NCMS Staff Members

Get to know your NCMS team! We’re all working remotely right now, but you can still reach us. We’ve added contact information to all of our staff listings – just click on a photo or name to learn more about each team member and how to access them at their home offices. Stay safe and well!

 

Executive Team


Chip Baggett, JD
Chip Baggett, JD

Executive Vice President &
Chief Executive Officer


Steve Keene, MBA, JDStephen W. Keene, MBA, JD

Chief Operating Officer & NCMS General Counsel


Evan Simmons
Evan Simmons

Director,
Executive and Board Services



Melanie Phelps, JD

Senior Vice President,
Health System Innovation;
NCMS Deputy General Counsel



Shawn Scott, MBA

Senior Vice President,
Member Services and Business Operations

 NCMS Team



Alan Skipper, CAE, CMP

Vice President,
Specialty Society Management Services



Ashley Newton, MBA

Vice President,
Member Services



Ashley Rodriguez, JD

Director, Regulatory & Legal Affairs; Associate General Counsel



Aubrey Cuthbertson

Program Manager, Leadership Development



Belinda B. McKoy

Development Manager,
Advancement & Donor Relations



Beth Remhof

Project Manager,
Member Services



Danielle Snyder

Project Manager, Health System Innovation



Elaine Ellis, MSJ

Vice President,
Communications & Marketing



Frank Snyder

Director, Member Services – East



Franklin Walker, MBA

Vice President, Rural Health Systems Innovation



Garry Linton

Director,
Communications & Marketing



Gail Stephenson

Meeting Coordinator, Specialty Society Meeting Services



Jackie Davis-Jones

Project Manager,
Member Services



Joy N. Avery

Member Services Assistant



Katherine Croom

Assistant Director,
Finance & Administration



Kelly Wilson

Assistant Director,
Business Operations



Kristen Shipherd

Director,
Marketing & Web Services



Kristen Spaduzzi, MS

Director,
Health System Innovation



Kristina Natt och Dag, PhD, MA

Vice President,
Leadership Development



Megan Eberle

Associate Director, Specialty Society Meeting Services



Pam Highsmith, MEd, CFRE

Vice President,
Advancement & Donor Relations



Riaz Mullick

Vice President,
Finance & Administration



Richard Simpson

Director, Member Services



Sue Ann Forrest, MPA

Director,
Legislative Relations

 

In Memoriam: Joseph Cupolo, III

September 11, 1958 – May 23, 2018

The NCMS mourns the loss of Joe Cupolo, our member services director serving the eastern portion of North Carolina. Joe started work here in 2015 after a long career in sales, working for such companies as Hostess/Wonder Bread and Capitol Broadcasting. NCMS CEO Robert W. Seligson shares, “Joe Cupolo, also known as ‘Broadway Joe’ for his love of New York, was one of the most kind, caring and thoughtful human beings that I ever knew. He was a dedicated, loyal employee whose strong work ethic set the bar for others to follow. He was a kind soul whose contributions to the medical profession will not be forgotten. He had a very positive outlook on life and showed incredible strength and resolve during his illness.”

Joe is survived by his wife, Lisa Ditta-Cupolo, and his daughter, Alexa Jensen. He also is survived by his mother, Grace Cupolo, his sisters, Gina Provenzano and JoAnn Wallace, and brother, John Cupolo. Joe was predeceased by his father, Joseph Cupolo Jr.

A GoFundMe page was created to assist Joe’s family with medical bills and other expenses.
CLICK HERE TO DONATE

 

 
 
 
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Chip Baggett, JD

Executive Vice President and CEO

With the NCMS since 2007

Contact Chip

In his capacity as CEO/EVP, Chip is responsible for state level advocacy efforts (primarily focused on the NC General Assembly) as well as communications and fundraising for the NCMS and NCMS Foundation.

Chip has a long history in organizational advancement and advocacy. Dating back to college, he has fundraised in numerous paid as well as volunteer capacities. He has led successful corporate and personal annual fund programs and gone through training at the Indiana School of Fundraising. Chip has worked in many different facets of health care ranging from a children’s science and health museum and pharmaceutical sales before going to work directly for physicians and PAs as a medical society executive first at the county level and then here at NCMS.

Chip graduated from the evening program at the NC Central University School of Law and passed the NC BAR in 2016 while working for NCMS. He is proud to be married to his wife, Shanon. They have two children in addition to a Great Dane-Lab mix. Chip also loves to explore the outdoors in his spare time by bike and on foot (preferably with a loaded backpack).

