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Risa Simon    

Motivational Speaker, Patient Advocate, Author & Kidney Transplant Recipient

Risa Simon is a fierce advocate who is elevating kidney transplant opportunities at every turn. As a preemptive (live-donor) transplant recipient, Simon understands the importance of proactive patient engagement and self-advocacy. Repurposing her own health journey to find her best-life’s work, she’s revolutionizing patient education with “tell-it-like-it-is” motivation programs to highlight proactive engagement and inspire “best-life” mindsets.

Simon’s creative thumbprint can be found on innovative brands of champion patient programs and “self-help” books—and her advocacy efforts can be seen behind ground-breaking organ donor proclamations and Senate Bills. Simon’s mission is fairly simple: to empower kidney patients to seek a better and longer life—the life she, and many of her followers now live.

Whether Simon is speaking, coaching, mentoring or advocating for the National Kidney Foundation (NKF), American Association of Kidney Patients (AAKP), or the Polycystic Kidney Disease Foundation (PKD)—she’s touching the hearts and minds of both patient and professional audiences alike.

Simon's life changed when the same genetic kidney disease that took her father’s life in his early 40’s — Polycystic Kidney Disease — started to creep into her life as well, despite her optimistic vision and passion for wellness. While exploring this new territory, she uncovered critical “blind spots” and provider reluctance to encourage proactive opportunities to avoid dialysis. These insights compelled Simon to morph her talents from the dental industry into the renal community to create a more powerful engagement platform that promised better outcomes for kidney patients.

As the founder and CEO of the TransplantFirst Academy, The Proactive Path and Simon Says Seminars, inc—she’s leading the way to better outcomes by redefining true patient empowerment. Her motivational programs and books, "In Pursuit of a Better Life" and "Shift Your Fate" continue to inspire her fellow kidney patients to be relentless and fight for their best life possible.

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