RPG Leadership

To contact your leaders, use the Academy's Leadership Directory. Click here for the Leadership Directory User Guide.


Michele Cook, RD, CSR, LD


Michele Cook, RD, LD,  has been dedicated to the field of nutrition and dietetics for over 30 years. She spent several years as a volunteer for the California Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Central Valley District, as an Executive Board member and as a California Delegate.  She is currently on the Renal Practice Group Executive Council, as an Education Committee member.  She has served as Secretary and is now the Chair Elect. Michele’s desire to continuously grow as a dietitian is noted in her job history and volunteerism choices. Michele obtained her Certificate of Nutrition Support early in her career as an acute care clinical dietitian, she used that experience to successfully transition to a Nutrition Support Dietitian position in the home care setting. Michele worked for Brooks Healthcare as a homecare dietitian for several years in Central California. Her thirst for knowledge enabled her to seek work in a variety of settings, including nutrition support sales for Abbott Nutrition and out-patient nutrition counseling. She enjoys participating in community support projects, such as the NKF Kidney Race and Tour Davita. Michele is passionate about her profession and worked in the dialysis setting for 9 years as a Lead Dietitian and Preceptor at Davita, Inc.  She recently started working for Aramark at Christus Good Shepherd in Longview, TX and has enjoyed the transition back to acute care dietitian.  Her lifelong experiences and growth as a Renal Dietitian now enable her to put into practice: continuity of care, Nutrition Focused Physical Exam and motivational interviewing as an acute care dietitian. Her leadership goals include becoming a Clinical Nutrition Manager and expanding Medical Nutrition Therapy programs for chronic kidney disease in her community.

Rory Pace, MPH, RD, CSR, FAND

Immediate Past Chair

Rory Pace has dedicated her career to Nephrology Nutrition. A graduate of UC Davis (B.S. Dietetics), the
West LA VA Dietetic Internship, and UCLA (MPH), she has developed expertise in malnutrition, CKD-
MBD, peritoneal dialysis, dialysis adequacy, quality improvement, and fluid balance has published
and presented on these and numerous other nephrology nutrition topics. Rory helped to shape practice
by authoring the Academy/NKF 2020 SOP/SOPP for Nephrology Nutrition. As Director of Nutrition at
Satellite Healthcare, Rory leads clinical practice for over 100 RDs and ensures that nutrition is
represented in company initiatives. Rory is a lifelong learner and an active volunteer leader who enjoys
collaborating with others.

Tammy Nijmeh, RD


Nephrology dietitian working in San Jose at Satellite Healthcare. I have enjoyed building relationships with our patients and navigating challenging situations with wonderful colleagues these past six years at Satellite. I have obtained the Board Certification as a Specialist in Renal Nutrition. I have participated in the “Satellite Employee Advisory Team” and am currently a part of the patient experience committee. I have had the opportunity to be the treasurer for the renal practice group and I am grateful for the experience. My previous work history includes nutrition counseling in a diabetes private practice and clinical dietitian manager in a skilled nursing facility. When I am not working, I love cooking for family and friends, spending time outdoors with my dog, and going to the gym. I am looking forward to continuing my work with the renal practice group and hope to give back to the profession.





Michele Cook


Tammy Nijmeh

Immediate Past Chair

Rory Pace


Veronique Champagne Pettitt


Melanie Betz

Nominating Chair

Julius Navarro

HOD Delegate

Jessie Pavlinac


Membership Services



Membership Services Chair

Brooke Nakashima

Volunteer Coordinator

Jian Li

Awards/Scholarships Chair

Amy Shiau

Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access Liasion

Lisa Huang





Marketing/Communications Chair

Melissa Young

Marketing/Communications Committee

Tammy Nijmeh

Melissa Young

Patient Education Chair

Jessica Prohn

Patient Ed Committee Members

Girija Vijaykumar
Brooke Nakashima
Kayoko Zahn
Kimberly Snodgrass
Jessica Prohn
Sarah Odom
Tammy Nijmeh

Professional Education Chair

Swathi Neel

Webinar Chair

Jennifer Hernandez


Editorial Board/Advertising-Sponsorship



RNF Managing Editor

Lynda March

RNF Assistant Editor

Vanessa Mazzella

RNF Lead Editor

Jackie Hankins

RNF Lead Editor

Dr. Tracy Ryan-Borchers

RNF Co-Editor

Jessica (Jess) Tower


Meagan Owen


Website/Electronic and Social Media




Melissa Ann Prest

Social Media Chair

Katherine Schury

Social Media Assistant

Amanda Hays

Podcast Committee

Victoria Newman
Melissa Ann Prest

Roundtable Coordinator

Melanie Betz


Public Policy



Policy & Advocacy Leader (PAL)

Catherine "Cate" Rhodes

Policy and Advocacy Leader (PAL) - committee member

Vida Goudarzi
Samantha Wildman
Lauren Levy
Kimberley Jackson

Nutrition Services Payment Specialist (NSPS)

Edith Yang

Nutrition Services Payment Specialist (NSPS) - committee member



The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics




Academy DPG Relations Manager

Martha Huizar, MS, RDN, CLC mhuizar@eatright.org


Past Chairs