Steve Keene, MBA, JD

Steve Keene, MBA, JD

Chief Operating Officer & NCMS General Counsel

With the NCMS since 1994

Contact Steve:

Email  |  Cell: 919-306-0057

In addition to serving as general counsel and chief operating officer of the North Carolina Medical Society, Steve is also vice president of legal affairs for Carolina Complete Health Network, Inc. a subsidiary of the NCMS.

Steve received a bachelor’s degree in agricultural economics (1980) and master of business administration (1989) from Georgia Southern College; a juris doctor (2000) from North Carolina Central University School of Law, and a master of laws in health law (2015) from Loyola University School of Law. Before coming to the NCMS in 1994, Steve worked in government affairs for the Mayo Clinic Jacksonville and before that worked on medical economics issues for the Florida Medical Association.

Evan Simmons

Director, Executive and Board Services

With the NCMS since 2014

Contact Evan

Evan holds a BA degree in Human Resources from Peace College in Raleigh and brings a decade of experience working in HR at Glaxo Smith Kline to her role at the NCMS. She was born in Florida, but spent most of her childhood in Raleigh. If they have a long weekend, you’re most likely to find Evan, her husband, Tate, and their young son, Henry, vacationing in the mountains of North Carolina.

Melanie Phelps, JD

Melanie Phelps, JD

Senior Vice President, Health System Innovation; NCMS Deputy General Counsel

With the NCMS since 2000

Contact Melanie:

Email | Cell: 919-306-5123

Melanie focuses on a wide variety of health policy issues and represents the interests of the medical community in public and private forums. She provides research on legislative and regulatory matters and general legal and policy guidance on many of the issues impacting health care, but focuses most of her attention on issues related to the transition to value-driven health care, improving health and connecting the traditional health care system with community health partners to address determinants of health. Melanie organized and directs the Toward Accountable Care Consortium and Initiative as well as the NC Population Health Collaborative and the NC ACO Council.

Shawn Scott, MBA

Senior Vice President, Member Services and Business Operations

With the NCMS since 1998

Contact Shawn:

Email Shawn

Cell: 919-621-5919

Shawn began her career at NCMS as Director of Member Services and Marketing in 1998.  In 2013, she was promoted to her current role.  A Virginia native, Shawn earned her BA in Speech Communication from George Mason University in Fairfax, VA and her MBA at Meredith College in Raleigh.

Prior to joining the NCMS, she was Director of Marketing and Communications for the American Traffic Safety Services Association (ATSSA) where she also began the ATSS Foundation, raising more than $100,000 for college scholarships in traffic engineering fields. After seven years at ATSSA, she joined Capitol Broadcasting Company to develop consumer marketing programs, returning to the association world when she joined the NCMS. In 2008 she earned the Certified Association Executive (CAE) designation from the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE).

Shawn is active in community and school arts programs, serving as Board Member for the Carolina Youth Theatre.  When she is not busy making sure all is operating efficiently at NCMS headquarters, she enjoys spending time with her husband, Tom McSwain, and son, Jack.

Alan Skipper, CAE, CMP

Vice President, NCMS Specialty Society Management

With the NCMS since 1980

Contact Alan

Alan, a Certified Association Executive and Certified Meeting Professional, brings a lifetime of experience in professional society management to his role managing a variety of medical specialty societies. Born and raised in Raleigh, Alan showed his persistence early working on building and construction maintenance crews during high school to earn money to buy his first car – a brand new 1976 Camaro. He went on to earn his BA in Business Management at NC State University. When not spending time with his wife, Jennett, or grown daughters, Eva and Emily, you might find Alan on the golf course, or maybe the beach. But after a long stretch of back-to-back weekend specialty society meetings, he concedes, ‘there’s no place like home.’

Ashley Newton, MBA

Director, Member Services, West

With the NCMS since 2017

Contact Ashley

Born and raised in Hickory, NC, Ashley brings her knowledge of the western part of the state and 20 + years working in pharmaceutical sale and marketing to her work as NCMS western region member services director. Ashley holds a BS in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina-Wilmington and earned her MBA at Lenoir Rhyne University, where she also was an adjunct professor in the business school. She enjoys being on the road visiting members and potential members as well as hiking, kayaking, kickboxing and working out at the gym, visiting art museums and her wine club. She also enjoys fishing with her three children – daughter Kailey, 21, and sons Luke, 18, and Matthew, 16 – and her significant other, Michael.

