Leadership Additions and Changes at the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness

January 13, 2015

Leadership Additions and Changes at the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness


NFCA logo Contact: Claire Baker
Director of Communications and New Media
215-325-1306 x111
[email protected]

January 13, 2015, Ambler, PA – The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA) has announced the addition of a new member, Linda (Linnie) Cook, to the organization’s Board of Directors. In addition, Wendi L. Wasik has assumed the role of Chair to lead the organization and Richard Mandel, MD has joined NFCA’s Business Advisory Council. These accomplished leaders work to advance NFCA’s mission of serving the millions of Americans affected by celiac disease and other gluten-related disorders.

Linnie Cook, who previously served on the collegiate program of NFCA, is an active member of the World President’s Association (WPO) with her husband, Harry. Together, they have chaired dozens of events on behalf of WPO. A past board member of the Philadelphia area Ronald McDonald House, Linnie created the lucrative annual ‘Read for Ronald’ program which continues today, raising over 1.5 million dollars over 15 years. Linnie is active in other local philanthropic endeavors, serving as a founding member of both ‘A Date with a Plate’ charitable event which helps fund various medical research needs, and Dragonfly Forest, a summer camp for ill children.

Linnie graduated from Arkansas State University with a Bachelor of Social Work and went on to study Child Psychology at the University of Chicago where she met her husband Harry. She has four children and one grandchild.

Wendi L. Wasik, Founder and CEO of Wasik Consulting, is an accomplished executive coach and organizational development consultant, working with leading firms across a broad range of industries and professions. She regularly is a keynote speaker for corporate events and professional women’s associations, and serves as an Advisor for The Wharton School’s Small Business Development Center. Wendi earned a bachelor’s degree from Rosemont College and a master’s degree in Organizational Dynamics from the University of Pennsylvania. She lives with her husband Howard Brownstein in Villanova, PA.

Richard Mandel, MD has joined NFCA’s Business Advisory Council. Through his personal experience with celiac disease, he has been a staunch supporter of NFCA and its programs for the past 9 years. An orthopedic surgeon specializing in hands and upper extremity disorders, Richard is a graduate of Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University and has offices in Norristown and Plymouth Meeting. Richard is affiliated with Einstein Montgomery Hospital, Chestnut Hill Hospital and Mercy Suburban Hospital.


About Celiac Disease
Celiac disease is a serious, genetic, autoimmune disorder that affects an estimated 1 in 133 Americans, 83% of whom are still undiagnosed. The disease causes debilitating symptoms, and if left untreated, can lead to serious long-term health problems including infertility and some types of cancer.

NFCA’s Mission
The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness advances widespread understanding of celiac disease as a serious genetic autoimmune condition that can be easily diagnosed and effectively managed. We empower our community to live life to the fullest, and serve as a leading and trusted resource that inspires hope, accelerates innovation and forges pathways to a cure.

A 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, NFCA is a leading source of free patient resources and industry training programs that not only help people get diagnosed, but also ensure they restore health and reclaim their lives after diagnosis. For more information, visit https://www.beyondceliac.org.



Complete our Celiac Disease Symptoms Checklist to find out if you could have celiac disease and how to talk to your doctor about getting tested.
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