The Lacuna Loft Board of Directors works tirelessly on behalf of young adult cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers. We are forever grateful for their commitment.
Mallory Casperson - President + CEO, Founder
Mallory has an MS and half a PhD in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Several months after serving as a primary caregiver for her mother, during the final months of her life, Mallory was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma at the age of 24. Several years after her diagnosis, Mallory realized that her new survivorship needs didn’t fit into the work-life balance mold enforced by her graduate school research schedule. After leaving graduate school, Mallory was challenged to ‘do anything she wanted’ for an entire year. That year, Lacuna Loft was launched. She now manages operations, programs, and development at Lacuna Loft where online support programs and resources are provided to young adult cancer survivors in the comfort of their own homes. Mallory is an avid lover of animals, running, swimming, hiking, being outside, reading, and TV or movie marathons.
Patricia McDonald - Treasurer
After first her young husband’s, and later her father’s difficult battles with cancer, Patti co-founded a cancer support center to encourage, educate, and empower patients and families experiencing cancer in their lives. She later went on to serve as Founding Executive Director for a second cancer wellness center in the Chicago area. Patti serves as a Lacuna Loft Board Member to do what she can to ensure young adults facing cancer have access to the innovative, age-appropriate, and impactful programs and resources they need to improve their quality of life and well-being – no matter how challenging the circumstances. With over 20 years of experience as a nonprofit leader and fundraising executive, Patti is currently working in advancement for higher education.
Shelly Whitsitt - Secretary
Shelly works as a director of research and strategy at a qualitative market research and creative agency, Fusion Hill. She started her career in marketing at a start-up in South America and her first experience with qualitative research was with women farmers in India. At Fusion Hill, she enjoys turning rich, qualitative research into key insights that help clients achieve their business goals. Shelly has a BA in Psychology and Spanish and an MBA with a concentration in Marketing from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Key experiences in her MBA program include a yearlong project on Product Innovation in Subsistence Marketplaces, and serving as CEO of a student-run 501(c)(3). Shelly enjoys spending time with family and friends, TV binging on Netflix, or getting cozy with a book. She loves traveling and exploring new cultures, trying new and different foods, and being active outdoors.
Marc Korobkin - Board Member
Marc joined the Lacuna Loft board in 2018 and is excited to be involved in this groundbreaking organization. Marc has been a tireless advocate for improving the health care system and increasing support for patients and caregivers. He has extensive volunteer and leadership experience in the nonprofit sector, including over six years at the Center for Patient Partnerships at UW-Madison, an interdisciplinary program that trains graduate and professional students in patient advocacy. He has also been a caregiver for family members with serious illnesses, including his brother Bryan, who passed away in 2016 from complications of a stem cell transplant. Marc received his JD from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 2009 and lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In his free time he enjoys hiking and nature photography.
Aerial Donovan - Board Member
Aerial is dedicated to helping the cancer community learn about resources, education about patient rights and encouraging engagement through her work at GRYT Health as Director of Programs. GRYT’s app is first and foremost peer support with educational and community programs, which Aerial coordinates. She has a sports medicine and healthcare background, through studying integrative physiology and medicine. Aerial is passionate about ensuring not only patients get the support system they need, but caregivers, advocates, and others affected by cancer as well. After caregiving for her dad, she is determined to continue that support on through the end of treatment. She has experience volunteering with several cancer organizations including Imerman’s Angels, Stupid Cancer, and Lacuna Loft.
Lauren Creel - Board Member
Lauren is a 6 year Hodgkin lymphoma survivor who was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 23. After treatment, Lauren was inspired to use her personal cancer experience to help other cancer patients, specifically young adults, which is why she is thrilled to be involved with Lacuna Loft. She is passionate about cancer survivorship, specifically dealing with issues of isolation, resilience, and fear of recurrence.
After graduating from George Fox University and working for a few years, Lauren returned to academia, earning a Master’s in Public Health and a Master’s in Social Work from San Diego State University. Lauren now works as a Program Administrator at City of Hope National Medical Center, building comprehensive programs for cancer survivors and academic programs for physicians. When she’s not a work, Lauren loves drinking coffee, cooking, and travelling with her brand new husband Dave.
Past Members of the Board of Directors:
Sarah Goodell - Board Member
Sarah is thrilled to have the opportunity to contribute to this amazing organization. She is a Senior Analyst in Digital Communications and Corporate Social Responsibility at Mead Johnson Nutrition where she works on a variety of projects, from managing social media campaigns to coordinating CSR efforts. Prior to her work here, she was a Program Manager at Cancer and Careers, where she ran a number of their programs as well as coordinated social media and PR initiatives. During her years working in the cancer community, she became very passionate about supporting survivors, particularly young adults, and helping them thrive after a diagnosis. Sarah is originally from Minneapolis but currently lives in Chicago, and is an avid rollerblader, yogi, and brunch enthusiast.