About the Team:

Our international research and program development team is led by the clinical founders of MEND: pediatric dietitian and senior research fellow Paul Sacher and child health psychologist Dr. Paul Chadwick.

In the US, we have partnered with leading academic institutions specializing in childhood obesity research, including the Michael & Susan Dell Center for the Advancement of Healthy Living, University of Texas School of Public Health, Austin Regional Campus, Baylor College of Medicine, RTI International and Duke University. 


Teresa Earle, Partnership Development Director and Board Member

Teresa joined MEND in  2008 to help launch the MEND Foundation and MEND 7-13 in the US.  With over 20 years experience in international strategic marketing, partnership development and media relations, Teresa has used her extensive knowledge and passion for family wellness to successfully broaden MEND's delivery, funding and research partnerships across the US. She has an international relations degree in political science from UCLA.


Adrienne Forman, Program Developer, North America

Adrienne is a registered dietitian with industry experience in weight-management program development and nutrition and health communications. Adrienne was a senior nutritionist at Weight Watchers International, instrumental in creating their weight-loss programs for North America, including the original Points® plan. She has been the Director of Nutrition Communications for Shape Up America! and was the editor of the Shape Up America! newsletter, an online publication on healthy weight management. She was a contributing editor of Environmental Nutrition newsletter for 15 years.  Adrienne received her master’s degree in nutrition communications from Boston University and a bachelor’s degree in dietetics from the University of Maryland. She has certificates of training in childhood and adolescent weight management and in adult weight management, level 2, from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly the American Dietetic Association).


Elana Needle, Regional Manager

Elana has over 9 years experience working in the public health, environmental, and women's issues fields in a variety of settings in the Northeastern US, from small start-up nonprofits to internationally recognized institutions. She has spent a great deal of time researching women’s issues including welfare reform and the intersection of race, class and gender among domestic violence victims. Elana has a bachelor’s degree in women's studies from Tufts University, a master’s degree in urban and environmental policy from Tufts University, and is currently pursuing her doctoral degree in social welfare with an emphasis on policy analysis from SUNY Stony Brook.  Elana’s dissertation topic is the nexus of poverty and childhood overweight and obesity. 


Hayley Lofink, Grant Writer

Hayley Lofink is a researcher in the field of Medical/Nutritional Anthropology and has designed, implemented and published research examining how cultural, political and economic factors influence dietary practices, physical activity patterns, body shape perceptions and obesity among children in low-income communities in the US and the UK.  Her projects have examined factors that influence nutritional health among British Bangladeshi adolescents in East London, children of Mexican migrant workers in New Jersey and African American children in Philadelphia.  She has a doctoral degree from the University of Oxford and undergraduate and Master's degrees from the University of Pennsylvania.

Hayley is the MEND Foundation’s grant writer and will be involved with expanding our base of public and private funders in order to increase access to the MEND 7-13 Program in low-income, underserved areas in the US.