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Rudolph A. Rodriguez, MD, Chair

Rudolph A. Rodriguez, MD

Dr. Rodriguez, a board-certified internist and nephrologist, is the Director of the Hospital & Specialty Medicine Service Line at the VA Puget Sound Health Care System and a Professor and Vice Chair of the Department of Medicine at the University of Washington. As a clinician scholar, his academic career focused on nephrology fellowship education along with scholarly work on issues related to vulnerable populations.

Dr. Rodriguez serves as a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Nephrology Board. He is the Chair of the Veteran Affairs Nephrology Field Advisory Board. He served on the American Society of Nephrology Training Program Director’s Executive Committee.

Dr. Rodriguez attended Stanford University and earned his medical degree at the Charles Drew/UCLA Medical Education Program at the University of California, Los Angeles. He completed his internal medicine residency at California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco, and his nephrology fellowship training at the University of California, San Francisco.

As of July 2022, Dr. Rodriguez reported the following external relationships:

Dr. Rodriguez serves in significant roles with the following organization, receiving reimbursement or compensation as listed:

  • Veterans Affairs, serving as Chair of the Field Advisory Committee, without compensation.

Deborah B. Adey, MD

Deborah B. Adey, MDDr. Adey is a transplant nephrologist and the Medical Director of the Kidney Transplant program at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). She had the honor of participating in all aspects of transplant nephrology from donor evaluations, pre-transplant evaluations, in-hospital care, and post-transplant follow-up. She has been the site fellowship director for general nephrology at UCSF for a few years, then started the transplant nephrology fellowship program at UCSF which she ran for seven years. Dr. Adey initially became board certified in Internal Medicine and Nephrology in 1996, and was recertified in 2006 and 2016 in both Internal Medicine and Nephrology.

On a national level, she has been the chair of the Transplant Nephrology Accreditation Program for the American Society of Transplantation (AST) and subsequently the Chair of the board of managers for the Transplant Nephrology Fellowship Accreditation Program, an LLC subsidiary of the AST. She serves as a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Nephrology Board.

Dr. Adey received her medical degree from the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center. She completed her nephrology fellowships at the University of Vermont followed by another two years of nephrology at Mayo Clinic Rochester, where she completed her research in protein metabolism in chronic kidney disease and focused clinically on kidney transplantation. She did a post-doctoral year of transplant, as this was before the days of transplant nephrology fellowships.

As of May 2023, Dr. Adey reported the following external relationships:

Funding for clinical trial expenses and staff, paid to the University of California, San Francisco, from the following companies:

  • Hansa
  • Natera

Dr. Adey also provides talks at the American Society of Transplantation Meeting.

Linda Awdishu, PharmD

Linda Awdishu, PharmDDr. Awdishu is Professor and Chair of Clinical Pharmacy and Director of Interprofessional Education and Simulation at the University of California, San Diego Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

She developed and currently practices in the Joint Commission certified UCSD Kidney Disease Program, a multidisciplinary clinic involving a nephrologist, pharmacist, social worker, dietitian and nurse providing care for patients with CKD stage 2-5. She serves as a member of the Internal Medicine Nephrology Board; she teaches in the third -year pharmacy curriculum chairing the therapeutics overseeing simulations for second and third year pharmacy students.

Dr. Awdishu is the recipient of numerous teaching awards from pharmacy students and residents as well as the UCSD Academic Senate Distinguished Teaching Award. Her research program involves pharmacokinetics and pharmacogenomics of drugs in kidney disease. She co-directed The International Drug Induced Renal Injury Consortium (DIRECT) in collaboration with The International Serious Adverse Event Consortium. The DIRECT study is investigating the genetic basis of serious drug induced renal injury, through a collaborative network comprised of leading clinical research centers from around the world. She is a co-investigator in the UAB-UCSD O'Brien Center for Acute Kidney Injury Research studying new novel biomarkers of acute kidney injury.

Dr. Awdishu completed her Bachelor of Science degree in pharmacy from the University of Toronto and completed a masters of advanced studies in clinical research from the University of California, San Diego in 2007. She completed her doctor of pharmacy from the University of Colorado in 2008.

As of July 2022, Dr. Awdishu reported the following external relationships:

Funding for salary support, paid to the University of California, San Diego, from the following not-for-profit healthcare-related organization:

  • National Institutes of Health, for a University of Alabama, Birmingham-University of California, San Diego O'Brien Center Grant.

