Our Team

Stan Stepkowski

Dr. Stan Stepkowski stood at the origins of some the most wide-used medications in transplantation. He was educated at University of Warsaw and Polish Academy of Sciences in Poland, then trained at Radium Hospital in Oslo, Norway (PhD). He then moved on to Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada for post-doctoral training, and then at the University of Texas in Houston, USA. For over 40 years now, he has been working in experimental and clinical organ transplantation. For the last ten years, he has holds a professorship position at The University of Toledo College of Medicine. Although he was very privileged to work in different countries, his home has been the United States. He is an extensively trained transplant immunologist experienced in clinical tissue typing and clinical immunology. A publication record of over 200 high-impact manuscripts, including clinical reseaerch papers, speaks for itself.

Ira L. Brody

In 2007, Ira Brody came out of retirement after a 40 career as a CMO in marketing and public relations to assume the position of CMO of the National Kidney Registry and then the Alliance for Paired Kidney Donation. Brody wanted to venture into areas where he could use his experience to explore the laws and ethics hampering the acquisition of kidneys. He has said, “ESRD is not cancer, we know the answer… it is living donor transplant! We also know that every healthy human being can potentially set off a chain that can save many lives… then why the problem?” Brody answers with a quote from Pogo, “We have met the enemy and it is us.” Brody volunteered to be altruistic kidney donor, “I could not work on a problem if my personal actions were not part of the solution”. He has lectured at universities throughout the country on Cause Related Marketing and has participated in numerous bioethics conferences throughout the world. For more information: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ira-brody-5037456/

J.T. Shim, PhD, MBA

Community Outreach Coordinator

Growing up in Salem WV, JT learned to dream big and organize himself to achieve big. In his college years, he worked in grounds, mailroom, duplicating in addition to earning an unprecedented 3 degrees: BS Computer Science—Business emphasis, BS Communications—Journalism emphasis, AS Accounting, minor in Behavioral Science. He next moved on to complete his MBA at Rollins. Learned more acutely about economics of supply and demand, optimization and constraints. Then, during his PhD at UCF, JT did business with MIS concentration and Accounting minor. Finally, his future educational degrees and designations may include but are not limited to: JD, MFA, CPA, PMP, etc.

JT has extensive public activities and volunteering background. In college, he ran for about 7 offices and only lost twice–those times he was a freshman and sophomore running for Executive Vice President but eventually won in a landslide on third attempt. He interspersed amongst the education he has done 5 governmental internships: 3 in his birth city of Washington DC with Members if Congress, and 2 in state Capitol. One of those internships was with Rep. Al Gore, Jr. who cosponsored the National Organ Transplantation Act in 1984. That’s when he first started making inquiries for kidneys to meet specific need. Subsequently one of his college roommates, then a UCF classmate, and more recently a fellow church member have all needed kidneys. He has focused on meeting the needs both personally and from a policy perspective.

Currently, JT is undergoing medical screening to make a living kidney donation is on hold due to the current pandemic.

Rob Green, Ph.D.

Robert C. Green II, Ph.D.

Chief Information Officer

Dr. Green has a unique history that blends professional expertise in Software Engineering, Data Analytics, and Consulting with research expertise in High Performance Computing and Computational Intelligence. In the past he has served in a variety of roles ranging from Software Engineer to Director of Wind & Solar Research. His professional mission is to leverage his unique and expansive background to positively impact as many lives as possible through the proper use of technology and analysis of data.

Dr. Green received his B.S. from Geneva College in Computer Science & Applied Mathematics in 2005, his M.S in Computer Science with a focus in Operations Research from Bowling Green State University in 2007, and his Ph.D. in Engineering from the University of Toledo in 2013. In addition to his role with the APKD, he currently serves as an Associate Professor of Computer Science at Bowling Green State University.

Beata Mierzejewska

Medical Advisor
Dr. Beata Mierzejewska has finished medical school with a specialty in emergency medicine and anesthesiology as well as she completed a PhD in transplantation immunology. She has worked as a medical adviser in Novartis and Roche pharmaceuticals. For the last eight years she has worked at the University of Toledo College of Medicine. She has extensive experience in transplantation, as documented by her peer-reviewed publication record.

Dulat Bekbolsynov

Research Consulting

Dulat has a diverse background in science and in kidney transplantation as well. He started his career in biomedical science as part-time laboratory assistant in a city hospital in his home country of Kazakhstan in 2003. In 2006, he was accepted for an undergraduate microbiology program at Colorado State University in 2006, tuition and costs being sponsored by the government. His study was interrupted the same year by ESRD diagnosis and kidney transplantation. He then was able to complete his undergraduate in 2010, and join a stem cell research lab back in his home country of Kazakhstan, where he worked on a regenerative medicine project in 2010-2012. Finally, in 2014 he was lucky to join with Dr. Stepkowski to pursue his PhD research in immunology at the University of Toledo in 2014. After completing his PhD in 2018, he worked in a tissue typing lab at Gift of Life Michigan in Ann Arbor. Today, his PhD research and post-doctoral career are dedicated to finding ways of mitigating the donor shortage crisis in the U.S.