Neil Johnson is a founder and Executive Director of the Global Heart Hub, the first international alliance of heart patient organisations, providing a platform to unite the voice of those living with or affected by cardiovascular disease. Neil is Chief Executive of Croí, the Irish Heart and Stroke Charity and the National Institute for Prevention and Cardiovascular Health in Ireland. He holds a Master’s Degree in Psychology and is an Honorary Clinical Fellow of the School of Medicine, National University of Ireland, Galway.
Jacqui Aupiais is the Executive Assistant to Executive Director.
Originally from South Africa, Jacqui has been living in Ireland since 1998. Having worked in industry and hospitality, she has a wealth of experience in administration, project management and meeting & events. In 2009, Jacqui completed a Master’s Degree (Gender, Globalisation & Rights) in the National University of Ireland, Galway with the aim of moving to the not-for-profit sector where she has worked since then. She has been involved with the Global Heart Hub since its inception in 2019.
Aistė Štaraitė is Global Heart Hub Heart Failure Development Executive and Chair of Heart Failure Patient Council, responsible for uniting, strengthening and developing PO and patient advocates to be a valuable independent stakeholder, which represents the voice of the patients living with Heart Failure. Aistė has a background in business and marketing management, but she became a powerful voice for patients when she was diagnosed with Heart Failure herself. In Aiste’s HF journey, she experienced living with LVAD and receiving a heart transplant. She is Lithuanian and mainly resides there but is constantly travelling.
Jackie Briggs is a Development Executive at Global Heart Hub, responsible for supporting and developing the Cardiomyopathy Patient Council within the Global Heart Hub. Over the last 25 years Jackie has held a variety of commercial roles in the pharmaceutical industry, at a national (UK, Belgium) as well as global level, and has also consulted for many of the Big Pharma companies. Her experience spans many disease areas ranging from respiratory to cardiovascular and oncology as well as rare diseases. She is delighted to be back working with patients and patient associations again, this time from the other side of the fence! Jackie is a UK citizen, based near Manchester.
Olive Fenton is a Global Heart Hub Development Executive, leading the formation and implementation of the Global Heart Hub Academy – our strategic approach to community capability-building, which includes the Unite Annual Summit, Inspire Speaker Series, and Advocate Targeted Advocacy programmes. She also leads Global Heart Hub Cardio-Diabetes initiatives.
After an extensive career as a leader in the BioPharmaceutical industry and as a business consultant, Olive is delighted to now focus her skills, experience and professional interest in CVD, on supporting advocacy for and by those living with heart disease. She is based near Geneva in Switzerland.
Teresa Glynn is Global Heart Hub Development Executive and leads the Heart Valve Disease Council engaging with patient affiliates globally to unite and strengthen the voice of those living with heart valve disease. In addition, she also drives strategy development for the Global Heart Hub as the organisation continues to grow and collaborates globally in addressing the challenges of cardiovascular disease.
Teresa’s background is primarily in the medical technology industry and throughout her 20 year career, she held numerous roles building extensive experience in communications, customer engagement and philanthropy. More recently she has followed a path aligned with her special interest in patient advocacy. She holds an MSc in Leadership and lives in Galway on the west coast of Ireland.
Karen Padilla is Global Heart Hub Project Lead, planning and supporting the execution of different projects across all councils and the Global Heart Hub Academy. Originally from Guatemala, Central America, Karen came to Dublin to pursue a Masters in International Business with a focus on Global Brand Management at Griffith College. She also holds a Masters in Marketing Management and Direction from URL Guatemala. Her background is mainly in marketing in the pharmaceutical industry, and she is now delighted to put her knowledge and experience at the service of those living with or affected by cardiovascular disease.
Deborah Miranda is Global Heart Hub Senior Communications Specialist and is responsible for leading internal and external communications. Projects include public awareness campaigns, publications, website and digital development, social media outreach and media relations.
She has a background in marketing, film, and content creation; and has worked for a number of international organisations in the public and private sector.
Originally from Mexico City, Deborah completed a BA in Communication and Mass Media in Mexico, and earned a Master’s Degree in Digital Media from the National University of Ireland, Galway.
Joanna is Global Heart Hub’s design-focused communications specialist. She joined our team earlier this year to support various awareness campaigns and projects, bringing her expertise in graphic design, web design and design for mobile apps.
Having experienced the cardiovascular disease in her own family, she recognises the significance of Global Heart Hub’s efforts to promote better cardiovascular health. Joanna studied web and graphic design at Dublin Institute of Design and TU Dublin. She holds a Master’s Degree in language education, a B.A. in international relations and recently completed a three-phased business development programme ‘New Frontiers’ at TUS Midwest.
Joanna Ten-Kate is Global Heart Hub’s Patient Community Engagement & Development Lead, where she focuses on developing and delivering resources, support, and engagement opportunities for affiliates, advocates, and partners. While currently based in Galway, Ireland, Joanna is originally from the U.S. She has a background in policy research and development, having worked for federal and state agencies in the U.S., and in organising for non-profit advocacy. She holds an MSc in Public Policy and Administration from the London School of Economics.
David Kelly is Global Heart Hub Heart Special Project Manager responsible for a number of specific and standalone projects which represent the voice of patients living with a range Cardio-vascular diseases. David has a backround in general management having studied with Technological University of Dublin, Cornell University in New York & the Club Managers Assoc. of Europe. David underwent a double heart valve transplant in 2021 – his second open heart surgery. It was during this time he became passionate about advocating for the heart patients voice. David joined the team at Global Heart Hub in November 2022 and is based in Galway, Ireland.
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