The preliminary retreat agenda is now available

2015 Speakers


Julian E. Bailes, M.D. - Evanston, Illinois

A leader in the research of neurovascular diseases, Dr. Bailes is the Chairman of the Department of Neurosurgery and Co-Director of the NorthShore Neurological Institute. He has been honoured as one of "America's Best Doctors" and "America's Top Surgeons" for eight consecutive years by U.S. News and World Report. Besides establishing the Brain Injury Research Institute for traumatic brain injury prevention studies, Dr. Bailes' impressive roles include neurological consultant for the National Football League Players' Association, advisor to the National Collegiate Athletics Association, chairman of Pop Warner Football, and medical director for the Center for Study of Retired Athletes at the University of North Carolina. One of the principal investigators on the analysis of chronic traumatic encephalopathy clinical data, Dr. Bailes' laboratory researches the mechanisms of and treatments for cerebral concussions.


Robert Cantu, M.D. - Concord, Massachusetts

A multi-hyphenate in the neurosurgery field, Dr. Cantu is a clinical professor of neurosurgery at Boston University, the Chairman of the Department of Surgery at Emerson Hospital, and a founding member and chairman of the Medical Advisory Board for Sports Legacy Institute. Not only does he advise numerous National Football League, National Hockey League, and National Basketball Association teams as well as NASCAR, Dr. Cantu also acts as a consultant to many scholastic and professional athletes for various health topics such as post-head-injury return-to-play, high school sports safety issues, and special health and exercise concerns for seniors. Moreover, Dr. Cantu is a prolific writer, having authored more than 350 scientific publications, including neurology and sports medicine books and educational videos. Dr. Cantu currently serves as the medical director of the National Center for Cata- strophic Sports Injury Research.


Pierre Frémont, M.D., Ph.D., CCFP - Quebec City, Québec

Dr. Frémont is a researcher and professor of rehabilitation at Laval University in Quebec where he investigates concussion management in sport and school settings through structured protocols. He is Chair of the Canadian Concussion Collaborative and member of the Concussion Working Group mandated to make recommendations to the Ministry of Education Leisure and Sport in the province of Quebec.

Samuel Gandy, M.D., Ph.D. - New York, New York

Part of the team that first founded amyloid-reducing drugs, Dr. Gandy is a professor of neurology and psychiatry, Associate Director of the Mount Sinai Alzheimer's Disease Research Center, and Chair of the National Medical and Scientific Advisory Council of the Alzheimer's Association. With more than 150 original papers and reviews under his belt, Dr. Gandy has made significant impact in scientific literature, serving in the capacity of an editor for several prominent journals including The Journal of Clinical Investigation, the Public Library of Science-Medicine (PLoSM), and Current Alzheimer Research. His past responsibilities expanded to not only chief organizer for the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories Bi-Annual Winter Biotechnology Conference on Therapeutic Opportunities in Neurodegenerative Diseases, but also founding director of the Farber Institute for Neurosciences. On top of speaking before the Congress, Dr. Gandy has given talks on television programs and for newspapers. This Alzheimer's Disease expert continues to train new scientists and lectures at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine.

Thomas Gennarelli, M.D. - Milwaukee, Wisconsin

An internationally renowned Neurosurgeon and Researcher in the field of traumatic head injuries, Dr. Gennarelli has served as President of the International Neurotrauma Society and published 406 original research papers - with a focus on Diffuse Axonal Head Injury, written 41 book chapters, and four editions of "The Abbreviated Injury Scale"; the international standard for determining the severity of bodily injuries. Among numerous other awards and designations, Dr. Gennarelli has received the National Head Injury Foundation's 1984 Caveness Award for outstanding contribution to head injury. He founded The Froedtert Hospital & The Medical College of Wisconsin CIREN Centre, and is also a founding member of the International Neurotrauma Society, the International Society for Neuro-emergencies and the Eastern Association for the Surgery of Trauma.


