Debra Miller, President & CEO
Debra Miller co-founded CureDuchenne in 2003 with her husband, Paul, after their only son was diagnosed with Duchenne. Miller relies on her extensive background in sales and marketing to lead CureDuchenne.
Her role includes overseeing all operations, research and financial resources as well as serving as the primary liaison to the Board of Directors. She is the decision maker, leader and manager in carrying out the mission of the organization. She also works closely with the Scientific Board of Advisors in designing and implementing the medical research strategic plan.
Miller earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies from the University of California Los Angeles. Prior to CureDuchenne, she had a career in publishing with positions in advertising sales and was an independent stock trader.
Michael Kelly, Chief Scientific Officer
Dr. Michael Kelly joined CureDuchenne in December 2011 as chief scientific officer. Kelly, a senior pharmaceutical executive, brings more than 25 years experience in drug discovery and development to the organization. He is responsible for advancing drug development programs and identifying new drug targets that exhibit potential to transform the treatment of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
Before joining CureDuchenne, Kelly served as president and U.S. site head of Renovis, Inc. and has held senior positions at Amgen, Inc., Wyeth (Pfizer) and Wellcome (GlaxoSmithKline).
Kelly holds a Ph.D. from the University of Southampton (U.K.), held research positions at the University of Michigan and University of Nottingham, is an inventor on more than 100 patents and is widely published in peer reviewed journals.
Karen Harley, Vice President of Marketing Communication
Karen Harley joined CureDuchenne in December 2011 as director of marketing communications. She has more than 20 years experience in public relations, social marketing and public education. She is responsible for marketing, communications, public relations, special events, website and building partnerships to help increase awareness about Duchenne muscular dystrophy and raise funds to find a cure for Duchenne.
Before joining CureDuchenne, Harley was director at PainePR. Previously she was vice president of Hill & Knowlton. Harley has managed large-scale public education campaigns focused on obesity prevention, service and volunteering, teen pregnancy prevention, mentoring and disaster preparedness that helped drive behavior change. She has worked with a variety of clients in the public, private and nonprofit sector.
Harley holds a bachelor of arts degree in English and psychology from Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana.
Drew Hoyer, Senior Director of Development
Drew Hoyer joined CureDuchenne in April 2013 as Senior Director of Development. He is responsible for overseeing all fundraising and cause-related marketing efforts. His role includes donor stewardship, cause-related marketing initiatives, sponsorships and board development. He brings more than 7 years of experience in development, philanthropy and community relations to the organization.
Hoyer was the Senior Director of Development for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Orange County Chapter. Hoyer has managed large scale fundraising events for the CFF and worked with many families to help find a cure for CF. He now brings this experience to CureDuchenne to help us reach our goal of a cure.
Hoyer holds a bachelor's degree in Science and Youth Ministry from Martin Luther College.
Rachel Nelson, Director of Development
Rachel Nelson joined CureDuchenne in November 2014 as director of development. She is responsible for parent outreach, special events, volunteer management, and donor cultivation. Over the last ten years her career has focused on business development and marketing.
Nelson comes to us from Mark Beamish Waterproofing where she was a project estimator specializing in sales for restoration projects. Previously, Nelson served as director of business development for the Muscular Dystrophy Association Greater Orange County Chapter. During her tenure at the MDA, she identified and built partnerships with new sponsors as well as leading strategic fundraising initiatives, media campaigns and volunteer outreach.
Alicia Clough, Database Manager
Alicia Clough joined CureDuchenne in May 2013. Clough is responsible for office operations, data entry, donor database/ CRM management and event coordination. She gained two years of office experience in Jacksonville, FL.
Clough holds a Bachelor of Science degree in sociology from Jacksonville University.