Teen Programming Staff
Marissa Town, BSN, RN, CDE, graduated from the University of Cincinnati with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and later earned her Certified Diabetes Educator credential. She has had type 1 diabetes since the age of two and has grown up with a passion for helping families living with diabetes. Marissa is currently working as a research nurse at Stanford University. She has always enjoyed working with families with diabetes at Children with Diabetes conferences, camps, and support groups. She and her husband Adam have two young children, Connor and Everly.
Kacie Doyle-Delgado, MSN, APRN, NP-C, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 11 and attended her first Friends for Life® conference in 2002. Since then, she has attended several FFL and regional conferences. She earned her BSN and her MSN as a Family Nurse Practitioner at Westminster College in Salt Lake City, UT and she is currently enrolled in a DNP program. She works for Utah Physicians Care Center in a diabetes specialty clinic. Kacie lives in Salt Lake with her husband, Justin Delgado, and their dogs. She is looking forward to volunteering with the teens again.
Justin Delgado is husband to Kacie Doyle-Delgado, diagnosed at age 11. After more than a decade together, he considers himself to be an expert carb counter and Dexcom inserter. He graduated with his Master of Science in Finance from the University of Utah in 2013 and has been working in commercial banking since then. He attended his first Friends for Life conference in 2015 and is looking forward to volunteering with the teens.
Tween Programming Staff
Melissa Geren was diagnosed with diabetes when she was four. She went to her first Friends for Life® Orlando Conference in 2003 and has been attending Friends for Life® conferences ever since. Melissa has three siblings, Sarah, Kayla, and Matthew. Matthew also has type 1 diabetes. Currently, she works on the Marketing Team for Fannie May Confections in Chicago. Melissa looks forward to working with Tweens at Friends for Life Conferences each year.
Tina Ghosn is mother to three children with diabetes. She is also an elementary school teacher and a US Veteran. She and her family attended their first Friends for Life Orlando conference in 2007, just months after their first and youngest child was diagnosed with type 1. They have attended FFL six times and each time learned new tricks and made new Friends for Life. Last year marked a turning point for her two oldest teens when the universe aligned and the two warring teens became FFLs while attending the conference. Miracles do happen! While currently living in the Seattle suburbs, she and her family have also lived in Texas and Northern California. When not teaching, playing with her many pets, reading, or hauling kids to various activities, Tina mentors families of newly diagnosed kids, volunteers with a local diabetes camp, and shares tidbits, advice, and humor about diabetes.
Sarah Melendez, BSN, RN, mom to Brady, diagnosed in 2004, resides outside of Philadelphia. They have been attending Friends for Life® conferences since 2005 and have made Children with Diabetes® an integral part of their lives. She earned her Bachelors of Science in Nursing at West Chester University. Sarah currently works as a Research Nurse for Medical Oncology and Phase 1 Clinical Trials at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, PA.
Jim Stone attended his first Friends for Life® Conference in 2004. His son, Andrew, was diagnosed with type 1 in 1998 at 20 months of age. Jim, his wife Julia, and Andrew have been active in diabetes advocacy since his diagnosis, with a focus on diabetes accommodations at school. Jim, a retired Army officer, lives in Modesto, California and works as a Public Works manager. He has been a Boy Scout leader for many years, and enjoys working with the Tweens.
Elementary Programming Staff
Sunshine Abel, LPN, is the mother of Sierra and Sailor. She attended her first Friends for Life® Conference with her family in 2002, after Sailor was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 2. Sunshine immediately knew she had found a new family and a new home where kids were experiencing the same thing as Sailor. She then made it her mission to involve her whole family. Sunshine is continuing her education working toward her RN degree. Sunshine has been working as a nurse and leader in the Friends for Life® youth programming since 2006.
Monica Lanning is a clinical research coordinator at Stanford University focusing on improving quality of life in people with type 1 diabetes and barriers to diabetes device use. She completed her undergraduate at the University of Chicago and her master's at Boston University. She was diagnosed in 1996 at the age of two and has been attending FFL conferences since 2000. Monica loves to play board games, craft, ski, and travel. She calls her CWD friends "family" and is excited for this year’s "family reunion!"
Marisa Fox, BSN, RN, is a graduate of East Texas Baptist University with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. She is now an acute care nurse in Portland, Oregon. She is the oldest sibling to two sisters, Jessica and Erica, both living with type 1 diabetes. Marisa attended her first Friends for Life Orlando conference in 2005 and has enjoyed being able to attend many since.
Katelyn Littlefield was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of nine in 2005, and has been attending the Friends for Life conferences yearly since 2006. She has a bachelors degree in psychology with a minor in counseling, and is a dog trainer. CWD is like a second family with so much love and support. It is so nice to give back to a community that's left such an impact on her.
Colton Brunsen has been attending the Friends for Life conferences since 2014 with his girlfriend, Katelyn, who has type 1. He is currently going to college for a degree in mechanical engineering, and works as a mechanic. He has really enjoyed going to the conferences, and is excited to be part of the staff again!
Child Care Programming Staff
Alexa Brenner was diagnosed with diabetes in 1997, and has been attending Friends for Life Orlando conferences since 2006 with her mom, Georgia. Aside from letting her appreciate her inner Disney princess well into her teens, the conferences have allowed her to make some of the best friends for life she could ever hope to have. Alexa is planning on getting her BSN followed by an MPH. She's excited to be on staff and give back to CWD, which has given her so much.
Shelley Grand, mom to Parker, diagnosed in 2002, resides in Southern California. Shelley and her family have been attending Friends for Life Orlando conferences since 2003, and they attribute Parker’s success in managing his type 1 to the knowledge, support and friendship that they have received over the years from attending the FFL conferences. Shelley has been a preschool teacher/director for the past 30 years. She states, “We look forward to attending FFL every year and enjoy being able to give back to a community that has given so much to our family.”
Parker Grand is excited to be on the Friends for Life staff this year as CWD has given him so much support and friendship over the years. Parker has attended every Friends for Life conference since his diagnosis at the age of three in 2002. Parker lives in California where he attends college full-time. He is employed by the California State Parks where he coordinates youth programs, leads guided tours and develops new programs to teach children an appreciation for the history and ecology of the parks. Parker loves working with children of all ages. In his free time, you can find him biking, golfing, and volunteering.
Teresa Littlefield, MSN, RN, RNC-MNN, CLC, is mom to Katelyn, diagnosed at age nine, and her sister Jessica. She has been attending conferences since 2006. She started out as a participant, then as a volunteer for many years and became a member of staff in 2013. Teresa currently works with at-risk first time moms and their babies. She also teaches in the clinical setting at a local university. Teresa also volunteers with patients with diabetes in her local community as well as online as part of the Online Diabetes Support Team of JDRF. She plans to earn her CDE credential in the future. Friend for Life offers a lot of support for parents, too, and she is super excited to be back again this year!
Denotes faculty or staff with diabetes
Friends for Life® Seattle 2019 Conference Introduction - Registration - Exhibitor Application Program - Youth Program - Faculty - Youth Faculty - CWD Staff
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