Secondary Logo

​​​​​​​​​​​​​Editorial Board

New Head Shot.jpg


Joseph Safdieh, MD, FAAN

Dr. Safdieh is the inaugural Louis and Rachel Rudin Foundation Education Scholar and associate professor and vice chairman of neurology for education at Weill Cornell Medicine. He is also an associate attending neurologist at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center, where he is the director of the neurology clinic. Dr. Safdieh has been associate editor of CME and self-assessment for the AAN's Continuum: Lifelong Learning in Neurology® since 2015. He has also served as Fall Conference Director for the AAN's Neurology Update program since 2013, and has chaired the Distance Learning Subcommittee, the Consortium of Neurology Clerkship Directors, and the Medical Student Self-Assessment Exam Work Group.

Associate Editors

Avitzur_Orly.JPG​Orly Avitzur, MD, FAAN

Dr. Avitzur, a practicing neurologist with offices in Tarrytown and Carmel, NY, is the medical director at Consumer Reports and the former editor-in-chief of the AAN website. She is chair of the AAN Medical Economics and Management Committee and a member of the AAN Board of Directors. She has been writing for Neurology Today since 2001. She has been a frequent contributor to Neurology Now and became its editor-in-chief in 2015. She writes and speaks frequently about consumer health and wellness, health information technology, and medical practice issues. She was recipient of the 2009 American Academy of Neurology Journalism Fellowship Award, a 2011 APEX Award of Excellence in the category of Feature Series ​​​Writing, and an APEX Grand Award in 2014 in the category of Best Writing. She serves as a medical consultant for the New York Rangers and holds academic appointments at Yale University School of Medicine and New York Medical College.

hall_deborah.jpgDeborah A. Hall, MD, PhD, FAAN

Dr. Hall is associate professor in the department of neurological sciences at Ruth University Medical Center in Chicago, director of the Fragile X-associated Tremor Ataxia Syndrome (FXTAS) Clinic at Rush University, and founder of the Chicago Fragile X Research Group. An adult neurologist and movement disorder specialist, she has expertise in large epidemiology studies, clinical trials, and human subjects research. She is chair of the Rush University institutional review board and director of the neuroscience block for first-year medical students at Rush University. She has been conducting research in FXTAS for more than 10 years and has published several phenotype and epidemiological papers related to the disorder. Her work with the AAN started with a Clinical Research Training Fellowship, and she is currently the chair of the AAN Clinical Research Subcommittee, member of the AAN Science Committee, and chair of the AAN Emerging Leaders Alumni Subcommittee.      

Barney J. Stern head photo 100110.jpgBarney J. Stern, MD, FAAN

Dr. Stern is vice chair of strategic planning in the department of neurology at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD. His subspecialty interests include stroke and neurosarcoidosis. Dr. Stern has been involved in clinical research throughout his career: He was involved in the planning and execution of the WASID study, and led the successful effort of the Maryland Consortium to become part of the NINDS NETT Network. More recently, he was involved in the planning and execution of a series of studies to further the understanding and management of the malignant MCA syndrome. He is a member of the scientific advisory board of the Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research.​

Editorial Advisory Board

Bickel_Jennifer-7.jpgJennifer Bickel, MD, FAAN

Dr. Bickel is associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Missouri and the chief of the headache section in the division of neurology at Children's Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, MO. Since 2010, she has led a multidisciplinary team of neurologists, pediatricians, advance practice nurses, and psychologists that provides comprehensive services to children and adolescents with migraines. She acts as the fellowship director for headache medicine, SIGN faculty advisor, and chair of the Clinical Competency Committee for the child neurology fellowship. Dr. Bickel is a course director for the University of Missouri–Kansas City basic neuroscience course and serves on the AAN Undergraduate Education Subcommittee. As a graduate of the AAN Palatucci Advocacy Leadership Forum and the Transforming Leadership Program, she has been a leader in advocacy for neurology patients including community outreach, website development, and research fundraisers. ​

Busis_Neil.jpegNeil A. Busis, MD, FAAN

Dr. Busis is director of community neurology of the University of Pittsburgh physicians department of neurology and clinical professor of neurology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. He is chief of neurology and director of the neurodiagnostic laboratory at UPMC Shadyside in Pittsburgh, PA. Dr. Busis is co-chair of the AAN Neurologist Burnout Task Force Study Group and principal investigator of the AAN study on neurologist burnout. He is a member of the AAN Medical Economics and Management (MEM) Coding Subcommittee and serves as the AAN's Alternate Advisor on the American Medical Association CPT® Advisory Committee. 

