Board of Directors

Laure Woods

Bonnie Crater*
Vice President

Carin Rollins


Linda Giampa

Executive Director

Dianne Barney
Controller/Office Manager

Jo Ellis
Education Outreach

Kate Misskelley
Donor Relations Director

Wendy Adams
Program Consultant

* indicates founders of Bay Area Lyme Foundation

Board of Directors

Laure L. Woods, Founder and President, Board Of Directors

Laure WoodsI continue to struggle with late-stage Lyme disease. If only I had gotten an accurate diagnosis and had been treated earlier, my life would be so much different. My goal as a founder of Bay Area Lyme Foundation is to ensure that we develop reliable diagnostics and a cure so that others don’t have to go through what I have. It is awful.

Laure Woods offers a unique perspective to Bay Area Lyme Foundation as a clinical researcher and a person with late-stage Lyme disease. Her research experience includes projects exploring anti-infectives for cystic fibrosis and bronchitis patients, and research about AIDS and metastatic breast cancer. She has held clinical research positions at California Bay Area companies like Matrix Pharmaceutical and Genelabs Technologies. Early in her career, she founded Woods Consulting, Inc., to advise organizations that test the safety and efficacy of medications, devices, diagnostic products and treatment regimens intended for human use. Laure is the President and Founder of Laurel Foundation, a private foundation focused on the health and welfare of children, and serves on the Board of the L.K. Whittier Foundation, a private Foundation focused on medical and technology research. Ms. Woods holds a BA in Animal Science from the University of California at Davis.

Bonnie Crater, Founder and Vice President, Board of Directors, Chair Science Committee

Bonnie CraterI founded Bay Area Lyme Foundation with my friends to help end their suffering. I fundamentally believe we can stop this disease. With the right talent and entrepreneurial approach, we can find a cure for Lyme. 

Bonnie Crater chairs the Science Committee which drives our research agenda, champions innovation, and seeks partners to chart new paths in Lyme research. She brings her background in biology, extensive experience in Silicon Valley, boundless energy, and an entrepreneurial spirit to Bay Area Lyme Foundation. Bonnie is currently President and CEO at Full Circle CRM, and a ten-year veteran of Oracle Corporation and its various subsidiaries. She has held senior executive positions at companies like Zelerate, VoiceObjects, Realization, Genesys, Netscape, Network Computer Inc.,, and Stratify. She currently serves on the board of the CB Wellness Foundation and on the Town of Portola Valley’s Nature and Science Committee. Ms. Crater holds an AB in Biology from Princeton University.

Carin Rollins, Board of Directors

Carin RollinsI know too many people affected by the debilitating symptoms of Lyme. Their stories have inspired me to do what I can to help better understand and ultimately conquer this disease, using the tools I have learned throughout my biotechnology career.

Carin Rollins offers strategic research advice and helps identify, vet and manage our research opportunities. She is a member of the Science Committee. She brings an extensive background in biotechnology and an in-depth understanding of the field of Lyme disease to Bay Area Lyme Foundation. Her experience in biotechnology equity research, management consulting and venture capital for Robertson Stephens & Company, Booz Allen & Hamilton, Bay City Capital and 5AM Ventures, makes her uniquely suited for this role. Carin currently manages CR Consulting, LLC, which provides consulting services to the biotech sector. She has served on the Board of Directors for a number of biotech companies and organizations. Ms. Rollins holds an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business and a BA in Biology from Colgate University.

Advisory Board

John Brennan, Advisory Board Member

John BrennanBay Area Lyme Foundation is helping to drive fundamental research and awareness into an epidemic that has been heretofore dismissed without the support of sound, evidence-based research. That research is happening now and the evidence is irrefutable. Prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of tick-borne diseases, especially Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease, will eventually become a national priority and Bay Area Lyme Foundation will help to make that happen.

