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Top 10 | Best in Show: Facebook

The 2019 WEGO Health Awards turned out to be our biggest celebration yet! With over 6k nominations and 130k endorsements, we were able to celebrate more Patient Leaders than ever before.

The program celebrates the top 5 finalists in each of the 15 WEGO Health Awards categories, but with so many nominations, it’s nearly impossible to shine a bright light on all these deserving nominees! In hopes of recognizing even more nominees, we’ve compiled the Top 10 Patient Leaders in each category based on community endorsements.

WEGO Health Awards Best in Show: Facebook Award

These Top 10 Best in Show: Facebook Patient Leaders foster communities through a Facebook page or group where people want to “Like” and interact. Their content is engaging and sparks likes, comments, and shares. They may have other social media sites, but he or she really utilizes all the tools Facebook has to offer and shows how it can be used for good! For anyone hoping to step up their Facebook game, these are the leaders to watch!


Asa Maass | Autism Patient Leader

2019 Best in Show: Facebook Winner

“The most powerful tool I have for advocating for autism families like ours is sharing our life and experiences. Our triumphs, our struggles, and that we truly are just like anyone else. I advocate for making a difference locally. If everyone worked to support the needs of others in their own community not only would their impact be greater but the wealth of generosity and caring can actually have a successful global reach.”

Be sure to follow the 2019 WEGO Health Award winner on social.


Dr. Shashank Akerkar | Ankylosing Spondylitis Patient Leader

2019 Best in Show: Facebook Finalist

“Over the years, I realized that there are three hurdles to be overcome in AS. Diagnostic delays, lack of correct medical information for the warrior & a ‘no effective treatment’ mindset about AS among the medical fraternity. This is how StandForAS was born. To raise awareness & cut down the diagnostic delays; to help warriors with correct medical information so that they can take informed medical decisions.”

Check out Dr. Shashank Akerkar’s advocacy work in the AS space.


Isabella Amazing Grace | Down Syndrome Patient Leader

2019 Best in Show: Facebook Finalist

“Sadly, everyday there is a family somewhere being delivered out dated material, feared opinions, options of termination and the lists goes on and on. Our goal is to share our journey with the world in order for all to see that our lives are more like yours than different. We have good days and we have bad ones. But at the end of each and every single day, we are BLESSED BEYOND MEASURE to have Isabella in our lives. We are better people because of her.”

Stay up to date with Isabella’s journey.


Ssebandeke Ashiraf | Sickle Cell Patient Leader

2019 Best in Show: Facebook Finalist

Ashiraf desires to improve the quality of life of people living with sickle cell disease through the creation of point of care inform of sickle cell clinics. He is committed to realizing a sickle cell free generation through providing sickle cell screening services and helping every person to know their sickle cell status.

Learn more about Ashiraf’s big advocacy goals.


The Unbreakable Princess | Osteogenesis Imperfecta Type 3 Patient Leader

2019 Best in Show: Facebook Finalist

Cyn’Niah and her mother are bringing greater awareness to Osteogenesis Imperfecta Type 3. By sharing their daily lives and reminding everyone just how much there is to be grateful for, the dyanmic duo is hoping others to better the lives of fellow patients in the community.

Get your daily gratitude reminder from Cyn’Niah by following her on social.


Kristal Kent | Fibromyalgia Patient Leader

“My motivation stems from my own personal experiences of frustration and difficulties overcoming barriers to healthcare. These experiences are what motivates me to help others suffering from fibromyalgia, invisible illnesses, chronic pain, military veterans etc. I do not want others going through the same difficulties I did. It is through my personal, and professional experiences, I learned to better advocate for myself and my healthcare needs. I want to make navigating healthcare for others easier to contend with, and share my knowledge and experiences with those struggling, so the can obtain appropriate and timely healthcare.”

Add to your feeds by connecting with Kristal on social.


Megan King | Ehlers Danlos Syndrome Patient Leader

“If I can give reassurance that someone is NOT going crazy because I experienced the same weird, crazy symptoms then it’s a win. If I can give guidance by simply sharing then it’s a win. At the end of the day any amount of sharing is a win. If it helps 1 person or if it helps a billion people then good has come from everything I’ve gone through. Sometimes we don’t understand why bad things happen in our lives. Sometimes we can’t see the bigger picture while in the moment. It is an amazing feeling when you look back & see how going through those hardships can give you the ability to help another.”

Follow Megan on social and learn more about her mission.


Sean and Sandra McElwee | Down Syndrome Patient Leader

“Being on the Emmy Winning television show Born this Way on A&E has given Sean and Sandra the platform to educate many more people around the world. We found out a Regional Manager of Aaron’s Rent to Own hired 200 people with Down syndrome after watching Born this Way. Multiple young parents have contacted us and told us of how the show helped them learn and helped them make the decision to continue their pregnancies. Sean has spoken to many groups and had inspired the attendees to step out of their comfort zones and pursue their dreams — because if he can achieve his dreams why can’t they?”

Educate yourself by following Sean and Sandra’s advocacy journey.


Myisha Malone King | Crohn’s Disease Patient Leader

“I believe that everyone needs someone they can count on to help them through this tough time being newly diagnoses. My goal is to raise awareness as much as possible so no one feels as alone as I felt when I was first diagnosed.”

Interested in learning more about Myisha? Click here.


Racquel Dozier | Lupus Patient Leader

“I am very active in educating others about Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, commonly known as Lupus. I am the Founder and President of Lupus In Color a support group that provides assistance and encouragement to lupus warriors. I am also the author of Butterflies of HOPE, a book of encouragement to lupus warriors. It is important to me to help others with lupus and other autoimmune diseases to make sure they are educated, inspired, encouraged and empowered. I feel those for things assists warriors in beating their chronic illness day to day”

Follow Racquel on social & check out her advocacy work.


Feeling inspired by these fantastic Facebook leaders? Don’t forget to add them to your feed!

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