Vision

Mission

LymeLight - The Story Of Professional Freeskier Angeli VanLaanen Living With Lyme Disease from NEU PRODUCTIONS on Vimeo.

We're Growing and Thriving

Over 30 years ago, a proper diagnosis and antibiotic treatment saved the life of Project Lyme founder, Heather Hearst. Decades later, the patients she meets with and hears about are still fighting a silent battle. In 2016, Heather Founded Project Lyme, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, to put a spotlight on Lyme disease and other tick-borne illnesses. Focused on creating a dialogue that makes Lyme disease awareness commonplace, the goal of Project Lyme was to become a global advocacy organization for prevention and early detection of Lyme and tick-borne diseases by giving communities and families up-to-date knowledge, tools and resources to stay safe from Lyme disease.

Within the first two years of operation, it became increasingly clear that Project Lyme’s next steps were to expand its education and awareness efforts to those living with Lyme. In the past six months, Project Lyme has added several Board Members who are all active and respected in the Lyme community, cultivated strategic funding and programmatic partnerships and is creating a long-term tactical plan to bring Lyme suffers credible information, support and hope.

Our team

Heather Hearst

President

Marta Ferro

Strategic Development

Julie Parrino

Strategic Development

Michelle Murphy

Social Media Coordinator

Board of Directors

Heather Hearst -
Co-Chair

Project Lyme is a nonprofit organization, launched in May 2016 dedicated to creating awareness and education about the prevention and early detection of Lyme disease on a national and global scale. Heather was diagnosed with Lyme disease in 1986. She contracted Lyme where she grew up on the shoreline of Madison, near Lyme, CT. Heather founded Project Lyme to raise awareness and begin to curb the increasing number of tick bites and cases of tick borne diseases.

Prior to Project Lyme, Heather was an art consultant on the East Coast. After completing her degree at the University of Denver, she held several positions in the Silicon Valley in marketing and business development at various software companies. After completing her master?s degree in career development, she worked as a career counselor in the Boston area for four years. She graduated from the University of Denver and received a master's degree in career development from John F. Kennedy University in Pleasant Hill, CA. She lives with her two children in Camden, Maine.

Jennifer Weis -
Co-Chair

Jennifer Weis Monsky is an Executive Editor at St. Martin's Press in NYC. During her tenure there, she has acquired and published many health-related books including most recently CLIMATE OF HOPE by Michael Bloomberg and Carl Pope, HOW CAN I GET BETTER by Dr. Richard Horowitz and Yolanda Foster's BELIEVE ME.

Jennifer's personal experiences with Lyme Disease began in 1990 when she got sick. She was treated for two years, recovered and nine years later got either a new infection or recurrence of the old, she will never know. It took five and a half years, and many doctors, for her to get well that time. Her family has also struggled with Lyme.

She joined the Columbia Lyme and Tick-borne Diseases Research Center board in 2008, and served as its chair for three years. She is also a pioneering member of the Gray Matters program at Columbia and continues to serve on its board. This program is devoted to funding young Fellows in Psychiatry. Additionally, Jennifer is a member of the Columbia University Psychiatry Board. As various advocacy groups have worked on addressing the Lyme Disease problem, Jennifer has participated in their national fundraising and strategic activities in both leadership and Board member positions. She is a member of the Yale Public Health School Leadership Council and UJA Publishing Executive Committee.

Jennifer received her B.A. and M.A. in English from Yale. She lives in NYC with her husband John Monsky, Yale '81, and is the mother of four children.

David Roth -
Executive Committee Chair

David Roth recently retired from Blackstone, with whom he was a Senior Managing Director in the firm?s Real Estate group and served as the head of Latin America investments, based in New York. Before joining Blackstone, David was a Principal in the acquisitions group at Walton Street Capital. Early in his career, David ran acquisitions in Europe for Security Capital Group and was an associate attorney at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz.

