Our Advisory Council consists of leaders in the professional community – stakeholders such as surgeons, other medical professionals, and legislators – who have generously donated their time and expertise to advise our Board of Directors. As with our Board members, our Advisors are committed to advancing our mission.
Hester Hill Schnipper, LICSW, OSW-C
Hester has a private practice providing individual counseling and runs a Breast Cancer Support Group in Concord, MA. Hester has served as the Chief of Oncology Social Work at Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, an adjunct professor at Simmons College School of Social Work and the Boston University School of Social Work, and the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation’s first Hatcher Professor of Survivorship. She was the Breast Cancer Patient Advocate for RevolutionHealth.com and now writes a blog, “Living with Cancer,” for BIDMC. She has authored two books: Woman to Woman: A Handbook for Women Newly Diagnosed with Breast Cancer and After Breast Cancer: A Commonsense Guide to Life After Treatment. In 1993 and again in 2005, Hester was diagnosed with breast cancer and treated with surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, and hormone therapy. These diagnoses transformed her life’s work into her life. She has two daughters and lives, gratefully, with her husband in Concord, Massachusetts.
Anne Marie Champagne
Anne Marie Champagne is a PhD candidate in sociology at Yale University and a Junior Fellow with the Yale Center for Cultural Sociology. Her research examines how mastectomy informs perceptions of gender identity and wellness in American law, medicine, and society. She is the editor (with Asia Friedman) of Interpreting the Body: Between Meaning and Materiality (BUP, forthcoming) and the author of “Toward a Strong Cultural Sociology of the Body and Embodiment” (forthcoming). Her areas of interest include the role of aesthetic experience in society; material culture and meaning; health, medicine, and technology; and issues of body and embodiment.
Leslie J. Waltke, PT, DPT
Advisor, Oncology Physical Therapy
Leslie J. Waltke, PT, DPT is a physical therapist with a clinical mastery in cancer rehabilitation and Founder of the Waltke Cancer Rehabilitation Academy, a provider of world class cancer rehabilitation program development consulting and continuing education. Since earning her degree in Physical Therapy from the University of Wisconsin in 1988, Dr. Waltke has dedicated most of her career solely to treating the cardiopulmonary, musculoskeletal, integumentary and functional needs of persons during and after treatment for cancer. Over the past decades Dr. Waltke has cared for thousands of people with cancer and has a following of beloved patients. She is respected nationally and internationally as an oncology physical therapist, cancer rehabilitation key opinion leader, author, educator and consultant.
Since 2005 Dr. Waltke has been the Cancer Rehabilitation Coordinator for Aurora Cancer Care of Advocate Aurora Health, one of the United States’ largest CoC and NAPBC accredited cancer programs and proud holder of the rare Commission on Cancer “Outstanding Achievement Award.” Her role, in addition to treating patients with cancer, includes cancer rehabilitation program development, program integration, education and training, and best practice and clinical standards development.
A gifted and impassioned speaker, Dr. Waltke teaches and lectures throughout the world to rehab professionals, universities, medical and oncology providers, cancer organizations as well as cancer patients and survivors. She spoke at the 2014 China Cancer Congress and the 2015 and 2017 World Cancer Congresses. Dr. Waltke is the founder of the hit Facebook and YouTube channel “The Recovery Room,” a platform of short, positive, medically accurate educational videos followed globally by thousands of cancer patients and survivors. Dr. Waltke is a former Board Member of the Oncology Section of the American Physical Therapy Association, an APTA Credentialed Clinical Instructor, on the APTA Specialization Academy of Content Experts and is a founding and current board member of ABCD, Inc After Breast Cancer Diagnosis. Recent honors include the “2014 Article of the Year Award” from the Journal of Patient-Centered Research and Reviews, the 2015 Academic Excellence and Leadership Award from Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science, and the 2015 Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Education Recognition scholarship. Dr. Waltke is a member of ASCO and ACE, the Association of Cancer Executives.
Pankaj Tiwari, MD
Advisor, Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery
Dr. Pankaj Tiwari is a board-certified plastic surgeon who has fellowship training in microvascular surgery and focuses his practice on breast reconstruction after mastectomy. After completing medical school at New York University, plastic surgery residency at the Baylor College of Medicine and fellowship at The MD Anderson Cancer Center, Dr. Tiwari went on to accept a faculty teaching position at The James Cancer Center and The Ohio State University, Wexner Medical Center. While a full time faculty member for seven years, he co-authored numerous publications and book chapters, was awarded the “Microsurgery Case of the Year”, Resident Teaching Award and Best Doctors’ Award and was selected as one of Columbus’ top 40 under 40 professionals. In 2014 he co-founded Midwest Breast and Aesthetic surgery and in 2018 Onyx and Pearl Surgical Suites to provide advanced techniques for reconstructive breast surgery. Beyond microsurgery, Dr. Tiwari has a keen interest in developing practice patterns and standards to help lower the costs of healthcare while providing outstanding quality and safety outcomes. He enjoys spending time with his lovely wife and two daughters, traveling on surgical mission trips and playing the Tabla (Indian Drums).
Ergun Kocak, MD
Advisor, Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery
Dr. Ergun Kocak is a board-certified plastic surgeon specializing in advanced aesthetic and reconstructive surgeries of the breast and body. He is fellowship-trained in microvascular reconstruction and performs over 200 DIEP and other microvascular free flap breast reconstructions yearly. He also specializes in aesthetic operations of the breast including breast reduction, and breast lift (mastopexy). After graduating from the University of Michigan with Honors, Dr. Kocak went on to complete medical school at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. Dr. Kocak continued his training by completing his plastic surgery residency at The Ohio State University Medical Center in Columbus, Ohio. During this time, he completed a Research Fellowship and earned a Masters of Sciences degree in Medical Sciences from The Ohio State University’s Graduate School. After residency, he further specialized by completing a fellowship in reconstructive microsurgery and cancer reconstruction at the esteemed M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas.