Christopher Giza, M.D - Los Angeles, California

A specialist in paediatric neurology, Dr. Giza acts not only as a civilian advisor to the US Department of Defense, he also serves the National Collegiate Athletic Association Concussion Task Force and Major League Soccer Concussion Program Committee. As co-chair of the American Academy of Neurology Academy committee, Dr. Giza is responsible for the development of an evidence-based Practice Guideline for Management of Sports Concussions. Recently selected as a "Super Doctor" of Southern California in 2015 by peers for excelling professionally and demonstrating strong leadership in his medical field, Dr. Giza currently lectures on paediatric neurology and neurosurgery at UCLA.

Ronald L. Hayes, Ph.D. - Alachua, Florida

Co-founder and Chief Science Officer of Banyan Biomarkers, Inc., Dr. Hayes is the Director of Banyan's Clinical Programs and Banyan Laboratories. He Previously served as Director, University of Florida's Center for Traumatic Brain Injury Studies which focused on laboratory studies of basic mechanisms of traumatic brain injury and development of novel therapies to treat deficits following brain injury including disturbances in memory and attention. Dr. Hayes has more than 35 years of experience studying brain injury. He is past President of The National Neurotrauma Society, on the Scientific Advisory Boards of International Brain Injury Association and the International Neurotrauma Society. Dr. Hayes has published more than 300 peer reviewed papers and more than 50 book chapters. He has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for more than 30 years and is currently funded by both the NIH and the Department of Defense.


Gillian Hotz, Ph.D. - Miami, Florida

A nationally recognized behavioral neuroscientist, Dr. Hotz is a research professor at University of Miami, and director to KiDZ Neuroscience Center, WalkSafe and BikeSafe Concussion Programs. Dr. Hotz is a founding member for numerous head injury care programs, such as the Pediatric Brain & SCI Program, and she is now developing the Countrywide Concussion care Program. In addition to conducting federally-funded clinical research for pediatric concussions, Dr. Hotz continuously provides scientific literature on pedestrian injury prevention and presents at many conferences on local, national, and international levels. Dr. Hotz is licensed to perform ImPACT for neurocognitive screenings and is studying neurocognitive deficits of traumatic and acquired brain injuries.

Neilank K. Jha, M.D. - Toronto, Ontario

Neurosurgeon and Spine Surgeon of Toronto, Canada, Neilank K. Jha is the founder of KONKUSSION; a global concussion management program. He is the Editor-in-Chief of Current Research: Concussion, the first International peer reviewed journal with a focus on mTBI research. As Chair of The Konkussion Retreat, he has devoted himself to creating a platform for which all experts in the field of mTBI from across the globe can confer and discuss their work with the goal of advancing the field at an international level.

Anthony Kontos, Ph.D. - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Possessing professional and personal interest in sports, Dr. Kontos is the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center's Assistant Director of Research and Associate Professor in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery. He has support the Eastern Psychological Association as a Fellow, and is a member of the Association of Applied Sport Psychology and American College of Sports Medicine. His publications and presentations have surpassed the 150 mark and reports on assorted subjects, from concussive psychological issues of underrepresented groups to TBI neuromotor effects in youth. Dr. Kontos currently serves as program chair for Division 47 of the American Psychology Association.

Rosemarie Scolaro Moser, Ph.D., ABN, ABPP-RP - Lawrenceville, New Jersey

Through more than 25 years of researching and treating concussions, Dr. Moser is a neuropsychologist, rehabilitation specialist and served as a key investigator in a Department of Defense-funded treatment study for Severe Disorders of Consciousness and Coma. A member of numerous expert panels, including the panel for US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to create a pediatric MTBI national guideline, Dr. Moser influences national legislation through her advocacy efforts, heals professional and youth sport teams as the official concussion doctor, and brings awareness of TBIs by facilitating seminars such as the International Conference on Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury which addressed the US Congress. Dr Moser's widespread authoring contributions is not limited to research papers, book chapters, and articles in myriad diverse journals. She also serves as the Associate Editor of Frontiers in Neuroscience: Sports Neurology and is the author of Ahead of the Game: The Parents' Guide to Youth Sports Concussion. A popular guest speaker on television and radios, Dr. Moser is serving as Director of the Sports Concussion Center of New Jersey at the RSM Psychology Center, LLC.


