Longtime leader of upstate MS chapter announces retirement  

Longtime leader of upstate MS chapter announces retirement  

Following a 42-year career with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society Upstate New York Chapter, Stephanie Kunes, chapter president and CEO, announced her retirement effective April 7. 


Kunes was named president and CEO of the Upstate New York Chapter – headquartered in Rochester – after a national search in 2010.  

For the past thirteen years, she has continued to be a staunch advocate for people living with MS and delivering results that drive progress in the search for new treatments and a cure for MS.  

Kunes has received many national awards, including the NMSS’s Cavallo award for excellence in client and professional education. In 2013, Kunes was the recipient of the Ontario County Athena Award for her service and volunteerism in the greater community. 

Cyndi Zagieboylo, president and CEO of the National MS Society, said Kunes is a one-of-a-kind leader who inspires others to give their time and talent to support the MS movement.  

“She’s witnessed the terrible effects of MS and instilled hope as she contributed to the incredible progress that has changed the MS journey for everyone living with MS,” she said. “Her legacy is in the people whose lives she’s touched and inspired to carry the work forward until we all reach a world free of MS.”  

The National MS Society will conduct a national search to find a new chapter president and CEO. 

“My entire working life has been spent driving toward a single purpose – the cure for multiple sclerosis,” Kunes said, adding she has gratitude for the staff, volunteers and especially those living with MS who have had an impact on her. “I will continue to be their loudest cheerleader as they continue this important work.”  

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