My Alzheimer’s story began two years ago. After 25 years in local government, most recently serving as the assistant city manager in Fayetteville, NC, I began to experience issues with information recall and my short-term memory, which caused a great deal of anxiety in both my work and personal life.
At age 57, I was diagnosed with younger-onset Alzheimer’s, three words that would change my future and impact my life forever. Following a very brief pity party, I recognized that by going public with my diagnosis, I could help educate folks, raise awareness and reduce the stigma associated with this disease. I began to get involved with the Alzheimer’s Association Eastern North Carolina Chapter, which opened the door to many new opportunities, from speaking engagements to events at my local Walk to End Alzheimer’s.
Most recently, I was appointed to the Alzheimer’s Association National Board of Directors in Chicago along with serving on the National Early Stage Advisory Group – both great opportunities to raise awareness and educate the community about this very devastating disease.