Update: Event Postponed

Out of an abundance of caution for public health and safety, the Epilepsy Foundation is postponing the 2020 Pipeline Conference, Shark Tank, and Community Day, previously scheduled for March 12-14 in Santa Clara, California. These three days gather together hundreds of international epilepsy experts, innovators, and families. As a health-focused organization, we made this difficult decision in light of the many unknowns about the rapidly changing COVID-19 situation in the conference region itself and around the globe.

We understand the disappointment and difficulties this may cause. Our considerations while reaching this decision include confirmed community spread in Santa Clara County and the number of international attendees, some of whom have needed to cancel.

We wanted to get this news out as soon as possible to allow enough time for changes to travel plans. Our intent is to reimburse all registration fees by March 31. We encourage everyone to contact their airlines. Many airlines are adjusting their policies and fees now. Talk to your travel desk about reimbursement. If you have any questions, please email Pipeline@efa.org.

Plans are already underway for how these meetings will be rescheduled. Our goal is to host them later this year.

Continue checking this webpage, as well as our social media and e-newsletter for updates. 

Thank you for your understanding and support. We’ll be in touch again soon.

Your Voice, Your Day

Every two years, the Epilepsy Foundation hosts a one-day educational conference dedicated to people with epilepsy, their families and friends, and community supporters. Community Day is a day of learning, support, and networking with peers, providers and partners. Community Day occurs immediately after the Epilepsy Foundation Pipeline Conference.

Tentative Conference Agenda

Times are pacific standard time (PST).

Breakfast and Registration – 7:30-8:30 A.M.

Welcome and Introductions – 8:30-8:40 A.M.

  • Tony Zucker, Board Chair, Epilepsy Foundation of Northern California
  • Robert Smith, Interim CEO, Epilepsy Foundation

The Epilepsy Experience – 8:40-9:00 A.M.

  • Jessica Veach, Communications Manager, Epilepsy Foundation of Alaska and Washington
  • Preston Reilly PhD, Program Manager, Old Dominion University's Dean of Students Office

Understanding How Epilepsy Causes and Type Help Predict Outcome and Comorbidities – 9:00-9:20 A.M.

  • Elaine Wirrell MD, Director of Pediatric Epilepsy, Mayo Clinic and Co-Editor in Chief of Epilepsy.com

Treating Epilepsy: What Works and What's Next? – 9:20-10:30 A.M.

Moderator: Ilene Penn Miller BS, JD, LLM, Co-Founder & Past President, Hope for Hypothalamic Hamartomas


  • Jeff Buchhalter MD, PhD, Co-Principal Investigator of the Epilepsy Learning Healthcare System
  • Jacqueline French MD, Chief Medical Innovation Officer, Epilepsy Foundation
  • Charles Kilbourne MPA, Board Member, Epilepsy Foundation of Northern California
  • Miles Levin, Filmmaker
  • Nicole Murray, Corporate Philanthropy Officer, Epilepsy Foundation
  • Sylvia Olvera MD, General Neurologist, Kaiser Permanente
  • Peter Weber MD, Neurosurgeon, Sutter Health

Break – 10:30-10:45 A.M.

Genes and Epilepsy: Understanding the Basics – 10:45-11:40 A.M.

  • Elaine Wirrell MD, Director of Pediatric Epilepsy, Mayo Clinic and Co-Editor in Chief of Epilepsy.com
  • Shannon Abdul Wahab BSW, BA, MA, Epilepsy Foundation Orange County
  • Kim Nye, President and Co-Founder, TESS Research Foundation

SUDEP Knowledge is Power – 11:40 A.M.-12:30 P.M.

What is SUDEP? What can you do to minimize risk? Organizations to support SUDEP.

  • Sam Lhatoo MD, FRCP, UT Health
  • Libby and Victor Boyce, The Cameron Boyce Foundation
  • Sally Schaeffer, Senior Director, SUDEP Institute, Epilepsy Foundation

Lunch – 12:30 P.M.-1:30 P.M.

Afternoon Break Out Sessions – 1:40 P.M.-3:00 P.M.

Breakout 1: Transitions in Life Guided through Wellness: Children and Youth

  • ​The Early Years from Toddlers to Tweens
  • Gaining Independence and Goal Setting
    • Mimi Callanan RN, MSN, ACNS-BC, Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, Stanford University
  • Roundtable Discussions

Breakout 2: Transitions in Life Guided through Wellness: Young Adults and Older Adults

  • ​Life's Twists and Turns (25-55)
    • Sandra Dewar PhD, RN, FAES, Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, University of California Los Angeles
  • Aging with Epilepsy (Older adults 55+)
    • Elaine T. Kiriakopoulos MD, MSc, National Director of Health Communications and Engagement, Epilepsy Foundation
  • Roundtable Discussion

Break and Room Switch – 3:00-3:10 P.M.

Getting Involved and Making Change – 3:10-4:00 P.M.

Moderator: Jon Scheinman, Senior Director of Community Engagement, Epilepsy Foundation


  • Rebekkah Halliwell, Executive Director, Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Los Angeles
  • Jon Scheinman, Senior Director of Community Engagement, Epilepsy Foundation
  • Alison Kukla MPH, Program Manager for National Programs and Services, Epilepsy Foundation
  • Miles Levin, Filmmaker

Reception – 4:00-4:30 P.M.

Thank You to Our Sponsors

Thank you for your support to make the 2020 Epilepsy Foundation Community Day a successful event and your commitment to the epilepsy community.

Authored By: 
Epilepsy Foundation Communications
Authored Date: