Britt Johnson Joins The Team

Britt Johnson Joins The Team

The Arthritis National Research Foundation is thrilled to announce that Britt Johnson has joined the team as the newest part-time employee. She brings her unique perspective as both an arthritis patient and advocate to the foundation, and will be assisting with both marketing and community outreach.

“At the Arthritis National Research Foundation, we focus on cutting-edge arthritis research,” said Helene Belisle, Executive Director, “But it is important to remember who we are helping, people just like Britt. She will help the foundation bridge the gap between the scientific community and patients. Allowing the Arthritis National Research Foundation to keep our focus, but also maintain our perspective on why we do, what we do.”

Britt Johnson has been living with autoimmune arthritis since she developed rheumatic fever at the age of seven. Doctors originally diagnosed her with “temporary juvenile arthritis” and insisted it would go away. When it didn’t, and her lab tests turned up seronegative, she fought for many years to receive an accurate diagnosis and gain access to proper treatment. This early struggle of hers created a fascination with medical research. She understood that learning from difficult cases like hers could advance medical knowledge and simultaneously help other arthritis patients. She feels that had she been treated with the right medications as a child, her disease would not have progressed to its current severity and multi-condition diagnosis of Undifferentiated Spondyloarthropathy, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Sjogren’s Disease, and complex migraines.

“My complex case of arthritis only makes my passion for research and finding answers that much stronger,” says Britt, “I’m so excited to talk to some of the leading researchers around the country to learn more about what all of us in the community can look forward to.”

Britt Johnson Trail Racing
Britt Running a Trail Race in her Racing For A Cure jersey

Britt’s passion for understanding and helping others with arthritis lead her to become an active member of the online advocacy community in her teens. From there she began “chronically the absurdity of living with her disease” and writing her blog in 2011. She reached out to us shortly there after to gain more information about the foundation, and in hopes that her story – like so many others, could advance research. She has since become a member of the Racing For A Cure team, and a Cure Arthritis Ambassador.

“Britt will bring her unique life experience to the Arthritis National Research Foundation to further community outreach and grow the support for arthritis research,” said Derek Belisle, Marketing Director. “We’re ecstatic to have her, her positive energy and her passion as part of the organization.”

As a member of Racing For A Cure, Britt has raised money and spread awareness while running races throughout California in her Cure Arthritis jersey. Continuing to stay active is important to Britt, often reciting a mantra she learned from a family doctor, “motion is lotion.” This mantra keeps her hiking, trail running, swimming, and most importantly climbing as she trains for her long time dream of climbing North America’s tallest peak, Mt. Denali. She trains at her own pace, encouraging others with arthritis to do the same and “find their fun” in staying active.

Britt Johnson comes to the foundation from Stanford Medicine X. She will continue her work for Health Central as a part-time writer and RA Social Ambassador, she is a member of the CreakyJoints Patient Governor Group focusing on patient-centered research, she collaborates with various medical groups to include the patient voice in healthcare, and she travels around speaking about her life with multiple forms of arthritis.

“I’m excited to bring my background into hosting the foundation’s monthly web series Arthritis Now,” says Britt. The foundation will re-launch the science based interview show with a new look in January 2016. In addition to the show, Britt will also be assisting with the Racing For A Cure program and the Cure Arthritis Ambassadors.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Britt to our team at the Arthritis National Research Foundation,” said Helene Belisle, Executive Director. “We look forward to her fresh take on our interview show, Arthritis Now, and her passion for community outreach.”

Join us in welcoming Britt Johnson to the team!

Article Author
Arthritis National Research Foundation

The Arthritis National Research Foundation's mission is to provide initial research funding to brilliant, investigative scientists with new ideas to cure arthritis and related autoimmune diseases. Writing articles about the patients affected and the science being done to find a cure shows why we need to come together to #CureArthritis!

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