Meet The Team
Cush it to the Limit was founded in 2017 by 19-year old Hepatosplenic T-Cell Lymphoma patient Ben Cushing and friends Ben Stevenson, Cole Nason and Jeffrey Gross. Ben knew their efforts would not make a difference to his outcome, but he wanted to bring hope to other HSTCL patients and their families. In 2019 we became a 501c3 and solidified our partnership with UW Medicine and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center to fund innovative research in t-cell lymphoma. Our hope is that the cutting-edge work we fund will lead to improved treatment options for patients, and one day, a cure.
Cush it to the Limit Board of Directors
After a thirteen-year career at Microsoft and 8-years as a high-tech consultant, Kathryn now directs the day-to-day operations of CITTL and manages our partnership with the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center and UW Medicine. As president of the board, Kathryn helps to guide our strategic direction.
Kristal brings her passion for efficiency, creativity, brand awareness and leadership to help guide the communications strategy and deliverables for CITTL. She is President of SanMar Canada and her passion for our mission has rubbed off on several of her colleagues who graciously step in from time to time to assist with communications.
Alison was a child life specialist for pediatric cancer patients many years before her own son was faced with a devastating diagnosis. She never imagined she’d need to use all her skills at helping young people cope with the challenges of hospitalization, illness, and disability to support her 19-year-old son through his devastating 9-month ordeal. Today, Alison is a co-director, board secretary and spiritual head of the work we do.
A passionate Washington State University Cougar (like Ben Cushing) and the Owner/Manager of Nordstrom Virtual Office for Finance and Accounting, Debi combines her skill with numbers, the big picture, and her “Coug” passion to help us maintain our financial health.
Andrei Shustov, MD was Ben Cushing’s hematologist at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center/UW Medicine. He has over three decades of research, clinical, development, and academic experience in hematology. He is currently Senior Vice President, Medical at Cellectar Biosciences where he leads and provides oversight on all aspects of the Company’s clinical development program, medical affairs, and medical communications. In 2022, he joined Cush it to the Limit as our scientific research advisor.
Our Team of Volunteers
Ben and Ben were close childhood friends and confidants when Ben Cushing was diagnosed with HSTCL during his freshman year of college at Washington State University. Together with Jeffrey Gross and Cole Nason, the four freshmen (from a variety of colleges) founded Cush it to the Limit. Ben S. uses his love of communications to manage our social media presence and to co-lead all communications efforts. Ben works in software sales at Skilljar in Seattle, WA.
Like Ben S and Jeffrey, Cole and Ben were close childhood friends. Cole took off the 2nd semester of his freshman year at college to hang with Ben during the latter’s chemo treatments, lending him the support Ben showed Cole when he lost his own father to non-smoking lung cancer. Cole assists with many CITTL communications and activities. He is currently in software sales for Pitch Book in Seattle.
Graham and Ben Cushing had been friends since middle school. Graham followed his buddy to Washington State University and to his beloved TKE fraternity where he pledged to keep Ben’s flame and spirit alive. When Graham isn’t working at his high-tech sales job, you’ll find him traveling, skiing or doing water sports.
Jeffrey and Ben met in kindergarten and remained close friends throughout Ben’s short life. That friendship along with Ben S and Cole, led to the co-founding of CITTL. Jeffrey assists with many communications and activities. He is currently in software sales for Amperity in Seattle.
Cush it to the Limit is exceedingly grateful to have the marketing and communications guidance of Danica Scott, Marketing Director at SanMar Canada. Danica helps to write, design and advise on all manner of communications projects and always gives way more than we could ever reasonably expect. We could not be more grateful for Danica’s commitment to our mission.
Kara Haugen is a medical data analyst with both the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center and the Kaiser Foundation. She was also Ben’s aunt. She blends her medical data expertise and love of Ben Cushing and family to help us manage our data needs, advise on medical issues, and run particularly prickly projects.
With over 20 years of tech experience background, Shane keeps our web presence up to date and afloat by developing website content, as well as managing our hosting services. He is currently the UI/UX manager at SanMar Canada.