Ashley Rodriguez, JD

Director, Regulatory & Legal Affairs; Associate General Counsel

With the NCMS since 2019

Contact Ashley

Ashley’s roots run deep in North Carolina. She grew up in Mount Olive and goes home often to visit her parents, who both are upper level administrators at the University of Mount Olive. After earning her undergraduate degree at the University of North Carolina, Wilmington and her law degree at Campbell University, Ashley gained valuable experience as a medical malpractice defense attorney. Ultimately, however, she decided that public policy was a better fit and moved on to the North Carolina Division of Public Health as a legal consultant for the North Carolina Office of the Chief Medical Examiner. She and her husband, Orlando, also an attorney (they met at law school), consider themselves ‘amateur policy wonks’ and love debating the issues. Ashley spends every spare moment with her young daughter and enjoying family time boating on the Pamlico River.

Aubrey Cuthbertson

Program Manager, Kanof Institute for Physician Leadership

With the NCMS since 2017

Contact Aubrey

Aubrey grew up in Plantation, Florida and moved to Raleigh to attend Meredith College, where she studied Mass Communications. In her spare time, she remains involved in her alma mater, serving on the Meredith College Young Alumnae Board, and she also enjoys entertaining.

Belinda B. McKoy

Development Manager, Advancement & Donor Relations

With the NCMS since 2014

Contact Belinda

Belinda brings 12 years of customer service experience with Club Corp, to her role helping NCMS members get answers to their questions through the NCMS Solution Center. Belinda earned her BA in Business Management and Economics at NC State University. She attended high school in Raleigh, but as part of an Air Force family, she grew up 'all over.' She still loves to travel and she and her husband, Von, enjoy sampling the regional cuisine wherever they are.

Beth Remhof

Project Manager, Member Services

With the NCMS since 2019

Contact Beth

Beth grew up near Chicago, later relocating to Ohio where she spent the next 20 years. While in Ohio, she attended the University of Dayton where she received her bachelor's and master's degrees. Before joining the NCMS, she worked in the Advancement Division at the University of Dayton, which introduced her to the world of nonprofit fundraising and donor relations. A job transfer brought her family to North Carolina in 2016.

Aside from her day job of analyzing membership data for the NCMS, you can probably find Beth with knitting needles and yarn in hand, or, as she explains, "If I’m sitting still, I’m usually knitting." A true enthusiast, Beth  serves on the leadership team for the Ol’ North State Knitting Guild in Raleigh. Her other passion that she shares with her family – husband Kevin, daughter Allison, and son Daniel – is a love amusement parks and rollercoasters. They have visited 50+ amusement parks and have been on over 300 different rollercoasters in the eastern half of the US and Canada. The family looks forward to expanding west in the years to come.

Danielle Snyder

Project Manager, Health System Innovation

With the NCMS since 2018

Contact Danielle

Danielle was born in Phoenix and loves to travel. She holds a BS in Sociology from Appalachian State University and has worked in both the human and animal medical fields. Her experience in Nursing Assistance, Customer Service, and Management has allowed her an eclectic perspective on life and she enjoys being able to help bring people together. When not working hard, she can be found playing hard – hiking the Blue Ridge Mountains, painting, exploring “off the path” locations for photography opportunities, fostering rescue animals, watching horror movies, cooking and baking. She has a full house in Garner with her rescue dog Briana and her 3 rescue cats Azrael, Freya, and Dinah.

Elaine Ellis, MSJ

Elaine Ellis, MSJ

Vice President, Communications & Marketing

With the NCMS since 2012

Contact Elaine

Email

Cell: 919-272-4027

Elaine brings experience as a daily newspaper reporter in Fort Lauderdale and New York City as well as communications and public relations work at several trade associations to her job. A Midwesterner at heart, Elaine has a BA in History from Carleton College and an MS in Journalism from Northwestern University. She enjoys biking, baking, travel and spending quality time with her daughter, Rachael, a student at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and her son, Michael, who attends high school in Raleigh.

Frank Snyder

Director, Member Services - East

With the NCMS since 2018

Contact Frank:

Email 

Cell: 704-877-2024

No stranger to the medical community in North Carolina, Frank joined the NCMS as Director of Member Services for the eastern portion of the state after more than 15 years in the medical liability insurance field. After graduating with a BS in psychology from the University of Georgia, Frank spent about eight years in law enforcement before getting into the insurance business. When he’s not on the road for business, studying for a degree in health informatics at ECU, enjoying the outdoors or watching college athletics, you’ll likely find Frank at home on Emerald Isle with his wife, Gayle or spending time with his four grandchildren.

