Our Board

Leah Wypych, MPA


Judy Rifkin

Vice Chair

Lorraine Mari, Ph.D.


Artie Fox


Gillian Bush, PsyD


Nicole Carlisi, LMHC


Kenneth F. Kahn


Margherita Mascolo, MD, CEDS


Cherie Monarch


Alicia Paulino-Grisham, Esq.


Rebecca Seelig


Frank Valente


Erica Waldron, MS, LMHC


Leah Wypych was born and raised in Palm Beach County, Florida. Upon receiving her undergraduate degree from Florida State University, she returned back home and earned her Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Florida Atlantic University.

Leah’s goal has always been to help the community, particularly children and their families. That’s the reason she chose to begin her career working in the child welfare system in 2001 helping children removed from their homes and placed in adoptive homes, foster homes, shelters, group homes and residential programs. Leah has worked for multiple non-profit agencies throughout her career, including Children’s Home Society of Florida, the Area Agency on Aging, and Child and Family Connections.

Leah began her career in the psychiatric arena as the marketing coordinator at psychiatric residential treatment center serving children and adolescents. She merged her career path with her passion for eating disorders in August of 2015 and is currently the Marketing Director at ViaMar Health, an eating disorder program in West Palm Beach, Florida. Leah is proud to have been a part of The Alliance family since 2011. Since joining the Alliance family, Leah has advocated for eating disorder legislation in Washington D.C. every year and diligently promoted eating disorder awareness through every avenue possible.

Judy was born and raised in Birmingham, Michigan. At the age of 16, she was recruited to move to New York City, where she began her career as a professional ballerina at The American Ballet Theater. When her professional ballet career came to end, she returned to the Midwest where she got married and raised two wonderful children, Josh and Rachel. While she raised her children in Fort Wayne, Indiana, Judy was thoroughly involved in community outreach and fundraising with the town’s synagogue, school system, and various parent-run organizations.

Judy became involved with The Alliance after her daughter, Rachel, confessed her struggles with an eating disorder in college. After meeting Johanna, connecting her daughter with proper treatment, and seeing the recovery process; she learned how much she related to her daughter’s struggles. Judy remained connected with The Alliance as Rachel maintained full recovery and interned with The Alliance. Judy now spends the majority of her time living in Jupiter, Florida with her husband, and continuing her passion with helping spread eating disorders awareness.

Dr. Lorraine Mari is a licensed Psychologist in New York State and Florida. She is a full time Florida resident residing in Palm Beach Gardens.

Dr. Mari focused her professional career of over 30 years in schools on Long Island. She was the chief psychologist in the Kings Park School District, where she was responsible for psychological services at the preschool, elementary and secondary levels. In-service training of professional staff, parent education groups, and chairing committees for providing special educational services to school age and pre-school age children were among her responsibilities. She also maintained a private clinical practice working with children, adults and families.

Dr. Mari received her doctoral degree from Hofstra University. She has two sons, Andrew Schles and Jeffrey Schles.

Dr. Mari has been volunteering with The Alliance since December of 2010, co-leading weekly support groups, assisting with educational presentations, grant writing and fund raising.

Artie Fox is a CPA with over forty years’ experience, servicing many wealthy individuals, small business, estates and trusts, as well as tax exempt foundations, through his business, Arthur Fox, CPA. He is a member of the AICPA and NYSCPA. Artie is married to Ellen and has two children, Justin and Brittany. Ellen is a Children’s Librarian. Justin is a CPA and attorney and works with him at Arthur Fox, CPA. Brittany, after suffering from an eating disorder for the past ten years, is on the road to recovery and hopes to become speech therapist and is enrolled in graduate school.

Artie has been extensively involved in dealing with his daughter’s treatment and has a very good understanding of Eating Disorders. Artie and Ellen have two homes, one in New York and one in Florida, where they divide their time. Artie is thrilled to be involved and a part of The Alliance.

Dr. Gillian Bush is a licensed Florida Psychologist and has a private practice in Palm Beach Gardens. Dr. Bush treats individuals, couples and families and specializes in work with anxiety and eating disorders.

Dr. Bush received her bachelor’s degree from Boston College, a master’s degree from Teacher’s College, Columbia University and her doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from Nova Southeastern University in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. She completed her pre-doctoral internship and post-doctoral residency at The Renfrew Center of Coconut Creek, a residential treatment facility for adult and adolescent women diagnosed with eating disorders.

Dr. Bush has been actively involved with The Alliance for years, co-leading one of their weekly gender inclusive support groups and volunteering at many of their events. Dr. Bush is passionate about community outreach and education, helping to increase education about eating disorders and mental health issues as well as demystifying the treatment process.

Nicole Carlisi, LMHC is a Florida Licensed Mental Health Counselor specializing in the treatment of eating disorders and co-occurring disorders. Nicole has extensive experience in the treatment of Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, ARFID, OSFED, and Binge Eating Disorders. Nicole received her Master’s degree in counseling education from Nova Southeastern University in 2007. During her undergraduate studies, Nicole worked as a life skills facilitator and drug/alcohol counselor in the public and private school sector, focusing on drug and alcohol prevention and early intervention. She completed her practicum and internship training at the Hanley Center and continued on to work in long term residential treatment for patients with addictions and complex trauma. She advanced her career as eating disorder program director at an intensive outpatient center for women struggling with eating disorders and addictions. Additionally, Nicole served as clinical director for a partial hospitalization and transitional living eating disorder program individuals experiencing eating disorders and addictive disorders.

Nicole has been an active volunteer and group facilitator at The Alliance and is a member of several other professional organizations. She has presented on eating disorders, body image and substance abuse. Nicole is also a Qualified Supervisor for mental health interns.

