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HDYO Staff Team

September 20, 2017

Huntington's Disease Youth Organization

HDYO has more information about HD available for young people, parents and professionals on our site:


HDYO Staff Team

Here is our current staff team and a summary of what we do, please feel free to reach out to us directly.

Executive Director

Catherine Martin


My role at HDYO is to oversee how we run as an organization and make sure we have enough money to do all the things we set out to do. I also make sure that the board know what is going on and that the staff and volunteers have everything they need to do their jobs.

I’ve been working within the non-profit sector for over 18 years and have mainly worked in the youth and community sector with a special interest in young people impacted by trauma and societal barriers. I previously worked at Scottish Huntington’s Disease Association as a Specialist Youth Advisor where I gained additional insight into the greater impact of HD on young people. Most recently I was the Quality Improvement Manager for Aberlour, Scotland’s Children’s Charity. I have been the Chairperson of Scottish Huntington’s Association for the last 2 years and up until March 2017 I was vice chair of HDYO.

I am proud to be from an HD family and love that I get to work and share my professional and personal stories with people from all over the world to encourage change. Together we all make a difference.

Email: catherine@hdyo.org

Project Coordinator

Matt Ellison


Hi! My role at HDYO includes developing all the educational project work we do for our website, including video projects, overseeing the youth camps and events HDYO hosts globally, planning future global projects to expand our reach, keeping the website up-to-date, responding to any messages we are sent for support/advice/questions and coordinating our volunteer translation team.

I am the founder of HDYO and come from a HD family. I started working voluntarily on the idea of HDYO in 2010 and it launched in 2012, I have been a staff person since 2013. I also have a degree in Childhood and Youth Studies. I am fortunate to work on something that is a passion for me. Contact details are below!

Email: matt@hdyo.org

Director of Youth Services US

Chandler Swope


Hi! I am the Director of Youth Services for HDYO. I work with young people and families across the United States to provide individualized support, answer questions, consult with local providers to help them serve the youth in their communities better, plan and facilitate youth education sessions along-side adult education days. I also plan and facilitate the North American HD Youth Camp which hosts around 50 young people from the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico each year.

I have been working with HDYO since 2014 and I love meeting the amazing and inspiring young people around the world making real changes in their communities. I have a degree in Social Work from Washington University in St. Louis. Have questions? Need some support? My contact details are below.

Email: chandler@hdyo.org