The woman who walked in the door and changed everything

| Steve Bieler
Editor's note: In honor of Women's History Month, we're bringing you stories of the women who shaped NPF's past. 
Even though Sherith L. “Sheri” Decker was raising a family and managing her severe psoriasis, she found the time and energy to join NPF’s Board of Directors in 1975. In 1980, she also joined the Board of Trustees and by 1983 had been that body’s vice president and president.
A decade of continuous involvement with NPF might’ve been enough for most people, but not Sheri Decker. In 1987 she became a full-time NPF employee. Here are just a few accomplishments from her two decades on staff:
  • Edited the Bulletin from 1987 until its redesign as the magazine Psoriasis Advance in 2003
  • Developed fundraising and outreach tools
  • Played a major role in creating the first world conference of the International Federation of Psoriasis Associations in 2006
  • Developed our first patient education program 
  • Created our first sustained support group program for patients 
  • Supervised the first physician outreach program, providing patient education booklets for dermatology offices
  • Set up our first website in 1996 (working with volunteer Edward Reiss)
“Sheri had exceptional writing and graphics skills that were informed by her own experience of having psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis, and that gave a unique depth and appeal to the Foundation’s communications,” says former NPF President and CEO Gail Zimmerman, whose own tenure at NPF lasted 28 years. “She was a critical person to the success of the organization.”

Other stories in our Women's History Month series:

Anne Bowcock, M.D.

Barbara Butler

Kathleen Gallant

Bevery Foster Halprin

Driving discovery, creating community

For more than 50 years, we’ve been driving efforts to cure psoriatic disease and improve the lives of those affected. But there’s still plenty to do! Learn how you can help our advocacy team shape the laws and policies that affect people with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis – in your state and across the country. Help us raise funds to support research by joining Team NPF, where you can walk, run, cycle, play bingo or create your own fundraising event. If you or someone you love needs free, personalized support for living a healthier life with psoriatic disease, contact our Patient Navigation Center. And keep the National Psoriasis Foundation going strong by making a donation today. Together, we will find a cure.

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