A WORD FROM THE FOUNDER
Dr. Lewis Zirkle
Diversity creates equality of fracture care.
The SIGN Network is like a machine moving steadily toward creating equality of fracture care throughout the world. Each part symbolizes SIGN Staff, Surgeons, Volunteers and Donors, who all rely on each other as SIGN Implants are used to treat increasing numbers of patients in developing countries.
I see the results of SIGN Surgery on the database every day when I am in the U.S. The comments on the database by surgeons in developing countries often express new ideas and new indications for SIGN Implants. The x-rays demonstrate the process of fracture healing and the pictures of the patients squatting and smiling have been shown to demonstrate fracture healing better than the x-rays. We realize the smile is not quantitative but smiles are contagious as an expression of joy and appreciation.
These are patients who would have severe disability due to their fractures if their surgeons were not excellent surgeons and did not have access to SIGN Implants. These surgeons understand fracture principles and enthusiastically treat their fellow countryman without using sophisticated equipment.
Our generous donors are essential to the network as the number of SIGN Programs and different implants increases. We are like a big family.
- Lewis G. Zirkle, MD
MANAGED WITH CARE
SIGN is a registered non-profit corporation in the state of Washington in the United States of America.
The majority of our funding comes from individual contributions given to us by people like you.
The economic conditions in most of the countries we work in require that we donate the SIGN Implants to the hospitals. However, about 1/3 of our funds come from cost reimbursement programs that we have in a few of the government hospitals, with other non-profit organizations and with implant distributors in Vietnam, Indonesia, Ethiopia, and Guatemala. We do not profit from these sales. Rather, the cost reimbursement program enables us to start new programs in other areas of great need.
89% percent of our budget went directly to supply the SIGN Surgeons with the implants and training needed to care for their patients.
Federal Tax #91-1952283
89% of all expenses directly supported SIGN Programs
Together, we can provide healing
We partner with businesses, foundations, and service organizations to continue creating equality of fracture care throughout the world. We rely on these partnerships to carry out our mission.
Officers and Board
The SIGN Board of Directors is a volunteer governing board, providing high-level oversight for the organization. Most of the Board Members are orthopaedic surgeons, or come from orthopaedic for-profit companies. They each play a unique role in SIGN’s Mission.
Lewis G. Zirkle, MD
President and Founder, Chairman
Dr. Zirkle founded SIGN in order to bring healing to the injured poor in developing countries. Today, he gives mentorship to SIGN Surgeons at each hospital, reviews patient cases, and inspires new, innovative design ideas.
Jeanne Dillner, CEO
Secretary and Treasurer
Jeanne became the Chief Executive Officer in 2001. During her tenure, she has led the team to significantly increase SIGN’s global reach. Whether addressing day-to-day business matters, or scrubbing in to assist surgery, Jeanne exhibits passion and enthusiasm in all she does for SIGN.
Richard Gellman, MD
Orthopaedic Trauma Surgeon
SIGN is social justice in action where surgeons from 50 countries work together to relieve suffering and solve orthopaedic challenges. I am honored to be a part of this organization.
Founder of Acumed
It is a pleasure to serve on the SIGN board and to be able to work with all of the very committed international surgeons and SIGN staff that are at the heart of our mission.
Executive Director, AO North America
Steve joined the SIGN Board in 2013. He is instrumental in obtaining significant grants from the Wyss Foundation, and frequently gives sound advice in business and education.
David Shearer, MD
Orthopaedic Trauma Surgeon
I remain inspired by SIGN's mission to create equality in fracture care and have been lucky enough to witness its impact first-hand.
Carla Smith, MD
To be a part of something that brings together such an inspirational group and to work on ways to improve fracture care all over the world is truly rewarding in its own.
John Staeheli, MD
I have seen how SIGN has helped so many patients and has given surgeons the ability to use their skills. I have experienced the tremendous impact SIGN has had on patients and surgeons in the Dominican Republic.
Thomas Vasileff, MD
Retired Orthopaedic Surgeon
Working with Lew, Jeanne, and all their dedicated, hardworking staff has been a very rewarding experience for me as a SIGN board member. The depth of SIGN’s contributions to the developing worlds health is truly amazing.
Patrick Yoon, MD
Pat became a board member in 2015. He has participated in the SIGN Conference, teaching calcaneus fracture repair, and has traveled to Haiti several times.
David Whitney, MD
Retired Orthopaedic Surgeon
With all the problems and disasters, local and global, it becomes very depressing for me to feel that, as one person, I cannot make a significant difference. SIGN allows me to make that difference and to actually see it happen.
Sandy Brown, Manager and Chief Compliance Officer
Terry Smith, Manager
Lori Maier, Supervisor
Brian Barnes, Manager
Sean Bradley, Production Manager
Jeri Rosenthal, Lead Program Coordinator
Richard Grizzell, Manager
Robert Schmitt, Manager and FDA Management Representative