PRESIDENT & FOUNDER
Verena was born in Austria and raised in the suburbs of Detroit. Verena is a former music marketing and cross-promotions manager. She worked with the prestigious Ford Modeling Agency, the Island Def Jam Music Group as well as well as working with artists such as R & B singer Kelis (formerly of Arista Records), rapper Fabolous (formerly of Elektra Records), hip-hop group D12 featuring Eminem (of Interscope Records) and Queen Latifah on the urban marketing of Bringing Down the House (Touchstone). The entertainment industry’s emphasis on image was extremely influential in Verena pursuing a career in beauty. Over the course of 7 years, she had the opportunity to work with high-end beauty brands including Bobbi Brown, Laura Mercier, Trish McEvoy, Nars, Shu Uemura and many more as a makeup artist. Simultaneously, she also worked doing makeup for celebrity guests on NBC, VH1, MTV and the HBO film Bernard and Doris starring Susan Sarandon and Ralph Fiennes while tending to private clients in the New York metro area. Verena had her first symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis at the age of 16 and was later diagnosed in 2001. Despite her MS, Verena has managed to excel in both the entertainment and beauty industries. However, after becoming a wife and mother with two children, the symptoms of her MS became more debilitating. As a result, she had to find ways to adjust to its physical challenges. In 2007, Verena had the opportunity to conduct a makeover workshop at the Corinne Goldsmith Dickinson Center for MS at the Mt. Sinai Medical Center in New York City. That event officially kicked off “Makeover Your MS” giving Verena the perfect venue to share the enjoyment and inspiration of her personal makeup routine and emphasize her belief that looking and feeling beautiful can be encouraging, inspirational and therapeutic to those suffering with the disease. Verena hopes to continue to encourage people Makeover “Their” MS with the beauty, confidence and optimism that inspires her each day.
Lisa Cohen is a NewYork-based photographer, designer and independent artist promoter who received her B.A. from Columbia University and her J.D. from Columbia University School of Law. After three years of practicing law, Lisa realized that she wanted to work with people rather than paper and to pursue entrepreneurial opportunities in more artistic industries. She entered the independent music business and began to study photography and graphic design.
Helping musicians to run their own record labels and assisting them with all aspects of presentation and promotion became one of her passions alongside photography. Lisa was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 2001 and, since then, has managed both the physical symptoms of a chronic condition and the recurring challenges involved in living life to the fullest in spite of illness. She chose to pursue her dreams of building a photography business and her Lisa Cohen Studios line of art and designs rather than deciding that settling was a “given” because of the MS. Lisa strives to express her best self through her art, to help musicians and photo clients to express their best selves and their brands, and hopes to bring this same kind of support to individuals living with MS in her role as Managing Director of Makeover Your MS. As a photographer who experienced vision impairment due to MS-related optic neuritis, she understands the cloud that an MS diagnosis and symptoms can cast on self-perception, self-esteem and self-expression. Still, she wholeheartedly believes that there’s no reason that one can’t be a “rock star” in spite of an illness and that nobody should feel that they’re required to settle for a lesser quality of life because of a medical condition. She is dedicated to helping others living with MS to enhance their quality of life and to pursue their dreams.
Denise J. Pipersburgh, Esq.
Denise is an attorney practicing business and employment law. She graduated in 1998 from Yale University with a B.A. in psychology, and received her J.D. from the University of Connecticut School of Law in 2001. Denise was diagnosed with MS in her first year of law school, but went on to graduate with Honors. As a senior associate with Wolff & Samson PC in West Orange, New Jersey, Denise counsels companies and their senior management on employment and corporate law issues. She also serves as a mentor to law students with disabilities through the American Bar Association’s Commission on Mental and Physical Disability Law, and was recently spotlighted in July 2010 for her success in managing her career through telecommuting arrangements despite the limitations imposed upon her from MS. Through her individual efforts and those of her sorority, Lambda Psi Delta Sorority, Inc., Denise is dedicated to increasing awareness of MS and improving the quality of life for those who struggle daily with this disease.
Tova is a LCSW providing counseling services at the Corinne Goldsmith Dickinson Center for Multiple Sclerosis. She has been a social worker at Mount Sinai for more than twelve years, and a part of the MS Center since 2001.Tova specializes in assisting patients and families adjusting to the stresses of chronic illness and their related social service concerns. She received her degree from Hunter College School of Social Work with a focus on individual and family counseling. Tova has run several workshops and led support groups for the National MS Society. Tova has been instrumental in the development of Makeover Your MS helping the program launch its first ever event in 2007.
Angela is a co-host of the Breakfast Club on New York City’s Power 105. Angela is the former host of Sirius Satellite radio’s the Morning After and Lip Service with Leah Rose on Eminem’s station Shade45. She is also a former marketing manager in the music and fashion industries. A New York City tastemaker and former colleague and close friend of founder Verena Frydberg, Angela strongly supports MS related causes and inspiring women to put their best face forward.
The Powder Group
Founded by Michael DeVellis, a 14 year veteran of the makeup artist industry, and based in beauty capital of the world New York City, The Powder Group is made up of a collective of talent that spans the makeup artist industry and the globe. The Powder Group artists and presenters are working experts from the areas of film, television, theater, fashion and editorial. The Powder Group is proud to provide makeup talent the opportunity to channel their generosity and become an active part of the Charitable community through The Powder Group Volunteer Network. The Volunteer Network is a collective of makeup and other beauty industry talent who have committed to donating their time and services to charitable organizations and becoming an active part in events for the organizations supported by the Network.
Erica Lytton-Miles is a celebrity makeup artist who also styles hair. In addition to her work with brides, she has an extensive network of professional artists in New York to accommodate bridal parties both large and small. A signature service of 360 Beauty is the Image Boot Camp makeup party, a fun way to entertain friends and learn about makeup. Whatever your beauty needs, 360 Beauty has you covered! Erica is a New York based makeup artist who also styles hair. With a BS Degree in TV-Film Production, Erica is very experienced with on-camera makeup technique. Before discovering her love of working with brides, Erica worked on photo shoots, TV and film sets which gave her experience in all three arenas in New York, California, Florida and Texas. Her image consulting experience stems back to 1997 when she started developing marketable images for new models at John Robert Powers, where she worked until 2003.
Star Bar Studio
Founded by celebrity makeup artist Mindy Draizin of CBS and Elise Firestone, a makeup artist in the fitness and pageantry industry, Star Bar Studio is the first Cosmetic & Blow Dry Bar in Rockland County, New York. Their staff includes top-notch celebrity makeup and hair artists and is located in Rockland County, New York. Star Bar Studio’s talented artists kindly donate their beauty expertise for various Makeover Your MS events.
Make-Up Designory (MUD) was founded in 1997 in North Hollywood, California. Today MUD teaches students from around the world at their main campus in Burbank, California, and their East Coast branch campus in New York’s vibrant SoHo neighborhood. MUD is dedicated to providing valuable training in the fundamentals of study. For this reason, both of campuses are accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSC), a private, non-profit, independent accrediting agency recognized by the United States Department of Education. MUD’s Career Services Department works diligently with Makeover Your MS to staff events with their talented graduates.
Mara Schwartz has a BA in Communications from Monmouth University and a certificate in makeup artistry from the Make-up Designory in New York City.
Ms. Schwartz has worked with Revlon cosmetics, on various TV/Film sets and is currently a freelancer in New York and New Jersey. Ms. Schwartz loves to make people feel good about themselves and has been a dedicated volunteer for Makeover Your MS since 2011. She is excited to embark on this new venture with the organization and continue growing with us.