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Our Chapter’s 2010 Event Season Despite the fact that we are in the middle of winter, the staff, committees and volunteers for our Walks and Bike ride are busy planning and getting ready for our 2010 events this spring. Before we know it, it will be time to walk and ride to help bring us closer to a world free of MS.

Satu r d a y – A p r i l 1 0 t h Fred e r i c k s b u r g Wa l k Our Walk Committee is making plans for a bigger and better event this year. We will once again gather at James Monroe High School. The walk will take us through historic Fredericksburg with 1 and 3 mile routes. Please join us for: • • • • • • •

The Pooch Parade A HUGE raffle A Kid’s Area Tents to sit in the shade Free lunch Team photos Much…much more!

Last year we had 39 teams and this year we want to exceed 40…so get your friends, family and co-workers together and register your team today.

Satu r d a y – M a y 1 s t Rich m o n d Wa l k Pres e n t e d b y L u m b e r L i q u i d a t ors Last year 2000 people gathered at the Markel Plaza in Innsbrook. This year we are planning for even more walkers! We will have our Pooch parade again this year, but it will be AFTER our Walk. Be there to • Walk at 9am • Gather at the stage for the Pooch Parade at 10am • Enjoy live music • Hang out in the Team Village • Raise $500 or more and enjoy the VIP Tent • Explore the MS Expo Tent • Play in the Kid’s Zone • Hear about our Top Fundraisers Last year we had 99 teams and this year we want to exceed 100! We know we can make it happen with your help and support.

Central Virginia Chapter 2112 W. Laburnum Ave. Suite 204 Richmond, VA 23227 (804) 353-5008

Board of Directors Mark B. Hubbard • Chairman Gregory Bishop • Chairman Elect David H. Carminucci • Chairman Emeritus James Sok • Treasurer Suzanne Gardner • Secretary Ronald Powell Jennifer Bittmann Ira Rosenfeld Frank Cowan Jeffrey Ruskan Sharon Hayes David Saunders Mark Householder Alexander Slaughter Tracey Jeter Gary Wallace Ashley Johnson Kyle Yocom Glenn Nunziata Gerald Zerkin Dr. John O’Bannon Staff Sherri Ellis

Chapter President - (804) 591-3030

Judy Griffin

Director of Development - (804) 591-3034

Donna Clements

Manager of Client Services - (804) 591-3039

Diana Oakley

From the Chapter President…

When I was in college, I walked into a very large room that housed our computers. I was told that someday these massive machines, which took up the majority of the room, would eventually sit in people’s offices. Thirty years later, it not only sits on my desk, but also in my hand. I crave connectivity! In a recent survey, it was reported that 93% of those living with MS used a computer daily. That is 13% higher than the general population of the USA. At the MS Society, it is our goal to keep you connected not only locally, but regionally, nationally, and globally. Facebook and Twitter have connected the world with 300 million users, Twitter has grown by 2500% in the past year, and 17 million people are texting.

Manager of Finance - (804) 591-3042

Matt Gregory

Systems Administrator - (804) 591-3041

Linda Pretlow

Executive Assistant - (804) 591-3037

Grace Phillips

Database Coordinator - (804) 591-3040

Melanie Hofe

Finance Assistant - (804) 591-3031

Ashley Chapman

VA Statewide Advocacy Manager - (804) 591-3048

April Bass

Manager of Relationships - (804) 591-3038

I want to personally invite you to connect with us and be a fan of our Facebook page ( MSCentralVA) to learn more about our programs, services and research. You can also follow our Walks and Bike ride on Twitter. We want to keep you connected and informed through posts and tweets. Also share your thoughts and photos with us. I look forward to being connected with you,

*Please Note these are direct phone numbers for staff. The Main Office phone number is still (804) 353-5008 or 1-800 FIGHT MS.

If You or Someone You Know Has MS . . . Studies show that early and ongoing treatment with an FDAApproved therapy can reduce future disease activity and improve quality of life for many people with Multiple Sclerosis. Talk to your Health care professional or contact the National MS Society at or try our Office Phone at (804)353-5008 to learn about ways to help manage Multiple Sclerosis and about current research that may one day reveal a cure.

Sherri Ellis


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Moving Towards A World Free of MS!

Our Events EVENTS

Satu r d a y / S u n d a y – M a y 2 2 n d / 23rd Bike M S : R i d e V i r g i n i a This is a very special ride this year, as it’s our 25th Anniversary Ride! We will start on the grounds of our MS Office complex in Richmond and make our way down to the Marriott in Williamsburg. We promise a very special weekend for everyone who joins us. • Register by March 15th and receive a pair of custom designed cycling socks • In March purchase an MS Training jersey • Earn a special Commemorative Thousandaire Jersey • Enjoy well stocked and well staffed Rest Stops along the route • Indulge in a finish line massage (free for Thousandaires) • Take advantage of exclusive VIP privileges if you raise $2000 or more • Renew your spirit with a delicious Saturday night buffet • Relax poolside and enjoy the sounds of Blues Flash • Celebrate with a picnic at the finish line in Richmond • Receive a bike medal made of recycled bike parts Take the personal challenge of riding 150 miles and raising money to help us find a cure for MS. Last year we had 48 teams and so far we have 35 registered. We want more than 50 for our Anniversary Ride. It’s time to make your plans, gather your teams, get registered and start training!