Fogel.jpgBrent L. Fogel, MD, PhD, FAAN

Dr. Fogel is associate professor in the departments of neurology and human genetics at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), where he also serves as the associate director of the neurogenetics program. Dr. Fogel's research focuses on basic molecular mechanisms of neuronal function to understand how impairment can lead to neurodevelopmental conditions such as autism and neurodegenerative disorders such as spinocerebellar ataxia. Dr. Fogel directs the UCLA neurogenetics clinic and also treats patients with various disorders of balance and coordination at the UCLA Ataxia Center. In addition, he directs the UCLA Clinical Neurogenomics Research Center and the Ataxia and Neurogenetics Biobank Program, where he is using genomic sequencing to identify rare and novel causes of neurodegenerative disease, particularly cerebellar ataxia. He has authored multiple research and clinical articles, reviews, and book chapters on spinocerebellar ataxia, clinical neurogenetics, and neurodevelopmental disease.

French.jpgJacqueline French, MD, FAAN

Dr. French is professor of neurology at New York University and the Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, and founder/director of the Epilepsy Study Consortium, an academic group that has performed early phase clinical trials in epilepsy, and has developed new methodologies for epilepsy trials. Dr. French is the past president of the American Epilepsy Society and is the 2005 recipient of the American Epilepsy Society Service Award, and the 2013 Epilepsy Foundation Hero award. She serves as the chief scientific officer of the Epilepsy Foundation, has served on the board of the American Epilepsy Society, and is the past secretary of the American Society of Experimental Neurotherapeutics. She has authored over 200 articles and chapters, is the editor of three books, and lectures internationally on clinical trials and use of antiepileptic drugs. 

James C. Grotta, MD, FAANGrotta James 01 Cropped.jpg

Dr. Grotta is director of stroke research for the Clinical Institute for Research and Innovation of the Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center in Houston, TX, and director of its mobile stroke unit consortium. In 2013, Dr Grotta stepped down as chair of the neurology at the University of Texas Medical School to lead the Mobile Stroke Unit Consortium, raising money and coordinating efforts to successfully deploy the nation's first mobile stroke unit to deliver tissue plasminogen activator and other stroke therapies wherever the stroke occurs within the first minutes after onset. Dr. Grotta has been an editor of the Annals of NeurologyStroke, and many other peer-reviewed journals, and has been a member of several National Institutes of Health and US Food and Drug Administration review panels. He has authored or co-authored more than 350 articles on stroke therapies in peer-reviewed journals.

Fogel.jpgJulie A. Gurwell, PhD, PA-C

Dr. Gurwell is an associate professor and director of advanced practice providers in the Department of Neurology at the University of Kentucky. Her clinical interests include movement disorders and multiple sclerosis. She specializes in programming deep brain stimulators to treat movement disorders. Administrative responsibilities include oversight of 7 advanced practice providers in the neurology department. Dr. Gurwell serves as an investigator evaluating the safety and feasibility of autologous peripheral nerve grafts into substantia nigra or nucleus basalis of Meynert in patients undergoing DBS surgery to treat idiopathic Parkinson's disease. Additionally she is the principal investigator of a study assessing the utilization of dopamine transporter binding as a biomarker in Parkinson's disease longitudinally. She currently serves as a member on the AAN Academic Medicine Initiative: Support Team Workgroup, and as a member of the AAN author panel for the guideline update project "Initiation of treatment for Parkinson's Disease."

Kreisl.pngTeri N. Kreisl, MD

Dr. Kreisl is assistant professor of neurology in the division of neuro-oncology at Columbia University. She earned her medical degree from Weill Medical College of Cornell University, was chief resident of her neurology program at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center, and completed fellowship subspecialty training in neuro-oncology at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. Subsequently, Dr. Kreisl joined the Neuro-Oncology Branch (NOB) of the Center for Cancer Research at the National Cancer Institute where she was a tenure track clinical investigator with a research focus on molecular imaging in brain tumors. Dr. Kreisl also served as fellowship director and medical director for the NOB. She has been the principal investigator for numerous phase 1 and 2 clinical trials for the treatment of primary brain tumors, and continues similar research efforts at Columbia University.

krieger.jpgStephen Krieger, MD, FAAN

Dr. Krieger is director of the Mount Sinai neurology residency program and associate professor of neurology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York. He joined the Corinne Goldsmith Dickinson Center for MS as a fellow in multiple sclerosis after completing his neurology residency training at Mount Sinai. He has received several teaching and mentorship awards including the George Forster Compassion Award in 2014. Dr. Krieger has written review articles on and lectures nationally about MS, and in 2015 he proposed the Topographical Model of MS, a new conceptualization of MS disease course that was published in Neurology Neuroimmunology & Neuroinflammation, and was the subject of an article in Scientific American.

