BOARD OF DIRECTORS
julie ratner, Ed.D, chair
Julie Ratner is the co-founder and chairwoman of The Ellen Hermanson Foundation which she founded in 1996 with her her sister Emily Levin. Named in honor of their younger sister, Ellen, who died in 1995 of breast cancer at the age of 42, the foundation has distributed more than $4 million in grants.
Julie worked as a school librarian at the Brearley School and at Columbia Grammar and Preparatory School in New York City before enrolling in the Department of Higher and Adult Education at Teachers College, Columbia University, in 1990. She earned her Doctorate in Education in 1996.
Currently, Julie is a member of the National Breast Cancer Coalition and the New York State Breast Cancer Network. She has also served on the boards of the League Education and Treatment Center in Brooklyn (as President), Congressman Tim Bishop’s Breast Cancer Advisory Board, the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, the Brooklyn Philharmonic Orchestra, the New York Chamber Symphony, the Hadassah Foundation, and The American Friends of the Soroka Medical Center of the Negev in Israel.
Julie received her B.A. from Simmons College with honors (1968), M.L.S. from Columbia University School of Library Science (1970), and M.A. and Ed.D. from Teachers College, Columbia University (1996). She is a graduate of Project Lead, Science Training Course, sponsored by the National Breast Cancer Coalition.
She has two daughters, Rebecca and Elizabeth.
Emily Levin, Esq., Vice Chair
Emily Levin is co-founder of The Ellen Hermanson Foundation with her sister Julie Ratner. During the early years of the foundation, Emily worked behind the scene to develop the foundation's data base, financial records keeping, printed materials including the Ellen's Run race application, party invitations, race poster, newspaper advertisements, race t-shirt, and website as well as reading contracts and providing legal advice.
Emily is a retired attorney, having practiced complex civil litigation in a large law firm for several years, including writing the winning brief for an important matter of first impression in the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. After Ellen’s death, Emily became a founding member of an organization within her synagogue that provides outreach and support to members in times of grief and need.
Emily served as a trustee of her synagogue, is past president of her Hadassah group, and for several years served on Hadassah’s regional board. A passionate balletomane, Emily is a member of the Golden Circle Council at American Ballet Theater. Committed to the eradication of breast cancer, Emily is a member of the executive committee for Babes Against Cancer events benefiting the American Cancer Society.
Emily received her B.A. from Clark University (1967), M.S. from Columbia University (1969), and J.D. with honors from Hofstra University (1988).
Constance M. Chen, MD
Dr. Constance M. Chen is a board-certified plastic surgeon with special expertise in the use of innovative natural techniques to optimize medical and cosmetic outcomes for women undergoing breast reconstruction. Dr. Chen received her BA from Harvard College, MD from Stanford University School of Medicine, and MPH from Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. After surgical residencies at the University of Washington Medical Center and New York-Presbyterian Hospital Cornell-Columbia, she completed fellowships at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and New York University Langone Medical Center Institute of Reconstructive Plastic Surgery. She is currently Clinical Assistant Professor of Surgery (Plastic Surgery) at Weill Cornell Medical College and Clinical Assistant Professor of Surgery (Plastic Surgery) at Tulane University School of Medicine. She is also the Chief of Microsurgery at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai.
Dr. Chen pioneered perforator flap breast reconstruction at Lenox Hill Hospital, and operates at the New York Eye & Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai as part of the New York Center for the Advancement of Breast Reconstruction. She was previously principal investigator of a multi-institutional clinical trial investigating autologous lymph node transfer to treat breast cancer patients who have developed chronic upper extremity lymphedema after mastectomy.
Dr. Chen is frequently invited to lecture nationally and internationally on new advancements in breast reconstruction and the surgical treatment of lymphedema. She is the author of three books, five book chapters, and fifty journal articles. She has also won numerous awards for her work in plastic and reconstructive surgery at the local, regional, and national levels. Dr. Chen has developed a reputation in the community for the personalized attention that she devotes to her patients. She is committed to aesthetic restoration of the breast and body, and enjoys helping her patients achieve overall well-being. At the end of the day, there is nothing more important to her than the joy she hopes to bring to her patients' lives.
Iris Shokoff is well known in the direct marketing industry for her media and marketing skills. For over 30 years, she has handled media campaigns for a wide range of business categories, including collectibles, check printing services, vitamin/health products, magazine subscriptions, catalogs, financial services and not-for-profit.
