Clubfoot Parent Advisory Board:
Originally from Southern California, Nicole always dreamed that her son would be able to run around at the beach or play in her parents' backyard. At Nicole’s 20-week ultrasound, her family discovered that their son would be born with clubfoot, and it shook their world to the core. Would he be able to walk? Would he be able to run? Through the support of a few clubfoot moms, Nicole was able to get her son quality care in Iowa City with Dr. Morcuende, and her son now walks everywhere (walks? More like SPRINTS!) Nicole hopes that through the Clubfoot C.A.R.E.S. organization, clubfoot parents will not have to feel the anxiety she felt, and that clubfoot patients of all ages will be supported and be part of a community that hopefully one day her son will also be part of.
Jennifer Baylis Aull
Jennifer is from Long Beach, New York. She works for the New York City Department of Education and is a LuLaRoe Fashion Consultant. Jennifer has two girls, ages 5 and 1, as well as her sweet Clubfoot boy, Seager, age 3. She found out that Seager would have unilateral right clubfoot when she was 11 weeks pregnant. Clubfoot C.A.R.E.S. is a labor of love that will help clubfoot families of the future to avoid the far travel and worry that Jennifer’s family has endured. She looks forward to educating the public about this common deformity that so many people have never heard of. Clubfoot has become Jennifer’s greatest passion that she never knew she had.
Allison is a Psychiatrist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City and the mother of two boys. She first became aware of clubfoot when the deformity was detected during a routine ultrasound appointment while pregnant with her youngest son. It is Allison’s hope that through Clubfoot C.A.R.E.S. we can advocate for non-surgical correction, ensure accountability on the part of physicians, provide opportunity to surgeons looking to learn from leaders in the field and get that much closer to exclusive non-surgical correction of clubfoot.
Jill is a wife and a mom of 3: twin boys (6) and her clubfoot girl cutie (3). She is also an elementary school teacher. Although clubfoot is treatable, the journey is not easy. Jill has been dedicated in helping clubfoot families receive impeccable care and feel supported along the way. Clubfoot C.A.R.E.S. will help pave the way to continue advocating for the Ponseti Method of clubfoot treatment. Our passion is our strength.
Born and raised in Southern California, Shell is mom to one son, Maxwell. When Shell found out Maxwell’s initial clubfoot treatment failed him at age 3, her passion shifted to spreading awareness about clubfoot and the Ponseti Method. Shell’s goal is to educate and inspire others through Clubfoot C.A.R.E.S. so that we can create a dialogue within our communities about one of the most common birth deformities in the United States; in doing so we can make improper clubfoot treatment a thing of the past and focus on celebrating our children for their abilities.
Erika is from Southern California and lives in the San Diego area. She is Chief Marketing Officer for Red Door Interactive, a digital marketing and web development agency, and has also served on several nonprofit boards including Junior Achievement San Diego. Erika is married with two children, including her son, Graeme, that was born with clubfoot in 2013. Erika was shocked at the lack of resources for parents in the clubfoot journey. Graeme relapsed when he was three years old and Erika’s family became further educated on proper methods of casting and Ponseti method of treatment for clubfoot. Erika is deeply committed to connecting people and resources. She believes if Clubfoot C.A.R.E.S. can help just one family, we have served our purpose.
Patient Advisory Board:
Tony is an endurance athlete living and training with bilateral clubfoot deformity in Southern California. He's completed numerous triathlons, half marathons, marathons, several Ironman 70.3's and in November 2012 he completed his biggest race: Ironman Arizona. "It is my goal and desire to network with other athletes born with cluboot, in hopes to inspire a generation of fellow clubfooters and others with disabilities, and to encourage them to engage in an active lifestyle. I seek to educate parents on the positive outcomes of children born with clubfoot using myself, and my son Eli, who was also born with clubfoot, as an example."
