By Kris McFalls
It has been nearly seven years since I began my position with IG Living’s founder and publisher, FFF Enterprises. And, I remember feeling then what I still feel now: It was a wonderful opportunity full of challenge and promise. Not only have I had the chance to work for a company like FFF Enterprises, which has integrity and a patient-first philosophy I have long admired, I have had the chance to connect with all of you - patients within the immune globulin (IG) community - through IG Living magazine. It has been an honor and a privilege to serve as a writer for IG Living, as well as a patient advocate for many of you. I take pride in the amazing work that has been done to serve the IG community. That is why it is with mixed emotions that I am announcing I have once again been blessed with a wonderful new opportunity. I have accepted the position of manager of reimbursement with CSL Behring, and this will be my last blog as a member of the IG Living staff.
The funny thing about opportunities is that sometimes when you least expect them, they find you. And I assure all of you that is the case for me. My colleagues here at IG Living celebrate with me as I embark on this new journey, and while I won’t be as visible, I will still be very much involved with this community. I can tell you, without a doubt, that the work is far from done, and I will always be a part of it in some way.
Winston Churchill was quoted as saying: “There is nothing wrong with change, if it is in the right direction.” I believe at IG Living we have made postive changes in the right direction, always with an eye toward our mission to support the IG community through education, communication and advocacy. For instance, our social media outreach has allowed readers from all over the globe to connect with one another. Many of our articles are now being written by experts in the fields of immunology, rheumatology and neurology. And, in 2011, we launched the first of what we plan to be an annual writing contest through which several of our readers shared the intimate details of their personal battles with chronic illness.
I have enjoyed reading your letters, emails, Facebook comments, as well as comments submitted with your subscription requests. And I can promise you that I have personally read every single one of them, as have many others on our IG Living staff. We take the responsibility to be good stewards of the rare disease community very seriously. Therefore, positive, forward change will continue to happen at IG Living, and you can be part of it. I encourage all of you to keep telling your story, continue to comment on the articles, and continue to make suggestions for new articles. Your needs can only be met if you let them be known!
I would like to thank my sons, Konner and Keegan, for allowing me to make their lives so public. It is only through sharing our trials that others can understand them. And I am grateful they allowed me to share some of our experiences with you. Additionally, I would like to thank the IG Living staff for their wonderful support and for making me look like a bona fide writer. Many on our staff go unrecognized and unnoticed, but I can promise you, they all care as much as I do. I must give a special thanks to Patrick Schmidt, FFF’s CEO, who has had the vision, caring and determination to invest in this community and to back a publication that is patient-focused. Thanks also go out to the IG Living advertisers who continue to believe in and support this publication and our community. Without this support, IG Living would not be able to continue. Last, I would like to thank all of you, our readers, for allowing me the honor of being a small part of your lives. I encourage you to celebrate your opportunities, rise to your challenges and embrace them all with passion. Know that, as I step into my new professional role, my personal role as part of this wonderful community and as a Facebook fan and avid IG Living reader will continue.