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Our Team

Anton Porsteinsson, MD - Director

Anton Speach As the Director of the AD-CARE Program, Dr. Anton Porsteinsson has devoted his career to the care and study of individuals with memory disorders.  His clinical and research interests are focused on cognitive deficits and behavioral changes associated with these disorders, especially treatment interventions and improved diagnostics – areas in which he is internationally recognized.  He is a lead investigator for many prominent, national AD prevention and treatment trials and has conducted major clinical trials with cognitive enhancers, course stabilizing agents, and psycho-tropics for behavioral changes associated with dementia.  Dr. Porsteinsson is the author and collaborator of hundreds of research publications and serves as site principal investigator for research grants from the National Institutes of Health and other leading funders.

A graduate of the University of Iceland School of Medicine, and completion of a psychiatry residency at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, Dr. Porsteinsson is also the William B. and Sheila Konar Professor of Psychiatry and Neurology at the University of Rochester.  Additionally, he directs the Psychiatry Program and Psychiatric Consultation Liaison Service at Monroe Community Hospital. 

Susan Salem-Spencer, RN, MSN – Senior Study Coordinator

Susan Salem-Spencer is the Senior Study Coordinator at AD-CARE. She has been involved in Alzheimer’s Disease Research since 1997 and joined AD-CARE in 2001.  Her role involves supporting, facilitating, and coordinating the daily clinical trial activities. 

Audrey Rice, RN, MS, ANP – Study Coordinator

Audrey joined the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) in 1985, where she worked as an RN in the Neurosurgical Unit and later in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit.  After earning her MSN from the University of Rochester’s School of Nursing, Audrey joined the Emergency Department (ED) at Strong Memorial Hospital as a Nurse Practitioner.  Her experiences with older adults in the ED led her to the field of gerontology where she practiced in long term care, meeting the complex health needs of older adults living with chronic illness.  In 2014, she transitioned to the URMC outpatient Memory Care Program, where she evaluated adults with memory problems and provided ongoing care for individuals with dementia.  In 2015, Audrey joined URMC’s AD-CARE Program, where she supports ongoing research in Alzheimer's Disease.

Nancy Kowalski, RNC, MS – Study Coordinator

Nancy has been with the AD-CARE team since 1996 and has had various roles ranging from Cognitive Rating administrator to Psychiatric consultant.  Since 2015, Nancy has taken on the role of Research Study Coordinator.  She is extremely grateful to work with the families that she meets on a daily basis; they inspire her to continue her work in research.

Kim Martin, RN, BSN – Research Nurse

Kim has been with AD-CARE since 2000 and enjoys working within the geriatric population.  She recently completed her BSN at the University of Rochester’s School of Nursing.

Melanie Keltz, RN, BSN – Research Nurse

Joining the AD-CARE team in 2014, Melanie has recently advanced to her new role as Study Nurse after receiving her BSN from the University of Rochester’s School of Nursing.  As of Fall/2018, Melanie will continue her role at AD-CARE while she advances her education through St. John Fisher’s Geriatric and Adult Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Program.

Asa Widman, BS – Research Technician

Asa has been with AD-CARE since 2001.  She runs the cognitive and memory testing for the research studies in addition to organizing research-related source documents.

Kaitlyn Lane, BA – Research Technician

Kaitlyn joined AD-CARE in 2016 after graduation from the University at Buffalo’s Health and Human Services program.  She is a Research Technician who works directly with participants through performing cognitive testing and clinical procedures.

Lauren Farberman, MBA – Program Administrator

Lauren has been the Program Administrator for AD-CARE since 2014.  She oversees the operations of the program along with negotiating budgets for potential clinical trials.  Lauren received her MBA from the University of Rochester’s Simon Business School in 2009 and has worked in all aspects of research from basic research to clinical trials.

Russ Kurvach, BS, CCRP – Health Project Coordinator

Russ has been a member of the AD-CARE team since 2011, overseeing all the regulatory aspects of our clinical trials including compliance with local, state, and federal regulations.

Patricia Herring, BS, MA – Administrative Assistant

Joining the AD-CARE team in 2017, Patricia’s role as Administrative Assistant includes prepping visits, prescreening participants, coordinating information sessions and community outreach, updating website/literature, stipend reimbursements, and financial tracking of research grants in addition to daily office requirements