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Event Details

About our guest speakers

About Down syndrome
and Alzheimer’s disease

RSVP by February 22

RSVP here


DATE: Thursday, February 29

TIME: 6:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Speaking program begins at 7:15 pm

the family home of Jonathan and LaSandra Brill
14311 Quito Road
Saratoga, CA 95070

Refreshments & hors d’oeuvres will be served

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Patty White Linkedin picture

About LaSandra Brill, member of board of LuMind IDSC and tonight's host

As the VP of Global Digital Marketing at NVIDIA, LaSandra is an innovative leader in AI and data-driven marketing. She brings a wealth of experience from her previous roles leading digital transformation at Symantec and Cisco.

Beyond her professional accomplishments, LaSandra is deeply committed to making a positive impact on the lives of individuals with developmental disabilities. She has previously served on the board of Abilities United and Special Olympics Northern California, and currently serves on the executive leadership council with Parents Helping Parents (PHP). LaSandra’s dedication extends to her personal life as well. She wrote a book titled “Let’s Be Friends” to help introduce, Avery, her child with Down syndrome, to her school community and peers.

LaSandra holds a B.S. in Business Management from San Jose State University. She resides in the Bay Area with her husband Jonathan, three children, two dogs, and a flock of thirteen chickens.

About Patty White, co-founder of LuMind IDSC, and tonight's moderator

Patty White is one of the co-founders of the Down Syndrome Research and Treatment Foundation – DSRTF, a previous iteration of what we know today as LuMind IDSC. The parent of an adult with Down syndrome, Patty and her family have been involved in the acceleration and promotion of Down syndrome research since 2004.

Patty is also the co-founder of ReBoot Accel Inc, a company created to help women stay current with technology and the latest business practices, connect them to broader networks and inspire them with confidence to advance in their careers.

As a speaker, consultant and executive coach, she prepares women to lead lives of impact and influence and guides companies to develop cultures where women will thrive. She co-authored a book of best practice suggestions for business leaders, The Upside: Better Outcomes When Everyone Plays.

Patty is passionate about aligning individuals’ talents and interests with their purpose, and drives her clients to set goals, identify and execute the steps necessary for perpetual success in their chosen fields.

About our guest speakers

photo of speaker Karen Gaffney
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Karen Gaffney, President of the Karen Gaffney Foundation

Karen Gaffney is the President of the Karen Gaffney Foundation. Her non-profit, funded entirely by her speaking engagements, workshops, and donations, is dedicated to championing the journey to full inclusion in families, schools, the workplace, and the community for people with intellectual disabilities.

In addition to her work at her non profit, Karen is a full time employee in a law firm, working 32 hours a week.

After graduating from St. Pius X grade school, Karen earned a regular high school diploma from St. Mary’s Academy in Portland, Oregon. She then went on to earn a regular two-year Associates of Science degree from Portland Community College.

Karen’s work with advocacy and public speaking has taken her to audiences all over the world where she tries to show that Down syndrome is a life meant to be lived! And she succeeds!

Karen has many critical messages to deliver especially with respect to employment for people living with an intellectual disability. She uses her experiences on the job to advocate for meaningful employment for people with intellectual disabilities, often describing employment as the next big horizon for people like her. She shares “lessons learned” in the working world that resonate with Employers, Hiring Managers, Job Seekers and Job Developers.

She is also an outspoken advocate for inclusion in the regular classroom for students of all abilities and she shares her experiences, tools and strategies that helped her succeed in her parish classroom and in an all girl Catholic High School.

Karen is a role model for physical fitness, and she builds regular exercise into every aspect of her day. She usually starts the day with a two mile swim before she heads off to work! She has a lengthy swim resume to keep up!

She successfully swam the English Channel as part of a six-person relay team, she swam 9-miles non stop, straight across the width of Lake Tahoe in 59-degree water and became the subject of the documentary: Crossing Tahoe: A Swimmer’s Dream. She has done many other open water swims on the Columbia River, across Lake Champlain, the Boston Harbor, and the San Francisco Bay just to name a few. All of her swims are fundraising swims, and swims to raise awareness about what people with Down syndrome CAN do!

Karen is the first person with Down syndrome to deliver a TED talk to one of the largest TEDX venues in the world, right in her home town of Portland, Oregon. She describes her life as a “Journey of Hope” while she calls attention to the tremendous accomplishments of people living with Down syndrome all over the world.

However, no amount of accomplishments can ward off the ugly cloud that hangs over Karen’s head and for many others just like her. The early onset of Alzheimer’s Disease threatens her, many of her peers and those coming along after her. Karen is an outspoken advocate for removing the barriers that are prohibiting the participation of people with DS in drug trials and treatments that can stop this deadly disease in its path.

Karen’s messages provide awareness, recognition and inspiration that Down syndrome IS a Life Meant to be Lived!

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William Mobley, MD, Ph.D.

Dr. Mobley is a board-certified neurologist who cares for patients with Alzheimer’s disease and other memory disorders. He has a special interest in diagnosing and guiding care for patients who have Down syndrome and signs of Alzheimer’s disease and other neurological conditions.

Dr. Mobley is also associate dean for neuroscience initiatives at UC San Diego School of Medicine and is director of the Down Syndrome Center for Research and Treatment. He is one of the world’s foremost experts on the neurobiology of Down syndrome.

His research focuses on neurotrophic factor signaling, especially in the context of neurodegenerative disorders. These include Alzheimer’s disease, Down syndrome and Huntington’s disease. His goal is to learn about the causes of dysfunction in neural circuits, which can then lead to developing treatments. The work of his lab has led to novel clinical trials for people with Down syndrome.

Dr. Mobley completed a fellowship and residency in neurology at Johns Hopkins University Hospital in Baltimore, where he was chief resident. He also did a residency in pediatrics at Stanford University Hospital. Dr. Mobley earned his PhD in neuro- and behavioral science and his medical degree from Stanford University School of Medicine. He is board-certified in pediatrics and neurology.
He has received numerous honors and awards, including both the Zenith and Temple Awards for Research in Alzheimer’s disease from the Alzheimer’s Association, the Cotzias Award from the American Academy of Neurology and the Christian Pueschel Memorial Award for Research in Down Syndrome from the National Down Syndrome Congress.

Dr. Mobley is a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In 2004, he was named a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Science.

He has published widely, has served on the editorial board of several major professional publications and was editor of the Journal Neurobiology of Disease. In addition, he has served on the scientific advisory committees or boards of a long list of national organizations, ranging from the National Association for Autism Research to the Hillblom Foundation.

In addition, Dr. Mobley served on the National Institute of Neurological Disorders (NINDS) Council from 2003 to 2007 and was named a member of the Committee on Committees of the Society for Neuroscience.

About Down syndrome and Alzheimer's disease