Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America (MGFA)

Empowering Volunteers


The Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America (MGFA) was operating with strained resources that inhibited investment in important programs. After two unsuccessful management firms fell short of delivering the strategic thinking and operational quality required, MGFA reached out to Kellen to help them restructure the organization, develop fundraising, and increase awareness of Myasthenia Gravis (MG).


Kellen led MGFA’s leadership through a complete strategic review, resulting in a new mission statement, goals, and strategic priorities. Notably, we facilitated transparent discussions with chapters and provided guidance on MGFA’s future decision making and organizational structure. Kellen worked closely with volunteer leaders to create and implement a national communications program to raise visibility about the disease among the public. We focused on leveraging online movements, such as #IHaveHeardofMG, to create a national fundraising program, developing a stronger relationship with the National Health Council, designing new newsletters and brochures, and improving the quality of events. By targeting specific subsets within the MG community, rather than talking to the MG community as a whole, and by revising the PR Toolkit and tutorial webinar, local volunteers became more empowered to spread the word and awareness of MG grew substantially.


  • Raised public support budget from $600,000 in 2009 to $1.6 million in 2017
  • Instituted MG Awareness Month and the MG Walk program, greatly expanding awareness of MGFA and increasing donations by more than 29%
  • Increased attendance at the MGFA national patient conference by 81%
  • Collaborated with the New York Academy of Sciences to produce the International Conference on MG and related diseases. This program runs every 5 years and is attended by leading clinicians and investigators in the MG arena.
  • Expanded patient service programs by instituting the new MG Friends peer to peer support program and growing the Support Groups program by 8%