Nonprofit 501 © 3 Organization A United Way Community Partner
ph : 216.229.8600
fax: 216.229.4500
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Our Mission

The American Sickle Cell Anemia Association (ASCAA) is an organization that provides quality and comprehensive services through diagnostic testing, evaluation, counseling and supportive services to individuals and families at risk for Sickle Cell Disease.

The American Sickle Cell Association is a private nonprofit 501(C)3 organization in Cleveland, Ohio. The ASCAA was founded in 1971, and is the oldest sickle cell research, education, and social services organization in the United States.

Within the Ohio Department of Health, the ASCAA is designated as Region V and comprises Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Medina and Lorain counties. Region V has the highest incidence of sickle cell disease and variants of the disease in the state.

The organization currently provides a wide range of services to those individuals and families with either sickle cell trait or variants of the disease itself. Key services include: ongoing follow-up diagnostic testing, counseling, and tracking services for parents with infants who screen positive by the State Laboratory; Family Counseling and Support Services; coordination of medical, social services, education and support for the program's clientele; teacher education and screening services delivery at upwards of 85 local health fairs. In addition, ASCAA makes outreach to the region's African American, Hispanic, Mediterranean, and Arab communities for family education and the identification of the incidence of sickle cell disease.

Since its inception, the organization has tested approximately 125,000 at risk individuals and has been a repository of statistical, case information, and data beneficial to patients, affected family members and the medical establishment both locally and globally. ASCAA has the interest of children and youth at the center of all of its affairs. Aside from its diagnostic testing, school educator supports and summer camp, the agency is also a United Way of Greater Cleveland Community Partner and operates an individualized transitioning program to adolescents called *CHAMPPS.
*Disclaimer: Our CHAMPPS youth camp is only available when funding is applicable.

Our Team

The American Sickle Cell Anemia Association (ASCAA) staff currently provides a wide range of services to those individuals and families with either sickle cell trait or variants of the disease itself. Particular services include ongoing follow-up diagnostic testing, counseling and tracking services for parents and infants who have screened positive by the State of Ohio Laboratory newborn screening practices.

ASCAA affairs are governed by a twenty-member Board of Trustees. Administrative leadership is provided by the Executive Director. Day-to-day operations are facilitated by a seven-member staff comprised of social workers, educator counselor, bilingual health educator, administrative assistant, IT consultant, accountant and clerical staff.

Our team consists of the following people:

Ira Bragg-Grant
Executive Director

Gilberto Peña
Bilingual Health Educator / Coordinator

Jessica Frank
Newborn Screening/Coordinator

Jacqulene A. Riley, Clerical
Medical Records/Clerical

Larry Osayamwen, CPA

Board of Trustees



Pamela Bradford -Board Chairman

Fundraising, Program, Board Development

Dr. Duncan Shepherd - Vice Chairman

Finance, Fundraising

Wanda Blount - Secretary

Personnel, Fundraising

Dr. Mark Worford - Treasurer

Ed Scott - Vice Treasurer



D'Wana Davis

Fundraising, Program

Dr. Duncan Shepherd

Program, Fundraising

LeJoyce Naylor

Program, Fundraising, Board Development

Gary Williams, Attorney


Leah Williams, Attorney


Brandi Dobbs, NP  

Medical Advisory, Fundraising

Earsler Lesure


Dr. Grace Onimoe - Medical Director

Medical Advisory

Ulesia Young

Fundraising Committee

Amonte Littlejohn


Board Member Emeritus

Dr. Andrew Fishleder
Dr. Harold Ford
Dr. George Hoffman
Dr. Edgar Jackson
Dr. George Jackson
Mr. Lewis Frauenthal (Posthumous)
Dr. Anthony Stallion
Mr. Herman Leggon
Dr. Lewis Wright
Dr. John Lewis (Posthumous)
Mrs. Anita Polk (Posthumous)
Dr. Clifton Turner (Posthumous)