The Team Behind the Littlest Tumor Foundation
Tracy Wirtanen, MSW
“We invest in the NF community with impactful programming. We lead NF Family Wellness Retreats (free for NF families), the NF Young Adult Leadership Program, and spearhead the NF Collective. We see children soar, moms connect, and young adults find their voices. It is amazing and an honor to be part of it all.”
Tracy believes in a world filled with innovative neurofibromatosis research, mindful moments, and never-ending running trails. In a few short years, her efforts have established Wisconsin as a bipartisan model of support for NF federal funding, helping build House of Representatives support from 6% to 30%.
Tracy received her Master of Social Work from McGill University, and her Nonprofit Management Certificate from Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Nonprofit Management. She currently serves on the Peer Review Panel of the CDMRP NF Research Program. Tracy’s vision continues to guide an innovative, inclusive NF Family Retreat model for families dealing with this disorder.
NF Family Wellness Retreat Coordinator
Lilla is a senior at American University Majoring in CLEG, (Communication, Economics, Legal Studies, and Government) with a minor in Literature. She has worked as a full-time nanny and has helped run a food shelf in Burlington, Vermont. She has been volunteering and working for LTF since its founding! Starting with cutting off her hair in a fundraiser, to running the retreat.
Lilla is passionate about seeing families grow and connect at the NF Family Wellness retreat. Lilla’s favorite part of the retreat is being able to watch kids with NF create life-long bonds. Lilla is passionate about her connection to the NF community because she is an NF sibling herself. She hopes to continue to bring joy and strengthen families through the NF Family Wellness Retreat.
Sophia is an American University graduate with a BA in journalism. She currently works for WCAX, a television station in Vermont. She previously wrote for Street Sense Media, The DC Line and Her Campus at American. She’s also worked as a program facilitator for Learn, Earn and Prosper (LEAP), a tutor for DC Reads, a peer educator for Planned Parenthood and a pediatrics volunteer at UVM Medical Center.
Sophia’s greatest passion is bringing awareness to issues that matter through storytelling, and she is proud to advocate on behalf of people with NF. She hopes to promote autonomy for those with NF and a heightened awareness of why NF is something to care about.
Young Adult Program Coordinator
Tyler was diagnosed with NF1 as an infant. In 2020, he participated in the Littlest Tumor Foundation’s Young Adult Leadership Program. This experience inspired him to go back to school to become a Certified Medical Assistant (CMA). He plans to work as a CMA for a few years before going back to school to become a Physician‘s Assistant.
Research & Programming Intern
Hannah graduated with a degree in Psychology and Health Studies from Bryn Mawr College and hopes to go to medical school soon. As a young adult with NF1, Hannah is passionate about advocating for research so that there will be innovative therapeutic options for patients and meeting the unmet needs of NF families. Hannah has been involved with the Littlest Tumor Foundation after taking part in the NF Young Adult Leadership program. As an intern, she will be helping with various projects for LTF.
Similar to LTF’s mission are core values, Hannah hopes to create an accessible space and practice of healing that can hold all kinds of bodies and minds when she becomes a physician. In her free time, Hannah loves going on runs, cooking, listening to podcasts, and reading.
County Board Supervisor for Outagamie County, Wisconsin
Katrin received her BA and MA in English Literature from Eastern Illinois University before working several years in the precision measuring and tooling industry. During this time she earned her teaching license and taught high school English literature and grammar, from remedial to Advanced Placement, from freshmen to seniors.
After moving to Appleton, WI, she succumbed to Tracy Wirtanen’s siren song. She was recruited to run for the county board and drawn into various writing projects on behalf of Littlest Tumor Foundation.
Currently Katrin divides her time between LTF’s advocacy efforts, endless Public Safety subcommittees, cooking, gardening, her husband, Rodger, and four cats with big personalities and even bigger hairballs.
By day she’s a snuggling, treat wrangling super sweet dog. Though snoozes through most team meetings, she is still devoted to the NF cause.
By day she runs all dog ops. Participates in most all team meetings by barking at passing by dogs. A true leader + advocate who ❤️’s to be of service to the NF community.
Moo is a one-eyed tortoiseshell cat who was hired after the staff saw how easily she can charm people into making donations (in treat form, to her belly). Moo loves to sleep on a warm laptop and has been known to hack into our website when we’re not looking. In fact, she might be writing this now…
Fueled by peanut butter and birdseed, Friday is always ready to greet you with a toothy smile and an anecdote about the importance of supporting the Littlest Tumor Foundation! Her top two passions are selfies and NF advocacy, in that order.
NF Pawlicy Advocate
Lincoln is passionate about NF solutions, all things bouncy and squeaky, and protecting his beloved family from the Roomba. Like his namesake, Abraham Lincoln, he knows the importance of political engagement and is an ardent advocate for federally-funded NF research between naps and surfing for crumbs.
In loving memory of Lincoln. We miss him every day.
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