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Sue Hagen, NAF’s Research Services Director, Announces her Retirement

We are both happy (for her) and sad (for us) to announce the retirement of Sue Hagen, Research Services Director. We are deeply grateful for her 15 years of dedication to the Ataxia community. Her fierce advocacy for patient needs and commitment to acceleration of research efforts have been an integral part of NAF’s accomplishments during her time here. Sue often said that her favorite part of her role was talking with patients and telling them about their opportunities to participate in research or pursue genetic testing. She made many meaningful connections over the years. We refer to her as the best rolodex in the Ataxia space – serving as the ultimate “connector” of patients, families, researchers, clinicians, and pharmaceutical companies. 

Sue was friend to all of her colleagues and the Ataxia families that she connected with. She will be greatly missed. As a tribute to her service to this community, we welcome you to send Sue a note of well-wishes or a favorite memory that you shared with her. We will be compiling the comments and presenting them to her to honor the work she has done for NAF and the Ataxia community. 

Use the link below to submit your comments.

Congratulations Sue! You will be missed!

“Bittersweet is the perfect word to describe how I feel about Sue’s retirement from NAF. While I am thrilled for her to start this next chapter, she will be dearly missed by the scores of Ataxia families that she has touched during her career, as well as the Ataxia research and clinical communities and NAF staff. Her impact on NAF’s mission will continue well after her departure.”

“Sue Hagen is synonymous with research at the National Ataxia Foundation. For more than 15 years Sue has nurtured and developed relationships across the Ataxia medical and research communities. Her resolve has built a strong and effective mechanism to further Ataxia research for years to come."

A Note from Sue to the Ataxia Community

It has been an absolute pleasure and privilege to have spent 15 years at the National Ataxia Foundation doing my best to serve the Ataxia community. In 2007 I read in a local paper that the National Ataxia Foundation was hiring an Outreach Coordinator. Like so many others, I had no idea of what Ataxia was. Little did I know at that time that my nephew’s very best friend and his mother had SCA2. During my time with NAF, I have witnessed Ataxia patients and families facing this disease with courage and, often, humor. I have seen physicians providing compassionate care for their patients with a disease that has no treatment or cure. Working directly with Ataxia researchers has given me access to brilliant scientists on a mission to discover treatments and cures. After 15 years, I now know very much what Ataxia is and how it impacts people’s lives, but more importantly, I know that the Ataxia community is being served well by the National Ataxia Foundation and will continue, as our vision states – to get us to “A World without Ataxia”.

Thank you for your 15 years of service!

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