Yara V. Robertson, MD, FACS
Advisor, Breast Surgical Oncology
Yara V. Robertson, MD, FACS, is a board-certified general surgeon and fellowship-trained breast surgical oncologist. Dr. Robertson practices at CARTI Cancer Center in Little Rock, Arkansas, providing quality breast cancer care. She is passionate about eliminating disparities in breast cancer treatment, especially in the African American community. She lectures on breast health and participates in numerous health fairs providing free clinical breast exams. She has previously served as Vice-Chairman of Sisters by Choice, a non-profit organization that provides education and free breast health screenings to uninsured women as well as support for women diagnosed with breast cancer.
As a kidney cancer survivor herself, Dr. Robertson is fully aware of the importance of the patient’s role in shared decision making and advocates for patient centered care. Dr. Robertson believes that women who choose to go flat after a mastectomy deserve a surgical result that is aesthetically pleasing to them and fully supports the mission of Not Putting on a Shirt.
Minas Chrysopoulo, MD FACS
Advisor, Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, Shared Decision Making
Dr Chrysopoulo (“Dr C”) is a board certified plastic surgeon, breast reconstruction surgeon and microsurgeon, and President of PRMA Plastic Surgery in San Antonio, TX. He specializes in state-of-the-art breast reconstruction with a particular focus on perforator flap breast reconstruction, nipple-sparing mastectomy, techniques to maximize aesthetic outcomes, and restoring sensation after mastectomy.
Dr C is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, is an active member of several professional societies including the American Society for Reconstructive Microsurgery (ASRM), and the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) for which he serves on several educational committees. He has authored and co-authored several book chapters and scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals, and is routinely an expert speaker at regional, national and international academic meetings.
Dr C has dedicated his professional life to advocating for breast cancer patients. He strongly believes that shared decision-making between the physician and patient is crucial in achieving the best outcomes and has built his practice on this philosophy. To empower as many patients as possible to advocate for themselves, Dr C created the Breast Advocate® App, a free app that provides anyone with a breast cancer diagnosis, or at increased risk of developing breast cancer, a much needed voice in their breast cancer treatment planning.
Jennifer Montes, MD, MPH
Advisor, Breast Surgical Oncology
Dr. Montes knew very early in her medical career that the treatment of breast disease was her true calling. She is a board-certified general surgeon specializing in diseases of the breast. She received her undergraduate education at Cornell University and went on to receive a Masters degree in Public Health from Columbia University. She earned her medical doctorate from Temple University and completed her surgical training at Lenox Hill Hospital. During her residency, she completed externships at Memorial Sloan Kettering, Columbia University and St. Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital. She received her fellowship in breast surgery from NYU Medical Center.
Dr. Montes understands that the scars left behind from a breast cancer diagnosis go much further than skin deep. She believes in the power of holistic modalities to help heal these wounds left on the mind, body and spirit. Through her years of training she has created a unique treatment approach incorporating these modalities with traditional medicine and her goal is to make these modalities accessible to all women fighting breast cancer.
Advisor, Public Relations
New York Times best-selling author Elana Amsterdam is a pioneer of the gluten-free diet movement and has been on the cutting edge of healthy living advocacy for over 30 years.
After living with celiac disease and MS for decades, Elana was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2021 and decided to go flat as part of her treatment plan. The decision was questioned and her surgical result was sloppy and painful. This process opened her eyes to the reality that a woman’s choice to go flat, and forego implants, is not only unsupported by the medical establishment, but under outright attack by a significant number of surgeons.
Elana has long fought for health equity and has been featured in Fortune Magazine, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and more. She has appeared on numerous television networks including CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News.
Rep. Charen Fegard (D-VT)
Charen Fegard of Berkshire, Franklin County, Democrat, was born on Howard Air Force Base in Panama. She lived in many states and countries growing up and through her twenties. Charen earned a Bachelors degree in Biology from the University of NC at Wilmington. She has worked in the Civil Service in Hazardous Materials/ Environmental Compliance on overseas military bases, and has owned and operated a registered home daycare as well as landscaping and cleaning businesses.
Charen worked for a variety of non-profits in Vermont over the years. Before starting the legislative session, she volunteered on the Richford Restorative Justice Panel. Currently, she consults for non-profits and waste municipalities throughout Vermont regarding recycling, composting, and Indoor Air Quality related to cleaning chemicals. She raises meat birds, sheep, laying hens, a lot of vegetables, and enjoys deer hunting with her husband, Russ Ford. They have 4 children in their blended family.
Corine de Boer, MD, PhD
Advisor, Medical & Research
Corine de Boer is a physician, wife and principal of her own consulting company. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015 and opted for a double mastectomy. Her female breast surgeon in Seattle was very supportive of her flat choice and did a great job but Corine has since learned, to her dismay, that this is not the case in other parts of the country. She fully supports the mission of Not Putting on a Shirt so every woman who chooses to go flat after mastectomy has a satisfactory outcome.
Not Putting on a Shirt is a 501(c)(3) organization advocating for optimal surgical outcomes for women who choose to go flat after mastectomy.
REGISTERED CHARITY ID# 84-3021062
FAIR USE STATEMENT
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