In 1989, she launched ISA Advertising as an independent direct response media buying service. Prior to 1989, Iris spent the bulk of her career in senior management positions at various direct marketing agencies; seven years as executive vice president of Grey Direct where she developed a media department for them and two years as senior vice president of Rapp & Collins where she created a direct response television buying unit. Previously, Iris worked for ten years at Wunderman Worldwide as vice president, media director.
Iris has been program committee chairperson for Direct Marketing Day in New York. She is a member of the Direct Marketing Association and serves on its committees. Iris is Treasurer of the Direct Marketing Idea Exchange and serves on its board of directors and executive committee. She has also served on the board of advisors for Target Magazine. Iris is a former board member of the Direct Marketing Creative Guild and was a former adjunct professor at New York University, Center for Direct Marketing. She is a frequent speaker at industry conferences.
DCG Public Relations specializes in Digital Marketing and Advertising for Brands seeking to reach the next level of growth.
Dee Rivera started her career in editorial magazines as a Fashion + Beauty Editor at Modern Bride Magazine, Latina Magazine, Brio, Vibe, and Chaos Magazine. She then rolled up her sleeves in Public Relations as a Publicist at one of New York City's top PR firms, Sandy Blye Media Relations, when she developed a "Nose for News" my pitching editorial stories, segments and tracking breaking news stories. In 2007, Dee started DCG Public Relations, a boutique firm in NYC specializing in beauty and fashion brands. In the last 10 years, her company has successfully grown, working with viable brands, such as IMAN Cosmetics, Vera Moore Cosmetics, Shimmer Med Spa, Rommy Beauty, Glamazon Beauty, Ogilvy & Mather-Latin read, Salud, Luscious Vines, Vanity Drink & many more.
Her scope of work covers the fields of food, sports, dance, music, health, fitness, charity, and fashion, with media placement seen onThe Today Show, The Early Show, FOX News, Fox and Friends, Essence, CBS Sunday Morning, Access Hollywood, Extra, The New York Times, Associated Press, The New York Daily News, The New York Post and Latina Magazine and more.
Ann began her real estate career in 1979 in the Northern Westchester areas of Armonk, Bedford and Chappaqua, and relocated to the Hamptons in 1995. Ann's passion for and deep knowledge of the real estate business, along with her outgoing personality and excellent people skills, have made her extremely successful. Ann is a fully licensed real estate broker, is very accomplished and committed, and loves to match buyers with the perfect property.
The social whirl of the Hamptons is nothing new to Ann, who concurrently with her real estate career over the years has been very involved with fundraising for the New York Junior Tennis League and Cartier's Grand Slam Event for the American Cancer Society. Ann is a Board member of the Ellen Hermanson Foundation and was a Co-Chair for HEAT, a celebration at the home of Steven Klein for the new Ellen Hermanson Breast Center at Southampton Hospital. Ann joined Sotheby's International Realty in 2006.
hugo moreno, treasureR
Hugo S. Moreno, who was married to Ellen Hermanson, has served as a board member since the Foundation’s beginning. Since 2011, he has served as Editorial Director of Forbes Insights, the thought leadership and strategic research practice of Forbes Media. In 2010, he helped launch the international edition Forbes Middle East in Dubai. Previously, Hugo spent a decade on the editorial side at Forbes, then another decade as Deputy Managing Editor at SmartMoney: The Wall Street Journal Magazine. He is also a co-founder of the thought leadership firm McParlin Partners.
Hope is the consummate urban/suburban professional. She spent the first five years of her career working in New York City's Upper West Side and counts as clients some of the area's most recognizable celebrities. She's been living and working in Fairfield County for the past 16 years and has become a fixture in the local scene. Her business philosophy mirrors that of her compatriots at The Riverside Realty Group. She's honest, hard working, tech savvy and possesses tremendous knowledge of the local marketplace. Hope takes pride in assisting buyers and sellers way beyond the closing table and now counts many as lifelong friends. She has been involved in some of the area's most prestigious sales.
Hope has been named to a worldwide firm's President's Club through her successful role as client negotiator. She's available 7 days a week and after finding her clients the perfect home considers them and their referrals as among her greatest assets. Living in Westport with her husband, a global real estate investor/developer, she has put their two daughters through the local school system. Hope's passion is real estate but she is highly involved in the mentoring program through Human Services in the town of Westport. She enjoys spending time with her family, skiing, engaging in fitness activities, traveling and doing all things outdoors.