Dr. Awdishu also serves on Israel Council for Higher Education.

Paul T. Conway

Paul T. Conway
Mr. Conway is the Chair of Policy & Global Affairs, and past president, of the American Association of Kidney Patients (AAKP), the largest kidney patient organization in the USA. In 2022, he was named as the Chair of the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Renal Disease Council by Governor Glenn Youngkin. He is a founder and Co-Chair of the Annual Global Summit on Kidney Disease Innovations, a partnership of AAKP and the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences that engages kidney stakeholders in over one hundred countries. As an advocate, he has advanced the principles of patient consumer care choice, patient-centered medicine, ongoing patient participation in the workforce before federal and state governments and, globally, before the United Nations, the European Parliament and the World Health Organization. He is a champion for greater use of patient insight data and real-world evidence in medical research and innovations, including diagnostics, drugs and devices.

He has managed kidney disease for forty-six years, including three years on home peritoneal dialysis and, for the past twenty-six years, with a kidney transplant. His advocacy honors include the American Society of Nephrology President’s Medal for policy work before the Congress and the White House. In 2022, he received the President’s Lifetime Achievement Award for Volunteer Service to the kidney community from President Joseph R. Biden, Jr.

He currently serves as Chair of the Food and Drug Administration’s Patient Engagement Advisory Committee and has chaired multiple technical evaluation panels related to patient reported outcome measures and patient-driven quality measures for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and is involved in research initiatives with the U.S. Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs. He is a champion for greater use of patient insight data and real-world evidence in medical research and innovations, including diagnostics, drugs and devices.

He has served under four presidents, four Commonwealth of Virginia governors and in support of five presidential transitions. His federal awards include the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary's Silver Medal for exceptionally meritorious service to America. His previous federal posts include Chief of Staff, US Department of Labor; Chief of Staff, US Office of Personnel Management; as an agency Chief of Staff at the US Department of Homeland Security, Special Assistant, White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. In Virginia, he has served as Deputy Secretary of Health & Human Resources and on the Board of Health Professions.

As of March 2022, Mr. Conway reported the following external relationships:

Service on a research-related advisory board for the following companies, with honoraria:

  • Novartis

Work as an author or editor for the following company, with compensation as listed:

  • The Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, receiving compensation for role as Patient Voice Editor.

Mr. Conway serves in significant roles with the following organizations, receiving reimbursement or compensation as listed:

  • American Association of Kidney Patients, President and Member of Executive Committee, receiving reimbursement for travel expenses.
  • American Society for Nephrology, Member, Transplant Workgroup; Member, Kidney Week Steering Committee; Moderator, Diabetic Kidney Disease Collaborative; receiving reimbursement for travel expenses.
  • Patient Access to Pain Relief Coalition, Chair of the Steering Committee, without compensation.
  • Kidney Health Initiative, Member of Board of Directors, without compensation.
  • University of Washington, Center for Dialysis Innovation, Member of Patient Advisory Board, without compensation.
  • Food and Drug Administration, Chair of Patient Engagement Advisory Committee receiving honoraria.
  • Kidney Health Initiative, Co-Chair, Annual Summit, without compensation.
  • National Institutes of Health, National Institutes of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, External Expert Evaluator for Kidney Precision Medicine Project, Member, Contract Management Board, United States Renal Data System, receiving honoraria.
  • George Washington University, Co-Chair, Global Summit on Kidney Innovations, without compensation.
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Liaison, Health Infections Control Practices Advisory Committee, receiving reimbursement for travel expenses.
  • Center for Medicare and Medicaid Service, Co-Chair, Technical Evaluation Panel (TEP), Patient Reported Outcome Data for the Dialysis Five Star Rating System; receiving reimbursement for travel expenses; Member, Patient & Family Engagement Program (PEFP) Kidney Affinity Group, without compensation.
  • United States Department of Health and Human Services, Public-Private COVID-19 Workgroup, without compensation.
  • United States Department of Defense, Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP), receiving honoraria.
  • United States Precision Medicine Coalition, Member.
  • Transplant Roundtable, Member, without compensation.

