Who We Are


  Joe S. McIlhaney, MD – Founder and CEO

Joe McIlhaney, MD is the Founder and Chairman of  Medical Institute for Sexual Health. He founded this organization in 1992 and left his medical practice of twenty-four years to become President of the organization in 1995. He is from Lubbock, TX and graduated from Texas Technological College (now Texas Tech University) in 1957. He graduated from Baylor University School of Medicine with an MD degree in 1991. Following an internship at Jefferson Davis Hospital in Houston he entered the USAF as a general medical officer, serving for two years. He returned to Baylor to do nine months of residency in Pediatrics and then to complete a three year residency in Ob-Gyn. He and his wife and three daughters then moved to Austin, TX where he practiced Obstetrics and Gynecology with an emphasis on care of infertile couples. During that time he was an innovator, bringing gynecologic laparoscopy, gynecologic microsurgery, gynecologic laser and, with three other doctors, IVF to the Central Texas area.

Freda McKissic Bush, MD –CEO (Emeritus)

Freda McKissic Bush, M.D is a Fellow in the ACOG and a practicing OB-GYN. She is CEO of The Medical Institute for Sexual Health and has co-authored two books with Founder Joe S. McIlhaney, MD, HOOKED, and Girls UNCOVERED. Dr. Bush is a Clinical Instructor in the Departments of OB-GYN and Family Medicine at the University of Mississippi Medical Center and served on the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS. Married to Lee Bush they have 4 adult children and 8 grandchildren.



Don A.F. Nelson, MD- Chairman

Dr. Nelson is Board Certified in Family Medicine. He and his wife, Dr. Mary Anne Nelson, are residents of Cedar Rapids, Iowa.  Dr. Nelson received his medical training at University of Iowa College of Medicine in Iowa City, Iowa. He is on-call part-time faculty at Cedar Rapids Medical Education Foundation and is the Director of Clinical Informatics & Research at Clinical Content Consultants, LLC.

Harvey L. Fishero

Harvey is retired from a successful career as a hospital executive, most recently serving as President/CEO of Medical Center of Plano. He also served for thirty-five years in senior executive positions with Hospital Corporation of America.  Harvey has served on numerous boards including the Plano Chamber of Commerce as Executive Committee Chairman and Chairman of the Plano ISD Education Foundation. Harvey and his wife, Karen, have three children and nine grandchildren.

J. Thomas Fitch, MD

Dr. Fitch resides in San Antonio, Texas with his wife Laurie. They have 2 children and 7 grandchildren.  He had a private practice of pediatrics for 42 years before retiring in 2010. In addition, he was a clinical professor in the department of pediatrics at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center in San Antonio. He is a national expert on condom effectiveness and was one of the expert panel members for the National Institutes of Health Condom Effectiveness Panel in 2000. He is a member of Focus on the Family’s Physician Resource Council and is a past chairman of the Medical Institute’s board of directors.

Donald L. Hilton Jr, MD, FAANS, FACS

Dr. Hilton is a board certified neurosurgeon in San Antonio, Texas.  He is an adjunct associate professor in the department of neurosurgery at the University of Texas Medical School at San Antonio, where he is the director of the spine fellowship and of the Methodist Hospital residency rotation.  His research, publishing, and speaking interests include minimally invasive surgery and neural mechanisms of addiction.

Jeffrey P. Kassing

Jeff Kassing has been an attorney and businessman for over 35 years. He has practiced law both in private practice (including with the law firm now known as Squire Patton Boggs LLP) and in-house as general counsel for two commercial finance companies.  Jeff was also President of a commercial finance company and part owner, board member and senior executive at Marquis Software, Inc. until the company was sold in 2016.   He has been on the board of various nonprofit organizations.  Jeff and his wife Diane have 3 grown children.

Lori Kuykendall

Lori Kuykendall earned her B.S. in Community Health Education from Texas A&M University in 1994. She began working in the field of sexual risk avoidance education at the A&M student health center where she wrote a program that was presented in college dorms. After she graduated, she was asked to write a unit textbook for HealthEdco/WRS Group called “Abstinence: A Positive Choice.” In 1995, Lori took a position as prevention coordinator for the Women’s Pregnancy Center in Houston. Subsequent to that she has led several sexual risk avoidance organizations including Aim for Success which she has directed since May 2016. Her passion is helping young people and families be healthy – physically, mentally, emotionally, socially and spiritually. She and her husband Chris have four children.

Gilbert R. Lavoie, MD, MPH

Dr. Lavoie is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Occupational Medicine. Much of his career was spent in the care of patients in the fields of internal medicine and occupational medicine. In his early years he practiced preventive medicine; first as chief of epidemiology and communicable diseases for the U.S. Army Medical Command in Europe. In recent years Dr. Lavoie has returned to the field of public health and has been doing medical literature research. His present focus is on the epidemiology and prevention of HIV. Dr. Lavoie and his wife Bonnie reside in Falmouth, MA. They have three children and nine grandchildren.

Jack W. Lesch, MD

Dr. Lesch is Board Certified in Family Medicine and certified in Hospice & Palliative Medicine. He retired, after 28 years from private practice of Family Medicine in The Woodlands Texas. He is currently the Associate Medical Director at Lighthouse Hospice. He has been married to Peggy for 40 years and they have two married daughters and 3 grandchildren. Jack has been actively presenting the MI message to teens in local schools for the last 18 years

Joneen Mackenzie, RN, BSN

Joneen Mackenzie graduated from the University of Texas and is a former 1st Lieutenant in the USAF Nurse Corp. Currently she is president / founder of The Center for Relationship Education which houses the Colorado Healthy Marriage Project.  Joneen works in the public policy arena with poverty prevention grants and is a national consultant for teen pregnancy prevention and positive youth development. Mrs. Mackenzie is married and has 4 grown children and 4 grandchildren.

Boone Powell, Jr., MPH

Boone Powell, Jr. was President & CEO of Baylor Health Care System and served as their Chairman of the Board of Directors. He was a past President & CEO of Hendrick Medical Center in Abilene, TX.  He received a BBA from Baylor University and an MPH from the University of California. He completed a Management Residency at Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis, TN. Boone has served on numerous corporate boards, as well as on many non profit boards. Boone has been married to Peggy Hogan for 54 years and they have three children and seven grandchildren.




The Advisory Board is composed of medical doctors, nurses, health professionals, educators, researchers and other professionals who provide ongoing support to assist in accomplishing our mission.

Dan Bailey – Founder/President Just Say YES

Marcia Ball, PhD – Health Sciences

Jennie Cerullo, PhD – Cross-Cultural Education

Kim Dernovsek, MD – Dermatology, Internal Medicine

Diane Foley, MD – Pediatrics

Wilson W. Grant, MD – Pediatrics

W. David Hager, MD – Obstetrics & Gynecology, Infectious Diseases

Rick Kiovsky, MD – Family Medicine

Meg Meeker, MD – Pediatrics

Mary Anne Mosack – Nat. Director of State Initiatives, National Abstinence Education Foundation

Mary Flo Ridley – Author/Speaker: Youth & Sex

Shepherd Smith – Co Founder/President The Institute for Youth Development

John Vessey, PhD – Psychology, Methodology and Evaluation Research

Bradley Ware, MD – Family Practice Medicine

Stan Weed, PhD – Director of The Institute for Research and Evaluation

Joe Zanga, MD – Pediatrics