John Brennan co-founded Sirios Capital Management, LP and serves as its managing director. Sirios manages two long/short strategies focused on investments in the United States, Europe, and Asia, as well as a global, long-oriented fund. In addition, Sirios manages two domestic partnerships that invest in continental US timberland. Prior to Sirios, John was a senior vice president of MFS Investment Management, where he served as portfolio manager and member of the MFS Advisory Board and MFS Equity Management Group. In addition, he completed the Manufacturing Management Program at General Electric in 1983. John is a cofounder and director of the Hunt Street Fund, a charitable foundation focused on children’s welfare and education; a trustee of Xaverian Brothers High School; a trustee of Xaverian Brothers USA; a director of the Saint Joseph Parish School Endowment Fund; a past director of the URI Foundation; and a past member of the Stanford Graduate School of Business Advisory Council. Mr. Brennan holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business in 1985 and a BS, summa cum laude, from the University of Rhode Island College of Engineering in 1981.

Laird Cagan, Founder and Advisory Board Member

Laird CaganI have seen firsthand how devastating this disease can be to an individual. I have watched my wife go through seven years of torture dealing with Lyme. We still do not have clarity and, while much improved, she has not yet fully recovered. I helped found Bay Area Lyme Foundation so we can stop Lyme disease and find a cure, so others will not have to experience this misery. Modern medicine should be able to diagnose and treat this vicious disease.

Laird Cagan brings a wide array of talents to Bay Area Lyme Foundation as a successful businessman and investor. He is currently Managing Director and Co-founder of Cagan McAfee Capital Partners (CMCP) a private investment firm he founded in 1990. CMCP has founded, funded and taken public over 10 companies in a variety of industries including energy, alternative energy, healthcare, information technologies and environmental. Mr. Cagan holds an MBA from The Stanford Graduate School of Business and a BS & MS in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University.

Sherry Cagan, Founder and Advisory Board Member

Sherry CaganIf I had been properly diagnosed—and received early treatment—when a tick first bit me on my property in Portola Valley 2005, I would not have endured so many difficult years concerning my health. Navigating my way to the correct medical help took me years. And it was nearly too late. Though I have improved, the current treatment efforts have not been completely effective. I founded Bay Area Lyme Foundation with my friends because I am determined to find a cure for Lyme Disease and prevent others from needlessly suffering.

Sherry Cagan takes an active role as a founder, serving on the Advisory Board. She is Event Chair for Bay Area Lyme Foundation’s “LymeAid,” a celebrity benefit dinner concert that she conceived and organized. Sherry brings the drive and creativity as a world champion equestrian and an internationally renowned artist to Bay Area Lyme Foundation. She has competed professionally showing cutting horses on a national level for more than 20 years, and her life-size bronze sculptures are featured at Stanford University and the Town Center in Portola Valley, CA. As a community leader and patient advocate, Sherry is dedicated to preventing others and their families from experiencing the devastation of a disease that nearly took her life.  Read about Sherry’s personal Lyme disease story here.

Gayle Collat, Founder and Advisory Board Member

Gayle CollatI helped found the Bay Area Lyme Foundation after seeing some of my friends suffer from late-stage Lyme disease: they had been misdiagnosed and not given proper treatment for years. Lyme is a disease that with education and early medical treatment can be prevented or cured, but right now there is no known cure for late-stage Lyme. Our goal is to make Lyme easy to diagnose and simple to cure.

Gayle Collat brings an entrepreneurial spirit, marketing savvy, and experience in developing health promotion and educational programs to Bay Area Lyme Foundation. As the Founder and CEO of Corporate Muscle, a worksite health promotion company, Gayle designed and staffed corporate wellness programs throughout the US and a corporate office in Cork, Ireland for a variety of large corporate clients including EMC, Lotus Development, Sun Life Insurance, and Blue Cross Blue Shield. Her marketing background also includes work on promotional and media campaigns for Westinghouse and International Medical Centers as well as an award-winning advertisement for the French car company Citroen, featuring Grace Jones. She began her career at Greene County Mental Health Center in New York working as a family therapist. During that time she also founded the Early Childhood Learning Center, a school that trained parents and teachers of handicapped children in infant stimulation techniques. Ms. Collat holds a BA in Psychology at the Western Michigan University, with a focus in Behavioral Science.

Lia Gaertner, Advisory Board Member

Lia GaertnerTick-borne diseases are easy to contract from a tiny tick the size of a poppy seed, yet the diseases are disproportionately difficult to diagnose and cure. It is critical to bring together scientists, health providers, policy makers, and the public in collaboration towards the goal of improving diagnostic tools and effective treatment options for those who suffer from tick-borne illnesses.

