Skip to main content

Food for Life Training Speakers

Dawnyel Pryor

Dawnyel Pryor

Dawnyel Pryor has devoted her entire professional career to helping to save lives and has over 20 years of nonprofit experience. In 2008, she joined the Physicians Committee and currently serves as the Director of Community Education. In this role Dawnyel is responsible for marketing and branding the Food for Life nutrition and cooking class program, the program licensing training, and the licensed instructors and institutions. She oversees the Food for Life program’s strategic direction, corporate partnerships, program design, and the supervision of the 300 licensed instructors and institutions. She also leads culturally competent content creation and partnership development.

Before joining the Physician Committee Dawnyel’s career includes positions at the American Institute for Cancer Research, Children's Defense Fund, and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. 

Dawnyel is also dedicated to philanthropic efforts that support various causes from curing breast cancer to advocating for children with autism spectrum disorder. After losing her sister to ovarian cancer, Dawnyel founded and chaired of the Ovarian Cancer National Alliance’s District of Columbia Junior Advisory Committee. She also served on the board of directors for the Ovarian and Gynecological Cancer Coalition of Greater Washington/Rhonda’s Club. Dawnyel holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Howard University. In her spare time, Dawnyel enjoys hiking with her two children and husband. 

Lorin Harik

Lorin Harik

In 2005, Lorin stumbled into a job as Dr. Barnard’s Assistant. She could not believe her great fortune of finding an entire office of vegans! She was fascinated by the science of nutrition and soon returned to school to complete a Master’s Degree in Health, Exercise Science and Nutrition from Colorado State University. She combined her lifelong love of dance and exercise with her newfound love of nutrition in a successful career in corporate wellness. After having children, Lorin’s passion for promoting plant-based eating became even higher priority and she reconnected with PCRM to help with various projects. She became a Food For Life Instructor in 2019 and now serves as the Food For Life Program Manager. Lorin lives with her family in Denver and loves to snowboard, hike, and make excessive amounts of vegan food.

Jennifer Paul, MPH, RDN

Jennifer Paul, MPH, RDN

Jennifer Paul, MPH, RDN, is the Nutrition Program Coordinator for the Physicians Committee for Responsible. She is a Registered Dietitian with a Master of Public Health in Nutrition from Loma Linda University. She completed her dietetic internship rotation at the Loma Linda Medical Center and public health nutrition internship with the Physicians Committee and the Barnard Medical Center. Jennifer is passionate about diet-related racial health disparities and advocating for healthful, plant-based meals in underserved communities. In her free time, Jennifer enjoys Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, volunteering in the community, hiking, and trying different plant-based cuisines.

Jennifer Adelman

Jennifer Adelman

Jen brings several years of marketing and project management experience to her role as Nutrition Marketing Coordinator with PCRM. She earned a master’s degree in nutrition education from American University, and previously, a bachelor’s degree in business management from Gettysburg College. She also has a certification in plant-based nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies at Cornell University. 

Jen fervently believes that whole plant foods are the remedy for a lot of problems. When she’s not grocery shopping or trying new recipes, she is most likely adventuring with her family, power walking, or singing along with the local rooster.

Shireen Kassam, MD, PhD

Shireen Kassam

Dr. Kassam is a Consultant Haematologist and Honorary Senior Lecturer at King’s College Hospital, London with a specialist interest in the treatment of patients with lymphoma. She is also passionate about promoting plant-based nutrition for the prevention and reversal of chronic diseases and for maintaining optimal health after treatment for cancer.

 Shireen qualified as a medical doctor in 2000, initially training in general medicine, and gaining Membership of the Royal College of Physicians (MRCP; 2003). She then specialised in Haematology and achieved Fellowship of the Royal College of Pathologists (FRCPath; 2008). During training, she took time out to undertake a PhD (University of London, 2011). Her research investigated the role of selenium, an essential micronutrient, in sensitising cancer cells to chemotherapy. She was able to show that supra-nutritional doses of selenium could enhance the action of chemotherapy in the laboratory. She has published a number of peer-reviewed papers in the field of lymphoma.

Shireen discovered the power of nutrition for the prevention and treatment of disease in 2013 and since then has been following a whole food plant-based diet. She has completed the eCornell certification in plant-based nutrition and in 2019 she became certified as a Lifestyle Medicine Physician by the International Board of Lifestyle Medicine. She is also a certified CHIP (Complete Health Improvement Program) practitioner.

 Shireen founded Plant-based health professionals UK in 2017, a community interest group dedicated to providing education and advocacy on whole food plant-based nutrition. Since then she has been appointed as Visiting Professor of Plant-Based Nutrition at Winchester University where she has developed and facilitates the UK’s only University-based, CPD-accredited course on plant-based nutrition for healthcare professionals.  In January 2021, Shireen co-founded and launched the UK’s first regulated, online, plant-based lifestyle medicine healthcare service, Plant Based Health Online (plantbasedhealthonline.com).

Alan Desmond, MB, BCh, BAO, BMedSc, MRCPI, FRCP

Alan Desmond

Dr. Desmond is a consultant gastroenterologist who is dedicated to educating the public on the health benefits of a whole food, plant-based diet. He has made evidence-based dietary advice an essential part of his practice as a doctor specializing in gut health problems. He has presented at numerous international conferences and is an ambassador for Plant-Based Health Professionals UK, a non-profit group that educates members of the public, health professionals, and policymakers on the incredible health benefits of a plant-based diet. In the spring of 2020, he suspended his practice as a gastroenterologist to work on his hospital’s coronavirus unit, witnessing first-hand the devastating effects of this new disease on his patients.

