Welcome to Pathways Stroke Foundation. We created this foundation in honor of our mother Agnes who suffered a debilitating Ischemic Stroke on December 18, 2012 that has left her with many deficits such as Apashia, Apraxia of Speech and Hemiplegia (paralysis of one side of the body) We all know someone who may have suffered from stroke, and the devastating long lasting journey the survivors and families face.
Although our foundation is beginning its journey, we have built a strong team of people that are like minded and determined to raise stroke awareness. While education is important, Pathways Stroke Foundation is unique in that we partner directly with survivors and families to assist in their long term recovery.
We have experienced first hand the importance of being a patient advocated especially during the beginning stages of recovery while in rehabilitation. A survivor is normally frightened and at times may not feel safe which will hinder their recovery times. There are many families that cannot stay with their loved ones because they live in another state or may have family and job commitments. One of our main goals is to partner with care facilities to provide each stroke and traumatice brain injury survivor with an iPad or Tablet so they may have 24 hour contact with their loved ones as well as to have the tools they need to continue their therapy on their own.
Once your loved one is home, much support will be needed. In home care is being cut to survivors giving them the bare basics. Recently with the bankruptcy of Guildnet, a large long term care Medicare/Medicaid insurance carrier, Agnes has had her twenty four hour care cut to twelve hours. There are thousands that are facing this same decision. Many survivors are left without any assistance and are either sent to the Emergency Room until someone can bring them home, or they stay in bed for up to 12 hours without food, water or medication. With your help, we will be able to subsidize critical home health aide hours so the survivor can recover with dignity.
With all of this said, we have many plans to help ease the strain and anxiety of survivors and caregivers but cannot continue this journey in helping survivors recover without you. With your generous donations, we will be able to provide families and survivors peace of mind knowing there is a foundation that will help. So join us today and spread the word.
TOGETHER WE CAN HELP PREVENT A STROKE.
Our mission is to reduce the profound impact of stroke by raising awareness of long term physical as well as emotional effects for the survivor, and caregivers through education, emerging technology, innovation, determination and activism.
Our desire is to co-create a world where fewer strokes occur, and to maximize human life with superior long term care, for those affected by a stroke.
Passion – We love what we do and the cause we represent. We are passionate about improving the lives of people affected by stroke and the their loved ones.
Trust - We are determined to be best at what matters most. We push the limits to beat the status quo.
Innovation – We are always learning, striving to bring innovative ways to recovery assisting in provide solutions from standard to holistic ways.
Integrity — We understand the importance of transparency, keeping us honest, authentic and accountable. Communicate fearlessly and build trust.
Commitment - We are committed to continually increasing our knowledge, and lead the way by maximizing our resources to best serve the community.
Most important, have fun and laugh along the way!
Jean Marie Gibbs
Founder / President
Jean Marie is the Founder President of Pathways Stroke Foundation. As an experienced executive and consultant, she is committed to operational excellence within the company. With a background in professional services and corporate business, she has shifted her focus to not-for-profit.
Working for large corporations such as Ralph Lauren, The Limited Corporation, Ann Taylor, as well as her own client staffing company Leading 7th Group, Inc., Jean Marie has developed over 25 years of expertise in Board reporting, performance reporting, project management, sales, business development and marketing.
Over the past 8 years, Jean Marie has submerged herself in a new venture as Independent Patient Advocate. With her mother Agnes suffering many deficits from stroke, Jean Marie has realized that recovery can only happen for a stroke survivor with constant therapy, support of family, friends and community.
With leadership and passion for stroke awareness, the inception of Pathways Stroke Foundation in honor of her mother Agnes is all set to help people fight stroke in a practical, educational, technologically advanced and holistic way.
Christine Szempruch RPA-C
Physicians Assistant Medical Forensic Investigator
Susan M. DeMetropolis, PhD CCC-SLP
Christine is a board certified Physicians Assistant with the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA). After completing her BA in Science from Touro College School of Health Science, she worked as a PA in the emergency room of Southside Hospital in Bayshore New York. Her commitment to her job and staff, as well as her devotion to her patients, garnered her the title of Chief of Emergency Room Physician Assistants. After many years, Christine transitioned into Primary Care for many years as a clinical Physician Assistant until her present position as Medical Forensic Investigator at the Suffolk County New York Medical Examiners office.
