The National Physicians Alliance Council of Consumers (COC) is founded to ensure that the NPA remains true to its mission of elevating the needs of patients and communities as the highest priority for our advocacy efforts. The COC fosters the development of partnerships between physicians and patients to improve health and health care. This body of patients and consumers participates in the development and review of NPA policies and strategies.
Rachel DeGolia, MPA
Rachel Rosen DeGolia is the Executive Director of the Universal Health Care Action Network (UHCAN), headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio. UHCAN supports and collaborates with a wide diversity of organizations and advocates organizing at the local, state and national levels around multiple approaches to advance comprehensive health reform. Rachel has worked for UHCAN since its founding in 1992, previously serving as Associate Director, Communications Director and Organizing and Operations Director.
Rachel has been fortunate to work in the nonprofit advocacy field throughout her career, previously in the civil liberties field. She was the Director of the Chicago Committee to Defend the Bill of Rights for 15 years, and served in various positions with the National Committee Against Repressive Legislation (formerly the National Committee to Abolish HUAC). Rachel received her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Chicago in 1975 and a Masters in Public Administration with a concentration in Non-Profit Management in 2003 from the Levin College of Urban Affairs at Cleveland State University.
Richard Seifman, JD, MBA
Richard Seifman has over 45 years high level experience in international development, mainly in health and nutrition with bilateral, multilateral and non-governmental organizations. First with USAID abroad as a senior foreign service officer and subsequently as a senior advisor at the World Bank where he focused mainly on Sub-Saharan Africa. With the World Bank he led major projects in health and HIV/AIDS, and more recently, he has been involved in its work on climate change and health, antimicrobial resistance, and pandemics, and is currently engaged in a 15 country program in West Africa to finance disease surveillance, build laboratory capacity, preparedness, and human resource capacity. He has been appointed a member of the Technical Review Panel of The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria.
He has held senior positions with non-governmental organizations, including as Executive Director of the Economic Policy Council of the United Nations Association of the United States, and as a Senior Advisor to IntraHealth International which deals with human resources for health. He has taught a graduate seminar in HIV/AIDS and Development at the George Washington Elliot School of International Affairs.
A graduate of the University of Michigan, he has a Juris Doctor and Masters of Business Administration from Columbia University. Married with two sons, he believes our domestic health situation is in critical need of objective, independent review and reform. He believes he can usefully bring his international experience to bear in contributing to NPA’s mission.
Kim Witczak became involved in pharmaceutical drug safety issues after the death of her husband, Tim “Woody” Witczak in 2003 as a result of an undisclosed drug side effect. She has taken her personal experience and launched a national drug safety campaign through www.woodymatters.com. Her work has been featured in major news media such as Fortune, Readers Digest, Consumer Reports, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and Star Tribune. Kim has testified before US Senate on PDUFA/FDA reform issues as well as numerous FDA Advisory Committees. In 2008, she was appointed to the FDA’s Psychopharmacologic Drug Advisory Committee as a Patient Representative. In 2013, Kim co-organized the Selling Sickness: People Before Profits international conference held in Washington, DC bringing academic scholars, healthcare reformers, consumer organizations/advocates and progressive health journalists to develop strategies and solutions challenging the “selling of sickness.” She is an active member of the Consumers Union Safe Patient Project as well as a part of the DC-based Patient, Consumer, and Public Health Coalition making sure the voice of patients and consumers is represented in healthcare/FDA related legislative issues.
Professionally, Kim is an advertising/marketing professional with 25 years of experience in a variety of industries (e.g. airlines, automotive, fashion, and retail). She is one of the founders of Free Arts Minnesota in 1996, a non-profit dedicated to bringing the healing powers of the arts to over 4,000 abused and neglected children in Minnesota. Kim earned her BA in Business and Economics at Lake Forest College in Lake Forest, Illinois.