Compassionate Team

Rachelle Welch, Program Director

Rachelle Welch

 As a Health Fitness Professional, Rachelle has over 20 years experience of exercise programming for people with chronic illness.  Her passion is evident in her uplifting attitude and dedication.

Ralais Harper, Director of Special Needs

image45

Ralais has been working as a Health Fitness Professional for nearly 20 years.  His creativity and innovative approach enable people of all ability levels to reach goals once thought unattainable.

Douglas Sorensen, Community Outreach

Douglas Sorensen

As a Health Fitness Professional and Licensed Chemical Dependent Counselor, Douglas expands the definition of Wellness by addressing collateral issues including addiction.  His expanded approach ensures success by addressing the body, mind, and spirit.

Will Osburg, Professional Health Trainer

Will Osburg

With a background in a variety of eastern traditions including Tai Chi, Qigong, Yoga, and Traditional Chinese Medicine, Will integrates a holistic approach into the pursuit of Wellness.  Practicing what he preaches, Will is a true leader by example.

Nancy Galarza, Professional Health Trainer

image46

Having experienced health challenges first hand, Nancy has an unequivocal enthusiasm to help others in their pursuit of Wellness.  She was assigned a mountain to show others it can be moved. 

Amber Black, Nutritional Coach

image47

Amber is a GBO Pro Athlete, IFBB Figure Pro and Figure Universe Pro Champion, AADP Board Certified Practitioner and Health/ Nutritional Coach.   Her solid approach for Wellness includes discipline, focus, research, sacrifice, nutrition, exercise, dietary supplementation, and a combination of traditional and alternative medicine. 

Leadership and Development

Danielle Sampey, Executive Director

image48

Founder and Director, Danielle is dedicated to the development and deliverance of a successful Wellness Program to empower Houston's community challenged with chronic illness/condition.  Recognizing that Lazarus House has created a prototype for future health systems, she is driven to share outcomes with the medical community.

Deborah Grotfeldt, Director of Development

image49

With a history of serving as the Executive Director of Project Row Houses, a nonprofit she co-founded, Deborah has significant experience in developing and strengthening nonprofits to realize their full capacity.  Her professionalism, and positive, forward thinking grows strong and successful relationships. 

Board of Directors

image50

Danielle Mulvihill, Board Chair

Central Bank, AVP Branch Operations Manager

David Gooding, Vice President

Nordstrom, Retired

Kimberly Sparrow, Treasurer

grotfeldt + sparrow, Partner

Stacey Batiste, Secretary

 Cheniere, Manager, Organizational Effectiveness Change Management 

Ralais Harper, Member

Lazarus House, Director of Special Needs

Jaime Tellez, JR., Member

Jaime Tellez, JR and Associates, Attornery at Law

Jerry Callaway, Member

Legacy Community Health, VP of Projects

Medical Advisory Committee

Wendy Brown

image51

 Wendy is a physical therapist who received her doctorate at The University of Saint Augustine in August 2007. She works at TIRR Memorial Hermann of which is a specialty hospital for a wide range of complex neurological illnesses and injuries. There she works closely with an interdisciplinary team to provide comprehensive medical and physical rehabilitation.  

Dr. Sayed Feghali

image52

 Dr. Feghali is Board Certified in Cardiology and Interventional Cardiology, and he has been practicing medicine in the Houston Medical Center since 1984.  He is a fellow of the American College of Cardiology and is the primary consulting cardiologist of the Liver Trasplantation Board.  He is a clinical associate professor in internal medicine and cardiology at the Baylor College of Medicine.   

Jordyn Forsyth, MS, RD, LD, CDE

image53

 Jordyn Forsyth is a Registered Dietitian (RD) and Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE). She completed the certificate for Adult Weight Management Level 2 and received the Recognized Young Dietitian of the Year Award in 2014. She currently serves as President of the Houston Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Jordyn focuses on debunking nutrition myths and diet fads, while teaching people how to eat real, healthy foods in a manner that is scientifically proven to prevent disease and improve wellbeing. Her passion is assisting others to feel healthier, live healthier and to embrace the many wonderful benefits of eating great tasting, nourishing foods.  

Dr. Jose Garcia

image54

 Dr. Jose Garcia, MD, is an Associate Professor Medicine-Endocrinology Baylor College of Medicine in Houston.  His professional interests include muscle wasting and cachexia, Ghrelin and GF/IGF-1 axis, and testosterone and hypogonadism.  His current research focuses on the role of ghrelin and other anabolic pathways in different wasting conditions. His group is currently involved in several human trials using different anabolic therapies for the treatment of wasting as well as in the development of different animal models to unravel the physiology of wasting and the mechanisms of action of different potential therapies.  