Latov.jpgNorman Latov, MD, PhD

Dr. Latov is professor of neurology and neuroscience, and director of the Peripheral Neuropathy Clinical and Research Center at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University in New York City. Dr. Latov's clinical and research interests focus on the diagnosis and treatment of inflammatory neuropathies. His laboratory is credited with the discovery of anti-MAG and anti-GM1 ganglioside antibodies, and the development of diagnostic tests for these condition in patients with neuropathy. More recent studies focus on the use of anti-CD204 macrophage antibodies in experimental models of autoimmunity. He has also served on the steering committees of several international multicenter clinical trials in peripheral neuropathy, including the ICE trial that led to FDA approval of intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) for the treatment of chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP). Dr. Latov was also a founding board member, medical and research director, and member of the national advisory board of the Neuropathy Association, which has since merged with the Foundation for Neuropathy. He lectures widely, and published over 200 research articles, reviews, editorials, chapters and books, including the American Academy of Neurology Quality of Life Guide for patients, Peripheral Neuropathy: When the Numbness, Weakness and Pain Won't Stop.

MCDADE-2011.jpgEric M. McDade, DO

Dr. McDade is assistant professor of neurology in the division of cognitive neurology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. He specializes in cognitive and behavioral neurology with a clinical and research focus on neurodegenerative dementia syndromes. He currently serves as the associate director of the Dominantly Inherited Alzheimer Network Trials Unit, where he focuses on the development of prevention trials for familial Alzheimer's disease and exploring different biomarkers for the earliest stages of Alzheimer's pathology.

niremberg.jpgMelissa J. Nirenberg, MD, PhD, FAAN

Dr. Nirenberg is the medical director of the New York Stem Cell Foundation and adjunct professor of neurology at the New York University School of Medicine in New York City, where she subspecializes in movement disorders. Her research interests include non-motor manifestations of Parkinson's disease, behavioral complications of dopamine agonist therapy, and translational studies of Parkinson's disease using dopaminergic neurons derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells. She was awarded a PhD in neuroscience from the Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences and earned her medical degree from Weill Cornell, where she received awards for the highest achievement in the graduating class in both medicine and pediatrics. She completed a residency in neurology at the University of California, San Francisco, followed by a three-year fellowship in movement disorders at Columbia University. 


Sara Manning Peskin, MD, MS

Dr. Peskin is a neurology resident at the University of Pennsylvania and a graduate of the Perelman School of Medicine at The University of Pennsylvania. She has published in The New York Times and The Huffington Post and got her start blogging about immigration issues for Borderwise. She plans to do fellowship training in cognitive neurology and pursue a career as a physician-writer. She is currently working on a book for non-medically trained readers about unique cognitive ailments and the patients who experience them.

rubin2.jpgMichael Rubin, MD

Dr. Rubin is assistant professor in the departments of neurology and neurotherapeutics and neurological surgery at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas. Chair of the UT Southwestern Ethics Committee and a member of the Medical Center's program in Ethics in Science and Medicine, he also co-directs the Ethics in Clinical Science course at UT Southwestern's Center for Translational Medicine. Among his many honors, Dr. Rubin is a 2015 recipient of the Presidential Service Award as well as a Presidential Citation by the Neurocritical Care Society. He is a member of the editorial board of Currents, the online journal of the Neurocritical Care Society, and he serves as a neurology reviewer for the Journal of the American Medical Association. Dr. Rubin has lectured widely on palliative care, medical decision-making, organ donation, and other neurocritical care topics, and he has authored or co-authored reports and reviews in peer-reviewed journalsas well as chapters in textbooks on neurotrauma and neurological critical care.

ShethKevin.JPGKevin Sheth, MD, FAAN

Dr. Sheth is associate professor at the Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, CT. After a fellowship in vascular neurology and neuro-critical care at Harvard, he was appointed the first neurology trained neuro-intensivist at the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore. He was recruited to Yale as the founding chief of the division of neurocritical care and emergency neurology. He is a nationally recognized clinical and translational scientist, and has directed a number of multicenter studies testing potential novel therapies against brain swelling, stroke, and hemorrhage. He is the winner of the prestigious Robert Siekert Award from the American Heart Association, and he is the author of over 120 publications in critical care neurology and stroke. 

Tilton_Ann.jpgAnn H.Tilton, MD, FAAN

Dr. Tilton is professor of neurology and pediatrics and section chair of child neurology at Louisiana State Health Science Center in New Orleans. She is director of the Rehabilitation Center at Children's Hospital of New Orleans and director of the Comprehensive Spasticity Program. Dr. Tilton has been involved on the executive committee of the Professors of Child Neurology and served as president of the Child Neurology Society. She is the president-elect of the Board of Directors of the Child Neurology Foundation. She is a vice president on the AAN Board of Directors, and has served as vice chair of the ACGME Neurology Residency Review Committee and chair of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.


vargas.jpgBert B. Vargas, MD, FAHS, FAAN

Dr. Vargas is associate professor of neurology and director of the sports neuroscience and concussion program in the headache medicine division at University of Texas Southwestern Clinical enter Richardson/Plano in Dallas. He primarily sees athletes with neurologic complaints or neurologic injuries as a result of participation in sports. His research focus and interests include studies on primary headache disorders including migraine, chronic migraine, cluster headache, chronic cluster headache, and secondary headaches including post-traumatic headache. He has also been involved with a number of studies on concussion, telestroke, and tele neurology including teleconcussion.​