Identified by Capitol File Magazine as one of the DC region’s brightest women working in philanthropy, Amanda Polk invests her time and talents to ensure the success of several philanthropic initiatives. So much so, she returned to her alma mater, New York University (Bachelor of Arts), to earn a Graduate Certificate in Fundraising through Special Events under the guidance of fundraising expert, Naomi Lavine. She is adamant about the need for accountability in fundraising, “It is important that people keep their promises about where your money is going to go. They need to deliver,” said Polk in an article about D.C fundraisers that appeared in POLITICO. She has served on the following boards: • National Board of Kids Enjoy Exercise Now (KEEN) USA, a national, nonprofit organization that provides recreational opportunities for children and young adults with severe developmental and physical disabilities.
The Washington D.C. Humane Society • Johns Hopkins/Suburban Hospital Foundation Board Amanda chaired Fashion for Paws, a fundraising event for the Washington Human Society, an organization which recognized her as the 2009 Washingtonian of the Year. She also previously chaired the KEEN Warm-up Event, KEENFest, and served on many other successful fundraising committees for her community, including: Blue Hope Bash, Knock Out Abuse, St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Key to the Cure and Luke's Wings. Mrs. Polk’s service to Johns Hopkins-Suburban Hospital included chairing the annual gala for two consecutive years and serving as co-chair of the Saks Fifth Avenue Key to the Cure. An early adopter of social media, Ms. Polk brought Suburban Hospital and many new FRIENDS together, significantly impacting the success of the Key to the Cure event. Her commitment to Johns Hopkins/Suburban Hospital earned her the distinguished recognition as one of the Association of Philanthropy’s fundraisers of the year. In 2012, she became a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA),a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to advocate for the timely placement of abused and neglected children in safe, permanent homes and for the highest quality of their care while they are under the court's jurisdiction. Amanda resides in Palm Beach, Wainscott and the D.C. area with her husband, Curtis Polk. They are big fans of the Charlotte Hornets and the Carolina Panthers. Together they have a daughter, Cheyenne, who is currently serving with the Peace Corps in Cambodia.
Cathy welcomes you into her office, offers you a comfortable chair, and listens to what you have to say. She asks you questions and pays attention to your answers. She works with you to find the perfect property to buy, or the best way to sell your home or land. She makes it easy for you because she takes the time to guide you through the process of obtaining the information necessary for you to be confident in making one of the biggest financial decisions of your life.
A native New Yorker who was raised in Manhattan, she earned a degree in Public Communications from Boston University's School of Communications. For over twenty years she worked in the high-profile worlds of advertising and direct marketing. Working for Ogilvy & Mather, Cathy quickly rose up the ladder to become Director of Client Services for Ogilvy Direct. She went on to open and operate her own successful agency, which she later sold, continuing to work as a consultant before venturing into residential real estate.
Weekending and summering in the Hamptons since the mid 90's Cathy bought a home in 2001. While her first intention was to vacation there, the East End's beauty and the desire to redirect her professional interests resulted in a permanent move.
Recently she was elected to the board of directors of HANFRA, the Hamptons and North Fork Real Estate organization. Cathy enjoys taking part in charitable work in her community. In addition to her work on the Board of The Ellen Hermanson Foundation, benefiting breast cancer patients and their families, she was formerly on the Associates Committee for the Multiple Sclerosis Society of New York.
She loves to visit the beaches on a daily basis, where she walks and basks in the unprecedented beauty with Dixie, her frisky, adorable Goldendoodle. She is also a cook, and enjoys entertaining and travel.
MEDICAL ADVISORY BOARD
Louis Avvento, M.D., Medical Oncologist, Eastern Long Island Hematology and Oncology
Deborah Axelrod, M.D., Director of Clinical Breast Surgery and Community Outreach at NYU Langone Medical Center
William Brancaccio, M.D., Radiologist at Southampton Hospital
Kathleen Foley, M.D., Chair, Society of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
Juan Gargiulo, M.D., Medical Director, East End Pain Management Center, Southampton, NY
Edna Kapenhas, M.D., Medical Director of The Ellen Hermanson Breast Center at Southampton Hospital
Larry Norton, M.D., Deputy Physician-in-Chief for Breast Cancer Programs at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center & Medical Director, Evelyn H. Lauder Breast Center
Karrie Zampini, M.S.W., Director of Clinical Programs and Senior Oncology Social Worker at Fighting Chance, Sag Harbor