In February 2010, as a healthy 43 year old, David became acutely ill. Like many sufferers of Lyme disease, he didn't see a Lyme rash and didn't know what symptoms to look for. David went to a dozen of the best doctors who didn't know the symptoms of tick-borne disease and who relied upon faulty diagnostic tests. He received two negative blood tests before a CDC positive test, four months after becoming ill. After nearly four months of medical visits and misdiagnoses, he was ultimately diagnosed as suffering from Lyme disease and Babesia. David was treated on and off for a year with antibiotics, anti-malarials (for the Babesia) and a variety of other drugs, supplements and dietary changes. After two and a half years of illness, he finally reached the level of wellness where he currently sits - about 85% of the human he was before he got ill. David continues to suffer periodic bouts of his original symptoms.

In the search for meaning and in order to help solve what he saw as a grave social injustice, David became one of the founders of the Tick Borne Disease Alliance, which eventually merged with another group to become what is know today as Global Lyme Alliance, before joining the Board of Project Lyme.

David received a B.A. with a major in Government from Dartmouth College, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa and magna cum laude. He also received a J.D. from New York University School of Law and is a Certified Financial Analyst Charterholder. He currently serves on the Board of Jazz Aspen Snowmass and the International Board of the Sao Paolo Biennale and on the National Council of the Aspen Art Museum.

Carla Gervasio Nugent -
Secretary

Early on, Carla spent over 25 years in the pharmaceutical and consumer products industry in a broad range of roles from new technology commercialization to Senior Executive in major corporations. Recently, she has taken advisor roles in innovative female founded start-ups and women’s accelerator programs.

A mother and children’s Lyme activist, Carla is a medical professional dedicated to being a driving force for awareness and actionable changes within the Lyme world. Some areas of focus for Carla include finding reliable diagnostics, advanced treatment options, patient support services, research and legislation.

In addition to being a Project Lyme Board member, Carla is also involved with Traditional Chinese Medicine, is a Board Advisor for the Italian Trade Commission and a member of ILADS.

Carla has earned a B.S. in Biochemistry, a M.S. Education Sciences and an M.B.A in Marketing & Finance.

Bob Forster -
Treasurer

Bob has been in the Real Estate industry for 26 years and financial services for 31 years. During that time, his experiences have ranged from managing and operating a startup property management company to managing a real estate portfolio totaling $10B with one of the largest real estate companies in the world. This range includes analyzing, entitling and building development/redevelopment projects from $2-$200MM in office retail and multifamily, working with all forms of capital products and investment vehicles including opportunity funds, mezzanine debt, preferred equity, joint venture equity, first mortgages, loan syndications and participations, working with institutional, individual and midsized investors, and the most complex of deal structures and issues including foreclosures, loan/equity restructures and complex retailer bankruptcies.

He has held the following positions:

  • GE Real Estate – Portfolio Manager/Asset Manager
  • Tick-Borne Disease Alliance – Board Member/Treasurer
  • Wilton Hockey Boosters – President
  • Town of Wilton Wetlands Commission – Commissioner
  • The Chase Manhattan Bank - Asset Manager
  • Trebol Realty Asset Management – Chief Operating Officer
  • Morgan Stanley – Portfolio Analyst
  • Deloitte, Haskins & Sells – Senior Accountant

Bob has a B.S. degree in Finance and Accounting from Boston College and Diploma from the New York University Real Estate Institute. He earned his CPA in the State of New York.

Bob and his daughter, Elizabeth, both contracted Lyme disease in 2006/07 and were involved with misdiagnoses, failed treatments and relapses. Elizabeth’s condition was resolved after several years of treatment from various practitioners. Bob continues to require monitoring and periodic treatment.

Drew Goldman -
Board Member

Drew Goldman joined Deutsche Bank in 1999 in the Gaming, Lodging and Leisure group. Prior to that, he was with Sun International Hotels Limited where he was responsible for Strategic Planning, Corporate Finance and Investor Relations from 1997 to 1999. Before joining Sun International, Drew spent five years in investment banking with Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc. and Paribas Corporation. Drew has focused on the Gaming and Leisure sectors for 14 years. He has worked in both banking and on the client side, gaining valuable perspective from working with a former client.

