Buffalo Education Day 2020
September 19, 2020
Saturday, September 19, 2020
9:30 am - 1:00 pm
LocationDent Neurologic Institute
Dent Tower, 3980 Sheridan Drive
Amherst, NY 14226
- Lazlo Mechtler, MD - Treatment Update: Current & Pipeline
- Nancy Harris Bonk, Patient Advocate
- Sharon Rhoades - Group Discussion Facilitator
- Sharon Rhoades - Group Discussion Facilitator
Keynotes, presenters and breakout sessions
Lazlo Mechtler, MD
Dr. Mechtler serves as Medical Director of Dent Neurologic Institute as well as the Chief of Neuro-Oncology at Roswell Park Cancer Institute and is also the Director of the DENT Headache Center, Neuro-Oncology Center, and Cannabis Clinic, with attending assignments at Kaleida Health and the Roswell Park Cancer Institute. He is also a Professor of Neurology and Neuro-Oncology at the State University of New York at Buffalo.
In addition, he is published in numerous publications and is currently the Principle Investigator of multiple clinical research protocols related to Headaches and Neuro-Oncology.
Dr. Mechtler is located at DENT Tower in Amherst.
Nancy Harris Bonk
Nancy Harris Bonk is a patient advocate and educator who has the honor and privilege of helping patients empower themselves to take an active role in their healthcare. Nancy became familiar with migraine disease when she started having migraine attacks around her puberty. These were easily treated with over the counter medications for many years.
In December 1996, Nancy slipped and fell on a patch of black ice in her driveway slamming her head and sustaining a traumatic brain injury, changing her life forever. This fall triggered unrelenting head and neck pain and chronic migraine attacks. In addition to chronic head and neck pain, Nancy lives with hypothyroidism, depression, anxiety, idiopathic intracranial hypertension, and Fibromyalgia.
While living with intractable pain and raising her children, Nancy was searching for support and in 2003 moderated the About.com (now Remedy Health) migraine discussion forum. In 2005 she became a moderator and from 2007 - 2013 was a Health Guide and Community Manager at Remedy Health.
In 2011 Nancy joined Health Union’s first site, Migraine.com, as a contributor/moderator and was nominated for the 2012 WEGO Health Activist Unsung Hearo Award. Nancy joined U.S Pain as a Pain Ambassador and continues to represent them at live events. In April 2011, she founded the Western New York Migraine and Headache Disorder Support Group, the first local in person migraine and headache disorder support group in Buffalo, N.Y. This group meets monthly and continues to support and educate people with migraine and headache disease, their families, and friends.
In 2013 Nancy was named one of the Top Ten Social Health Media Makers in headache and migraine, was a WEGO Health Activist ‘Unsung Hero’ finalist, and has been a WEGO Health Activist award finalist in the categories of ‘Health Activist Hero” and “Best in Show; Facebook”. Nancy enjoys working closely with other health advocates on projects that create awareness and change in the headache disease community.
Nancy is Vice President of Chronic Migraine Awareness, Inc., CMA, Inc. a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit with over 45,000 members, in 2016. In 2018 she was invited to be on the National Headache Foundation’s Patient Leadership Council and a member of CHAMP – Coalition for Headache and Migraine Patients. CHAMP supports and works to identify unmet needs of the headache, migraine, and cluster disease community.
Nancy lives in Albany, N.Y. When she’s not advocating for people with headache disease, she enjoys baking, quilting and spending time with family.
Sharon Rhodes is a mother of two, and a full time care-taker of her parents. She has lived with migraine disease for over 35 years, and became chronic 15 years ago. Living with chronic migraine prompted her into migraine and headache disease advocacy, and has participated in various migraine disease studies. Sharon has been active in researching alternative methods to alleviate pain, continues to search for possible migraine attack triggers and learns all she can about migraine disease.
Sharon is the facilitator of the monthly, Buffalo Miles for Migraine, Migraine Community Group, formerly the Western New York Migraine and Headache Disorder Support Group and works with the Chronic Migraine Awareness, Inc. ARMS (Advocates Removing Migraine Stigma) program, ECHO (Education Council for Headache Online) and is a U.S. Pain Foundation Ambassador. She continues her advocacy by participating in letter campaigns to ICER (Incremental Cost Effective Ratio), Congress, and The Buffalo News.
Volunteering and advocating has given Sharon a sense of purpose and belonging. She finds helping others not lose hope living with migraine disease empowering. Being part of the migraine disease community makes her feel less alone and helps her continue to fight through her pain day after day.
One of Sharon’s goals is to help research moving forward so others do not have to experience this disabling, neurological condition. She wants migraine sufferers to have the opportunity and ability to get their life back.
In her free time, Sharon enjoys being outside and capturing photos of nature and making photo books. Sharon also has a son who lives with migraine disease.