Alice Bast, President & CEO
Alice Bast’s experience with celiac disease began more than twenty years ago, when debilitating physical symptoms, multiple miscarriages, a stillbirth and intense mental and emotional strain began to take over her life. Alice struggled to get a proper diagnosis, and after visiting 22 physicians, the 23rd finally diagnosed her with celiac disease, a serious genetic autoimmune condition that has only one treatment—a lifelong gluten-free diet. After researching the disease and discovering the lack of resources and funding from federal agencies and pharmaceutical companies, Alice was inspired to help the estimated three million Americans suffering from celiac disease by starting the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA).
Founded in 2003, NFCA aims to drive diagnosis of celiac disease, improve quality-of-life for children and families adhering to a gluten-free diet, and facilitate collaborations within the healthcare community. The organization is a leading resource for those with celiac disease and other gluten-related disorders and offers free information and support materials for celiac disease patients and their families, as well as education and training for food industry professionals. Following a decade of restoring help and reclaiming lives, NFCA serves as a leading and trusted resource that inspires hope, accelerates innovation and forges pathways to a cure with an emphasis on research.
Widely regarded as a celiac disease expert, Alice has been a keynote speaker at major medical and food industry events nationally and internationally, as well as culinary and foodservice industry conferences. She has presented at the American Pharmacists Association (APhA) Annual Meeting, Healthy Foods Conference, International Pizza Expo, The Flavor Experience, Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) Wellness Conference, and both Natural Products Expo East and West shows. She also chaired a panel presentation at the 14th International Coeliac Disease Symposium held in Oslo, Norway. An abstract from NFCA’s study, “The Use of Disease Symptoms Checklist in Self-Initiated Diagnoses of Celiac Disease and Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity,” was accepted to the 2012 International Meeting on Coeliac Disease, Mastering the Coeliac Condition: From Medicine to Social Sciences and Food Technology, where Alice presented the abstract in a poster session. In 2013, NFCA presented two research posters at the International Celiac Disease Symposium held at the University of Chicago.
Alice is a Patient Representative for celiac disease for the FDA, a board member of the Digestive Disease National Coalition, led the autoimmune disease roundtable at the 2013 Partnering for Cures conference, and served on the landmark 2015 FDA GREAT3 Workshop Steering Committee as a speaker and panelist along with other noted experts in the field of celiac disease.
In April 2015, Alice led the inaugural NFCA Research Summit, entitled Celiac Disease: A Roadmap to Accelerating Progress for Patients, a ground-breaking meeting that brought together expert physicians, scientists, individuals personally affected by celiac disease, biopharmaceutical and diagnostics representatives and government stakeholders from various healthcare fields to accelerate innovation, develop treatment options and forge pathways to a cure for celiac disease.
NFCA embarked upon the first-ever initiative that advocated family testing for celiac disease, and most recently launched a supporting campaign titled “Seriously, Celiac Disease.” The campaign received national media attention, including coverage in Reuters Health, Huffington Post and Examiner.com, among others. The campaign was developed after NFCA research found that when genetically at-risk relatives are properly educated about the condition, their interest in getting tested for the disease increases. NFCA offered a powerful PSA video, discussion guides and patient stories at the campaigns website, www.SeriouslyCeliac.org, to encourage family members to participate in a “Talk. Tell. Test.” approach with their families about getting tested.
Alice’s story has been featured in Good Housekeeping Magazine, Newsweek, USA Today, and on nationally televised programs such as ABC’s ‘The View’ and CNN. Among her accomplishments, Alice coauthored an article titled “Celiac Disease and Reproductive Health Issues,” which was published in the Journal of Practical Gastroenterology. She was the Principal Investigator on an NIH funded Grant titled, “Novel Educational Aids for Celiac Disease.”
In May 2011, Alice was awarded the 90th annual Philadelphia Award, one of the city’s most prestigious honors given each year to a citizen who has acted and served on behalf of the best interests of the community. Email Alice Bast
Claire Baker, Director of Communications and New Media
Claire joined the NFCA staff in July 2014 with 20 years of non-profit management experience in Philadelphia. Diagnosed with celiac disease in 2010, she sought to improve the lives of others who need to live gluten-free through her blog, gluten-free product and restaurant reviews, social media presence, and publications. Prior to joining NFCA, Claire served as Director of Gardening Programs for the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS). She managed the PHS City Harvest program and led community engagement and greening teams focused on gardening education, parks revitalization, youth environmental stewardship, Pop Up Gardens and more. Claire formerly served as Director of Operations and Interim Executive Director of the Metropolitan AIDS Neighborhood Nutrition Alliance (MANNA), Executive Director of the William Way LGBT Community Center, and Manager of Off-Air Civic Engagement Activities and Events for WHYY.
Email Claire Baker
Mary Buhring, Office Manager
Mary joined NFCA in January 2014. She brings 20 years of business experience from the healthcare, non-profit and insurance industries. A graduate of LaSalle University, Mary earned her MBA with a concentration in Human Resources.
Her strong organizational skills keep the busy NFCA team running smoothly. She also oversees the foundation’s database, mass mailings and manages various projects within the organization.
