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GBS/CIDP Foundation International Appoints Patricia A. Bryant as Executive Director

NARBERTH, Pa., June 17 /PRNewswire/ -- The GBS/CIDP Foundation International, the only non-profit organization dedicated to serving patients afflicted with Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS), Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy (CIDP) and variants, announced the appointment of Patricia A. Bryant to the position of Executive Director effective as of May 2009. Patricia succeeds Estelle L. Benson, who along with her husband, Robert Benson, founded the volunteer organization in 1980 after Robert was stricken with GBS. As a Founding Director, Estelle will continue to serve the organization as a consultant.

Since Patricia's recovery from Guillain-Barre Syndrome in 2003, she has served the Foundation as Chapter Liaison, Regional Director and has served on the Board of Directors since 2005.

Patricia has a B.A. degree from St. Francis College and an M.A. from New York University. She began her professional career as a teacher and educational administrator, and has also worked with troubled youth in New York developing and establishing educational, job training, employment, and health care programs. Prior to being appointed Executive Director of the Foundation, Patricia was an investor relations professional.

About the GBS/CIDP Foundation International:

GBS is an inflammatory disorder of the peripheral nerves and is characterized by the rapid onset of weakness and often paralysis of the legs, arms, breathing muscles and face. GBS can develop in persons of any age. CIDP is a rare disorder of the peripheral nerves with weakness occurring over two or more months and is characterized by gradually increasing weakness of the legs and, to a lesser extent, the arms. It is caused by damage to the covering of the nerves called myelin.

The Foundation was founded in 1980 by Robert and Estelle Benson to assist GBS patients and their families. A non-profit volunteer organization, it is dedicated to supporting patients and families through its national office and 174 chapters with more than 30,000 members around the globe. In addition to education of the public and medical communities, the Foundation is dedicated to funding medical research and supporting patient advocacy.

    For further information, contact:
    Patricia A. Bryant
    Executive Director
    (610) 667-0131
    (866) 224-3301 (Toll free)

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