Minnesota Board of Directors

Dr. Gregory F. Molnar, PhD, President

I joined the Board of Directors in early 2018 and have been a very active member since then. I am committed to the efforts of APDA Minnesota, and hope that APDA Minnesota will continue to grow in support of those who are impacted with PD in our community.
I have over 20 years of experience in the study of PD and as a medical device innovator. I was previously the Director of Neuromodulation Research at Medtronic Inc. I currently serve as an associate professor of neurology at the University of Minnesota and Udall Center, and was more recently announced to be the Chief Scientific Officer for a new start-up business in the Twin Cities, SynerFuse.
My wife Gabi and I, and our two children, enjoy the outdoors and spending time at our lake cabin.


Robert B. DeNardo, Secretary

Surprised and honored to be asked to serve on the Board, I hope, in some small way to contribute to the broader PD community. I retired from a career in Social Work, largely serving children and families in various capacities in both the private and public sectors. My wife’s diagnosis this past year has introduced us to the array of supports, information and treatments available to patients and caregivers. I am awed by the strength, determination and fortitude displayed by many of the persons we’ve had the privilege to meet.


Jamie Engebretson, Treasurer

I am a physical therapist with a neurologic certified specialty and practice at Bethesda Hospital’s Outpatient Clinic. I enjoy working to optimize people’s lives through therapy and educate individuals with Parkinson’s Disease on resources and research available. Over the years, I have educated various support groups and therapists on Parkinson’s Disease and the various treatment options.


Dr. Eleanor Orehek, Medical Director

I have been caring for patients with Parkinson’s Disease since 2009 when I started neurology residency at Boston University. I am happy to have been able to return here to my home state of Minnesota to continue in this care. It was during residency in Boston that I found an interest and passion for, not only the medical aspects of the disease, but the human side of treating people with Parkinson’s Disease. Working with patients and their families, learning patients’ stories and coming up with a care plan that addresses their individual needs is what motivates and inspires me. What you start to realize as a physician is that there’s a limit to what you can do during the clinic visits. How that care plan is implemented largely depends on the patient themselves, and other people in their care network, the caregivers, therapists, support groups, as well as access to good information and ways to exercise. I am thrilled to be involved with an organization like the APDA that aims to help fill in these gaps for patients and their families and works with communities on awareness and education.


My journey with Parkinson Disease began in the summer of 2015 when I was diagnosed with PD. It was a struggle to understand the disease so I looked for as much information as I could. This led me to the Minnesota Chapter of the APDA. I was encouraged to join the Board of Directors, and I became a member of the Board in late 2016.

I retired from 3M in June of 2015 after a 33 year career in the Manufacturing and Supply Chain organizations. I am looking forward to helping serve those with PD in the Twin Cities’ community as well as learning more about the disease and possible treatments.


Ed Mielech, MBA

I was diagnosed with PD in 2018 by the VA due to exposure to Agent Orange during the Vietnam War. One of my goals is to raise awareness about Parkinson’s disease in other Vietnam veterans. I am a retired technology sales professional with over 35 years of experience, and I have spent the past 12 years selling real estate. I have a BA and MBA from St. Thomas University.


Erin Holker, Ph.D, LP, ABPP-CN

I am a board-certified neuropsychologist and Assistant Professor at the Neuropsychology Laboratory of the University of Minnesota. I completed my Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at the Pacific Graduate School of Psychology (Palo Alto University), in Palo Alto, California, a predoctoral internship at the Memphis VA Medical Center, and my postdoctoral fellowship in Clinical Neuropsychology at Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida, before coming to the Neuropsychology Laboratory at the University of Minnesota in 2001.
I have had an interest in movement disorders since my postdoctoral fellowship. I am a co-investigator for the Clinical Core at the University of Minnesota Udall Center of Excellence for Parkinson’s Disease Research. I provide neuropsychological evaluations for all patients at the University of Minnesota who are interested in deep brain stimulation surgery. I also have a general practice including evaluation of individuals with a wide variety of neurocognitive disorders, including those associated with cerebrovascular disorders including stroke, cancer and its treatment, degenerative brain disease, traumatic brain injury, infectious diseases, and psychiatric conditions.


Teri Gustafson

As the director of the Protocol School of Minnesota, I have had the privilege to be in a consultative role at Medtronic Neuromodulation for 14 years. In that time I have listened to scientists, engineers, physicians, and occasionally patients. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to do something to benefit the Parkinson’s community. I have a background in human resources, special events, and education, and will use existing skills and acquire new ones to complement and assist the Board and the cause in any way I can. I live in Shoreview with my husband Dan and have a grown daughter in Minneapolis. We travel often, love college football and play golf.

 


Stuart M. Baumann

I am a retired airline pilot, diagnosed with Parkinson’s in August 2012. With no family history of PD, I was caught off guard, but relieved to put a name to my symptoms. On my Parkinson’s journey, I’ve gone through questioning, acceptance, education, action, and now advocacy. PD patients need information, support and encouragement. I’m a proponent of coordinated patient driven treatment, and believe strongly in exercise in the management of PD. You’ll find me at the YMCA most days of the week.


Dr. Michael Park

Dr. Park received his M.D. and Ph.D. from the Department of Molecular and Integrative Physiology at the University of Kansas (KU) in Kansas City, KS, and received a Bachelors in Biology from KU in Lawrence, KS, and dual Bachelors in Electrical Engineering and Economics from Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. He was a 2009 recipient of the William P. Van Wagenen Fellowship and studied at the Assistance Publique L’Hopital d’Adulte de la Timone, Marseille, France.


Patty Flynn, Past President

I am honored to be serving on the board for the Minnesota Chapter of the APDA. When my husband was diagnosed with Parkinson’s five years ago, we decided that knowledge is power, and we committed ourselves to learning everything we can about this disease so that together we would live life to the fullest. I look forward to helping educate others about Parkinson’s and encouraging them to adopt the motto we live by, “everyday is a good day, some are just better than others”. I believe that if PD is going to affect my life, I want, in some way, to have an effect on PD, and so I choose to be active in the Parkinson’s community, participating as a healthy control for PD research studies. I work in finance and accounting. In addition, I teach yoga classes, and I hope to bring yoga to the Parkinson’s community.