The Brevard Parkinson’s Alliance (BPA) serves all of Brevard County and is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, funded by donations, sponsorships, and fundraisers.
One mission…serve those challenged with Parkinson’s Disease, their caregivers, and families.
Our non-profit is guided by the Brevard Parkinson’s Alliance Board of Advisors, composed of individuals with Parkinson’s, Parkinson’s caregivers, and associated professionals from the area.
We are extremely grateful for the support by several organizations and businesses, who have joined us in supporting the greater Brevard Parkinson’s Community. Please consider thanking and supporting them as they work with us for this cause.
Do you have a program or resource focus towards those with Parkinson’s and their families? Reach out to us, we are always looking to expand the pool of resources for our community.
Jerry is a retired USN Captain who moved to Florida in 2006 to join the Naval Ordinance Test Unit. When he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease, he wanted to be able to give back to the community. He became active with the one of the Parkinson Support Groups and then was asked to sit on the Brevard Parkinson’s Advisory Board. Jerry is able to contribute real life experience with the disease and how it not only affects him but his life partner. Together they are reaching out to the community to help educate and support others.
Russ joined the Board in 2021. He’s the Co-Director and Coach of T’ville Uppercut Rock Steady Boxing in Titusville, Florida. A graduate of University of Central Florida, he served 26 years in the U.S. Air Force as a B-52 Pilot and as an International Area Specialist, serving in four different embassies. In 2003, he retired as a Colonel and relocated to Titusville in 2019. He is married to Diane, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2017; they have 5 children and 13 grand children
Bridget is a Senior Clinical Home Health Specialist who works with CenterWell Home Health. She has thirty years’ experience assisting seniors to recover from acute, chronic illnesses and surgical recovery in their homes with Skilled Nurses, Physical, Occupational, Speech Therapists, Medical Social Workers and Home Health Aides.
Nicole Knights is a doctor of physical therapy in Melbourne, Florida. She is from Cocoa Beach, Florida. Nicole received her Bachelor of Science degree in Kinesiology with a Human Movement Science Concentration from Louisiana State University in 2014 while playing Division 1 Women’s soccer. She went on and received her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences in 2018, graduating with high honors. Nicole had the opportunity to take advanced manual therapy classes while in physical therapy school and is now certified in PWR (Parkinson’s Wellness and Recovery) for Parkinson’s Disease. She enjoys spending time with her husband Tom, son Oliver and their dog Archie.
Born and raised in Brevard County, Chris has been a member of the Brevard Parkinson’s Alliance Board of Advisors since 2010. With service in the healthcare industry for over 16 years, Chris is currently the Director of Business Development for Home Health Care of Florida, a local home health care agency providing skilled care as well as private duty services. He is married with three children.
Barbara is a Social Worker and a Certified Care Manager and has worked with the Parkinson’s Community since 2016. She joined the Alliance in 2017 as a consultant and assisted with events and support for the families. Barbara facilitates a Parkinson Support Group monthly at One Senior Place and speaks in the community on Parkinson’s Disease. Barbara’s goal is to reach as many people with Parkinson’s and help them through the journey.
Janice is the owner and head coach of Rock Steady Boxing at Advance Fitness in Melbourne since 2018. Janice has worked as a physical therapist assistant for over 20 years and a certified personal trainer for over 6 years. She has been a caretaker for her father who had Parkinson’s Disease and has worked with many other PD patients over the years. Janice has a A.S. degree in Physical Therapy Assistant and holds certifications as a personal trainer and head coach for Rock Steady Boxing. She became a member of the Brevard Parkinson’s Alliance in 2020 and a board member in 2021. Janice loves being able to continue so much of what she did in physical therapy and seeing the amazing changes in the lives of the people who participate in Rock Steady Boxing.
Ron Gerson serves as Scientific Advisor to the Brevard Parkinson’s Alliance. He has spent more than 30 years in pharmaceutical research and development helping to advance various drugs through the development process. Ron has a doctorate in Toxicology from the University of Rochester, and a Master’s in Pharmacology from University of Maryland. He served as President of the Brevard Parkinson’s Alliance from 2019 to 2021. Ron holds a unique perspective on Parkinson’s treatments as he has Parkinson’s himself and is a major advocate for the role of exercise in the overall treatment of the disease. He is “semi-retired” running a successful consulting practice advising pharmaceutical companies on the nonclinical development of products in their pipelines.
MS, BCBA, CDP, CMDCP, CADDCT
Deidra is the Director of Education and Outreach for the Brevard Alzheimer's Foundation. She has almost 10 years of clinical experience and a M.S. in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and Organizational Behavior Management (OBM). Her background is in nonpharmacological interventions to challenging behaviors and caregiver/staff training. Deidra was a caregiver to her grandfather, Paul, who was treated for Parkinson’s Disease for several years before passing away from complications related to dementia.