achl-logo achl-logo-orignal

About Us

ACHL’s vision is to improve health outcomes through collaborative, impactful education.

core services

Clinical Content

Our editorial team collaborates with expert faculty to create innovative and scientifically rigorous content in a variety of therapeutic areas. Most notably, ACHL excels in developing content that not only imparts new knowledge regarding the latest data but introduces strategies for day to day application for clinicians to introduce in a real-world environment, efficiently and effectively.


Experienced in developing education in a variety of diverse and complex formats ranging from live symposia to digital applications to QI programs, our program management team spearheads the development of complex education.


Our accreditation team is experienced in developing education aligned to accreditation criteria and standards for ACCME, ACPE and others. They work collaboratively with internal and external teams to ensure the highest standards of compliance are met.

Digital Services

Our digital team has extensive experience in developing scalable, innovative and adaptive learning platforms for a continuing education environment. From sophisticated UI/UX strategies to proven data migration and integration practices, our digital customized digital platforms are responsive and effective in education delivery.

Production &
AV Services

From concepting, to setup/onsite support, to post production, our production team ensures that the videos and audio that enhance our education is purposeful, optimized and cost effective.

Our Company

The Academy for Continued Healthcare Learning (ACHL) is an independently owned and operated full service medical education company that has been developing certified healthcare education for nearly twenty years.

Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, and supported by a staff of twenty full-time employees, ACHL actively engages and collaborates with diverse stakeholders in healthcare to improve the quality of care by developing comprehensive educational strategies reflective of the multifaceted and globally diverse healthcare environment. Through this collaborative model, we seek to transform the reach and redefine the value of IME.

Our Team


Sara Brykalski

Director of Accreditation

Sara has over 15 years of experience in program management and continuing medical education (CME). At ACHL, she manages multiple accreditations, including ACCME, ACPE, CDR, CBRN, and CCMC, and ensures that ACHL activities are designed, developed, and implemented in accordance with appropriate regulatory guidelines.

Sara is a member of the Alliance for Continuing Education in Health Professions (ACEHP) and Illinois Alliance for Continuing Medical Education (IACME). Sara stays active in the CME community by volunteering with the ACPE and the IACME. She serves as a field reviewer for the ACPE and serves IACME through various positions with the Board of Directors; Board Director (2018-2019), Secretary (2019-2020), President-Elect (2021-2022), and President (2022-2023). She is active with both the IACME Annual Meeting and marketing committees.

Prior to joining ACHL, Sara worked as a senior program coordinator at Discovery Institute for Medical Education (DIME), program manager at CME Incite and Haymarket Medical Education, and an account supervisor at Discovery USA.

Sara earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications from the University of Iowa, in Iowa City, IA.


Amanda Kaczerski, MS, CHCP

SVP, Educational Strategy & Development

Amanda brings over 13 years of CME development to her role at ACHL. Her primary areas of attention have been on strategic planning, instructional design, and outcomes. Responsible for conceptualizing new ideas and offerings, she is focused on exploring new partnerships and developing solutions responsive to their needs.

Some areas of attention Amanda has put emphasis on include the Quality Payment Program by CMS, Quality Improvement activities, and patient education. With a passion for improving the quality of care, Amanda is determined to partner and strategize with like-minded organizations to meet this goal.

Having earned her CHCP in 2011, Amanda is committed to lifelong learning and consistently strives to plan interventions which will result in the greatest impact to clinicians and patients.

Amanda earned her Master of Science degree in Athletic Training and Bachelor of Arts degree from Seton Hall University.


Richard Keenan

VP, Education Development

Rich has over 15 years of CME experience focused on identifying, developing, and offering educational activities to address educational needs among healthcare professionals. Rich began his healthcare career in Pharma, with varying roles in sales, sales management and marketing providing experience across multiple therapeutic areas and healthcare channels. His marketing roles included extensive work and interaction with physician leaders in immunology, infectious disease, and cardiovascular disease.

Rich earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration, with a minor in accounting from Marist College, Poughkeepsie, NY.


Brittany Puster

VP, Education Development

Brittany brings over 13 years of CME experience to ACHL including expertise in business development, program conceptualization and execution, and tactical industry knowledge. She strategically works to provide unique and engaging continuing education activities for clinicians with the ultimate goal of improving patient outcomes.