Franklin Walker, MBA

Vice President, Rural Health Systems Innovation
Executive Director, Community Practitioner Program
Executive Director, Project OBOT NC
Executive Director, Our Community Health Initiative (OCHI)

With the NCMS since 2010

Contact Franklin

Email  |  Cell: 919-280-4334

Franklin earned his BA at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and his MBA at Xavier University in Cincinnati, OH. Prior to his position at the NCMS, Franklin has been a restaurateur, the CEO of a medical/surgical practice, a health care consultant and on the faculty of UNC’s School of Public Health. Franklin enjoys boating, travel and reading. Born and raised in Chapel Hill, Franklin, his wife, Melanie, and teenage sons, Trey and Paul, and poodle, Fitzgerald, live in Raleigh.

Garry Linton

Director, Marketing and Communications

With the NCMS since 1985

Contact Garry

Garry has worked as a media tech at Pamlico Community College, a Realtor, a stager and home re-designer and co-owner of L & L Sign Company. Lately he is the videographer behind many NCMS videos including the popular “Bowtie Briefing.” Garry has an Associate’s Degree in Commercial Art and Graphic Design from Pitt Community College and a BS in Business Administration from Mt. Olive College. He grew up in Washington, NC. When not at work, you’ll likely find Garry spending time with his grown daughter, McKayla, at the beach, fishing, doing yard work or on his porch swing.

Gail Stephenson

Meeting Coordinator, Specialty Society Meeting Services

With the NCMS since 2020

Contact Gail

Jackie Davis-Jones

Project Manager, Member Services

With the NCMS since 2007

Contact Jackie

Originally from Washington, DC, Jackie moved to Raleigh in her teens. She has worked as a credentialing analyst and is a published author with Life Changing Book Publishing Company. She enjoys writing, reading, shopping and watching football. She’s the proud mother of North Carolina Central University class of 2014 basketball star point guard Emanuel “Poobie” Chapman, III. Jackie enjoys time with her husband, Cleveland Jones, Jr., and if she had long weekend you’d find her someplace tropical.

Joy Avery

Joy N. Avery

Member Services Assistant

With the NCMS since 2000

Contact Joy

Joy grew up in Garner, NC, but if she has a long weekend you’ll most likely find her at Carolina Beach. By day, Joy is the voice you hear when you call the main NCMS phone line; by night she is a prolific and best-selling romance novel writer with some of the highest ratings on Amazon.com. She and her husband have a Pekingnese/Poodle mix named Rocket. Fellow NCMS staff members also know Joy for her cake decorating skills and the delicious cakes she treats us to on special occasions.

 

Katherine Croom

Assistant Director, Finance and Administration

With the NCMS since 2014

Contact Katherine

Before arriving at the NCMS, Katherine served as an accountant at the NC Central Office of Child Support and as a fiscal manager at the NC State University Office of Contracts and Grants. Katherine holds a BS in Accounting from Strayer University. She grew up in Kinston and enjoys traveling, shopping and baking. While she is not a pet person (she’s scared of dogs; allergic to cats and her goldfish died), she does enjoy spending time with her son Preston, who is in the Navy, and her daughter, Aliyah, a college student.

Kelly Wilson

Assistant Director, Business Operations

With the NCMS since 1993

Contact Kelly

Kelly was born in Indiana but spent a good bit of her childhood in Ontario, Canada. This may explain her affinity for hockey – she loves the Carolina Hurricanes. When she’s not at a ‘Canes game, doing yard work, reading or hanging out with her poodle, Carbon, you’ll most likely find Kelly spending time with her daughter, Bailey, and Bailey's husband, Josh, in Wilmington.

Kristen Shipherd

Kristen Shipherd

Director, Marketing & Web Services

With the NCMS since 2002

Contact Kristen

Equipped with a BA in Classical Archaeology and Anthropology and a minor in Art History from George Washington University, Kristen’s career path began with editing field reports for an archaeologist and segued into a job with an art auction house as editor of their lifestyle magazine. At the NCMS, she gives the visual pizzazz to our website and publications, including the NCMS Member Calendar and online Bulletin magazine.

Kristen is the proud mother of daughter -- and recent college grad -- Kaleigh and caretaker of Winnie the rescue pup and three cats (Pixie, Francesca and Joel). She enjoys traveling and exploring new sights with her significant other, John.