Lia Gaertner is a scientist, mother, and nutrition consultant who is passionate about cultivating better research and recognition for tick-borne illnesses. She has experienced, first hand, the obstacles to effective diagnosis and treatment of tick-borne illness. She was first bitten by a Lyme-carrying tick in 1998, but was misdiagnosed until 2008. Lia is a principal at Halteres Associates, a bioscience consulting company, and she has over 20 years of international experience in scientific and field research, technical writing, teaching, and project management. She has also worked for several science and medical companies as consultant, project manager, content producer, and affiliate relations director.  Ms. Gaertner earned her BS in Environmental Science with minors in Ethnobotany and Agroecology from UC Berkeley and her MS in Ethnobotany from Cornell University. She lives in the Bay Area with her Lyme-literate physician husband, Sunjya Schweig, MD, and their two children.

Gib Myers, Advisory Board Member

Gib MyersOur youngest son went four years with undiagnosed Lyme and then another four years recovering. Thankfully, he is in good shape now. My wife Susan and I crisscrossed the country looking for both a diagnosis and a cure. We are very familiar with how devastating the disease is and are excited to think that the Bay Area Lyme Foundation can make a difference.

Gib Myers was a general partner at Mayfield Fund, a venture capital partnership, from 1970 until his retirement in 1998. Prior to joining Mayfield, Gib worked for Hewlett-Packard for four years in computer systems. Gib is the founder of the Entrepreneurs Foundation, a Bay Area nonprofit with the mission of developing corporate citizenship and philanthropic efforts to benefit the community. Gib is also Vice-Chairman of American Prairie Reserve, which has the mission of assembling the largest wildlife reserve in the lower 48 states, an American Serengeti. Gib is a co-founder of the Center for Social Innovation at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Previously, he was a member of the Stanford Graduate School of Business Advisory Board, on the President’s Leadership Council of Dartmouth College, and a senior fellow and board member of the American Leadership Forum. Mr. Myers earned an AB degree in Engineering Science from Dartmouth College in 1964 and a MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business in 1966. Gib and his wife, Susan Myers, live in the San Francisco Bay Area, have two sons and a daughter and three grandchildren.

Susan Myers, Advisory Board Member

Susan MyersOur youngest son suffered with Lyme disease for eight years before getting well. I wish to work with others to make a difference in this devastating disease, so less people suffer from Lyme the way my son did. I am especially committed to supporting research that will create better diagnostic tools for Lyme disease.

Susan Myers serves on the board of the American Prairie Reserve, whose mission is to establish a three-million acre wildlife reserve on the high plains of Montana. The reserve some day will rival the African Serengeti. She is also a member of Impact Partners, a social interest film fund that invests in documentary films that will have a social impact. Susan and her husband, Gib Myers, live in the San Francisco Bay Area, have two sons and a daughter, and three grandchildren.

Kathleen O’Rourke, Founder and Advisory Board Member

Kathleen O'RourkeIn a state of deteriorating health for many years, I had no inkling of the cause until my son contracted an acute presentation of Lyme disease. Even with a known tick bite, it took months to find a doctor who ran the proper clinical tests to make his diagnosis. With that diagnosis and new knowledge, I discovered the cause of my own more chronic presentation of symptoms. The status of Lyme disease as an unspecified illness in the medical community is cause for alarm. I helped found Bay Area Lyme Foundation to find a cure and to remediate the lack of proper education around the issues of Lyme prevention, diagnosis and early treatment.

Kathleen O’Rourke brings a unique combination of marketing, science, and design expertise to Bay Area Lyme Foundation along with the experience of growing and managing a small business. She is a member of the Science Committee. She has worked at Oracle Corporation in product marketing, developed a design consulting business serving the California Bay Area, and founded Culinary Alchemy Inc., a gourmet food company located in Silicon Valley, CA. She also brings the dual perspective of a Lyme patient and a parent of a child with Lyme. Ms. O’Rourke holds a BA in Human Biology from Stanford University.


Linda Giampa, Executive Director

It’s simple: I want to help. Several of my family members and friends have suffered with Lyme. Working with Bay Area Lyme Foundation puts me on the front line in the search for an accurate diagnosis and the battle for a cure. I’m thrilled to take my executive experience and apply it to a worthwhile cause, and truly make a difference in someone’s life.