Certified in both gastroenterology and general internal medicine, Dr. Desmond completed his specialist training in Ireland and Oxford. He has a specialist interest in the role of diet in the prevention and treatment of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. A member of the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland, and a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, London, he has published several influential research papers in the field of inflammatory bowel disease and is a dedicated advocate for the gut health benefits, and overall health benefits, of a whole food, plant-based approach to nutrition. 

He shares his plant-based meals alongside the latest research in nutritional science and health on Instagram @dr.alandesmond. His research publications can be accessed at www.researchgate.net/profile/Alan_Desmond/publications.

His new book, The Plant-Based Diet Revolution: 28 Days to a Happier Gut and a Healthier You, is available wherever books are sold. Find Dr Desmond on Instagram @dr.alandesmond 

Or join his online course The Gut Health Revolution at alandesmond.com/revolution

Michael Greger, MD

Michael Greger, MD

A founding member and Fellow of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, Michael Greger, MD, is a physician, New York Times bestselling author, and internationally recognized speaker on nutrition, food safety, and public health issues.  He has lectured at the Conference on World Affairs, testified before Congress, and was invited as an expert witness in the defense of Oprah Winfrey in the infamous “meat defamation” trial. In 2017, Dr. Greger was honored with the ACLM Lifestyle Medicine Trailblazer Award. He is a graduate of Cornell University School of Agriculture and Tufts University School of Medicine. Dr. Greger has authored multiple books, including “How Not to Die”, which became an instant New York Times Best Seller. He has videos on more than 2,000 health topics freely available at NutritionFacts.org, with new videos and articles uploaded every day. All proceeds he receives from his books, DVDs, and speaking engagements is all donated to charity.

Kristi Funk, MD, FACS

Dr. Kristi Funk

Kristi Funk, MD, is board-certified breast cancer surgeon and physician, bestselling author, international keynote speaker and women’s health advocate. Dr. Funk practices as a breast cancer surgeon at the Pink Lotus Breast Center in Los Angeles, where she excels as an expert in minimally invasive diagnostic and treatment methods for all types of breast disease. She has helped thousands of women through breast cancer treatment, including well-known celebrities, like Angelina Jolie and Sheryl Crow. As an ambassador and avid contributor to the Pink Lotus Power Up community, Dr. Funk hosts the Cancer-Kicking! PowWow podcast, the Cancer-Kicking! Kitchen, and frequently authors Breast Cancer 101 blogs and provides instructional videos on breast health. Her extensive nutritional science research caused her to expand the passion for her medical practice with the life-empowering Cancer-Kicking! Summit which teaches women (and men) how to maximally reduce their chances of facing cancer or any other controllable killer disease.

Kim A. Williams, Sr, MD, MACC, FAHA, MASNC, FESC

Kim Williams, MD

Dr. Williams is chief of the division of cardiology at Rush University and specializes in cardiology, prevention, and cardiac imaging. His current professional focus is on preventive cardiology, specializing in synthesizing data on cardiovascular risk and mortality due to nutrition. 

He has served on numerous national committees and boards including serving as the President of the American College of Cardiology, President of the American Society of Nuclear Cardiology, and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Association of Black Cardiologists. He is also the founder of the Urban Cardiology Initiative in Detroit, Michigan to reduce ethnic heart care disparities, and continues community-based efforts in Chicago at Rush. He has become a nationally and internationally recognized speaker, including more than 200 publications, online resources, movies and lectures on the topic of cardio nutrition.   

Karen A. Mills, JD, RDN, LD

Karen A. Mills, JD, RDN, LD

Karen A. Mills JD RDN LD is a dietitian and the founder of The Healthy Culture LLC. Karen draws from her background in acute care and as a lecturer on food pathways of diverse cultures to provide resources that empower people to develop their unique Healthy Culture, a sustainable approach to nutrition that considers family traditions, culture, health concerns, and budget. In addition to individual counseling, Karen writes, speaks, and develops plant-forward recipes. When she’s not hard at work at her home office in Oregon, you can find Karen hiking or eating her way around the world.

Anthony Dissen, MPH, MA, RDN, CPH

Anthony Dissen, MPH, MA, RDN, CPH

Anthony Dissen, MPH, MA, RDN, CPH, is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist focusing in public health, plant-based nutrition, and lifestyle medicine. Anthony is currently a professor at Stockton University in Galloway, NJ, in the School of Health Sciences, and in 2018, Anthony was thrilled to join the telemedicine company WellStart Health, Inc, as their Vice President of Nutrition. Anthony has earned a Master of Arts degree in Holistic Health Studies at Georgian Court University, a Master of Public Health Degree from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, with a focus in Public Health Nutrition, and completed the Certificate Program in Plant-Based Nutrition through Cornell University in 2015. Currently, he is a doctoral student in the EdD in Organizational Leadership program at Stockton University. Anthony is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and is a member of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, the New Jersey Public Health Association, and the New Jersey Society for Public Health Education. Anthony has also been able to share his scholarly work at a number of conferences including the Food and Nutrition Conference & Exposition, American College of Sports Medicine Greater New York Area Annual Conference, the Jersey Society for Public Health Education Annual Meeting, the American Public Health Association Annual Meeting, and the Association of Schools of Allied Health Professionals Annual Conference.