Drew received an M.A. in Economics from the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in 1993 and a B.A. from Connecticut College in 1992. He lives in New York City with his wife and twin boys. He and his family have been impacted by tick borne diseases, as have many of their friends and dogs.

Nan Kurzman -
Board Member

In 2002, Nan brought herself and a tick to her doctor’s office. While she was positive on the Elisa and negative on the Western Blot (by CDC standards), the doctors took the “wait and see” approach. As she had no rash and no symptoms, there were no options to treat her. It wasn’t until 2008 that Nan became highly symptomatic and began treatment for Lyme disease.

Sadly, not enough has changed and this is still a common scenario for so many people. Motivated to help others after being diagnosed, Nan joined the Board of Turn The Corner Foundation and remained on the Board as it grew to become Tick Borne Disease Alliance (TBDA) and, ultimately, Global Lyme Alliance (GLA).

Today, Nan remains committed to freeing the world from tick-borne diseases through her work with Project Lyme and Generation Lyme. She has her B.S. from New York University and is a registered Occupational Therapist specializing in Pediatrics. Nan lives in NYC with her husband Moshe Sukenik and has three adult children, one of whom suffers from Lyme disease.

Jill Levy-Fisch -
Board Member

Jill has spent several years advocating for newborns through Save Babies Through Screening Foundation (SBTS), for which she served as National Director for Education and Awareness, and then President. Jill’s advocacy work was put on hold abruptly in 2016 when her daughter was diagnosed with Lyme disease. Her daughter’s prolonged diagnosis, acute symptoms, and chronic effects all opened Jill’s eyes up to how debilitating this disease can be to the human body, and inspired Jill to diversify her advocacy work to include awareness and education about Lyme disease.

Jill’s advocacy work led to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issuing a nationwide letter informing parents of their comprehensive newborn screening options. She was also executive producer of an educational video called "One Foot at a Time."

Jill has also represented nonprofit organizations at UNICEF Global Health Meeting, Yale University, and National Institutes of Health.

Brooke Stoddard -
Generation Lyme

Brooke joined Project Lyme in 2017 and manages the Generation Lyme initiative. Brooke contracted Lyme disease in 2009, was diagnosed in 2013, and today is 95% better. He joined Project Lyme to raise awareness, support research, and create a community for young people facing Lyme disease.

Brooke works at Goldman Sachs in New York, and he worked previously in India. Brooke graduated with Honors from Wharton with a M.B.A. in Finance & Management and a B.A. in History from Princeton University. At Wharton, Brooke spoke about his experience with Lyme disease in a speech called “Leadership Through Resilience”.

Mark Weber -
Generation Lyme

Mark is a lifelong avid golfer who has nearly two decades of personal experience with the Lyme epidemic. He joined Project Lyme in 2017 to raise awareness and encourage investment in tick-borne disease research. He is also a member of Generation Lyme, focused on empowering young adults facing Lyme and associated illnesses.

Mark received his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Duke University and a M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

Professional Advisory Board

Holly Ahern, MS MT(ASCP) -
Associate Professor of Microbiology, SUNY Adirondack
Dr. Elena Frid, M.D., ABPN, ABCN -
Pediatric and Adult Neuro-Lyme Specialist
Dr. Nevena Zubcevik, D.O., MSPT -
Clinical Co-Director at The Dean Center for Tick Borne Illness: Spaulding Rehabilitation Network

The Professional Advisory Board is comprised of the most experienced and knowledgeable professionals in the field. They are committed to advise and assist Project Lyme with scientific and clinical programs.

Join us

No Current Openings

Working together to end suffering
“I had to think bigger than my own disease and arm parents and kids with info to help stop this growing wave”
Heather Hearst, Founder Project Lyme