Kenneth F. Kahn is the President of LRP Publications, a broad-based legal and professional publishing company specializing in the fields of K-12 education administration and technology, federal employment law, workers compensation and human resources. Launched in 1977, LRP Publications now employs more than 400 employees in its Florida, Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C. offices.

Kahn has received numerous honors including Cornell University’s Groat Alumni Award, Northern Palm Beach County Chamber of Commerce’s Community Leader of the Year Award, and the Sun Sentinel Co.’s Excalibur Award. He civically involved on several boards including Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations, and Max Planck Florida Foundation. Kahn also serves on the executive committees of the Business Development Board of Palm Beach County, Economic Council of Palm Beach County, Palm Beach County Education Commission, and Kravis Center Corporate Partners, plus is an active member of the Florida Council of 100. Kahn was born in Sioux City, Iowa and raised in New York City. Graduating from Cornell University with his Bachelor’s degree in 1969, he obtained his law degree from Harvard Law School. Kahn has five children and currently resides in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida with his wife and two daughters.

As Chief Medical Officer at Alsana, Margherita Mascolo, leads the medical component of Alsana’s Adaptive Care Model™. Margherita brings over 10 years of hands-on experience and extensive knowledge in the treatment of eating disorders.

Prior to joining Alsana, Margherita served as the Medical Director at ACUTE Center for Eating Disorders at Denver Health.
After completing her undergraduate work at the University of St. Thomas in Houston, Texas, Margherita earned her medical degree at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center. Her residency was completed in Internal Medicine at the University of Colorado in Denver. Margherita is board certified in Internal Medicine, has published multiple peer reviewed articles on the medical complications of eating disorders, travels nationally and internationally to speak on these complications, and has earned her certified eating disorder specialist certification.

Cherie Monarch graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Florida. Cherie has been married for 31 years with two daughters. She has chaired/hosted many silent auctions and fundraising events, including five eating disorder walks and a national eating disorder awareness campaign. Cherie sits on the board for the National Alliance for Eating Disorders (formerly The Alliance for Eating Disorders Awareness) and is the Chair of the Alliance’s Family Action Committee for Eating Disorders: Instilling Truths (FACEIT). She is very active in the eating disorder community and has been involved in many national advocacy events (most recently overseeing the delivery of more than 1,000 medical education packets to healthcare providers across the U.S. and Canada). Cherie was recently awarded the National Mom Making a Difference Award for 2017 for her work with eating disorders. She works diligently to support families on this journey with their loved ones.

Alicia Paulino-Grisham is a founding partner of Paulino-Grisham & Chmielarz, P.A., a firm representing individuals in both private and group disability, life, health, and long-term care insurance claims. Ms. Paulino-Grisham is a civil litigation attorney who concentrates her practice on representing claimants with chronic physical and mental illnesses, catastrophic injuries, health insurance claims requiring partial hospitalization and residential treatment, and life insurance dispute litigation. She also represents hospitals and clinics in preparing health insurance claim denial administrative appeals. Ms. Paulino-Grisham is a member of the Florida Bar Association and is admitted to the U.S. Supreme Court, Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, and the Southern and Middle District Courts of Florida. She is a member of the American Association of Disability Attorneys, American Association for Justice, American Bar Association, South Palm Beach Chapter of the Florida Association of Women Lawyers, and is a board member of the Alliance. She has been interviewed by national and local news stations and publications on the issue of disability, life, and health insurance litigation. She has been a guest speaker for numerous advocacy groups, specialty groups, medical associations and facilities, and financial advisors on the subject of insurance benefit claims and litigation.

Native Floridian Rebecca Seelig is owner of Palm Beach Public Relations (PBPR), a public relations firm located in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. PBPR works with local and national companies in promoting their businesses and products to national and international media.

Ms. Seelig spent over nine years at The PGA of America in their communications department managing the promotion of PGA Professionals and communication of their major Championships which included the PGA Championship and the Ryder Cup. Ms. Seelig is a 20-year sports industry veteran, who in addition to working with The PGA of America, worked with the Florida Marlins Baseball Club, Orange Bowl Committee and University of Florida Athletic Association.

Frank Valente was born and raised in New Jersey. He attended Gettysburg College graduating with a B.S. Political Science. Initially a sports writer and editor of a local newspaper, he moved to Florida to become a sports talk host and talk show producer.

Frank left radio and joined a company that became a nationally recognized leader in direct marketing and data management. He served as Director of Operations for this company for eight years.
Since 2001 Frank has held leadership roles in the animal welfare field serving as CEO of the Humane Society of the Treasure Coast since 2007. During this time the organization has set records in all areas of animal care and consistently received the coveted four star rating from Charity Navigator for fiscal management and transparency.

Frank’s relationship with The Alliance began in 2014 when he started attending family group on Wednesday evening. After hearing the so many moving and receiving support as a group member Frank became more involved in supporting the Alliance. Frank is committed to working toward community education and positive change for people and families affected by eating disorders. Frank, his wife Julia and their dog Bella live in Palm Beach Gardens.

Erica received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut.  During her four years, she was a member of the Div. I Field Hockey Team where she was recognized with multiple honors throughout that time.  She completed her Master’s Degree in Mental Health Counseling from Palm Beach Atlantic University.  While completing her degree, she counseled undergraduate students at the University’s Counseling Center and was trained and worked at an IOP with women dually diagnosed with Eating Disorders and Substance Abuse.  After graduation, Erica became a Primary Therapist and Group Facilitator working with men and women who had Eating Disorders and Co-Occurring Disorders.  Over the last year, Erica has been building her private practice working with children, adolescents, and adults struggling with Eating Disorders and Co-Occurring Disorders, as well as, facilitating support groups and psychotherapy groups.

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