Meet the DownSyndrome Achieves Leadership Board and Staff

Our leadership board helps ensure DownSyndrome Achieves is well-equipped to meet its goals and objectives when supporting those with Down syndrome and their families. Learn more about their background, commitment, and passion for DownSyndrome Achieves.

DownSyndrome Achieves Board

Rebecca Bowman

Rebecca Bowman

Board Chair

Rebecca is Director, Customer Operations, North America, for the Clorox Company. Rebecca has been a board member of DownSyndrome Achieves for over a year

“I was drawn to DownSyndrome Achieves because of one of its fundamental reasons for being……..education on the importance of research. I agree wholeheartedly with the importance and necessity of research for Down Syndrome and all ailments impacting mankind.”

Jason Widmer

Jason Widmer

Immediate Past Board Chair

Jason is a Chief Engineer at Honda R&D Americas, Inc. At DownSyndrome Achieves, he takes part in the strategic and financial planning for the organization and has been a part of DSA for 6+ years.

“My daughter, Brooke, was diagnosed with Down syndrome. And as a parent, I want to do all I can to help her achieve her highest potential. Part of that is participating in an organization like DSA and advocating for research and clinical trials that could potentially be life-changing for her and others in the future.”

Mark Weitzel

Mark Weitzel

Treasurer

Mark is a Vice President of Commercial Lending at JP Morgan Chase Bank.

“I first became involved with the Down syndrome community when I was a teenager and was struck by the sincerity and joy those with Down syndrome project. Years later a friend had a child with Down syndrome. I discovered the many medical challenges that often face people with an extra 21st chromosome, well beyond what occurs in the general population. Since the research into the common health conditions impacting the Down syndrome community has been so limited, I’m pleased to have an opportunity to help them lead better, healthier lives so they can share that joy which I saw for myself in my teenage years.”

Elizebeth Mag

Elizebeth Maag

Secretary

Elizebeth is Senior Legal Counsel for CPS Solutions, an inpatient, ambulatory, and specialty pharmacy company.

“DSA is an organization prioritizing research and truly trying to change the lives of those with Down syndrome and their families for the better. I’m proud to be part of an organization making such a positive impact.”

David Bastulli

David is a Strategic Regional Sales Manager for Delta Medical Systems/Siemans Heathineers.

“Although I personally do not have a loved one suffering from Down syndrome, I’ve known this to be a condition that too many individuals are suffering from. On top of that, after going through the traumatic loss of a loved one in my own family in 2022, I was compelled to look for opportunities to give back in new and unique ways. After all, I learned very quickly that life is short, and you never know what the future holds. Coincidentally, that is when I was contacted by a friend to consider joining DSA. After some due diligence and meeting a couple key board members, I knew I had an opportunity to join an amazing group of people pushing the boundaries of Down syndrome research.”

Moti Bycel

Moti is a Senior Enterprise Customer Success Manager for LinkedIn Sales Solutions. He is also father to Ayala, his young daughter who has Down syndrome. Moti has been a board member at DownSyndrome Achieves for 3+ years.

“My daughter Ayala has Down syndrome, and I’ve become increasingly involved in the Down syndrome community–both as an advocate for Ayala and all of us who are positively impacted by inclusion, awareness and diversity. I joined DSA because I was drawn to helping solve the problem of the long term health effects that negatively impact people with Down syndrome. I believe this work is so important and can lead to major breakthroughs. The research being done is hopefully making future generations live longer, healthier lives. There are many organizations doing great work but DSA’s commitment to research is truly inspiring.”

Steven Fields

Steven Fields

Steven is the Consumer Marketing Strategy Director at Gannett USA Today Network.

“I am often asked WHY? Why am I so involved in DSA when I don’t have a child or family member with Down syndrome. The truth is, I can’t fully explain it. Which may be similar to how parents feel when they learn their child has Down syndrome (that unknowing why). I was first introduced to DSA through my participation in one of their Fall Shotgun Shoots. I looked forward to a day of sporting clays with my friends, but what I did not realize was the impact DSA would have on me. As I waited, I was drawn in by the leadership of DSA sharing their mission and vision. I was captivated by the passion of the board, and the impact that dedicated research to Down syndrome could have not only on Down syndrome patients but also for everyone. Individuals with Down syndrome have a “superpower” in more ways than one, and I believe my involvement can help strengthen their power.”

Kevin Fox

Kevin Fox

Kevin is the Founder of Foxwerx Group, a marketing & communications firm based in Columbus, OH. Kevin has been a board member at DownSyndrome Achieves for 6 years.

“I was drawn to DSA because of the dedication of its board members and their unwavering commitment to Down syndrome research. This organization is not just making strides but truly reshaping the future for those with Down syndrome, one breakthrough at a time.”

Joe Garber

Joe Garber, JD, CPA

Joe is Senior Deputy Counsel at Root Insurance. Joe has been a board member at DownSyndrome Achieves for 6+ years.

“DSA cares about Down syndrome research and doing all it can to draw attention to its importance and scientific need for the Down syndrome community. It’s an amazing organization making strides that I’m proud to be a part of.”

DownSyndrome Achieves Staff

Lito Ramirez

CEO
Lito Ramirez

Lito is president & CEO of DownSyndrome Achieves, the
DSA Biobank’s sponsor. He has more than 20 years of
senior-level experience in brand development, strategic
marketing, and product development specializing in B2B
healthcare.

He is a TEDx Columbus speaker and a published author, whose work has appeared in national healthcare journals, including the Journal of Medical Practice Management and Healthcare Marketing Report. He is the father of a young son with Down syndrome.

“Our son, Cal, was health comprised from the day he was born. For the first 10 years of his life, he underwent nine different surgeries to correct health conditions related to DS, including open heart/lung bypass when he was just four months old, two spinal cord surgeries, and two gastrointestinal surgeries, among several others. With each surgery, Cal missed more than 30 days of school recuperating, which prevented him from learning, developing social skills, and building friendships. How can we expect people with DS to lead the fullest life possible, when many are challenged on a daily basis by health conditions related to DS? I started DownSyndrome Achieves to help answer that question. The biospecimens we collect through our DSA Biobank at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center fuel the discovery of new treatments and therapies that will ultimately improve the health and well-being of people with DS and others, in years rather than decades. This is my vision. This is my hope.”

Nicole White, Biobank Coordinator

PhD, MBA

Nicole is Biobank Coordinator for the DSA Biobank and brings strong expertise, technical insight, and strategic design to the project.

She has more than 18 years of research experience, specializing in the creation of new research core facilities. She currently serves as Research Shared Facilities Administrator at Cincinnati Children’s, where she oversees 28 different research facilities, including biobanks, bioinformatics, and translational research, among others.

She has four children, including a daughter with Down syndrome.

“I am a researcher. But when our daughter was born we quickly learned how little was understood about the health conditions she had. It is important to support research so we can have more options for treatments and ensure our child has the same opportunities at living a full, high-quality, healthy life as her siblings and peers.”

Breakthroughs Begin With You

Our 5-year goal at DSA is to collect up to 500 blood specimens and related health data from individuals with DS and their immediate families. These samples are crucial to advancing translational research that will yield improved diagnostics and therapies for people with DS.


Please join us in making a contribution to help us reach our goal!