The Anatomical Pathology Patient Interest Association (APPIA) is a non-profit, membership organization that exists to promote educational and professional interests and develop best practices while providing a vehicle for advocacy and public education efforts for those working in the field of anatomical pathology which benefits the public by increasing patient safety, quality and standards of care, accessibility of care and social responsibility in of anatomical pathology.

APPIA Mission Statement

The Anatomic Pathology Patient Interest Association (APPIA) is a not for profit organization focused on advancing patient safety, quality, standards, and accessibility of care in anatomic pathology.

APPIA History

The Anatomical Pathology Patient Interest Association was founded and incorporated in 2016, to promote educational and professional interests and patient safety in Anatomical Pathology,  We are currently striving to achieve these goals today.

Board of Directors

Eric Walk Chairman of the Board (Roche Tissue Diagnostics) Eric Walk, MD, FCAP is Chief Medical Officer and SVP of Medical & Scientific Affairs at Ventana Medical Systems Inc./Roche Tissue Diagnostics.  Dr. Walk has over 15 years’ experience in medical & scientific affairs, in vitro diagnostics development, oncology drug development, translational medicine, and anatomic pathology.  He is a board-certified anatomic and clinical pathologist.

Beth Sheppard President (Roche Tissue Diagnostics) Ms. Sheppard has worked in both private and academic management of Anatomic Pathology laboratories for the past 30 years.  Her passion to influence the profession includes committee involvement at College of American Pathologist (CAP), ASCP, ISO,CLSI and is past President of the National Society of Histotechnology (NSH). Beth is currently Senior Director, Market Access at Ventana Medical Systems/Roche.

Debra Hanks, MD Secretary (Agilent Technologies) Debra Hanks, MD, is the Chief Pathologist for the Companion Diagnostics Division of Agilent Technologies, Inc. She leads a group of pathologists developing novel biomarker assays to predict patient response to new pharmaceutical drugs. Her background includes leadership positions in the in-vitro diagnostic industry, clinical and anatomic pathology community practice, and CLIA/CAP Clinical Laboratory Directorship. She has also served as a Director on the boards of non-profit and for-profit healthcare, community and finance organizations. Her credentials include an undergraduate degree from Stanford University, medical and pathology training at University of California, San Francisco, and board certification in Anatomic, Clinical, and Hematopathology.

Keith Wharton Treasurer (Leica Biosystems).  Keith Wharton MD Ph.D. FCAP is Senior Medical Director at Leica Biosystems since 2017.  He has 30+ years of experience in academic and biopharma settings, including Novartis and Biogen.  Following board certification in anatomic pathology and fellowship training in autopsy pathology and developmental biology at Stanford University, he ran an NIH funded research laboratory at UT Southwestern Medical Center and held several leadership positions including Pathology course director, Director of the Laboratory of Molecular Pathology, and Associate Dean.

George R. Kennedy Benefactor Director (Sakura Finetek USA, Inc.) Mr. Kennedy is the Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Sakura Finetek USA, Inc.  He possesses over 40 years of experience in laboratory diagnostics with a focus on commercialization of cancer diagnostics including executive leadership positions as Leica Biosystems, Vysis Incorporated (now Abbott Diagnostics) and Dianon Systems (now LabCorp).  Mr. Kennedy started his career as a Medical Technologist and transitioned into industry with positions of increasing responsibility in sales, sales management, marketing management and executive positions.

Veronique Berger  Benefactor Director (Leica Bio Systems) Véronique Berger is the Vice President of Global Marketing for Leica Biosystems. She joined Leica in January 2017 and is responsible for driving growth by building marketing excellence in Digital, Product Management and Commercial marketing.  In line with the company’s Vision 24, she is leading strategic initiatives to build strong customer intimacy and advance Leica’s ability to win in the highly competitive environment of Diagnostics.

Kirsten Sondersted-Olsen Benefactor Director (Agilent Technologies) Kirsten Sondersted-Olsen is Head of Global Pathology Marketing for Agilent Technologies and joined Agilent Technologies in January 2013. She is responsible for Product Management, Marketing Management, MarComs and Sales Analytics of all Dako branded products. She is a part of the management team in the Pathology division of Agilent Technologies, setting the strategic direction on how to fight cancer, based on patient and customer needs.  She has worked 25+ years within the Medical Device and CE-IVD industry