Janice P. Lea, MD, MSc, FASN

Dr. Lea is Professor of Medicine at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia and is board-certified in Nephrology and Hypertension. Dr. Lea is the Clinical Director of Nephrology and of Telenephrology, as well as Chief Medical Director of Emory Dialysis. She has been designated as a Master Clinician at Emory Healthcare and serves as Chief of Staff at Emory University Hospital Midtown. Dr. Lea's research and clinical expertise are in hypertension, chronic kidney disease, kidney health disparities, home dialysis, and overall outcomes of end-stage renal disease patients. Dr. Lea currently is Principal Investigator (PI) for a PCORI grant entitled: "Enhancing Patient Engagement in CKD through Peer mentorship", and previously served as the Emory PI for the NIH- AASK Study (African-American Study of Hypertension and Kidney Disease). She is an active member of the American Society of Nephrology and an executive board member of the American Association of Kidney Patients. She recently received a Presidential Silver Medal Award for her kidney patient advocacy efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic and was appointed to the American Board of Internal Medicine Nephrology Board in 2022. Dr. Lea also has been named one of Atlanta's Top Doctors for the last 10 years

She earned her medical degree at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston and completed her residency in internal medicine and a nephrology fellowship at Emory University affiliated hospitals. She also received a master’s of science degree in clinical research from Emory's School of Public Health.

As of July 2022, Dr. Lea reported the following external relationships:

Dr. Lea serves in significant roles with the following organization, receiving reimbursement or compensation as listed:

  • The American Association of Kidney Patients, National Board of Directors, Member, without compensation.

Funding for salary support, paid to Emory University, from the following not-for-profit healthcare-related organizations:

  • The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute, regarding peer mentorship for patient engagement.

Dr. Lea also serves as faculty for the Home Dialysis University for fellows.

John C. Lieske, MD

John LieskeDr. Lieske is Professor of Medicine at the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, and the Director of the Renal Function Laboratory in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology. He is also currently Principal Investigator for the Mayo Clinic O’Brien Urology Research Center, Assistant Director for the Rare Kidney Stone Consortium (Director of the Dent Disease component), and Principal Investigator for the Mayo NIH Nephrology Training Grant. He has a longstanding interest in urinary proteomics and nephrolithiasis, including NIH-funded projects to investigate inhibitors of crystal aggregation, growth, and adhesion to tubular cells; epidemiology of nephrolithiasis; genetics of nephrolithiasis; and mechanisms of enteric hyperoxaluria.

As director of the Renal Function Lab, Dr. Lieske has also developed expertise regarding renal markers of renal disease including tandem-MS based assays for urinary biomarkers and validation of newer markers of injury and kidney function (e.g., cystatin C, NGAL). Dr. Lieske previously conducted clinical trials regarding the role of diet and probiotics in patients with and without enteric hyperoxaluria. He has also studied the epidemiology of enteric hyperoxaluria and kidney disease after bariatric surgery. In Project 2 of the Mayo Clinic O’Brien Urology Research Center he is keenly interested in the biology or stone pathogenesis, including the role of the urinary microbiome.

Dr. Lieske received his bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering from Northwestern University and his medical degree from the University of Chicago. He completed his residency and internship at Emory University and fellowships in clinical nephrology and research nephrology at the University of Chicago.

Funding for clinical trial expenses, staff, and salary support, paid to the Mayo Clinic, from the following companies:

  • Allena, study of an oxalate-degrading enzyme in hyperoxaluric kidney stone formers.
  • OxThera, for a trial of oxalobacter to treat primary hyperoxaluria.
  • Siemens, for a clinical trial.
  • Dicerna, for a clinical trial.

As of July 2022, Dr. Lieske reported the following external relationships:

Funding for clinical trial expenses, staff, and salary support, paid to the Mayo Clinic, from the following companies:

  • Alnylam, for a clinical trial on potential siRNA therapy for primary hyperoxaluria.
  • Arkray, for a urinalysis clinical trial.
  • Dicerna, for a clinical trial.
  • Novobiome, for a clinical trial.
  • Synlogic, for a clinical trial.

Service on data and safety monitoring boards for the following company, without compensation:

  • Alnylam, for a Phase I/II

Service on a research-related expert panel or advisory board for the following companies, with honoraria:

  • Alnylam
  • Biomarin
  • Cantera
  • Dicerna
  • Federation Bio
  • Intellia
  • Mirum
  • Novobiome
  • Ofran
  • Synlogic

Dr. Lieske serves in significant roles with the following organizations, receiving reimbursement or compensation as listed:

  • Oxalosis and Hyperoxaluria Foundation, member of Scientific Advisory Board, receiving reimbursement for travel expenses.
  • Dent Disease Foundation, Scientific Advisory Board, Member, without compensation.