Brittany actively partners with patient advocates, and key patient / clinician foundations to ensure educational offerings are representative of real-world experiences. Her expertise across a variety of therapeutic areas, key partnerships, and collaborative opportunities ensures optimization of educational offerings.

Brittany earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology, with minors in Business Management and Environmental Population and Organismic Biology from the University of Colorado, Boulder.


Don Hallagan

Chief Financial Officer

Don has significant experience, including the last five years at ACHL, with financial and operating decisions, including strategy, workflow, systems, staffing, requests for proposal, and legal matters.

He is adept at meeting the expectations of a broad range of audiences, including clients and partners, board members, private equity owners, and commercial and investment bankers.

When involved with client and partner agreements, Don’s goal is “WIN-WIN” outcomes. He has Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Accountancy from the University of Notre Dame and is a Certified Public Accountant.


Melissa Stradal

AP Accountant and Certification Services Coordinator

Melissa manages, and ensures timely fulfillment, of the accounts providing financial, administrative, and clerical support to ACHL.

Since 2014, Melissa has also provided logistical support for CME programs, including certification management. She is active in the CME community and is a member of the Illinois Alliance for Continuing Medical Education (IACME).


Natasha Mitchner, PhD

VP, Scientific Services

Natasha has over 20 years of experience in medical education and communications. As VP of Scientific Services at ACHL, Natasha works collaboratively with faculty to develop educational strategies and scientific content for live and digital-based CME programs across diverse therapeutic categories. Prior to joining ACHL, Natasha worked at DIME, a full-service accredited provider, for over seven years.

Natasha completed her undergraduate work at Hampshire College and received a PhD in Cell and Molecular Biology from the University of Cincinnati. She began as a scientific writer after a post-doctoral fellowship at Northwestern University. She is a member of the American Medical Writers Association.


Jonathan Sokolowski, PhD

Scientific Director

Jonathan has been in science writing/editing and medical communications since 2001, initially joining ACHL in 2008.

As a Scientific Director, Jonathan works with expert faculty and ACHL team members to develop and deliver creative, strategic, and scientifically rigorous content for a wide variety of distribution platforms across an array of therapeutic areas, with extensive experience in cardiovascular, endocrinology, rheumatology, dermatology, immunology, and neurology, among others.

Jonathan completed his PhD in Neuroscience at the University of Connecticut and his post-doctoral training in pharmacology at the University of Chicago.


Arman Nabatiyan, PhD

Senior Medical Writer

Arman earned his master’s degree in systems neurobiology & neurophysiology at the University of Cambridge in England and his PhD also at the University of Cambridge in cancer cell biology/genetics. He formerly served as faculty at Sussex University in England then Northwestern University and Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.

He has authored 13 scientific papers, 5 books and is the primary inventor of several US patents. He has also served as policy advisor to the State of Illinois on science and innovation initiatives. His areas of expertise include, but are not limited to, oncology, immunology, neurology, gastroenterology, & molecular diagnostics/devices.


Nicolle Rochino, PharmD, RPh

Associate Scientific Director

Nicolle has been in the continuing medical education field since 2016. As an associate director, Nicolle works with faculty and ACHL team members to create creative, strategic, and scientifically sound content for a wide variety of platforms across a multitude of therapeutic areas. Nicolle is also involved in the development of grant proposals that identify education needs in healthcare.

Nicolle completed her PharmD at the Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy of Rutgers University and continues to maintain her pharmacy license and, of course, her continuing education credits.


Ritesh Kothari

VP, Digital Solutions

Ritesh has over 18 years of CME experience at ACHL with a focus on identifying and implementing emerging technologies in ever-changing digital environment. He has vast experience building enterprise-level learning solutions (i.e. Learning Management System), client-server applications, mobile applications (i.e. iOS/Android) and digital applications (i.e. green screen technology, 3D composition, 3D animation, animated medical illustration, AR/VR).

Ritesh earned a Bachelor of Engineering (BE) degree in Electronics and Communications, and a Masters' degree in Computer Science from Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, Illinois.


Priyank Tamboli

Sr. Technical Project Manager

Priyank is an application architect with nearly 15 years of experience in designing and implementing successful multi-tier applications and system integration solutions. He has excellent understanding of application analysis and design concepts, as well as the ability to apply proven design patterns to the system design, employ extreme programming, and SCRUM techniques for robust implementation.

