Meet the MSA NJ Team
Founded by the Roemer Family in 2012 after losing their mother, Dolores Roemer, to Multiple System Atrophy on Mother’s Day of 2009, all members of the MSA NJ leadership team have been personally impacted by MSA. Each member is deeply dedicated to making the journey easier for others battling this deadly disease, and shares the dream that someday there will be a cure for MSA.
Kymberli Roemer – Chairperson
Kymberli Roemer has resided in the Garden State all her life. With a background in education and corporate training, she currently works as a training and development consultant. She has organized numerous events both professionally and in the volunteer sector.
As the baby of the family, Kym shared a special relationship with her mother. Throughout the battle with MSA, she was a caregiver and ‘bad influence’. Shopping, day trips, and nights watching TV and eating ice cream, Kym helped to keep life ‘normal’ and above all, to remember to bring laughter to day-to-day activities. About founding MSA NJ, “We’re taking baby steps, but every little bit helps.” Contact Kym.
Ronald Roemer – Executive Vice Chairperson
Ronald Roemer was born and raised in Jersey. He is a professor of history, teaching at both Fairleigh Dickinson University and Union County College. He is enthusiastic about the lessons learned from the past and brings this spirit to MSA NJ to improve conditions for those currently fighting the battle against MSA.
Cynthia Roemer – Vice Chairperson
Cynthia Roemer is a life-long New Jersey resident. She is a senior professor of mathematics. During her tenure, she has coordinated various programs, planned numerous events, and founded the college’s Student Volunteer Organization.
Cyndi was her mother’s primary caregiver. Navigating the medical system, handling business for long-term care and planning, and understanding the personal challenges of MSA are among lessons learned through her journey with her mother, and ones she is ready to share. “If I can make a difference for others traveling down this path, then my mother’s suffering will not have been in vain. Mom helped people all her life. I have no doubt she is leading me now to continue her legacy.” Contact Cyndi.
Robert Charkowsky – Vice Chairperson – Web Communications
Robert Charkowsky currently works in the technology field, specializing in web design and maintenance, information technologies, and programming. Robert joins the MSANJ Executive Committee to manage technology needs and to contribute to planning MSANJ fundraising, events, and conferences. Although Robert has not been personally affected by MSA, he knows of the importance of shining a spotlight on this rare neurological disorder in order to educate and support research. He has gotten to know patients and families in his work to support this cause, and wants to help make a difference. He hopes to translate his knowledge into helping those affected by MSA, whether it be patients or their loved ones, through promoting awareness and building support. Contact Robert.
Amy Colcher – Vice Chairperson – Medical Advising
Amy Colcher grew up in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She did her undergraduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania where she also received a Masters in Secondary Education. She attended Jefferson Medical College and completed her Neurology residency at Georgetown University Hospital in Washington DC. She returned to Philadelphia to do a fellowship in Movement Disorders at Graduate Hospital, and stayed with that group when they moved to Pennsylvania Hospital and the University of Pennsylvania in 1997. She started at Cooper University Hospital in Camden, NJ, in 2012 where she is director of the movement disorders program. She is a Professor of Neurology of Cooper Medical School of Rowan University. She is actively involved in patient care and research and is part of the North American MSA study group, Parkinson’s study group, and the Huntington’s study group.
Stephen M. Borstelmann
Stephen M. Borstelmann, MD joined the MSA NJ Board in 2016. He received his MD from New York Medical College and was elected to Alpha Omega Alpha medical honor society. After an internship in Internal Medicine at Westchester County Medical Center, he completed his residency in Diagnostic Radiology and then his fellowship in Interventional Radiology at the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Hospital. Thereafter he was a partner at Florida Radiology Associates P.A. and an executive board member at Florida Radiology Imaging, Inc., practicing in the central Florida area. He currently resides in Boca Raton, FL and is a father of three. His areas of interest include rare and congenital disorders, supervised and unsupervised learning, and machine learning as applied to healthcare.
Dr. Fox is a physical therapist at the Dan Aaron Parkinson’s Rehabilitation Center in Philadelphia. She graduated from Lehigh University with a Bachelor’s degree in Biology and Psychology and then earned her DPT from Temple University. Dr. Fox has more than a decade of professional experience within the University of Pennsylvania Health System. Her professional accreditations include: ATTP Clinician Trained, LSVT Big Certification, Parkinson’s Wellness and Recovery (PWR!) certification and Rock Steady certification. Dr. Fox has been an adjunct at Widener University, Drexel University and Rutgers for over 6 years and has taught seminars on behalf of the PPTA and CurePSP both nationally and internationally.
Michelle Lowry grew up on Long Island, New York. She completed her undergraduate studies in Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology at Loyola University Maryland. Michelle then went on to complete her Master’s Degree in Speech-Language Pathology from Seton Hall University in New Jersey.
Michelle has worked in a variety of setting as a Speech Pathologist including private practice, home care and hospital settings. Michelle is currently a Speech Pathologist at a rehabilitation hospital in New York. Michelle is certified in LSVT therapy, providing therapy to Parkinson’s and MSA patients. She hopes to share her knowledge of Speech and Swallowing with those affected by MSA and their loved ones.
Dr. Lucy Norcliffe-Kaufmann is an Assistant Professor in Neurology and Neuroscience at New York University School of Medicine. She gained her PhD in autonomic physiology in England. She is currently the Associate Director of the NYU Dysautonomia Center, which focuses on research and treatment of rare autonomic disorders. She has been working in MSA clinical research for the past decade. Dr. Norcliffe-Kaufmann trained within the Autonomic Disorder’s Consortium and is a lead investigator in the Natural History Study of MSA; a global effort to unite the MSA research community. Her research work is funded by the MSA Coalition, the Dysautonomia Foundation, the National Institute of Health, the Food and Drug Administration and the Michael J Fox Foundation. Dr. Norcliffe-Kaufmann lives in New York City with her husband and two children.
Victoria Pena-Cardinali has Masters Degree in Social Work with a clinical concentration from New York University. She has fifteen years experience in the social work areas of family preservation services, crisis intervention, child welfare, case management and counseling and six years of experience in the area of Medical Social Work at Capital Health Systems. In her newest role, as the Outpatient Social Worker at the Capital Institute for Neurosciences.
Victoria has been able to work closely with patients and their families to address their unique and personal needs related to management of chronic diseases such as adjustment issues, community reintegration, service connection, advocacy, collaboration, support counseling and transitions of care among many others. Victoria facilitates three caregivers’ support groups at Capital Health Hopewell and is a provider of psychotherapy services at the institute.