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Corey Reich

Diagnosed with ALS in 2007
Founded "Corey's Crusade" to give voice to ALS sufferers

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Robert Villanueva

Diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 2001
Became national speaker & trainer for The National Alliance on Mental Illness

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Lisa Ford Berry

Lost son, Michael, to peer abuse-driven suicide
Created nonprofit organization to combat peer abuse

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Meet our Advocates

Their stories of turning adversity
into advocacy will inspire you!

Browse through our collection of inspiring stories from our incredible advocates.

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Dr. Zachary Burton

Dr. Zachary Burton

Dr. Zachary Burton Adversity: Diagnosed with bipolar I disorder with psychosis Advocacy: Co-founded and leads The Manic Monologues to disrupt stigma; serves with various mental health nonprofits "We lean on the brutally and beautifully unashamed, raw power...

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Chrissie Hodges

Chrissie Hodges

Chrissie Hodges Adversity: Undiagnosed OCD Advocacy: Pure OCD Advocate "I started my advocacy to help others know they are not alone and recovery is possible for Pure OCD. Little did I know by hearing other's stories, struggles, and seeing their resiliency...

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Shira Strongin

Shira Strongin

Shira Strongin Adversity: Undiagnosed rare disease Advocacy: Health policy advocate and founder of an international community for young women with varying illnesses and disabilities "I learned early on if I wanted to be heard, I'd have to raise hell and no...

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Christina Roth

Christina Roth

Christina Roth Adversity: Type 1 diabetes Advocacy: Founded the College Diabetes Network "I’m honored to be an advocate, along with so many inspiring individuals, and I’m passionate about empowering students and professionals living with Type 1...

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Claire Wineland

Claire Wineland

Claire Wineland Adversity: Cystic Fibrosis Advocacy: Provides support through speaking, writing, social media and her nonprofit to help those affected by Cystic Fibrosis "For me, patient advocacy is the difference between feeling like a victim in your own...

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Dr. Lamar Hardwick

Dr. Lamar Hardwick

Dr. Lamar Hardwick Adversity: Diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (Asperger’s Syndrome) Advocacy: Mentor to those on the autism spectrum; autism educator for churches, schools and nonprofits "As a pastor, I often share that a great way to make a...

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Daelyn James

Daelyn James

Daelyn James Adversity: Cystic fibrosis Advocacy: Inventor, supporter and speaker for chronically ill children "I feel like the most rewarding thing I can do is to help young kids battling CF realize that, in spite of CF, you can tell yourself, ‘I can do...

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Leeza Gibbons

Leeza Gibbons

Leeza Gibbons Adversity: Lost her mother and grandmother to Alzheimer's disease Advocacy: Has become a leading voice in the movement to create a world without Alzheimer's "I got drafted into serving on the front lines of Alzheimer's advocacy, but now I see...

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Chrisfino Kenyatta Leal

Chrisfino Kenyatta Leal

Chrisfino Kenyatta Leal Adversity: Incarcerated with a life sentence Advocacy: Leads and is active in a host of self-help programs for prisoners "As a formerly incarcerated individual and graduate of The Last Mile, I can tell you I didn't get to where I am...

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Ann Graham

Ann Graham

Ann Graham Adversity: Cancer diagnosis Advocacy: Founded a nonprofit to serve pediatric cancer patients "I used to think that everything happens for a reason, until I saw children dying of cancer. Cancer was my best teacher and ultimately, a saving grace. I...

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Ethan Smith

Ethan Smith

Ethan Smith Adversity: OCD Advocacy: Shares his story as a keynote speaker. "I was told early in my treatment, 'The best thing you can do for your OCD is to help others.' Not only have I found that statement true but necessary. Every person I speak with,...

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