As Executive Director, Linda brings an impressive array of expertise in sales, marketing and business development. Her experience includes executive management of technology startups as well as established market leaders. Linda was CEO of Transparency Software until 2009 when she sold it to an Israeli security company . Previously, Linda was Vice-President Worldwide Operations at Versata. In that role, Linda was responsible for all customer-facing activities including sales, marketing and consulting services. Early in her career, Linda held various marketing and sales roles at Oracle, building and managing successful sales teams during Oracle’s explosive growth years from early 1986 through 1994. Leveraging her experience from Oracle, Linda developed marketing and sales organizations for a number of successful startup organizations, Most recently, she ran her own executive consulting business, helping companies bring emerging technologies to market. In that capacity, Linda was able to raise over $70M in venture funds for her companies. Ms. Giampa holds a BS in Computer Science from University of North Carolina.

Dianne Barney, Controller & Office Manager

I have always enjoyed the outdoors whether it be hiking, backpacking or walking the many beautiful trails in the Bay Area.  Working at Bay Area Lyme has opened my eyes to the debilitating consequences that Lyme disease has on both young and old if not diagnosed early and/or correctly. I am proud to be a part of a team dedicated to the mission of finding the cure and helping people get back their lives.

Dianne Barney is a native to the San Francisco Bay Area with a variety of experience in accounting, finance, grant administration, and general office administration.  Her most recent experience was as an Administrative Director for a large family foundation, where she was responsible for the accounting, grant management, and general administration of the organization.  Prior to that, she served as a Controller for several companies in the Bay Area. Dianne is a graduate from San Francisco State University with a business degree in finance.

Jo Ellis, Education Outreach

I know too many people whose lives have been derailed by Lyme. I love the outdoors and the stunning beauty of the Bay Area, but it is imperative that we are all informed and safe when we are outside in nature. I want to help educate everyone about this insidious disease so we can prevent more cases occurring.

Jo Ellis has over 20 years of experience developing and marketing educational programming for schools, nonprofits, and corporations. A native of the UK, Jo was Product Development Executive for BBC Education & Training, developing award-winning educational programs distributed worldwide. Here in the US, Jo worked as Director of Executive Education at Stanford and then for Charles Schwab, launching “Schwab U,” the company’s internal management education provider. When Jo started a family, she went back to school and got her Montessori teaching qualification. She received her BA/MA from Cambridge University, and a post-graduate high-school teaching certification from the University of London. Jo holds the AMI middle school teaching certification, and is a nationally recognized gifted and talented educator with Johns Hopkins University.

Kate Misskelley, Donor Relations Director

It is a rare honor to have the opportunity to focus my work on something I care deeply about. I have seen the effects of Lyme disease on several dear friends and it is a pleasure to contribute to an organization that is having a profound impact on finding a cure for long-term chronic Lyme, prevention and awareness.

Kate Misskelley plays a crucial role in managing and coordinating Special Events. Kate brings extensive experience as a consultant, director of finance, Estate Manager and a professional fundraiser serving a variety of small businesses, nonprofits, and high net worth individuals. She is the Founder of KMS Financial Systems where she continues to serve a variety of clients across the San Francisco Bay Area.

Wendy Adams, Program Consultant

After suffering from undiagnosed Lyme disease for many years, I am passionate about the development of reliable diagnostics and improved treatment for this devastating disease. I now have the opportunity to marry my avocation with my professional experience in biotech and I am excited to do this through my work at Bay Area Lyme Foundation.

Wendy Adams provides strategic research advice and helps identify, vet and manage our research opportunities. She is a member of the Science Committee. Her unique perspective and knowledge as a Lyme patient—as well as her background in finance and business development for companies like Cowen & Company, Aviron and Affymax—make her a great addition to Bay Area Lyme Foundation. Wendy runs B2DC LLC, a business development consultancy to biotech clients in infectious and autoimmune disease, respiratory disease, oncology, drug delivery and neurology. Previously, Wendy served as Vice President of Business Development at Principia Biopharma, a drug development company focused on cancer and autoimmune disease. Wendy holds an MBA from the Haas School of Business, University of California at Berkeley, where she also served on the faculty in Entrepreneurship, and an AB in Comparative Area Studies from Duke University.