With over 35 years of medical experience, Christine's extensive care portfolio has educated patients on cardiovascular and diabetic health which are risk factors for stroke. Her early years as a first responder paramedic with New York City EMS has given her the first hand experience in recognition and treatment of stroke from the onset of symptoms.
With her ever-growing medical knowledge, she has been crucial in the ongoing care of her mother Agnes. Christine has been able to collaborate with doctors to come up with the best on going treatments for continued recovery of her mother. Christine is a vital advisory resource for Pathways Stroke Foundation in assisting, clinicians, therapist and caregivers to create better health practices that are implemented to benefit people living with stroke and traumatic brain injury, their families, health and community services.
Susan M. DeMetropolis, PhD CCC-SLP is an assistant professor in the department of speech, language, hearing sciences at Hofstra University and the director of the Neurocognition of Speech Laboratory where her team works toward assessing speech, language, and cognitive function in progressive and acquired neurological conditions via behavioral and objective measurements (e.g., Tobi eye-tracking). She has a collaboration with the Neurophysiology in Speech Language Pathology laboratory at Adelphi University under Dr. Reem Khamis-Dakwar doing EEG research on semantic memory skills in healthy adults and those with early-stage Alzheimer disease.
Currently, she is doing research on semantic and orthographic preferences in aphasia using standardized measures and eye-tracking and speech and cognitive changes in Parkinson disease in collaboration with the international consortium: Speech FTLD for objective speech and language outcomes in neurogenic disorders. Dr. DeMetropolis has presented at local, state, national, and international levels. In addition, she is a speech-language pathologist with clinical expertise in adult neurogenic disorders, with a clinical affiliation at Mercy Medical Center. At Hofstra University, she teaches graduate courses on aging, aphasia, and motor-speech disorders and a variety of foundational undergraduate courses such as the capstone course, clinical methods: evidence-based practice. She is also the academic advisor for the National Student Speech Language Hearing Association.
Susan began working with Agnes in 2015, when she was overseeing students on the clinical level at the speech language program in Queens College City University of New York. Susan spent three years working with Agnes, proactively guiding her through traditional speech therapies along with incorporating new technology. Susan's professionalism, and knowledge in all areas of speech pathology has become a vital resource for Pathways Stroke Foundation
Visionary Optometry of Long Island
Dr. Ceonzo has been in practice for 17 years providing comprehensive eye exams, vision therapy, sports vision, and visual rehabilitation for patients ranging from 4 months old to their 90's. Dr. Ceonzo completed her optometry degree at SUNY College of Optometry where she was mentored by renown head trauma specialist, Neera Kapoor, and earned the Frederick Brock Memorial Award for Outstanding Clinical Performance in Vision Therapy. Dr. Ceonzo then continued her education with a Residency at the Veterans Hospital in Northport, NY, specializing in Head Trauma and Stroke, Visual Rehabilitation, Vision Therapy, and Ocular Disease. After years of being on the staff of the Veterans Affairs Hospital in Northport NY, and years practice in Garden City as well as Staten Island NY, Dr. Ceonzo has finally brought vision therapy to Long Island through her own practice, Visionary Optometry.
Throughout her years of practice, Dr. Ceonzo has lectured to stroke support groups, head trauma survivors, occupational therapists, teachers, nurses and doctors on the importance of visual development and rehabilitation in work, life, and academics.
Dr. Ceonzo's primary aim is to help her patients obtain the best possible vision to remove visual barriers to living their best life.
Independent Personal Advocate
Maureen Whitehill and Jean Marie Gibbs have been friends for over 40 years. When Agnes suffered a stroke, Maureen spent everyday with Agnes while she was recovering in rehabilitation. Over the past 8 years, Maureen has tirelessly become one of Agnes's greatest advocates as well as close friend. The bond the two have formed is one of pure love and companionship.
Maureen's previous military medical background has been pivotal on a daily basis for the continued care of Agnes. She is able interpret difficult medical information and terminology allowing for positive options that allow for smooth transactions with doctors and therapists. Maureen has and incredible way of listening to Agnes and finding solutions with any complaints or concern. With Agnes's communication barriers, Maureen is mindful of independence making sure that Agnes makes as many decisions as possible throughout the day keeping dignity and positivity only for Agnes's stroke journey.
Maureen's advocacy, devotion and friendship has provided great gains for Agnes. Pathways Stroke Foundation is fortunate to have Maureen as a supporter for not only Agnes but for all survivors and families.