NEW THIS YEAR…Virtual Walkers and Riders If you want to be a part of our events but will be out of town the weekend of the walk or ride…you can still join us. If you don’t own a bike or don’t think you can go the distance…you can still join us. Become a Virtual Participant!You can enjoy the fun of being on a team, the satisfaction of fundraising, and the reward of earning incentives…without actually walking or riding. Learn more about this option on our websites.


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Winter Edition 2010


Relationship Matters A Program for Couples Living with MS There are 2 separate courses that run on 6 consecutive weeks. Jumpstart Your Relationship Starts Tuesday, February 23rd 7-8:30pm Runs for 6 consecutive Tuesdays

8 Hours to a Lifetime of Relationship Satisfaction Starts Thursday, February 25th 10-11:30pm Runs for 6 consecutive Thursdays

Registration DEADLINE for both courses is February 8th In order to take the course you must complete the registration requirements. • Couple enrollment • Individual assessments Email to receive the links for enrollment and the assessments. You can also call 800-344-4867 to obtain this information. Once you have completed the requirements, you will receive the course materials. When you complete all 6 sessions you will receive:

$50 gift check Copy of the book “Multiple Sclerosis: 300 Tips for Making Life Easier” Participant Handbook Follow up call to discuss the results of your assessments

Clinic in Midlothian, VA for MS Clients The Multiple Sclerosis Clinic at the Neuroscience & Gamma Knife Center on the Johnston-Willis Campus of CJW Medial Center was created to provide advanced personalized care. The team of clinicians, led by neurologists and rehabilitative specialists will help coordinate all aspects of your MS care including: •Diagnosis and Treatment •Evaluations for physical and occupational therapy •Disease progression management To learn more or to schedule an appointment, please call (804) 267-6767

Location: 1401 Johnston-Willis Drive Midlothian, VA 23235 Dates: 3rd Monday of the each Month Time: 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. ** Most insurance providers require a physician referral. You can bring this with you on the day of your appointment.

Central Virginia Office Number: (804) 353-5008

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Moving Towards A World Free of MS!


Teleconference This winter/spring we have a couple of series of free teleconferences that we hope you will enjoy. Thursdays – 7-8pm February 4th Alternative Therapies and MS

February 25th Managing Difficult Symptoms: Bowel & Bladder

Alternative therapies, defined as any medical treatment or intervention that has not been scientifically documented or identified for a specific condition, can aid the management of MS symptoms while promoting general health and wellness. A few examples of alternative therapies are acupuncture, yoga and massage. Registration deadline is February 2nd

This call will address the basics of bowel and bladder issues related to MS. It will also discuss how to recognize the onset of these symptoms, management strategies and how to talk with your doctor about difficult symptoms. Registration deadline is February 23rd

February 11th Managing Cognitive Issues Cognitive symptoms such as poor memory, decelerated processing of information and distractibility can be particularly challenging to manage. You will learn practical strategies on how to best manage such symptoms in your everyday life. Registration deadline is February 9th

February 18th Accessible Travel Whether you travel by land, air or sea, learn how to arrange services for your individual needs and manage differing altitudes and security, as well as general preparation for that long-awaited vacation. Registration deadline is February 16th

March 4th Staying Healthy Emotionally This discussion will focus on some common emotionally charged issues that people affected by MS face, such as ways to enhance emotional health and ways to cope with stress and additional life demands. Registration deadline is March 2nd

March 11th Current Research & MS Join us on this call during MS Awareness Week to learn about the latest MS research initiatives including oral therapies, progress toward neuroprotection and tissue repair, imaging technologies, biomarkers and genetics. Registration deadline is March 9th

Call 877-899-4666 to register or register online through our Chapter calendar at Looking Ahead… There will be a special Employment Teleconference Series beginning in March. They will be on Thursday evenings. Registration will be available beginning mid-February. March 18 Staying Positive While Job Hunting March 25 How to Search and Apply for Jobs Online April 1 Practical Applications of the ADA Amendments April 8 Resources for Training and Placing Older Workers April 15 Considerations for Career Changers April 22 Starting a Business: With the Right Supports, It’s Easier Than You Think JOIN THE MOVEMENT:

