Dr. Gilbert Hosts: Advocacy & Parkinson’s Disease

In this session of Dr. Gilbert Hosts, special guest Ted Thompson discussed advocacy for PD and the National Plan to End Parkinson’s Act, and answered audience questions live.

On behalf of Unified Parkinson’s Advocacy Council, or UPAC, a group consisting of many national and local Parkinson’s disease non-profit organizations, including APDA, Ted and his team spearheaded a remarkable new PD advocacy initiative – the National Plan to End Parkinson’s Act. A bill was introduced into Congress that, if passed, will unite the federal government and all those impacted by Parkinson’s disease in a mission to prevent and cure PD. This is exciting news for the PD community!

We talked about:

  •       What does advocacy mean?

What is the National Plan to End Parkinson’s Act?

  •       What other advocacy initiatives are underway for people with PD?
  •       How can people with PD, care partners, and family members get involved?

And much more!

Watch the broadcast now on APDA’s YouTube Channel and be sure to subscribe to the APDA YouTube channel for more informative and important resources for Parkinson’s disease:


Ted Thompson, JD, is the Senior Vice President of Public Policy for The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research. Ted has more than 30 years of experience in public policy and government affairs, serving in several nonprofit leadership positions and as staff to two members of Congress.

Prior to joining the Foundation, Ted served as president and CEO of the Parkinson’s Action Network (PAN), a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit focused on federal policy issues affecting people with Parkinson’s disease. Prior to PAN, Ted was the Vice President of Federal Government Relations at the National Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society. He was also the Senior Vice President of Public Policy and Mission Advancement for the National MS Society, Minnesota Chapter; the President of the National Association to Prevent Sexual Abuse of Children; and the Legislative Counsel/Director of Federal Relations at the Minnesota Medical Association. Ted has also independently consulted for several nonprofits, for-profit companies, and political entities.

Previous to his work in nonprofit policy, Ted spent nine years working for two members of Congress. He served as Chief of Staff and Communications Director to Rep. Bill Luther (D-MN) and Deputy District Director for Rep. Gerry Sikorski (D-MN). He also ran for the state senate in Minnesota and while unsuccessful, the experience gives him another point of view in helping to shape policy.

Ted holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and political science from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota, and a law degree from the William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, Minnesota.

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