Zach was born and raised in Charlotte, North Carolina. He is a journalist, and has interests in media and public affairs, along with photography and videography. Zach is a writer by training and has written news pieces which gained widespread national recognition (Drudge Report, Huffington Post, etc.). Recently, Zach has finished a documentary, called The Footnote Film Project; a documentary about clubfoot. Zach was born with severe bilateral clubfoot. As an infant, he had corrective surgery to re-align the bones in his feet. Without this surgery, he may have never been able to walk. However, the surgery was not completely curative. He still lives with a substantial amount of daily pain due to a lack of mobility. Despite his struggles, Zach feels incredibly thankful that he was born into a family that could give him the support he needs to accomplish all that he has today.
Chloe was born with a severe foot deformity. She has had numerous operations and faced daunting challenges but has always met each hurdle with emotional strength and grace. In 2014, Chloe was a victim of assault and bullying at her high school. Six months later, she had the courage to begin telling her story. A turning point for Chloe came when she met U2 frontman, Bono who spoke powerful words about fighting injustice. This would mark a recovery story that builds in strength.
Medical Advisory Board:
Dr. Jose Morcuende
Jose A. Morcuende, MD, PhD, is a pediatric orthopedic surgeon that specializes in clubfoot, hip disorders, tumors, fractures, and a number of other pediatric orthopedics diagnoses. Dr. Morcuende received his medical education and training from the University Autonoma of Madrid with an additional residency in Orthopedic Surgery atUniversity of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. Dr. Morcuende is the President of the Ponseti International Association, dedicated to eliminate clubfoot disability worldwide by the development of sustainable national clubfoot programs.
Dr. Matthew Dobbs
A pediatric orthopedist specialist at St. Louis Children’s Hospital, Dr. Dobbs specializes in the treatment of pediatric spine and foot deformities. He is nationally recognized for his skill at treating all pediatric foot disorders, including the use of the Ponseti method of clubfoot correction. Dr. Dobbs earned his medical degree from the University of Iowa in Iowa City in 1995, followed by a residency in orthopedic surgery at the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics.
Dr. Nitza Rodriguez
Nitza N. Rodriguez, DPM, AACFAS is an adult and pediatric podiatrist (foot & ankle specialist) in Orange County, CA. She was born in Nicaragua and raised in San Francisco and is fluent in English and Spanish. She treats all foot and ankle disorders, specializing in lower extremity pediatric deformities. During her residency she traveled to Iowa to meet and train with her hero, the beloved Dr. Ponseti, with whom she honed her clubfoot casting technique. They developed a bond of friendship and a common goal to end congenital clubfoot disability worldwide.
Dr. Steven Frick
Dr. Frick is the chief of orthopedics at Stanford University in Palo Alto, CA. He is a pediatric orthopedic surgeon with clinical and research interests in clubfoot treatment, and a the father of a child with clubfoot.
Dr. Heather David, PT, EdD, MPT, NCS
Physical Therapist and Assistant Professor
Dr. David is a Physical Therapist in San Diego, and an Assistant Professor at the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences. She has two amazing daughters. Her youngest daughter, Skye, was born with bilateral clubfoot in 2017. She was fortunate to speak with experts in the field when she was still pregnant, so she knew the right questions to ask regarding her treatment and how to identify when something wasn’t right. She is passionate about educating families and the medical community on the Ponseti Method for treating clubfoot and to provide resources and support to families dealing with a new diagnosis or challenges along the journey. She hopes to expand the role of the physical therapist in clubfoot treatment following Ponseti Method correction to maximize movement abilities and positive outcomes for children with clubfoot.
Professional Advisory Board:
Author of The Parents’ Guide to Clubfoot
Betsy Miller is the co-author of the picture book Hip, Hop, Hooray for Brooklynn! and is the author of The Parents' Guide to Clubfoot and other children’s health books. She also wrote scripts for several educational videos about clubfoot for Clubfoot Solutions. Miller lives in Santa Rosa, California, and is one of the founders of Thinking Ink Press, a small press located in Silicon Valley.