an EMS instructor for Regions Hospital EMS and as a paramedic for ALF ambulance for 8 years. She is an ACLS and ACLS-EP (Experienced Provider) instructor and AHA Regional Faculty for ACLS. Over the years has used clinical experience to enhance the principles of the American Heart Association in how to deal with cardiac arrests in multiple classroom, patient room, and out of hospital situations.
Christopher Streib, MD, MS
Dr. Streib is an Assistant Professor and the Vascular Neurology Program Director at the University of Minnesota. His clinical interests include vascular neurology, acute stroke treatment, intracranial hemorrhage, interventional stroke therapy and ischemic stroke secondary to large vessel occlusion. He attended the University Of Iowa College Of Medicine and completed a neurology residency followed by a vascular neurology fellowship at the University Of Pittsburgh Medical School. He is the PI and Co Investigator on multiple clinical trials including DEFUSE 3 (EnDovascular ThErapy Following Imaging EvalUation for ISchemic StrokeE 3) and is one of the leading enrollers on two prior national and international endovascular stroke trials: SWIFT PRIME and ESCAPE. Dr. Streib also sits on the ICSI Stroke Guidelines Committee.
Mary Walters, PharmD
Ms. Walters is a PGY-1 Pharmacy Resident at North Memorial in Robbinsdale, Minnesota. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry from Saint Catherine University and her Doctor of Pharmacy from the University Of Minnesota College Of Pharmacy. Mary has a keen interest in education, critical care, and oncology and hopes to pursue a PGY-2 in oncology pharmacy practice. During her free time, Mary enjoys yoga, outdoor activities, and coaching the St. Anthony Village High School Girls Swim team.
Thomas Wyatt, M.D., FACEP
Dr. Wyatt attended medical school at the University Of North Dakota School Of Medicine and completed his residency in Emergency Medicine at Hennepin County Medical Center in 2003. He practiced as a community emergency physician at Mercy Hospital in Coon Rapids for thirteen years before joining the Emergency Medicine faculty at Hennepin County Medical Center last year. His professional interests include both clinical Emergency Medicine as well as advocacy for the specialty of Emergency Medicine. He is the Immediate Past President of the Minnesota Chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians (Minnesota ACEP) and currently serves as the Chair of the Minnesota ACEP Advocacy Committee.
Demetris Yannopoulos, M.D.
Dr. Yannopoulos’s research involves cardiopulmonary resuscitation, hypothermia, and myocardial salvage during acute coronary syndromes. He is considered an authority in cardiorespiratory interactions and hypothermia during CPR. His work in the laboratories of Dr. Keith Lurie (at the University of Minnesota) and Dr. Henry Halperin (at Johns Hopkins University) has helped change current CPR practices.
Dr. Yannopoulos is a member of the American Heart Association’s CPR guidelines-writing committee, and of the basic life support and research working-group subcommittees. He also serves on the organization committee for the AHA’s Resuscitation Science Symposium (ReSS), the largest international conference addressing CPR and emergent cardiac/trauma care.
Dr. Yannopoulos is the recipient of two American Heart Association Young Investigator awards (2005 and 2008), and has received AHA and NIH grant support for his work in CPR devices designed to improve bloodflow and clinical outcomes.
Sarah Zastrow, RN
Ms. Zastrow has a business management degree from Rasmussen Business College and worked in various business positions including owning and running a small business for 10 years. Sarah has experience working with the IRS and government in reporting required documentation. Sarah went back to school and obtained her RN licensure. Her nursing experience includes long-term care and hospice case management prior to obtaining the role in administering the HRSA grant and performing as the patient navigator to the rural stroke/TIA patient at CentraCare Long Prairie