Kristen Spaduzzi

Director, Health System Innovation

With the NCMS since April 2017

Contact Kristen

Kristen was born in Hong Kong, but grew up in Marietta, GA and Union City, TN. She earned her BS in Exercise Science and her MS in Sports Management at Middle Tennessee State University. She has worked as a practice manager at UNC Physicians Network and the director of center operations for Lifesigns in Raleigh. Not one to be idle, Kristen got her real estate license while out on maternity leave with her daughter, born in 2013. In her downtime, Kristen does love watching Georgia football, live music, reading and exploring.

 

Kristina Natt och Dag, PhD, MA

Vice President, Leadership Development

With the NCMS since 2014

Contact Kristina:

Email  |  Cell: 919-889-3809

Kristina received her undergraduate and MA degrees in Human Rights from Lund University in Sweden and her Ph.D. in educational research and policy analysis from NC State. At the NCMS she oversees the leadership development activities of the Kanof Institute for Physician Leadership, which includes organizational development services. Her career has taken her all over the world including working with Estee Lauder companies as director of education and development in New York and throughout Europe. Her experience also includes the finance sector as well as non-profit.

She has served as an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the George Washington University and was more recently affiliated with Executive Education at Poole School of Management at North Carolina State University. Kristina, her husband Magnus and their two children, Alexander and Emma, enjoy the beautiful North Carolinian weather, spending time outdoors as a family hiking and boating.

Megan Eberle

Associate Director, Specialty Society Meeting Services

With the NCMS since 2020

Contact Megan

Megan was born in Eugene, Oregon, but grew up in the Raleigh area and remained in North Carolina for her college career. She studied business administration with a concentration in accounting at UNC Wilmington and soon went to work in meeting and event planning with Health-Scripts and BCD M&E on the Pfizer account.

When not spending weekends at numerous specialty society meetings, Megan likes to cook, read, run, go hiking, travel and spend copious amounts of time with her black Lab mix, Shadow, and her family – her parents, two sisters and her niece all live in the Raleigh area.

Pam Highsmith, MEd, CFRE

Vice President, Advancement and Donor Relations

With the NCMS for 17 years

Contact Pam:

Email | Cell: 919-830-4127

Born and raised in Burgaw, NC, Pam earned her BA in Education at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and her M.Ed. at The Citadel. She taught English for six years and was the Executive Director of the Alice Aycock Poe Center for Health Education and a hospice administrator. Pam also has experience as a lifeguard, a bank teller and is handy with a skill saw. When she is not spending time with her large extended family, which includes three siblings and their spouses, 11 nieces and nephews and 20 great nieces and nephews and counting, you’ll likely find Pam swimming, biking, running or cheering on the Tar Heels.

Riaz Mullick

Vice President, Finance and Administration

With the NCMS since 2016

Contact Riaz

Riaz is a Certified Public Accountant, Certified Information Systems Auditor and holds an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh. He spent most of his childhood in New Castle, PA, and began his career at what is now Bank of New York Mellon in Pittsburgh. He has also worked for a Transamerica sub-prime finance joint venture and a non-profit financial institution as well as a Federally Qualified Health Center in North Carolina. When not crunching numbers, Riaz enjoys watching movies (his favorite is Back to the Future) and spending time with his wife, Shireen.

 

Richard Simpson

Director, Member Services 

With the NCMS since 2018

Contact Richard

Richard grew up in Western NC, spending lots of time on his grandmother’s farm in Flat Rock where he learned to garden, care for her many animals and cook classic southern fare. An avid hiker, Richard also enjoys running half marathons and European travel. Richard holds a degree in political science with a concentration in Africana Studies from the University of North Carolina – Asheville. Before coming to the NCMS, Richard served as Director of Member Services for the Western Carolina Medical Society. He brings his skills in serving the physician community in western North Carolina to his position as NCMS Director, Member Services, focusing on members and potential members in the triangle area.

Sue Ann Forrest, MPA

Director, Legislative and Political Action

With the NCMS since 2016

Contact Sue Ann

Sue Ann holds a BA in English and Communication Studies with a minor in Marketing from Campbell University, where she served as Student Government President, Miss Campbell University, and where she is still active as an Alumni Board Member and Student Union Foundations Board Member. She also recently attained her Masters of Public Administration at East Carolina University. In her precious free time she enjoys volunteering as a Scholarship Committee Member for the Miss North Carolina Scholarship Pageant and as a Steering Committee Member for the NC Museum of History Young Associates group. She grew up in Greenville, NC, and when she truly wants to relax, you’ll find her on the beach at the Outer Banks with a good book.