Nancy Nelson

Lives in Nevada

Nancy’s first passion is being a mother to her two daughters, four grandchildren, and many “bonus” kids and grandkids. Her second passion is helping others in the dementia community.

When Nancy was diagnosed with early-stage Alzheimer’s in the fall of 2013, she realized that she would be following in her father’s footsteps, who also had dementia. In 2017, Nancy was re-diagnosed with MCI. Soon after her diagnosis, Nancy began volunteering for the Alzheimer’s Association and was a member of its 2014/2015 national Early Stage Advisory Group and still stays involved on current projects. She was a member of the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health’s Voices for Patient Advocacy Council for two years, has participated in their educational presentations, and is a participant in the COBRE five-year brain study. She’s always pleased to say, “YES, HOW MAY I  HELP?” In 2018 Nancy was named Nevada Senior Citizen of the Year for her volunteer work.

Nancy has written and published three books titled, “Blue,” “River,” and “Apple”. Recently she and Kat Hartley co-founded a social enterprise called “dangle & dot to share their combined wisdom, knowledge and insight to empower individuals and care partner teams learn to embrace and skillfully navigate the challenges of dementia.

Rev. Dr. Cynthia Huling Hummel BS. MDiv, DMin

Lives in New York

Cynthia was diagnosed with amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment due to Alzheimer’s in 2011 at age 57. She left her full-time ministry because of her cognitive difficulties, and now works with faith communities and other community groups to help them explore ways to support those living with dementia and care partners. Cynthia is passionate about dementia research and has participated in the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) study for 12 plus years. In 2017, Cynthia was appointed to serve a two-year term as a non-federal advisor on the National Alzheimer’s Advisory Council. She has presented at three NIH research summits and  served on two different advisory panels for the National Academies of Sciences. Cynthia received the NYS Governor’s Recognition in 2020 for her dementia advocacy. In January 2021, she began a 4-year term on the National Advisory Council on Aging. Cynthia is a lifelong learner and enjoys auditing classes at Elmira College. She has been singing in a band for more than 20 years and was inducted into the NY State Country Music Hall of Honor in 2016. Cynthia is an author and an artist. She loves swimming, kayaking, travel, and most of all, being a grandma! In August 2021, she celebrated her 25th anniversary as an ordained Presbyterian pastor.

Barney Nelson

Lives in Oregon

Barney lives in Portland, OR with his wife, Vicki. Together they have five adult children. After spending two decades working for a global technology company, Barney became an entrepreneur and regional developer of a national company that opened 29 massage franchises in Washington state.

In 2018 Barney noticed difficulty multitasking and keeping up with the pace of his business. After visiting numerous specialists, he was diagnosed with Lewy body dementia. Shortly after being diagnosed, Barney sold his company and currently assists his wife with her business. Barney credits his wife, Vicki, with her steady presence and support as vital to helping him cope and manage living with dementia.

Mark Timmons

Lives in Massachusetts

Mark was 48 when he retired in 2016 after being diagnosed with young onset Alzheimer’s Disease. A tax accountant for over twenty years, his work focused primarily on trusts, estates, and non-profit entities.

In the early 1990s, he led a local chapter of the U.S. Jaycees, and was twice elected President. Today, Mark uses the skills he honed in the Jaycees to work with the Dementia Action Alliance and help eliminate the stigmas associated with a dementia related diagnosis. His own diagnosis has been changed to mixed dementia. He is an avid landscape and astrophotographer, postal history and stamp collector, genealogist, and gardener.

Steven Schneider

Lives in New York

Steve retired as an account executive from a medical insurance brokerage in 2015. He lives in Brooklyn, NY with his wife, Cookie. They have been together over 50 years, having met in junior high school. They have two grown sons and five grandchildren.

In 2018, Steve had open heart surgery. During recovering from the surgery, he felt his brain was “clogged”. The doctor said this was very common when one has open heart surgery and that it could take six months to a year to “unclog”. His brain didn’t “unclog”, so he saw a neurologist. After much testing, the neurologist advised that Steve has Alzheimer’s. Subsequently, a different neurologist reviewed all his tests and diagnosed young-onset MCI rather than Alzheimer’s.

Prior to his heart surgery, Steve liked to paint modern art on canvas. Currently, he enjoys playing mind games on his iPad. He came across DAA online and found the people there very welcoming, caring and understanding and wanted to get more involved. “They are the best medicine for me!”

Chuck McClatchey

Lives in Nevada

Chuck McClatchey retired at the age of 61 after being diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s. He had served 21 years in the US Air Force as a C141 Flight Engineer and retired as a Master Sargent. Chuck then worked for the state of Arizona for 21 years retiring as Electrical Operations Superintendent. After deciding to become a fierce dementia advocate he started talking to groups about living life after this diagnosis. He was selected to the 2016 Alzheimer’s Association National Early Stage Advisory Group.

Chuck now lives in Las Vegas, Nevada with his care partner Bobbie, where he is still talking to groups and being involved in drug trials, while saving time for golf and travel.