Hope for HIE announces an organizational shift appointing Betsy Pilon as Executive Director, and David Ford as President of the Board of Directors. Hope for HIE is the premiere global organization dedicated to awareness, education and support for children and families affected by Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy, a type of neonatal and pediatric-acquired brain injury.
Pilon will be the first Executive Director of the organization, previously serving on the Board of Directors and serve as a non-voting member of the board in an ex-officio role. Since 2013, she has worked with several volunteers to grow the support arm from roughly 500 families, worldwide, to now serving over 6,000 families today. She has been instrumental in developing connections with clinicians and researchers who are actively involved in work to decrease the incidence of HIE and improve the quality of life for children and families, serving on the Board of Directors for the Newborn Brain Society, and participating in various task forces and committees as a parent voice in neonatal and pediatric neurology care and communication improvement projects.
“Our organization has been in a continuous growth curve for the last few years, gaining opportunities to collaborate with clinicians and researchers that typically happen from much longer established and resourced organizations. We knew we needed to aggressively work to set up the organization for this shift, as we could no longer effectively operate as an all-volunteer organization,” stated Ford, incoming President.
Prior to serving Hope for HIE in this new capacity, Pilon was the Director of Public Relations for Eton Academy in Birmingham, Mich. - a private school dedicated to serving students who learn differently. She has a background in healthcare communication and marketing, previously working for Henry Ford Health System and Trinity Health Senior Communities, and spent several years coaching high school competitive colorguard teams.
“I appreciate the board’s confidence in me, and I’m delighted to have the opportunity to lead such a great organization. Hope for HIE has been my heart and soul, and seeing it grow into a well-respected partner with key clinicians, and getting recognition for our community by organizations like Facebook has been an absolute joy,” Pilon said.
David Ford, shifting to President, has previously served in fundraising and advocacy capacities on the Board, making key connections with other organizations and high-profile advocates in disability rights and legislative efforts including the recognition of HIE Awareness Month in April by the State of Pennsylvania. He has a strong background in nonprofit operations and fundraising, and currently serves as the co-owner/operator of Central Bucks School of Gymnastics and Dance in Doylestown, Penn.
“David’s relentless commitment to growing Hope for HIE, and advocating for HIE families, combined with his professional prowess, makes him an excellent choice to operate and lead the Board of Directors in this next chapter,” stated Pilon.
About Hope for HIE
Hope for HIE is the premier global resource for awareness, education, advocacy and support surrounding neonatal and pediatric hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE). Serving a worldwide community, the organization provides a comprehensive support network for families, collaborates with research and medical professionals, and leads advocacy initiatives to reduce incidence and increase quality of life for those affected by HIE. Hope for HIE is a 501(c)3 non-profit registered with the IRS. www.hopeforhie.org