Our Keynote Speaker for 2021 is Ms. Carol Ann Bartz, author of the book:
For Carol Ann, life was almost perfect until she began to suspect something wasn’t quite right with her youngest son, Zachary, who was just two years old. Call it mothers intuition or maybe it was the knowledge of being a nurse that lead her on a frustrating search to find the answers to what she feared the most. Her nightmare turned into reality, and Zachary was diagnosed with neurofibromatosis. When the disorder manifested into a fight for Zachary’s life, Carol Ann and her husband, Nathan, struggled to find a cure in time.
Despite overcoming many odds, without medical explanation, Zachary became an inspiration beyond belief as he strengthened the faith of a community and far beyond. It wasn’t until Carol Ann and Nathan were forced to make the ultimate decision that they would come to realize the extent of what Zachary was capable of accomplishing despite his incredible suffering while teaching thousands a valuable lesson in the meaning of life.
Carol Ann Bartz lives in Chisago City, Minnesota, with her husband where they are raising their children. She is a hockey, soccer, and gymnastics mom as well as a runner and a triathlete. She graduated from St. Catherine University and continues to work part-time as a registered nurse at the University of Minnesota Amplatz Hospital (now renamed University of Minnesota Health). Carol Ann continues to fundraise in efforts of one day getting closer to finding a cure for neurofibromatosis and cancer.
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