Elizabeth Pieroth, Psy. D. - Glenview, Illinois

An expert in concussions and traumatic brain injuries, Dr. Pieroth is a clinical neuropsychologist for the Northshore University Health System and a member of Heads Up Football Advisory Committee. Her neurological consulting services are highly sought after, with patrons including the Chicago Bears, the Chicago Blackhawks, the Chicago White Sox, and the US Soccer teams. In addition to her role as a Diplomat with the American Board of Professional Psychology – Clinical Psychology, Dr. Pieroth currently evaluates diverse neurological and psychiatric disorders at her clinics in Illinois.

Alain Ptito, Ph.D. - Montréal, Québec

A NSERC (Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council) and FCAR (Fonds de recherche du Québec – Nature et technologies; Fonds de recherché du Québec – Société et culture)-funded scientist, Dr. Ptito is a neuropsychologist, specializing in research on mechanisms of cerebral reorganization and plasticity. Besides his integrative investigation focus on exploring new imaging methods for brain trauma examinations, Dr. Ptito's studies aims to help not only victims of motor vehicle accidents, but also soldiers injured in combat and athletes. Contributing to the scientific literature since 1988 on a range of topics, from cerebral hemispherectomy to post-TBI financial management, Dr. Ptito's findings have helped improve the lives of various patient populations. In addition to lecturing on neurology at McGill University, Dr. Ptito currently acts as the Director of the Psychology Department at McGill University Health Centre.

Philip Schatz, Ph.D. - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Along with his affinity for technology, Dr. Schatz is a neuropsychologist and webmaster at the Psychology Department at Saint Joseph's University. He has extensive experience in clinical, research, and education work, having held a vast range of positions, from psychology consultant of Professional Psychological Group and Neurobehavioral Specialist at the Moss Rehabilitation Hospital, to board member of the Philadelphia Neuropsychology Society and Director of the National Academy of Neuropsychology distanCE Program. Besides having been the principle investigator of the Disorders of Consciousness (DOC) Advanced Care Protocol (ACP) funded by the Department of Defense, Dr. Schatz's involvement in concussion research is associated with the International Brain Research Foundation, Sports Concussion Center of NJ, and Pennsylavnia Head Injury Program. Currently Chair of Information Technology at the National Academy of Neuropsychology, Dr. Schatz carries on his research on TBI outcomes, youth TBI, and computer-based neuropsychological assessment.


Gary W. Small, M.D - Los Angeles, California

Besides holding careers in writing and public speaking, Dr. Small is the director for Geriatric Psychiatry, Memory and Aging Research Center, and a professor in Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at UCLA. He also founded the UCLA Memory Clinic and directs the UCLA Center on Aging. Having authored more than 400 scientific publications, Dr. Small is an experienced writer, with one of his books, "The Memory Bible", being an international bestseller. Throughout his medical career, Dr. Small was awarded many honors and tributes, such as the Jack Weinberg Award from the American Psychiatric Association and the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry's Senior Investigator Award. In 2002, Dr. Small was named one of the world's top 50 innovators in science and technology by the Scientific American magazine. He continues to research on Alzheimer's and other neurological diseases with the support of the National Institute of Health.


Charles Tator, C.M., Ph. D., M.D. - Toronto, Ontario

A member of the Order of Canada since 2000 and inducted into the Terry Fox Hall of Fame in 2003, Dr. Tator is a professor of neurosurgery at University of Toronto, a board member of Parachute Canada, and the Project Director for the Canadian Sports Concussion Project at the Krembil Neuroscience Centre at Toronto Western Hospital. Heavily involved in improving safety laws related to accidental brain and spinal cord injuries, Dr. Tator founded ThinkFirst Canada; an organization that promotes injury prevention awareness through education especially for the youth. For his efforts in injury prevention, Dr. Tator was awarded the USA Hockey Excellence in Safety Award and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Spinal Injury Association. Furthermore, Dr. Tator has extensively published peer-reviewed academic articles on spinal cord injury and repair. A neurosurgeon at the Toronto Western Hospital, Dr. Tator continues to train research scientists in his laboratory.