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The Sickle Cell Association of Kentuckiana, Inc. (SCAK) is a tax-exempt not-for-profit organization that provides education, support, and advocacy for individuals with sickle cell disease and their families.

SCAK is dedicated to increasing awareness of this disease and supporting endeavors that assure prompt and appropriate medical care. Our target audience, however, is not limited to those personally affected by sickle cell. Our mission encompasses educating the lay community as well as the medical community about the disease and resources available.

SCAK, founded in October 2000, has been an advocate and resource for patients and families throughout Kentucky and Southern Indiana. Thus far, this has been achieved through support groups, community outreach opportunities, and efforts to establish a comprehensive Sickle Cell Center of Excellence.

SCAK currently has approximately 50 members and is continuing to grow. The University of Louisville Medical Student Sickle Cell Project (MSSCP), in collaboration with Dr. Suzanne Ildstad and the Institute for Cellular Therapeutics (ICT), are founding members of SCAK and have been consistently involved with the association since its inception. A strategic plan is in place for the growth and development of SCAK’s success.

One major goal is to establish a comprehensive Sickle Cell Center of Excellence and to build the infrastructure to support that program. The center of excellence will provide comprehensive psychological, social, and medical care to patients and families affected by the disease. The existence of SCAK in establishing a network of communication throughout Kentuckiana to provide information to individuals and families living with sickle cell disease is a critical supporting component of this initiative. The Board of Directors and general membership continue to work toward securing the future of this exceptional organization. The establishment of SCAK played a major role in helping UofL to become one of ten designated National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded Sickle Cell Centers in the United States (4/1/03).

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Board members


Rebecca Seavers

President & Director


Phone: (502) 338-0102


Jennifer Reid

Executive VP


Phone: (502) 338-0102


Carey Payne



Percy Thornton

Senior Vice President & Community Engagement Director


Phone: (502) 767-2260


Jessica McDowell 

Director of the Star Program


Phone: (502) 876-1108

Committee members


Shanta Stell

Community Engagement


Jean Whitt

Community Engagement


Jalen Matthews

Community Engagement


Tara Sadler

Assistant Community Engagement Director 

Get in touch

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