Both Mary and her oldest son have celiac disease. Working at NFCA has been fulfilling for Mary because of her personal connection to the autoimmune disease. Email Mary Buhring
Alicia Carango, Web and Social Media Manager
As the Web and Social Media Manager, Alicia works to provide NFCA's online community with the latest resources, news, and events surrounding celiac disease and other gluten-related disorders. Alicia updates and expands on NFCA-affiliated websites as well as find new social media outlets where the NFCA can build an online presence. Through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube, Alicia engages with the NFCA online community and work towards a shared goal of raising awareness for celiac disease. She was first introduced to celiac disease from her previous work in the clinical trial industry. From this prior experience, Alicia has developed an interest in raising awareness for research studies, particularly those for celiac disease. Alicia holds a BA in English from West Chester University and works out of the Philadelphia office. Email Alicia Carango
Susan Gardner, Director of Finance
Susan began working with the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness in June 2004and has been a part of the organization as a staff member and volunteer since that date. Sue is a graduate of Penn State and she has served as Controller for a number of businesses in the Greater Philadelphia Area. At NFCA, Sue is responsible for the day-to-day financial activities of the organization, as well as annual reporting and governmental compliance matters. Sue also joins the NFCA team in planning for special events. Sue works out of the NFCA Philadelphia office. Email Susan Gardner
Nancy Ginter, Director of Administration
Nancy Ginter joined the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness in June of 2004 after working extensively for AT&T leading a global sales team focused on the needs of multi-national corporations. At NFCA, Nancy works across departmental lines to assist in operational matters along with programming, Philadelphia area events, contracts and sponsorship. Nancy also is responsible for the NFCA Speakers Bureau, contributing to NFCA publications and working on NFCA programs for raising awareness. Nancy works in the Philadelphia office. Email Nancy Ginter
Beckee Moreland, Director of GREAT Kitchens
Beckee Moreland is a recognized gluten-free market expert with the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA), and has worked as a gluten-free consultant for companies in the food industry since 2008. She currently manages NFCA’s Gluten-Free Resource Education and Awareness Training (GREAT) Foodservice programs, which are ADA and ACF accredited training programs for foodservice professionals and dietitians. Beckee also heads the GREAT Business Association, which promotes networking and best practices for safety and transparency in gluten-free food preparation and manufacturing.
Beckee’s restaurant industry experience dates back over ten years. In 1992, she and her husband opened Sportscaster’s Bar & Grill in Lincoln, NE, which they currently own and operate.
Beckee holds a Bachelors of Science, Education from University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Born and raised in Omaha, NE, she currently resides in Lincoln, NE, with her husband Dave and son Cole. Email Beckee Moreland
Kimberly Yost Moyer, Director of Development
Kim earned her degrees in International Business and Marketing, including a Cértificat de Français from Sorbonne University and International Relations from American University, both in Paris, France. She has worked in Paris and is fluent in French. She has also traveled extensively throughout Central and South America.
Kim has over 15 years of professional fundraising experience. Her primary concentrations have been on higher education, political campaigns, and social agencies. She has served as a congressional assistant and political consultant to two state senators and a member of the U.S. House of Representatives. Kim currently serves on the Board of Directors for Casa Guadalupe, an organization who serves the Latin and Hispanic populations of the Lehigh Valley and Haven House, an organization focused on providing a mental health services. She provides the fundraising leadership for both organizations. Kim has presented at numerous professional fundraising conferences and is active in the Council And Support of Education (CASE). Email Kimberly Yost Moyer
Jennifer North, Vice President
Jennifer joined the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness in 2009 when she served as the organization’s first full-time development officer. Currently the organization’s Vice President, Jennifer oversees the organization’s communications efforts and corporate partnerships. She is responsible for NFCA’s gluten-free industry initiatives including the GREAT Kitchens foodservice training program and the NFCA-endorsed Gluten-Free Certification Program. She has acted as a consultant, writer and presenter for webinars, onsite training programs and other industry-facing activities and is considered an expert on celiac disease and the gluten-free diet, the needs of gluten-free consumers, gluten-free food safety and marketplace trends. She formerly served as the Vice-President of Development for JCCs of Greater Philadelphia. Her diverse skill set stems from professional and board roles in communications, development, programming, assessment, strategic planning and operational management for organizations addressing a range of critical community issues. She has been contracted by the federal Department of Health and Human Services as a grant reviewer. Jennifer was introduced to Celiac Disease in 2008 when her daughter was diagnosed. Email Jennifer North
Rachel Rieger, Patient Education Manager
As Patient Education Manager, Rachel Rieger’s responsibilities include webinar planning and implementation, as well as some forthcoming initiatives to better understand patient needs. She graduated from the College of Wooster in 2014 with a Bachelor’s degree in Communication Studies, with a special focus on Health Communication. There, she worked closely with foodservice staff to help them better understand the needs of someone afflicted with celiac disease, and wrote a senior thesis on a self-designed health campaign to raise awareness for celiac disease on campus. Rachel also interned for The Chronicle Telegram in 2012, through which she wrote a bi-weekly column on the gluten-free lifestyle. As someone who has been managing celiac disease for nine years, working with NFCA has given Rachel the opportunity to fulfill her lifelong goal of raising awareness and changing the landscape of celiac disease research. Email Rachel Rieger.
Kristin Voorhees, Director of Healthcare Initiatives
Kristin Voorhees joined NFCA in March 2010. Kristin works directly with the NFCA’s Scientific/Medical Advisory Board and other clinicians to develop and advance NFCA healthcare initiatives, including Celiac CME Central, lifestyle Webinars and Lunch-and-Learns. Kristin recently fulfilled her Master’s in Health Communication from Emerson College’s dual graduate program with Tufts School of Medicine in December 2009. During her graduate work, she had the privilege of working with the Celiac Center at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and, through this connection, developed a working relationship with NFCA. Kristin was diagnosed with celiac disease in July 2007 and has since remained passionate and enthusiastic about educating others and furthering the awareness of this autoimmune disease. Kristin works out of the Philadelphia office. Email Kristin Voorhees