Dr. Chad Lemaire

image55

 Chad Lemaire, MD, is a staff psychiatrist and Associate Medical Director of Behavioral Health at Legacy Community Health Services. After working as a pediatric nurse, mainly in oncology, Dr. Lemaire attended medical school at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. After deciding to pursue a career in psychiatry, he completed his psychiatric residency training at BCM as well. Dr. Lemaire has received numerous awards over the years, but he prefers to be known for his passion for caring for a diverse population of people who often have difficulty accessing health care. A lifelong proponent of physical, mental, and spiritual health, he has a strong belief in the importance of regular exercise in improving quality of life and overall health.  

Dr. Michelle Ludwig

image56

 Dr. Ludwig is an Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology at the Baylor College of Medicine and treats patients at the Smith Clinic as part of the Harris Health System.  She received her Medical Degree and Master of Public Health degree from Emory University, completed residency in general radiation oncology at MD Anderson and has a Ph.D. in epidemiology from The University of Texas School of Public Health at Houston.   Her practice consists of primarily breast, cervical, and endometrial cancer, and her research interests include cancer prevention, health education and clinical trials focusing on health disparities in the underserved population.  Currently, Dr. Ludwig is researching treatment options for cervical cancer patients who are too sick to receive standard of care therapy.  She volunteers at Casa El Buen Samaritano and is a proponent of treating the whole patient: mind, body, and spirit. 

Dr. Yi-Ping Li

image57

Yi-Ping Li, Ph.D., is a faculty member at UTHealth Medical School.  Since 1996 his research has been focusing on skeletal muscle metabolism, including the mechanisms of cachexia and muscle regeneration.  He has been the primary investigator on 4 R01 grants from the National Institute of Health in addition to research grants from the American Heart Association and American Lung Association.  He is specialized in the study of cachexia associated with such diseases as cancer, sepsis, diabetes and COPD.  

Scott Read, RPh

image58

 Scott Read, RPh has been a pharmacist in Houston for 25 years. After coming to Houston to attend University of Houston's College of Pharmacy he fell in love with the vibrant city and stayed. Currently the Pharmacy Manager at the Legacy Clinic in Montrose he is very active in various charities and organizations but focuses on health related causes.  

Dr. Shannon Schrader

image59

 Dr. Shannon Schrader is a Primary Care Physician currently in private practice in Houston and also serves as Medical Director at the TAN Clinic in Beaumont; a federally funded clinic that serves HIV affected patients and primary care needs of patients in the Beaumont area.  He also volunteers at Legacy Community Health Services Clinic on a weekly basis.  Dr. Schrader's passion in Medicine is the care of those impacted by HIV  and as his patients live longer, he has shifted his focus to the overall well being of patients by empowering them to live smarter and to engage themselves in a wellness program with exercise and nutrition. 

Dr. Sandra Scurria

image60

M. Sandra Scurria, MD is a board certified Family Practice physician who has been in private practice for over 30 years. She sees a diverse group of patients but has a special interest in women’s health.  Currently she is affiliated with MDVIP and has a concierge style practice.  She focuses on wellness, and health and taking a proactive approach to preventing illness. She enjoys spending time with her patients and getting to know them. She believes working together as a partner with each individual patient is the best way to deliver comprehensive and personalized care to her patients. 

Nelson Vergel

image61

 

Nelson Vergel is a chemical engineer who, by his own necessity, has become a leading advocate for sports nutrition, supplementation, hormone and therapies, and the promotion of wellness. His search for cutting-edge health  knowledge started when he was diagnosed with HIV over 25 years ago during a hopeless era. This life-threatening diagnosis propelled him to explore therapies to save his life and that of his peers by reviewing available literature, attending numerous health conferences, becoming an advocate member of NIH research committees, moderating online groups, and networking with many progressive clinicians. With his survival knowledge he has been able  to help people to lead a healthy life regardless of their health status or background. He is the author of "Testosterone:  A Man' Guide" and co-author of the book "Built to Survive"; the founder of the nonprofit organizations Body Positive Wellness Clinic and "Program for Wellness Restoration"; the Nutrtion and Exercise forum expert at TheBody.com; and a bilingual speaker on body composition, exercise, nutrition, supplementation, testosterone replacement, metabolic disorders, and medication side effect management. His latest project,ExcelMale.com, provides a trusted exchange platform for men's health in a moderated and curated environment.