In 2014, Greg was diagnosed with DCM and required an ICD. Through genetic testing, it was revealed he had three mutations responsible for his DCM. A number of his relatives carry genetic mutations that can cause DCM.
Greg retired from his work as a business entrepreneur and in 2017 he launched the DCM Foundation to bring education, hope, and resources to DCM patients and their family members. Greg’s hope is that by raising awareness and supporting DCM research, a means will be found to halt, reverse or even completely prevent DCM from developing in at-risk individuals.
After a period of worsening heart failure, on July 15, 2021 Greg had a successful heart transplant. Greg lives in Dublin, Ohio with his wife Brenda of over 30 years, and together they have three grown children and two grandchildren.
Director, Patient and Family Support
Melissa spent her career working in libraries and higher education across the United States, focusing on teaching students how to navigate information sources and gain support in a variety of subjects. Knowing that finding good information can be stressful, especially when that information pertains to health, Melissa created programs to help people access information with fewer hurdles and more personal connections to research professionals.
Navigating an autoimmune diagnosis, Melissa developed an awareness of how frustrating it can be to find good information and support. She believes that finding accurate information and compassionate support is vital and wants to help DCM patients and family members with these endeavors.
Melissa has taught in higher education since 2001 and received an MS in Information Science from the University of Kentucky in 2010. She currently lives in Western Kentucky with her husband Kent of 20 years, a grumpy cat, and a rather overgrown garden.
Director, Information and Education
After receiving her Master’s degree in Education, Jae-ann worked in sales and marketing for 10 years. Since that time, she has been a self-employed consultant, helping companies better communicate their messages, improve processes, and increase sales.
Having worked with Greg Ruf since 2015, Jae-ann was honored to be asked to join the DCM Foundation in 2019. She is excited to use her education and marketing experience for the benefit of the Foundation and the DCM patients and family members it serves.
Jae-ann holds a Master’s of Education, which she uses to help organizations improve communication — connecting information with the people who need it most. In her free time, Jae-ann enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, gardening, hiking, and volunteering.