Chairman - Robert Knutzen, MBA

RKnutzenCEO / Chairman

"Pituitary diseases and tumors are not rare, just rarely diagnosed... A diagnosis is a precious commodity - it is hard to find and often worth your life when you are looking for a center for treatment..."
- Robert Knutzen, MBA



Robert Knutzen, M.B.A., is the CEO, Chairman of the Board and Co-founder of the Pituitary Network Association (PNA). This non-profit organization was created in 1990 shortly after Mr. Knutzen was diagnosed with the pituitary disorder, acromegaly. The PNA has been instrumental in raising awareness of the dangers associated with pituitary diseases and disorders worldwide. To that end, the PNA organizes conferences, publishes health information, raises money to support research, and hosts a chat room/web forum for the pituitary community. On a daily basis, the PNA helps individual pituitary patients on the difficult path from diagnosis to treatment and rest-of-life care.

Working as an advocate on the behalf of pituitary patients, Mr. Knutzen has garnered the support and respect of top medical professionals who recognize the importance of raising pituitary awareness. This coalition between the medical and patient communities has achieved a remarkable level of success in educational endeavors.

Mr. Knutzen's unrelenting pursuit of public awareness has led him to get involved in a number of ways. By publishing, editing, and contributing articles to the PNA's Network magazine and Highlights e-newsletter, Mr. Knutzen has managed to keep pituitary issues in the spotlight. He also co-edited an issue of Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics; Emotional Aspects of Pituitary Disease and has contributed entries to "Comprehensive Clinical Endocrinology" and others. His many speaking engagements at the world's top universities and institutions in pituitary education and patient care include: The National Institutes of Health, The University of California at Los Angeles, The University of Pennsylvania, The University of San Francisco, The University of Erlangen (Germany), Westmeade Hospital (Australia) and The Meeting of Pediatric Endocrinologists (Switzerland). In addition, Mr. Knutzen arranged for the American Medical Association to co-sponsor a one-day press briefing with the PNA in 2003 to raise awareness of hormonal issues. He is best known for creating and publishing the Pituitary Patient Resource Guide and the PNA's highly respected web site,

In 2004, Knutzen organized the Family Hormonal Health Symposium, with the National Institutes of Health and Department of Defense. The Symposium was web cast world-wide. Knutzen received his Masters of Business Administration at Pepperdine University in 1984 and did his undergraduate work at UCLA and Santa Monica College. Mr. Knutzen has been married for 27 years and has four children.


Daniel Prevedello, M.D.

PrevedelloAssistant Professor
Director of the Minimally Invasive Cranial Surgery Program
Department of Neurological Surgery, The Ohio State University
"Unfortunately, pituitary disorders are far more frequent than doctors think when seeing a patient. These conditions can slowly destroy the body and go undiagnosed for years. I am very proud of being part of the PNA in this battle for bringing diagnosis and treatment for all..." Dr. Daniel Prevedello


Dr. Prevedello's specialty is minimally invasive endoscopic surgery for brain tumors, skull base, and pituitary disorders. He received his medical degree and completed his residency in neurological surgery in Brazil. Dr. Prevedello completed a clinical fellowship in neuroendocrine and pituitary surgery at the University of Virginia and also completed a clinical fellowship in skull base and cerebrovascular surgery at University of Pittsburgh, where he became faculty and helped to pioneer the field of endoscopic endonasal skull base and brain surgery. Recently, Dr. Prevedello joined Ohio State University as the director of the minimally invasive cranial surgery program.

Dr. Prevedello research interests include developing less invasive approaches to the brain and skull base in order to obtain the best surgical tumor resection possible with minimal disruption of normal tissue.

Dr. Prevedello is studying the impact of extracapsular (en-block) resection of pituitary adenomas, particularly for functional tumors (Acromegaly, Cushing's disease and prolactinomas). He believes that for these tumors, the assurance of complete resection has a major impact in disease control and recurrence prevention. Dr. Prevedello also performs endonasal resections of other benign tumors (meningiomas, craniopharyngiomas and Rathke cleft cysts) and malignant tumors (chordomas, chondrosarcomas, esthesioneuroblastomas, sinonasal cancers etc).

Dr. Prevedello is a member of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons, the Brazilian Society of Neurosurgery, the Latin American Federation of Societies of Neurological Surgery, and the World Federation of Neurosurgical Societies. He has published numerous academic articles on endoscopic surgeries to skull base and brain.


Garni Barkhoudarian, MD

Garni Barkhoudarian, MDAssistant Professor of Neuroscience and Neurosurgery
Brain Tumor Center and Pituitary Disorders Program
John Wayne Cancer Institute at Providence Saint John’s Medical Center




Dr. Garni Barkhoudarian is an Assistant Professor of Neurosurgery and Neuroscience at the John Wayne Cancer Institute at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, CA. Garni completed his undergraduate education at UCLA, majoring in

Microbiology and Human Genetics. He attended the University of Michigan Medical School, wherein he was the Edgar A. Kahn Neurosurgery Research Fellow. He completed his Neurosurgery Residency at the UCLA Medical Center. He then completed a fellowship in Pituitary Surgery and Neuroendoscopy at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School.