Priyank earned a Master of Computer Application (MCA) from Gujarat University, Gujarat, India.


Katlyn Cooper

Director of Outcomes and Educational Effectiveness

Katlyn has contributed in various capacities to the development of ACHL’s CME activities since 2012. As Outcomes Director she collaborates with the scientific team to develop and validate instructional designs and evaluation instruments to assess the effectiveness of ACHL’s educational programs. Katlyn’s efforts in analyzing outcomes data, summarizing relevant findings, and synthesizing program evaluation data support grant proposal development, reporting and presentations for grantors, and submissions to professional scientific conferences and publications.

Katlyn earned her undergraduate degree at Michigan State University, as well as completed a Predictive Analytics Certificate Program with DePaul University. She is on track to complete a specialization in Research Methods and Statistics with the University of Amsterdam in 2022. She is member of the American Evaluation Association.


Karen Catino

Sr. Program Manager

Karen has worked in the medical education field for over 15 years in a variety of professional roles. She manages all aspects of CME activities from inception to completion for both live meetings and online formats.

Karen is responsible for project implementation while meeting the educational objectives of stakeholders and educational partners. Ensuring expectations are met on all levels of the project throughout the lifecycle of the activity.


Michelle Forcier, MS, CMP

Sr. Program Manager

Michelle Forcier has been leading CME/CE program development for over 10 years. She has served in a variety of roles including logistical support, project management, and onsite staffing in hospitals, specialty clinics, and association conferences. In addition, she has forged strategic partnerships with academic providers, healthcare associations and patient advocacy groups to design and execute strategic education and achieve mission-driven results. She is also an active member in the CME community as a member of the Illinois Alliance for Continuing Medical Education (IACME) and holds a seat on the Board of Directors.

Prior to joining ACHL, Michelle held various internship positions at Joint Commission Resources, Huntington’s Disease Society of America (HDSA), and AMITA Health Alexian Brothers Medical Center, Elk Grove Village.

Michelle earned a Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations from the University of Dayton, Bachelor of Arts in Hospitality Management from Kendall College, and a Master of Science in Health Communication from Northwestern University.


Katie Hacias

Associate Program Director

Katie supports ACHL part-time, primarily focusing on the annual Linda Morgante MR Nurse Leadership Program. She has over 15 years of medical education experience that includes implementing complex educational platforms in varied media. As an Associate Program Director, she is responsible for establishing and maintaining relationships with educational stakeholders/ collaborators (associations, payers, hospitals, faculty, etc.), and presenting innovative solutions to meet educational objectives and drive improved quality of care.

Katie earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Relations from Illinois State University with a minor in Psychology.


Laurie Novoryta, MBA, MOL

Program Director

Laurie has worked in medical education for over 18 years and has been involved with CME program development since 2012. At ACHL, Laurie has managed programs covering multiple therapeutic areas, which are more commonly incorporating patient experiences and providing resources on shared decision making. Laurie was recently involved in the launch of an adaptive learning activity that allows learners to experience education uniquely tailored to their individual needs based on how they engage in questions across multiple topics on inflammatory and autoimmune skin conditions.

Laurie earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Sociology from Illinois State University, and a Master of Business Administration and Master of Organizational Leadership from North Park University in Chicago.


Vanessa Senatore

VP, Operations

Vanessa has over 15 years of medical education experience that includes implementing complex educational platforms in varied media. As VP of Operations, she is responsible for providing oversight to all programs, as well as establishing and maintaining relationships with educational stakeholders/collaborators, presenting innovative solutions to meet educational objectives, and drive improved quality of care. Vanessa is a member of the Alliance for Continuing Education in Health Professions (ACEHP) and the Illinois Alliance for Continuing Medical Education (IACME).

Vanessa recently earned a certificate in Operations Strategy through Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management Executive Education program and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology, with a minor in Sociology, from Illinois State University.


Emily Bennett

Manager, Marketing & Communications

Emily comes to ACHL with nearly 15 years of marketing experience in a variety of industries across agency, corporate, and non-profit sectors, including healthcare associations. Emily is responsible to develop strategy for, and execute on, multi-channel marketing campaigns that further the mission of ACHL and its partners.

Emily is a member of the marketing committee for the Illinois Alliance for Continuing Medical Education (IACME).

Emily recently received her certificate in Digital Marketing Strategies from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, and received her Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Hope College, in Holland, Michigan.