Featured Sessions

Sessions at FARECon featuring Teen Summit serve people of all ages managing food allergies.


FARECon featuring Teen Summit is a new, annual education event serving people of all ages managing food allergies, as well as registered dietitians helping their clients live and thrive with this serious, increasingly common disease.

If you’ve ever attended FARE’s National Food Allergy Conference or a FARE Teen Summit, you’ll find the same energizing world of knowledge, friendship and inspiration at FARECon featuring Teen Summit. If you haven’t attended a FARE conference before, you won’t want to miss this opportunity to learn, recharge and celebrate our food allergy community. There are popular events and sessions for teens, adults and mixed-age groups, from Food Allergy 101 and Ask the Allergist, to icebreakers, teen and adult socials, FARE’s Vision Awards and the extraordinary talents of the teen inventors competing in our third annual Innovation Tank.

Sessions will be offered to teens with food allergy, parents of teens and younger children with food allergy, adults with food allergy and registered dietitians. Explore the breadth and diversity of our speakers and topics in this featured list of presentations.


Tips for High School
Speakers: Robbie Black, Jack Thompson and Sophia Anderson

Hear from a panel of teen peers about how they’ve handled food allergies in high-school life. Dating, school dances, playing on sports team and going to sporting events: all of these can be frightening when you have food allergies. Strategies to manage food allergies can help ease this worry and anxiety. Younger students can benefit from the panelists’ firsthand understanding of challenging high-school situations.


Steve Gendel

Behind the Label: Understanding Food Labeling Laws, Manufacturing and Risks
Speaker: Steven Gendel, PhD

There’s a lot to know about U.S. food labels and manufacturing practices, and what you don’t know can hurt you. Learn where the real risks lie as Dr. Gendel shows how to avoid products that may pose a danger to you or your child.


Linda Herbert

Overcoming Anxiety and Depression
Speaker: Linda Herbert, PhD

Anxiety and depression are common in children and teens with food allergies, and also in their parents. But the symptoms in children look very different than they do in adults. Dr. Herbert will discuss the factors that can encourage healthy coping as well as signs and symptoms that professional help is needed.


Michele Lefebvre

Transitioning to College with Food Allergies
Speaker: Michele Lefebvre RD, CDN

Transitioning from high school to college is exciting, but it can also be stressful for students with food allergies or special diets. How can you find the best school to meet your academic and safety needs? As Director of Nutrition Management, Michele has worked hard to make Cornell University’s dining program a leader in serving students with food allergies and intolerances. Learn how to work with your school to make sure that your campus dining experience is safe, satiating and happy.


Xiu-Min Li

Chinese Herbs for Treating Food Allergies and Asthma
Speaker: Xiu-Min Li, MD

The creator of FAHF-2 (Food Allergy Herbal Formula), which has reversed food allergy in mice, Dr. Li shares how she uses Chinese herbal formulations to treat food allergies, eczema and asthma and gives an update on her latest research.


Speaking Up: Living with Exercise-Induced Anaphylaxis
Speaker: Bekah Mulberg

The truth about living with a rare disease is this: not many will understand. However, speaking about your experience can be the first step in healing. Bekah explores the question of what we can gain from sharing our narrative, rather than keeping it protected and hidden from the world.


Cathy Nagler

Are Bacteria the Cause (and Cure) of Food Allergies?
Speaker: Cathryn Nagler, PhD

Dr. Nagler is an expert on food allergies and the microbiome. This exploration of our internal ecology shows us how the friendly and unfriendly bacteria in our digestive tracts may be part of the cause and the potential cure for treating food allergies.


Behind the Scenes Tips for Safe Dining
Speaker: Chef Joel Schaefer ­

Chef Joel, formerly special dietary needs manager for Walt Disney World, will offers his behind-the-scenes perspective on what restaurants can and cannot do to accommodate food allergies. Coping with his own dietary restrictions has motivated Joel to become even more creative in finding ways to dine out safely.


The College Search- Lessons Learned
Speakers: Andrea and Paul Schmidt

The college search process is a challenge and an adventure for both teens and their parents, which is compounded by the demands posed by food allergies.  Where do you start?  How much do you take food allergies into account when searching for your dream school?  How do you keep food allergies from getting in the way when you find your dream school?  This daughter-father team will provide their real life lessons and tips learned from their 20 visit college search for Andrea’s ‘right fit’ school, and her trials and successes during her first year while managing multiple food allergies.


Traveling with Food Allergies Panel
Speakers: Benny Shaevsky, Josephine Schizer, and Sahiba Baveja

This session covers tips for traveling with food allergies. We'll discuss basics about flying tips, flight attendants, preboarding, and traveling with family. Then we'll cover the difficulties of arranging food and accommodations on school trips, and finally, how to take on traveling summer programs. We will offer tips based on our travel experiences as teens with numerous food allergies.


Participating in a Clinical Trial: Emerging Therapies from Stanford
Speaker: Tina (Sayantani) Sindher, MD

Research from the Sean N. Parker Center for Allergy & Asthma Research at Stanford University is yielding results. Dr Sindher will discuss some of Stanford’s most promising food allergy research, case studies, and the benefits and challenges of participating in a clinical research trial.


Gwen Smith

After Anaphylaxis 
Speaker: Gwen Smith

As an adult with food allergies and editor of Allergic Living magazine, Gwen has traveled the world and unfortunately experienced many severe anaphylactic reactions along the way. Gwen will reveal her tips for never letting food allergies get in the way of career, travel and an adventurous life, and share how she moves on after an unsettling reaction.


Taking the Fear Out of Anaphylaxis
Speaker: Susan Tatelli

For her Girl Scout Silver Award project, Susan developed a training video called “How to Stay Alive,” which includes footage of her self-administering epinephrine during an actual reaction, interviews with three leading pediatric allergists, a review of the signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis and instructions from an allergist on proper administration of epinephrine.  Susan recently revised her original video to incorporate changes in administration guidelines for the EpiPen and to include additional footage of her self-administering epinephrine during a recent anaphylactic reaction.  


Mary Vargas

A Seat at the Table: Recent Developments in Food Allergy Litigation
Speaker: Mary Vargas

A disability rights attorney and food allergy parent, Vargas advises on how to advocate effectively for yourself and your child while highlighting the importance of “impact cases” in changing the landscape of food allergy awareness today.


Cook It Up: Delicious Recipes for Healthy Cooking
Speaker: Catherine Walker

This session takes its name from the title of Catherine’s 2018 allergy cookbook, for which she is the author and photographer. Find out why she wrote “Cook It Up: Delicious Recipes for Healthy Cooking” and how she created “safe” recipes in this overview of living with food allergies and cooking at home for the whole family.


The Risk: Studying and Working in the Food Industry with Food Allergies
Speaker: Alexa Wyszkowski

As a college student and employee at a bakery, handling her allergens on a daily basis is something Alexa views as normal. Despite anxiety and attempts to persuade her not to pursue a career in food, Alexa has decided that food allergies should not stop her from following her passion. Here she shares her story and everything she has learned in the hope that someday the food industry will be a safer place for those with food allergies.