Dr. Barkhoudarian’s clinical interests are minimally invasive skull-base surgery, pituitary disorders and tumors, benign and malignant brain tumor surgery, neuroendoscopy, adult hydrocephalus, trigeminal neuralgia and hemifacial spasm, and head injury / concussion. He is the director of the Adult Hydrocephalus and Neuroendoscopy program where he works with Dr. Daniel Franc to treat patients with normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH) amongst other diagnoses.

Dr. Barkhoudarian has organized or participated in numerous educational conference and skull-base conference for pituitary and skull-base surgery in both the national and international forums including Japan, Italy, Egypt and Iran. He also educates the nursing staff and community on topics such as pituitary tumor surgery and patient management.

He is a volunteer faculty at the Pituitary endocrinology clinic at Harbor UCLA.

He has extensive research interests in pituitary disorders, including surgical outcomes, quality of life after pituitary surgery, preservation of gland function, advanced neuroimaging of the pituitary gland, headaches associated with pituitary tumors and advanced technology for pituitary surgery. He is the director of the Brain Tumor Center Skull-Base and Endoscopic Microdissection Laboratory. Dr. Barkhoudarian is involved in a number of clinical and translational research studies, evaluating the genetics, diagnosis, treatment and results of patients with malignant metastatic tumors, meningiomas, chordomas and pituitary tumors. He is also evaluating children as well as active and former NFL athletes with chronic, repetitive concussions and brain injury, with a specific interest in pituitary dysfunction. He has a special interest in the advancement of technologies for minimally invasive neurosurgical procedures.

Select publications:

  • Barkhoudarian, Garni, Aaron R. Cutler, Sam Yost, Bjorn Lobo, Amalia Eisenberg, and Daniel F. Kelly. "Impact of selective pituitary gland incision or resection on hormonal function after adenoma or cyst resection." Pituitary18, no. 6 (2015): 868-875.
  • Barkhoudarian, Garni, Aaron Cutler, and Daniel F. Kelly. "Transsphenoidal Surgery for Non-Adenomatous Tumors: Effect on Pituitary Function." InTumors of the Central Nervous System, Volume 12, pp. 235-245. Springer Netherlands, 2014.
  • Kelly, Daniel F., Charlene Chaloner, Diana Evans, Amy Mathews, Pejman Cohan, Christina Wang, Ronald Swerdloff et al. "Prevalence of pituitary hormone dysfunction, metabolic syndrome, and impaired quality of life in retired professional football players: a prospective study." Journal of neurotrauma 31, no. 13 (2014): 1161-1171.
  • Barkhoudarian, Garni, Alicia Del Carmen Becerra Romero, and Edward R. Laws. "Evaluation of the 3-dimensional endoscope in transsphenoidal surgery." Neurosurgery 73 (2013): ons74-ons79.
  • Little, Andrew S., Daniel Kelly, John Milligan, Chester Griffiths, Daniel M. Prevedello, Ricardo L. Carrau, Gail Rosseau et al. "Predictors of sinonasal quality of life and nasal morbidity after fully endoscopic transsphenoidal surgery." Journal of neurosurgery 122, no. 6 (2015): 1458-1465.


Jessica Diller Kovler, MA, AM, PhD(c)

Jessica Kovler smallProfessor
History of Psychology
City University of New York




Jessica Diller Kovler is a Professor in the History of Psychology at the City University of New York, where she examines historical chronicity of disease and psychological sequelae. She is part of The Derner Institute, where her research foci are psychosocial impact of pituitary disease, hormone dysregulation, historical illness chronicity, and trauma.

Prof. Kovler is currently serving as the principle investigator on a study assessing psychological distress among patients treated for Cushing's Disease, other hormone-secreting tumors, and non-functioning pituitary adenoma, with eventual longitudinal assessment of mental health functioning. Prof. Kovler is a former medical reporter for The New York Times, Health Monitor, Forbes, and Reader's Digest, has written for Highlights, and has worked collaboratively with the Pituitary Network Association for nearly 15 years.


Paula Gallegos-Maxfield


Paula has been a California licensed Insurance agent/broker since 1988. She was first licensed with Farmers Insurance Group of Companies to provide personal, commercial, and life insurance coverage to her clients. Her agency is a full-service agency.



Paula Gallegos has been a California licensed Insurance agent/broker since 1988. She was first licensed with Farmers Insurance Group of Companies to provide personal , commercial, and life insurance coverage to her clients. Her agency is a full-service agency.


State of California Insurance Licensed, 1988-Present
American Institute of Business, Des Moines, IA, 1969; GPA 4.0
Iowa State University, Ames, IA, 1968

Professional Affiliations

  • TO Network, a local business Networking group - 1995 to Present; Served two terms as Asst. Director; one term as Director; two terms as Recorder
    United Farmers Agents Assn. Chapter 4 -1994 to Present - Current Treasurer
    Thousand Oaks Chamber of Commerce – member since 2001
    National Notary Assn., Notary Public – since 2003


Available Now!

PPRG6-500 Cover
The Pituitary Patient Resource Guide Sixth Edition is now available! Be one of the first to have the most up-to-date information. The Pituitary Patient Resource Guide a one of a kind publication intended as an invaluable source of information not only for patients but also their families, physicians, and all health care providers. It contains information on symptoms, proper testing, how to get a diagnosis, and the treatment options that are available. It also includes Pituitary Network Association's patient resource listings for expert medical care.

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