Donna Jean Matlach President
I reside in Fountain Hills Arizona. A former resident of Buffalo NY, I relocated three years ago to Arizona due to the environmental and physical conditions that affected my life because of my illness. I am married and have 4 children and 10 grandchildren. I have been in 12 hospitals and have been seen by 8 physicians over the past five years. I travelled the country seeking answers and to find a physician knowledgeable in treatment of my disease. I have been under the care of Dr. Sally Wenzel since 2011 at the University of Pittsburgh. My disease was so debilitating that I couldn’t even tie my shoes without having an asthma attack. I am now on an experimental medication that somewhat controls my disease, I want to help the public and medical community realize the enormous impact of Severe Asthma and its complications. Co-founding the Severe Asthma Foundation has been a dream of mine for years. I am proud to be receiving my Masters of ministry in October, something I never thought I would be able to do with the limitations of my illness.
Brenda Young Vice President
It has been such a privilege starting the foundation with the rest of the members of the board. I have suffered from Severe Asthma for years with many hospitalizations and ICU stays. This is a life threatening disease and not to be treated lightly. I am on many strong medications to help me just live day to day life. Advocacy is very important to me for myself and to help others. I am married and have 2 grown daughters.
Michelle Langille Secretary
My name is Michelle Langille and I have been asthmatic for over 20 years, severe for the past 5 1/2 years. I have been hospitalized due to this disease over 40 times, many times in ICU. I am prednisone dependent and have too many side effects from this medication. I have two daughters and a village who help me cope with this debilitating disease. I am an advocate not only for myself, but for so many others who deal with severe asthma which is very different from regular asthma. It is life threatening and I have been in that situation too many times.
Patricia Sheehy Board Member
Patricia is a retired registered nurse. She has had varied professional experiences including primary care, family medicine, pediatrics, home care and hospice care.
Rebecca Thomson Board Member
Rebecca accepted a position on the board for the Severe Asthma Foundation in the spring of 2015. I consider it an honor to have been chosen to sit on the Severe Asthma Foundation. Like many of the other board members Rebecca suffers from severe asthma. It is her expectation as a member of the board to create awareness of severe asthma in communities, provide advocacy to those in need and strive to assist those working towards a cure. Her background includes over 20 years of management experience; eight years were spent in financial management. In addition, Rebecca has many years of training and development, and client relations experience. Rebecca earned her BA in Communications from the University of Pittsburgh and an MBA from Chatham University. Previous board experience derives from the Alto Sutton Sanitary board in Mill Valley, CA where Rebecca served as a board member and secretary.
Sheila Brillhart Board Member
Hello, I’m Sheila Brillhart! I am an award-winning chef, caterer and author; I have been a professional chef for over 25 years I’m based out of beautiful Denver Colorado. I am a life-long severe asthmatic, it has been a struggle for me to breathe every minute of every day for my entire life. The simple joy of taking breathing has eluded me. Breathing is so precious and most people I know take it for granted. In relation to my culinary interest, I have developed a strong interest in a breathing-food connection. I am a severe asthmatic. I have suffered for most of my life from extremely severe attacks that have put me in the ICU at lest 5 or 6 times a year and have disrupted my life on way too many occasions to count.