International Waldenstrom’s Macroglobulinemia Foundation



Many of you may already recognize Shirley, as she has served for several years as the support group leader in the Seattle, Washington area, and most recently has agreed to replace Alice Riginos as the editor of the IWMF Torch. From 1973 until 2008, Shirley worked in many US museums as curator, consultant, writer, and educator in Chinese art, particularly ceramics, and led tours and seminars for the Smithsonian Institution in China and the US. As a museum consultant and as a board member for two small Seattle area non-profits, one arts and the other social services, she also worked in various capacities, from governance and administration, to outreach and programs. Since 2008 she has written a book, published in Chinese and English, on Chinese export porcelain, as well as written and edited museum documents for the US National Park Service. Shirley was diagnosed with WM in 2012, was last treated in early 2014, and is currently in “watch-and-wait” status. Shirley is a key addition to the Board, ensuring that the IWMF Torch will be in very capable hands well into the future, along with ensuring additional guidance for future publications that will benefit the IWMF community.

Ronald has been a regular attendee of the IWMF Educational Forum since 2012, and was so impressed by the quality of the event that he felt it was important that he volunteer to apply his skills and experience in non-profit organizations to help the IWMF continue to provide top-notch services to its members. For over 40 years, Ron has devoted himself to “giving back”, and has earned recognition and awards for his efforts. Among the roles he’s held in the past are Director, Executive Director, Board Member for several organizations in health-related (serving those with developmental disabilities and mental illness) and community-related organizations – many times volunteering for multiple organizations concurrently. His lengthiest engagement was with the Rappahannock Area Community Services Board (RACSB) in Virginia, between 1976 and 2017, where he served as its Executive Director from 1983 until his retirement in 2017. RACSB provides mental health, developmental disability and substance abuse services through an array of outpatient, day support, residential, prevention and early intervention services. The RACSB service area covers over 1,400 square miles and over 15,000 individuals in 32 locations, with a workforce of more than 600 employees. Ron was diagnosed with WM in 2011, was treated with Bendamustine/Rituxan, and completed Rituxan maintenance in April, 2014. While Ron will initially be assisting the IWMF’s Fundraising Committee, his extensive background in working in and leading non-profit organizations will be of great value in ensuring that the IWMF continues to excel in meeting its mission of providing education & support to everyone affected by WM, and in promoting research leading to better treatments and, ultimately, a cure for WM.

Join us in welcoming Shirley Ganse and Ronald Branscome to the IWMF Board of Trustees!


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