Kelly Waters Kelly Waters, LCSW, MSW | Executive Director, Virginia Hemophilia Foundation

VHF’s educational scholarship was established to honor Dr. Lyman Fisher, a teacher, researcher, and clinician in hemostasis. This year VHF is thrilled to award a $2,000 scholarship to five very deserving students. I hope you will join me in congratulating this year’s Lyman Fisher Scholarship recipients!

Seth Boucher is a senior philosophy major at Old Dominion University (ODU). He is currently interested in a variety of philosophical topics ranging from AI personhood and simulation theory to ancient Chinese philosophy. Seth is planning on continuing his education with a PhD in philosophy, and to teach philosophy at the college level. He says, “being so close to major hospitals in the area, ODU can give me the opportunity to explore the philosophical implications of the treatment and stigmatization of bleeding disorders both within the medical field and outside of it.” He has volunteered around campus in various clubs and has attended multiple VHF events throughout the past couple of years. He says he has “met wonderful people who share my bleeding disorder and can offer new insight into how they have dealt with it throughout their lives.” And is looking forward to continuing attending events to meet new people and reconnect with others.

Kiera Davidson is 20 years old and will be a junior at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) studying mass communications with a specialization in media production. She has worked at a retirement community, interned at the Taubman Art Museum, and is currently working at Chocolate Paper gift store. Kiera has volunteered with her local PBS chapter and the LEAP food kitchen. She likes Spider-Man, Pokémon, sea life, and enjoys playing video games, creative writing, painting, making collages, and collecting things like bottlecaps, crystals, and postcards. Kiera has been actively involved with VHF since moving to Virginia about 10 years ago. She says, “finding a community full of people just like my younger brother was such a big help – learning and sharing information and experiences to show that we aren’t alone took such a huge burden off of everyone’s shoulders.” She hopes to work with VHF to create video content or help produce content for VHF, either for educational purposes, or just to spread the message.

Jackson “Jack” Spasojevich is pursuing a degree in environmental engineering in the ISAT program at James Madison University (JMU) where they are working to build awareness and opportunities around sustainable energy, environmental awareness, and making a positive impact in developing communities. Jack is actively engaged in volunteerism and community involvement and has dedicated their time to various environmental initiatives, from local clean-up efforts to educational outreach programs promoting eco-friendly practices. Jack enjoys exploring nature, hiking, and spending time outdoors. For Jack these activities reinforce their connection to the natural world and inspire them to continue their efforts in environmental advocacy and activism. Jack has said VHF is “like a second family to me” and has been involved in various capacities but says “VHF has been more than just volunteering, though – it’s been a life lesson. It’s taught me the power of community and collective action.”

Adam Teran is currently a sophomore at the Culinary Institute of Virginia. His goal is to graduate from the culinary program and pursue another program like baking or restaurant management. He realized after starting school that it could be a real career for him and would eventually like to open his own restaurant and host hemophilia dinners there. One of his instructors said “Adam has excelled both in the classroom, as well as socially amongst his classmates. I look forward to seeing the progression of Adam both in and out of the classroom.” Adam’s hobbies are cooking, reading, and gaming. He is also very active with VHF and tries to go to every event he can, and he generously donates when he can. He hopes to continue to advocate for the community and help where he can, especially utilizing his restaurant connections for educational dinners.

Wade Wickline is 19 and working towards finishing his mechatronics engineering associate degree at Virginia Western Community College. He hopes to eventually obtain his mechanical engineering technology degree from Old Dominion University (ODU) and may strive for a master’s degree in engineering. He enjoys mountain biking, rock climbing, hiking, going for drives in the mountains, and doing things to improve his mechanical skills. He also has had many jobs such as a shop helper at a local automotive mechanical/body shop, an electrician’s apprentice as a local electrical company, made parts working in a company’s fabrication section, and now works at a machine shop. Even being so busy with school and work, Wade is also an active member of VHF and sees VHF as a big family. And says that “one of the lessons that I try to teach others is that even though our blood disorder can be scary to us, and others it’s not something that should hold us back.”