Leadership in Advocacy Development

The Leadership in Advocacy Development (LEAD) Program provides training, tools, mentorship, and support for mid-career healthcare professionals and physician advocacy leaders in headache medicine.

Participants will explore opportunities for professional development through formal didactic sessions and small group workshops with leaders in the field on topics including practice management, advocacy, and project management, as well as the development of an advocacy project over a 2-year timeframe.

2023-2025 LEAD Program Participants

Amy Hessler, DO


Dr. Amy Hessler is a Women’s Neurology Specialist and Headache Specialist in Jacksonville, Florida. She returned to clinical practice in private practice at Universal Neurological Care. After leaving the University of Kentucky in the summer of 2021, she took a sabbatical from clinical practice to settle her family into a new community.

Dr. Hessler completed a neurology residency at Tufts Medical Center followed by a Clinical Neurophysiology fellowship at the University of Michigan. She joined the University of Oklahoma briefly before relocating to the University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY where she practiced as a general neurologist and the clerkship director for 13 years.

Dr. Hessler is thrilled to have been selected for the inaugural Leadership in Advocacy Development (LEAD) program. Her advocacy project is operationalizing a newly developed Women’s Neurology Curriculum focused on headache and epilepsy as well as other aspects of care in women across her life stages .

Scott B. Turner, DNP, APRN, FNP-C


Dr. Scott Turner is a nurse practitioner and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at the Heersink School of Medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He co-directs the headache program at Children’s Hospital of Alabama and has over 20 years of advanced practice experience in pediatric neurology.

Dr. Turner is an active member of the American Headache Society where he led the task force that developed the Pediatric Migraine Action Plan and co-led the First Contact in Pediatrics task force that developed this presentation.

Dr. Turner’s scholarship focuses on the measurement and reduction of migraine-related disability in children and adolescents.

How to Apply

Applications are closed for the 2023-2025 LEAD program. This is a highly selective program, with only two participants selected for the inaugural program in 2023. Please keep an eye out for updates regarding the next application cycle which will be announced soon.

Candidate Criteria

  • Must be an AHS member in good standing for at least 3 years
  • Must be 7+ years in clinical practice
  • Must have a strong interest in practice management and/or advocacy
  • Must commit to attending the 2023 Scottsdale Headache Symposium and 2024 Headache on the Hill events in person (expenses paid)
  • Must commit to the development and completion of a proposed advocacy project over a 2-year timeframe

Required Application Materials

 Applicants must complete the online application form and provide the following supporting materials:

  • CV
  • Letter of support speaking to the leadership potential and interest in advocacy of the applicant
  • Personal statement up to 500 words. Questions to consider:
    • What has motivated you to apply?
    • What would you like to accomplish as an advocate?
    • As a busy professional, how will you make time to pursue your advocacy project? How many hours per month can you dedicate?

Health professional/physician advocacy project proposal up to 500 words describing your major goal/vision for the 2-year program and your desired outcome. Questions to consider:

  • What are you trying to do? What health problem are you trying to solve?
  • How does this get done at present and what are the current challenges?
  • What is novel about your approach? Why do you think you can be successful at this time?

Applications will reopen in 2025.

LEAD Program Committee

Image of Amaal Starling

Amaal Starling, MD, MS, FAHS, Chair

Mayo Clinic

Scottsdale, Arizona

Image of Jessica Ailani

Jessica Ailani, MD, FAHS

MedStar Georgetown University Hospital

Washington, District of Columbia

Image of Olivia Begasse de Dhaem

Olivia Begasse de Dhaem, MD, FAHS

Hartford Healthcare

Westport, Connecticut

Image of Larry Charleston IV

Larry Charleston IV, MD, MS, FAHS

Michigan State University College of Human Medicine

East Lansing, Michigan

Image of Christopher H. Gottschalk

Christopher H. Gottschalk, MD, FAHS

Yale Neurology Group

New Haven, Connecticut

Image of Teshamae Monteith

Teshamae Monteith, MD, FAHS

University of Miami School of Medicine

Miami, Florida

Image of Maureen A. Moriarty

Maureen A. Moriarty, APRN, DNP, FAH

Moriarty Associates

Westminster, Maryland

Image of Barbara Nye

Barbara Nye

Wake Forest Baptist Health Center

Winston Salem, North Carolina

Image of Matthew S. Robbins

Matthew S. Robbins, MD, FAHS

Weill Cornell Medicine

New York, New York

Image of Robert E. Shapiro

Robert E. Shapiro

University of Vermont

Burlington, Vermont

The American Headache Society gratefully acknowledges the support of the 2023-2025 LEAD Program from our industry supporters:

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