SD Network

Member Spotlight: Rosie

user image 2024-03-31
By: SD Network
Posted in: Member Spotlight

FE57B14FAB434A1592943823F242E815.pngMeet Rosie. This Diehard Award winning very determined survivor and author travels around the world sharing her story of hope and perseverance. Her story has helped medical professionals, researchers, and advocates create needed changes to practices in medical facilities. She’s also a big advocate for Diversity, Equality, Inclusion, and Accessibility.  We’re so fortunate to have Rosie as a member of the Self-Determination Network!

What’s your story?  Tell us a little bit about yourself.

This widow, mother, grandmother and educator is a fighter. In August of 2009, she underwent a total right knee replacement that developed into a MRSA staph infection. She explains that this healthcare acquired infection has led to 58 surgeries, over 200 hospitalizations more than 100 blood transfusions, more than 15 incidents of septic shock, a right leg amputation six inches above the knee, a total hip amputation, the removal of most of her pelvic bone and all the tissue to her waist on the right side. She shares that she also has suffered from C-dif. She developed it when she was in a coma because doctors had given her antibiotics to treat everything, they thought might be causing her infection and septic shock.

As she continues to battle this MRSA infection in her body, she’s driven to share her story of survival. “I believe in helping others with disabilities and other health concerns find their voices. I use my story to co-design with medical professionals, researchers and to advocate for patients and their caregivers,” she tells us. She has also written a book entitled, “Rosie’s Story, A Story of Faith, Hope, and Survival.” It isn’t found on Amazon because she signs every book. If you would like a copy, she says that people can email her.

How are you involved with self-determination? Why did you join the SD Network?

Rosie shares stories about living with a disability. She helps healthcare organizations and communities around the world understand the lived experience of individuals living with a disability. “As the world looks at Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI), I encourage them to look at Accessibility or DEIA because without accessibility there won’t be any diversity, equity, or inclusion. Without the self-determination of individuals with disabilities change will not happen,” she says. She joined the SD Network because she believes the voices of many helps to create change for all individuals living with disabilities.

Tell us some good news – what’s the most exciting thing happening for you (or in Wisconsin) in terms of self-determination?

One of the most exciting and humbling experiences that happened to Rosie around self-determination was at the Wisconsin Self-Determination Conference last year when received one of the Diehard Awards. She shares that she also values being a member of the IRIS Advisory Committee because she’s able to share not only her experiences as a participant, but also the experience of other participants. “Finally, I appreciate that I was asked to share my story, my experience as a participant, and being able to present with both people from the Ombudsman and DHS at the Self-Determination Conference the last two years respectively,” she tells us.

What tip or resource would you like to share with people who want to be more self-determined?

Rosie’s go-to resources are the DHS website or calling DHS; she also encourages people to join the SD Network directly.

For her tip, Rosie really encourages everyone to attend the Wisconsin Self-Determination Conference. “You will meet many individuals living with disabilities that live a very self-determined life and will learn about many resources available to you,” she explains.

What are some of your hobbies?

Rosie tells us that she doesn’t have a lot of hobbies, but she loves to read James Patterson books; she has read everything he has written. She also enjoys watching television series that have a police/FBI, hospital/medical, fire department, law/order, building/renovation, baking, and every 90 Day themed programs.

***We love hearing the views and opinions of Network members. We need to mention that the views and opinions expressed on this site are those of the person who is sharing them. They do not necessarily reflect InControl Wisconsin or any of our supporters and funders.


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