Rhonda Resnick has set the gold standard as a Celiac Disease Foundation (CDF) Board member. Thanks to her wisdom, dedication, grace, and truly boundless generosity, CDF has experienced unprecedented growth during her 8-year tenure – expanding from a grassroots patient support organization to an international patient advocacy organization. Her contributions have played a pivotal role in our ability to pursue our shared goal of accelerating research, treatment, and a cure for celiac disease. As she departs our Board, it is difficult to articulate the depth of gratitude we feel for her and her stellar commitment to our collective cause.
The Resnick family’s tireless efforts have helped to shape what is now a broad understanding within the healthcare provider community of the link between celiac disease and mental health. Thanks to their steadfast advocacy, there are now programs in place to support the range of mental health challenges that arise in celiac disease patients. Rhonda’s drive to serve this community grew out of her experience helping her daughter, a celiac disease patient, as she navigated the many difficult aspects of this life-altering diagnosis. Today, patients and their families now have access to invaluable resources that did not exist before the Resnick family’s tenacious efforts.
Specifically, we celebrate both their vision and strategic financial investments that spurred the creation by Children’s National Hospital Medical System of a mental health training program – accredited by the American Psychological Association – to help healthcare providers across the country understand how to diagnose and treat behavioral issues and eating disorders, as well as depression and anxiety, in children and young adults with celiac disease. You may read more about this program here. The inspired advocacy of the Resnick family on issues of mental health has left an indelible mark on this aspect of care now available to the patient community.
Rhonda also lent her energy and creativity as the Chair of our 25th Anniversary GALA, which was an unparalleled success. With her steady, skillful guidance, this event helped raise awareness of CDF’s mission and secured funding essential to supporting the breadth of programming for the public, patients, healthcare professionals, and the food industry that distinguishes CDF as the nation’s leading voice for celiac disease and other gluten-related disorders.
In addition to the exceptional level of commitment to the Foundation, the Resnick family has also rallied their community to financially support our mission. Their tremendous efforts have had a profound impact on our ability to achieve Foundation goals, and we are forever grateful.
Three words characterize Rhonda’s service as a CDF Board member: “I’ll do it.” Whenever the Foundation has needed something – anything – she has worked to make it happen. From rolling up her sleeves to stuff envelopes or making ‘thank you’ phone calls, to hosting events at her home or travelling to Washington, DC to meet with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration or the team at Children’s National Hospital, her work in support of our shared mission is unparalleled.
Rhonda and the Resnick family have truly created a singular, lasting legacy – a legacy that has and will continue to benefit countless celiac disease patients and their caregivers.
On behalf of our very grateful Foundation and the celiac disease patient community, we thank Rhonda for her dedicated service and wish her the very best in her future endeavors!