Jeffrey Modell Foundation Appoints Executive Director

Mar 07, 2011, 10:52 ET from Jeffrey Modell Foundation

NEW YORK, March 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Jeffrey Modell Foundation, a global, non-profit organization dedicated to Primary Immunodeficiencies (PI), announced today that Vanessa Tenembaum has been appointed as Executive Director.  The new position responds to the dramatic expansion of the Jeffrey Modell Centers Network, now comprised of 460 expert physicians, at 190 Centers of Excellence, in 58 countries, spanning 6 continents.

Vicki and Fred Modell established the Foundation 25 years ago in memory of their son Jeffrey, who died of complications from a Primary Immunodeficiency disease.  PI is a defect in the immune system that is carried through the genes and is a condition characterized by recurring, persistent, and chronic infections.  The Foundation is dedicated to research, physician education, patient support, public awareness and advocacy.

Vanessa Tenembaum returns to the Foundation where she began 11 years ago.  During the past five years, she worked with Russell Simmons as Director of Marketing for his jewelry brands.  "I am excited to return to the Jeffrey Modell Foundation and reunite with physicians, families, patients, and friends, many of whom I have kept in touch with over the past 5 years.  I believe that working with Russell was an invaluable experience, and I can bring those skill sets back to the Foundation."

Vicki Modell, Co-Founder of Jeffrey Modell Foundation, said "Vanessa joins us at an important moment in the Foundation's history.  We are just launching a new National Public Service Advertising campaign entitled 'When I Grow Up.'  The campaign speaks to the wonderment of a child's dream; a dream of a future without hospital visits, sleepless nights, and without fevers.  These children now have a chance – a chance to thrive, to imagine, and to be lifted to their highest potential... the empowerment of a child's dream."  Modell added, "I am thrilled to have Vanessa back with us as Executive Director.  She has the heart, compassion, and skills to lead this Foundation, as we embark upon exciting new initiatives planned all over the world."

About Jeffrey Modell Foundation

The Jeffrey Modell Foundation was established in 1987 by Vicki and Fred Modell, in memory of their son Jeffrey, who died at the age of 15 of a PI disease. The Foundation is dedicated to early and precise diagnosis, meaningful treatments, and ultimately cures through clinical and basic research, physician education, patient support, advocacy and public awareness of primary immunodeficiencies. More information on PI can be found at or by calling the JMF hotline at 1-866-INFO-4-PI.

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Vicki Modell (212) 819-0200

Fred Modell (212) 819-0200

SOURCE Jeffrey Modell Foundation