Matthew A. Sparks, MD

Matthew Sparks

Dr. Sparks is an Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of the Nephrology Fellowship Program at Duke University, and a staff physician at the Durham VA Health Care System in Durham, North Carolina. He also serves as Lead of the Society for Early Education Scholars (SEEDS) program in the Duke University Department of Medicine. He is board certified in Nephrology.

Dr. Sparks’ research interest is in the pathogenesis of hypertension, chronic kidney disease and pulmonary hypertension. His research has been funded by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the American Heart Association. He is also interested in leveraging social media for medical education.

He is a founding faculty member and program director of the Nephrology Social Media Collective (NSMC) Internship and a member of the Board of Directors of the Nephrology Journal Club (NephJC), a nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing free online medical education in nephrology. Dr. Sparks is also the cocreator of NephMadness and a faculty lead of the Renal Fellow Network. He is a member of several national committees spanning the American Society of Nephrology, the National Kidney Foundation and the American Heart Association. He also serves as Education Director for KIDNEYcon, an annual hands-on conference in Little Rock, Arkansas, dedicated to advances in nephrology.

Dr. Sparks received his medical degree from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of Medicine, where he also completed his residency and served as chief resident. He completed his fellowship in nephrology at Duke University School of Medicine.

As of July 2022, Dr. Sparks reported the following external relationships:

Work as an author or editor for the following, company with compensation as listed:

  • Elsevier, receiving compensation as an editor for Nephrology Secrets.

Dr. Sparks serves in significant roles with the following organizations, receiving reimbursement or compensation as listed:

  • The American Heart Association, Kidney in Cardiovascular Disease Leadership Committee, Kidney in Cardiovascular Disease Membership and Communications Committee, Kidney in Cardiovascular Disease SKIL (Education) Committee, without compensation.
  • The American Journal of Kidney Diseases, Editorial Board Member, without compensation.
  • The American Society of Nephrology, Kidney 360 Editorial Board, without compensation.
  • The National Kidney Foundation, North Carolina Medical Advisory Board; Kidney Medicine Editorial Board, without compensation.
  • The Nephrology Journal Club, Board of Directors, without compensation.

Dr. Sparks also reported that he is the Associate Program Director of the Duke University Nephrology Fellowship Program.

Sana Waheed, MD

Sana Waheed, MD

Dr. Waheed is board certified in both Internal Medicine and Nephrology and is an Associate Professor at Emory University School of Medicine. Her clinical work is based out of Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta which caters to the underserved population in the area. Prior to that, she has practiced at Piedmont Kidney Institute in Atlanta. Dr. Waheed has served as the Medical Director of the Home Dialysis Program at Wisconsin Dialysis Institute. In addition, she has been involved in improving the clinical care delivered to patients by serving on the medical review committee for the end stage renal disease networks. She is actively involved in developing material and initiatives to decrease infection risks in dialysis units as the chair of the Quality, Assessment, Improvement and Education workgroup of the Nephrologists Transforming Dialysis. Safety, which is a collaborative effort between the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention and the American Society of Nephrology (ASN).

Dr. Waheed has also been actively involved in education, both locally and nationally. She was the Director of the Medical School Renal Pathophysiology course and Associate Fellowship Director at University of Wisconsin in Madison, Wisconsin. Through her involvement with ASN, she has been actively involved in shaping the future of nephrology workforce as a part of the ASN workforce and training committee. In addition, she developed questions for the nephrology in training exams and kidney self-assessment program.

Her research interests include kidney disease in HIV patients, peritoneal dialysis and issues involving nephrology education for trainees.

Dr. Waheed received her medical degree from the Aga Khan University in Pakistan and then completed her internal medicine residency at University of Cincinnati and fellowship at the Johns Hopkins Hospital.

As of July 2022, Dr. Waheed reported the following external relationships:

Dr. Waheed serves in significant roles with the following organization, receiving reimbursement or compensation as listed:

  • The American Society of Nephrology, Nephrologists Transforming Dialysis Safety Committee