Carrie Favaro – President Carrie

Carrie is a speech therapist at Beekmantown Middle School in West Chazy, New York . She resides in Saranac, New York, with her husband, Craig, and daughter, Kiera. She is the aunt of Hannah Sames, the namesake of Hannah’s Hope for G.A.N. and is sister to Lori Sames, Executive Director. She is constantly in awe of the progress that Hannah’s Hope for G.A.N. has made since her nieces diagnosis in March of 2008. She feels it is a blessing that newly diagnosed families have an organization to turn to when they learn of their child’s diagnosis and that a treatment for G.A.N. is in the making.

Carrie is the aunt of Hannah Sames, the inspiration of Hannah’s Hope for G.A.N. and sister to Lori Sames, Executive Director. She is committed to helping patients with G.A.N. get their life-saving treatment, as is the rest of her family.

Beth Haig – Secretary Beth

Beth Haig has been a registered nurse since 1993, she attended Albany Memorial School of Nursing, and also graduated from SUNY Canton with an AAS in Hotel Technology.

She has been friends with Lori and Matt Sames since childhood, they are an extended part of my own family. Beth often thinks of how proud she is of them both and the work and progress that has been made in the fight to cure children with GAN. Beth and her husband Walter and their two daughters live in Rexford within shouting distance of the Sames family. Beth is currently employed at the Eddy Visiting Nurses and in her spare time likes to run marathons with board member Erkia Ligouri.

Lagenia ClarkLagenia

Lagenia graduated cum laude from Vanderbilt with a degree in Economics in 1990. Immediately upon graduation, she served as an active duty Military Intelligence Officer in the U.S. Army for 3 years (including Desert Storm). After receiving her MBA from Boston University, she worked in medical device sales in Houston until the birth of her twins in 2000. She now works part-time as a team coordinator for Kids Triathlon Inc., a non-profit. She resides in Bellaire, TX with her husband, Dave, and fraternal twin boys, Jared and Justin, and daughter, Lexi.

Since two of her children were diagnosed with G.A.N in the fall of 2013, Lagenia now spends the majority of her time trying to find a cure for G.A.N. Justin, created the campaign, Justin’s TRIumph over GAN to help spread awareness in the Houston area and was the guest speaker at the Hope and Love Ball in 2014.

Matt SamesMatt

Matt is Co-Founder of Hannah’s Hope Fund and Hannah’s Father. Married to Lori and proud father of Madison and Reagan, too, he helps spearhead the fundraising, marketing and management of our Public Charity. Matt worked for over 18 years in various Management positions at TV stations in Plattsburgh, Burlington, VT, Syracuse, Buffalo and Albany, NY. In the fall of 2007, he started a new career and launched a company called Pet Lodges, Inc., which operates 5 doggie daycare and boarding facilities, a pet food and supply store and bottle redemption center. Matt is sole owner of Sames Media Group, which does consulting work with law firms around the country. Matt has a B.A. from LeMoyne College in Syracuse, NY. However, his main mission is to save his daughter and every other child who has GAN.

Todd SilaikaTodd

Todd is a financial advisor at Merrill Lynch in Clifton Park NY. Born and raised in Schenectady, Todd graduated from Niskayuna High School, then attended Hudson Valley Community College. In 1992 he graduated from SUNY Albany, Summa Cum Laude, from the school of business. Todd and his wife Beth, have six children: Karen, Victoria, Isabella, Xavier, Sophia and Genevieve. Xavier and Hannah have been classmates since kindergarten, and this connection extended to a friendship between the Sames and the Silaika families. Beth and Todd have been and continue to be involved in Hannah’s Hope Fund and are praying for a cure for GAN.


Steve Eichorn

Steve is a CIO with General Electric’s Renewable Energy business based out of Schenectady, NY.  Steve met Matt and Lori through his daughter Sabina when she and Hannah were both 5 years old and became friends at a local drama club.  Steve holds a Bachelors degree in Accounting from Bryant University in RI and an MBA in Finance from Pace University in NY.  He also serves on the board at Junior Achievement of Northeastern NY.   Steve, his wife Karen and daughter Sabina (all active participants in the HHF cause) reside in Clifton Park NY.

In Loving Memory – Karen ArmstrongAunt Karen

Karen, “Auntie,” Armstrong was Hannah’s Hope’s first Treasurer and the loving Aunt of Lori and Hannah Sames.

Karen passed away after a courageous battle with cancer on December 4, 2013.

Prior to her final cancer battle, Karen fought off cancer and sent it to remission multiple times. One of the reasons she gave for continuing her courageous fight was that she “still had more to do for Hannah’s Hope.” She was one of Hannah’s Hope’s most passionate and loving supporters as the charity took flight.

We remember Karen with the deepest love and gratitude and know that she is among the angels watching over and guiding Hannah’s Hope. We honor her memory in our continued courageous and passionate fight against GAN.

You may read Karen’s obituary here.