Dreaming big is not for the faint of heart

UCLA Former Users From the Founder, Transplant News

The TED Dream 2016 conference is not for the faint of heart. I know a lot about my field of kidney transplantation and patient education. Every day in my UCLA research lab, I work with transplant professionals, conduct research, write journal articles, and design and test whether new educational programs work. Before TED started, I flew in early to give a Grand Rounds talk to the entire transplant community in Vancouver. However, I came to …

Love large, dream larger

UCLA Former Users From the Founder, Transplant News

It’s Valentine’s Day, a day to be grateful for the love in our lives and the impact we all can have on each other. This week, I have the privilege of being at the 2016 TED Dream conference in Vancouver, BC with a lot of other people who, like me, have big dreams. I work at UCLA in kidney transplantation. I am a transplant educator – you can read more at www.exploretransplant.org, and follow me …

On your mark…get set…TED!

Karen Handelman From the Founder

Helping solve the kidney shortage was something that, Amy Waterman, Ph.D., an Associate Professor and national transplant educator, dreamed of doing when she was growing up in Knoxville, TN. But to do that, she needed to surround herself from as many smart and diverse people as she could. When she moved to Los Angeles in 2013 to work at UCLA, a friend told her that her favorite week of the year was when she attended …

Craig Hostert: kidney recipient

Karen Handelman Donation Stories

To have my son give life back to our family has made us even more committed. The Hosterts are an active family, going on ski trips, camping trips, attending sporting events, spending time with friends and just watching movies together. No one would guess that Craig used to rely on dialysis to maintain his life, or that two of the family members are living kidney donors. In 1986, Craig Hostert was diagnosed with an autoimmune …

Valen Keefer: winning my war against PKD

Amy D. Waterman, PhD Donation Stories

Since age five, Valen Keefer has battled and triumphed over seizures, scoliosis surgery, pancreatitis and polycystic kidney disease (PKD). After undergoing dialysis and more than 70 blood transfusions, Valen “won the war” when Sally Robertson gave her a kidney on August 13, 2002. Valen reflects on her transplant journey. As one health issue mounted on top of the next, I did not have time to process the reality of my life as an 18- and …

Mary Wu: transplantation…a lifetime journey

Amy D. Waterman, PhD Donation Stories

Mary Wu was diagnosed with chronic kidney failure as a toddler. Transplants at ages 3 and 12 saved her life. Mary reflects on her transplant journey. I received two kidney transplants, one in 1987 and the other in 1995, both from deceased donors. No one in my family was a match to donate a kidney to me. Prior to both of these transplants and during these particular times, there was not a real push for …

Melissa Benosouda: choosing to live

Amy D. Waterman, PhD Donation Stories

At age 24, Melissa Bensouda was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease after giving birth to her second daughter. After her third child, a son, was born, she lost all kidney function. On April 16, 2012, Melissa’s wait of nearly ten years for a transplant finally came to an end. Melissa reflects on her transplant journey. When I was initially diagnosed with kidney disease, I was already in ESRD (end-stage renal disease) and fortunate enough to …

Phillip Palmer: my decision to donate

Amy D. Waterman, PhD Donation Stories

Phillip Palmer, morning anchor for ABC7 in Los Angeles, was inspired to donate a kidney after reading a Sports Illustrated article about then-NBA star and transplant recipient Alonzo Mourning. He resolved then to one day save someone’s life as a living kidney donor. Years later, that person turned out to be longtime friend Dale Davis. Phillip reflects on his living donation journey. Oddly enough, I learned most everything I know about living donation as I …

Welcome from the founder

Amy D. Waterman, PhD From the Founder

by Amy Waterman, PhD The first thing I say after I tell people that I work in the field of transplantation is that it is a true honor and a privilege. I feel this in my bones. I feel this so strongly because I get to see the best of humanity and healthcare, every day. I know so many generous donors who offer a part of their body to help someone else. Some of these …