The Arthritis National Research Foundation Staff is committed to finding a cure for arthritis. As we grow so does the Arthritis National Research Foundation staff. Currently we’re small administratively, but that allows us to ensure that 91 cents of every dollar donated to this organization is placed into research programs. Please take a moment to read about the Arthritis National Research Foundation staff below.

Helene Belisle

Helene Belisle

Executive Director


Helene Belisle has been Executive Director of the Arthritis National Research Foundation since 1996, helping guide the organization to its current focus funding arthritis research grants nationwide. Ms. Belisle joined ANRF after four years in fundraising for a Long Beach, CA non-profit organization. For many years prior to entering the non-profit field, Ms. Belisle was a marketing executive for a real estate investment firm. Born on the East coast but now considering herself a California native, Ms. Belisle met her husband and earned a degree in Journalism from the University of Wyoming. She and her husband of 37 years raised their family in Southern California.


“It is a joy to work with such a dedicated board of directors who have developed the Arthritis National Research Foundation into a recognized and respected organization committed to funding the brightest scientists with the best prospects for helping the victims of these debilitating diseases,” says Belisle. “When I saw how juvenile arthritis robbed my little cousin of her childhood, I knew I wanted to do something so that others would not have to suffer as she did. Research holds the key to a better life for millions in our country who face each day in pain.”


Join Helene by supporting arthritis research and make a donation today!

Anita Rodriguez, CFRE

Fund Development Director


Anita joins the Arthritis National Research Foundation bringing with her 16 years of experience in fund development. As a Certified Fund Raising Executive, Anita has helped raise millions of dollars for both local and nationally based nonprofit human service and voluntary health organizations. Anita holds a Master of Arts degree in organizational management from the University of Phoenix and two Bachelor of Arts degrees, one in English and one in Liberal Studies from California State University of Fullerton. Her career began in marketing for nationally recognized corporations and then transitioned to the nonprofit sector in 2001.


“I am thrilled to join this dynamic team here at ANRF and look forward to working with everyone to help build up funding for more research. My grandmother suffered greatly from osteoarthritis and now my mother does too. I have a personal interest in seeing major advancements in this field.”


Join Anita by supporting arthritis research and make a donation today!

Derek Belisle

Derek Belisle

Marketing Director


Derek graduated from UC Santa Barbara in 2009 with a degree in Communication and a minor in Sport Management. Since graduation he has worked full time for the Arthritis National Research Foundation serving as Marketing Director.


“My passion is marketing and making a difference. Life is bigger than just ourselves so having the opportunity to help over 54 million Americans and millions more worldwide is an incredible opportunity and privilege.”


With over seven years of professional experience at ANRF, Derek is continuing to grow the team and influence of in the community. Soon he hopes to have a team of ambassadors and crew members working together to help #CureArthritis!


Join Derek in his efforts to cure arthritis by making a donation today!

Brandi O'Kelley | Cure Arthritis

Brandi O’Kelley

Marketing Specialist


Brandi is the newest edition to the Cure Arthritis Family. A Virginia native, Brandi moved to California to work with the Arthritis National Research Foundation. She graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2014 with a degree in Psychology and a minor in Media Studies. She now serves as the Marketing Specialist, co-handling the social media accounts, writing articles, handling donations, and interacting with donors, supporters, and patients.


“The most rewarding part of the job is seeing the impact we make on the personal lives of individuals with arthritis and their families. Interacting with our supporters has broadened my perspective; I learn something new from our community every day.”


When Brandi isn’t working, she enjoys photography, trying new foods, working out, and looking at photos of cute, furry animals.


Join Brandi in her quest to cure arthritis by making a donation today!

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