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Winter Edition 2010

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society recognizes that self help groups play a role in helping people affected by MS. They provide an avenue for connection, optimism, education, personal change, advocacy and friendship. Self-Help Groups are led by trained volunteers and the members determine the group’s purpose and meeting agendas. The groups view the Society as a source of information and support. Below is a listing of official SelfHelp Groups sponsored by the National MS Society. Please contact the group leader in advance if you would like to attend as groups are sometimes cancelled or meeting times changed. If you do not find a group that is convenient to you, and you think you might like to start one, contact the Cental Virginia chapter of the National MS Society at 804-591-3039 or 1-800-FIGHT MS, ext. 3039. Chesterfield The Positive Thinkers 3rd Thursday at 11:30am River City Diner (Shoppes at Bellgrade - Huguenot & Robious) Leaders: Claudia (804) 677-6445 Gail (804) 379-5493 Hanover County 4th Thursday from 7-8:30pm Commonwealth Wholesale, Inc. - 10085 Leadbetter Pl. Leaders: Dana (804) 550-2280 (work) (Care Partners Group meets 2-4 times/year in conjunction with this group) Petersburg Day Group Call for meeting times and locations Leader: Melanie (804) 526-9129 Petersburg Evening Group Call for meeting times Soutside Regional Hospital 4th Fl. Leader: Quennette (434)246-6007 Fredericksburg Fred-Spotsy MS Support Group 3rd Tuesday from 7-8:30pm Mary Washington Hospital - Classroom Leader: Candace (540) 623-4095 (Program locations and times vary, please call leader if planning to attend!)

Richmond 2nd Monday from 10:15-11:30am Tuckahoe YMCA 9211 Patterson Ave., Richmond Leader: Sherry (804) 562-9181 Richmond Evening Group 2nd Thursday from 7-8:30pm HealthSouth Rehab Hospital - Classroom 5700 Fitzhugh Ave., Richmond Open to Anyone with MS Leader: Lorenzo (804) 318-0360 Richmond (Virginia Home) For people with advanced stages of MS Every Monday at 11am 1101 Hampton St. For people with advanced stages of MS Leader: Judy (804) 359-4093 South Hill Empowerment Group 3rd Wednesday from 5:30-7:30pm Please call before attending as dates my change! Community Memorial Health Center 125 Buena Vista Circle Leader: Starr (434) 378-3021 Surry County 2nd Thursday at 7pm Hope Christian Alternative 325 Banks St., Surry, VA 23883 Leader: Stephanie (757) 267-2329

Tappahannock Neuromuscular Support 2nd Monday from 10-12pm Essex Library, 117 Church Ln. Leader: Pat (804) 443-9657

Central Virginia Office Number: (804) 353-5008 | 6


Self-Help Groups

Winter Edition 2010

Lobby Day On Monday, January 25, 2010, over 50 MS Activists from across the state gathered in Richmond to learn about issues that affect the MS community and to meet with their legislators. In just a few hours, the activists met with 75 Virginia Senators and Delegates! They discussed increasing access to affordable and accessible housing, increasing mobility for people with disabilities by increasing access to transportation, working to make disease-modifying therapies more affordable, and the need to protect people with disabilities and low-income families as the state budget is drastically reduced. The volunteers also lobbied legislators for their support of several bills of interest such as House Bill 514 which would provide for the Secretary of Health and Human Resources to coordinate the development of a blueprint for livable communities and long-term services and supports for older Virginians and people with disabilities; and Senate Bill 144 which would allow people with disabilities to submit electronic absentee ballots from their homes. In conjunction with the legislative day in Richmond a virtual advocacy day took place across the state. To bolster The National MS Society’s advocacy efforts - Virginians emailed and called their legislators, updated their Facebook statuses and followed live alerts on Twitter. For more information on how you can join our Action Alert Network and be more involved in state advocacy, contact

Ashley Chapman

Central Virginia Office Number: (804) 353-5008 | 8


Virginia Advocacy - The 2010 Legislative Day

Moving Towards A World Free of MS!


Leadership Class is a unique campaign that raises money for the MS Society serving their community. Nominees receive the Leadership Award, networking opportunities, as well as recognition in the Freelance Star. Each honoree is challenged to raise a minimum of $1500 for the National MS Society of Central VA. The awards ceremony will be held at the Jepson Alumni Executive Center.

Advisory Council: Rob Billingsley Dana Herlong Dana Houck

Leadership Class Honorees: Jim Elliott Mike Fidgeon Ben Keddie Megan Mason

Berkley Mitchell Susan Mullane Neda McGuire Deidre White

MS Lab Tours Virginia Commonwealth University March 23rd or March 31st 10:30am – 12:30pm The National MS Society has awarded a three year grant of $496,000 to Babette Fuss, and her team of MS researchers at VCU to continue their study in myelin repair. These Lab Tours are hosted by our Golden Circle Committee as a fundraiser. Learn more and to make a reservation contact April Bass 804-591-3038 (Space limited to first 10 people for each tour)


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We are thrilled to announce a new program to the state of Virginia, the Greater Fredericksburg Region MS Leadership Class of 2010. The program recognizes professionals in Fredericksburg, Spotsylvania and Stafford County for their commitment and outstanding contributions to both their profession and to their community. Lead by Co-Chairs Joe Wilson and Senator Edd Houck, the six week program kicked-off on January 5th and will conclude March 18.

2112 W. Laburnum Ave. Richmond, VA 23227

Suite 204

Miles of Scarves‌Update This group of 8 girls has raised $1700 and is the official sponsor for one of our Bike route Rest Stops. They are still taking donations as they would like to sponsor a Rest Stop next year and figured they’d start their fundraising now. If you are interested in contributing to their project, contact Judy Griffin at

MS Connections - Winter 2010  
MS Connections - Winter 2010  

Central Virginia Chapter of the National MS Society newsletter