AЯRE Board of Directors

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Dr. Bianca Russell

Dr. Bianca Russell received her bachelors degree from Connecticut College in New London, Connecticut in 2008 and her medical degree from the University of California, Irvine in 2013.  She completed her residency in Pediatrics and Human Genetics at the Cincinnati Children's Hospital in Cincinnati, Ohio and will be a Genetics attending at UCLA beginning in June of 2018.  She has focused her career and research on clinical genetics with a particular interest in the management of genetic conditions including Bohring-Opitz Syndrome.


Dr. Wen-Hann Tan

Dr. Wen-Hann Tan a clinical geneticist at Boston Children's Hospital with an interest in diagnosis and management of rare genetic syndromes, including pediatric cancer predisposition syndromes, vascular malformations, and other unusual clinical findings.  He has also been actively involved in a longitudinal natural history study and various clinical trials in Angelman syndrome, which is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder.


Melissa Farmer Richards

Melissa Farmer Richards is the mother of Jaden, age 14, who was diagnosed with Bohring-Opitz Syndrome in 2012. She and her husband, Andy, are strong advocates for genetic research.

In July 2017, Melissa joined Sweet Briar College in Virginia as vice president for communications and enrollment management. She is responsible for presidential communications and all aspects of public relations, brand marketing, content strategy, admissions recruitment, and financial aid.  Melissa has 25 years of global experience in communications, public relations, integrated marketing strategy, new media, sales, special events, and strategic alliances. 

Melissa earned a Master of Public Administration at Virginia Tech and a Bachelor of Arts at the University of Virginia. She also completed graduate-level coursework at Syracuse University and creative writing courses at Johns Hopkins University and UCLA. She has held leadership positions in several community and professional organizations, including the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) District III Programming Committee and College Communicators Association of Virginia and D.C.  She is one of the founding board members of the Blacksburg Children’s Museum (VA). She is a co-founder of TEDxVirginiaTech and TEDxStLawrenceU. She served on the Board of Directors for TAUNY, a non-profit supporting regional arts and culture in the North Country. She currently sits on the board of directors for the Girl Scouts Virginia Skyline Council, was a troop leader from 2009 to 2011, and founded Troop #397.


Jeanette Troiola

Jeanette Troiola has been with AXA US since November 2014 and currently hold the position of Director, Human Resource Business Partner supporting the Individual Retirement and Group Retirement in the training, communication and delivery of HR practices, programs and policies, talent assessment, performance and compensation management, diversity and inclusion, human capital metrics and coaching.  She has 10 years of experience as a Human Resources professional and holds a Professional Human Resource (PHR) certification from HRCI.

Jeanette has a B.S. in Business Management & minor in International Business from Johnson & Wales University.  She is a 2020 graduate candidate in the Executive MBA program at the New York University Stern School of Business