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Robert Cochrane, PhD
YAX CEO, Founder & Lone Nut

Dr. Robert Cochrane is a graduate of UNLV's Integrated Health Sciences department. He's researching the effect of improvisation and storytelling on Parkinson’s disease. He received grants from the Parkinson's Foundation and support from the Davis Phinney Foundation along the way. He is a popular, unique and high energy Keynote speaker, bringing joy, optimism and practical tools for people in the PD community to thrive today. 


He has a background in filmmaking, with the Artisan Entertainment release, The Playaz Court, and two Stephen King-based short films among his credits. His father, Dan, was diagnosed with PD in 2001, which shifted Robert’s artistic lens to health. He made his first documentary, the award-winning Boys of Summer in 2004. There are two follow up films in the series with the fourth film coming in 2023. 


He lives in Walnut Creek, CA with his beautiful wife, two crazy kids, and an old, cranky Cockapoo. 

Susan has loved life all of her 71+ years.  She is a wife, mother, daughter, sister, student and friend. In 2015, she discovered she is also a Person with Parkinson’s (PWP).  Much like everyone who hears the words “Parkinson’s Disease” and “you” in the same sentence, Susan was numb for a while.  YES, numb … AND she instantly found herself surrounded by the love and support of family and friends. Her lifetime smile returned, soothing the numbness.  Susan’s nephew, Adam, challenged and inspired her to exercise by attempting a nonstop, 65-mile swim. It was featured in the award-winning documentary, VICTORY SWIM. Susan shared her stories of what it means to thrive with Parkinson’s as keynote speaker at the University of Maryland’s Within Our Reach Symposium


Robert reached out to Susan after seeing VICTORY SWIM, sharing his hypothesis that improv could improve quality of life measures for PWP. She can confirm, YES, Robert was a Lone Nut with his ideas about improv… AND she became his official First Follower. She participates in every Day One class and YAX playshop available.  She serves as a Mentor in the Day One program, as the Co-host of the YouTube Daily Dose of Dope(-amine), the Festival Director for the Yes, And eXercise Festival in Texas (YAX F iT) and, generally, as an all-around Robin to Robert’s Batman. 


Susan lives in Austin, Texas with her husband of 50 years and their Golden Retriever.

Susan Scarlett
YAX F iT Festival Director & First Follower