Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Wayne State University School of Medicine Rabbi Elimelech Goldberg, who holds a First Degree Black Belt in the Korean art of Choi Kwon Do, first provided a therapeutic martial arts program at Camp Simcha, where he served as the Director from 1990 to 2002. Having lost his first child to leukemia at the age of 2 years, Rabbi Goldberg brings a wealth of personal experience and sensitivity to dealing with children and families facing life-threatening illness. His commitment to ease the pain of very sick children and his dream of bringing healing through the empowering focus of the martial arts resulted in the creation of the Kids Kicking Cancer organization in June, 1999. Rabbi Goldberg, was a recipient of the Robert Wood Johnson Community Health Leader's Award (2004) and the McCarty Cancer Foundation's Humanitarian of the Year Award (2004). He is a Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Wayne State University School of Medicine. Rabbi Goldberg received his BA from Yeshiva University, summa cum laude. Ordination and graduate training were also at Yeshiva University.
Dr. Bluth received his Doctor of Philosophy (Immunology) from SUNY Health Science Center at Brooklyn in 1997 and his Doctor of Medicine in 1999. He is Board Certified in Clinical Pathology/Laboratory Medicine and in Blood Banking/Transfusion Medicine. Dr Bluth is currently Professor of Pathology and Director of Translational Research at Wayne State School of Medicine and Director of the Transfusion Service at Children's Hospital of Michigan, an affiliate of the Detroit Medical Center Hospital system in Detroit Michigan, USA. He has over 25 years experience in the martial arts (karate, kenpo, weaponry, tai-chi, chi-gung) and holds the rank of Sho Dan (Black Belt). He has co-authored over 200 manuscripts, book chapters, presentations and manuscripts and been the recipient of numerous awards in medical research, entrepreneurship and industry.
Marc has been with Kids Kicking Cancer for 9 years in various positions. He is currently Chief Financial Officer and is responsible for the day-to-day business operations of Kids Kicking Cancer. Marc holds a degree in Business Administration with a major in Accounting from Wayne State University in Detroit, MI. Marc and his wife Miriam live in Oak Park, MI with their six children.
Cindy Cohen holds a Master of Science in Child Life from Wheelock College in Boston, MA, with an undergraduate degree in Psychology from the University of Michigan. Cindy has also earned a Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management and Leadership from Lawrence Tech University. She is a Certified Child Life Specialist, and has worked in the field of pediatric healthcare for over 25 years, helping children and families understand and cope with illness, hospitalization and loss.
Master Plowden is a 6th degree Black Belt and a five-time martial arts world champion. He brings over 30 years of martial arts experience and teaching to the Kids Kicking Cancer family. Richard has a Bachelors’s degree in Public Administration from Grand Valley State University and is the owner of Plowden’s Championship Martial Arts. He serves as well as an Adjunct Instructor at the University of Michigan, Dearborn.
Rob is the Kids Kicking Cancer Boston Program Coordinator. He earned his Black Belt (1st Dan) in ITF Taekwondo and is currently studying Kenpo under Grand Master Joe Esposito. He has a B.S. in Human Factors Engineering from Tufts University and MBA from the University of Massachusetts at Boston. Rob's professional experience extends the fields of Rehabilitation Engineering, Information Systems, and Non-Profit/Youth Organization Leadership – having served 8 years as the Executive Director of a Jewish overnight camp. Rob lives in Sudbury, MA with wife Marjie and daughters Marissa (19) and Jenna (15).
Bruce Rush is a doctor of psychology and a licensed clinical psychologist in California. A black belt in karate, Bruce has over 25 years of martial arts experience. Bruce received his undergraduate degree from Columbia University, and his master's and doctoral degrees from Pepperdine University. In addition to serving as California program director and martial arts therapist for Kids Kicking Cancer, Bruce is the Director of Clinical Training at Bienvenidos, a community mental health center providing services to children, adolescents and their families.
Joel joined the Kids Kicking Cancer family after a 30-year career in both finance and teaching, and has earned black belts in two different martial arts. He holds a 2nd degree black belt in American Kenpo karate and a 3rd degree in Kyusho Jitsu. He also brings a wealth of experience in leadership roles with various charitable organizations and a passion for helping others.
Andrew currently teaches with the Gainesville Kids Kicking Cancer program. Andrew had already been implementing the tools of mindfulness and meditation in his own life and martial arts practice when he joined Kids Kicking Cancer. Andrew practices the martial art taijiquan, popularly known in the United States as Tai Chi. Taijiquan is a style of kung fu that emphasizes softness, flow, and the power of listening. It is often practiced slowly and gently so that the whole body and mind become more connected throughout the practice.