Arthritis Foundation Hosts Hundreds of Volunteers at 2016 Conference of Champions Meeting

Almost 400 attendees gather in Denver to hear and learn from each other, experts and celebrities – including Matt Iseman and Mark Schlereth

DENVER (October 25, 2016) – Every year, the Arthritis Foundation rallies with its volunteer force to continue its mission of finding a cure for arthritis, the leading cause for disability in America, and helping people with arthritis live a more fulfilled life by being a Champion of Yes. From November 3-4 at the Grand Hyatt Denver, volunteers from around the country will come together to hear from and connect with experts, leaders, influencers and fellow volunteers to celebrate the victories of 2016 and gain the necessary tools to make an even bigger impact in 2017.

To help inspire and energize these volunteers to achieve even more, Matt Iseman, host of NBC’s “American Ninja Warrior” and Mark Schlereth, three-time Super Bowl champion, former Denver Bronco and current NFL analyst, will share their personal stories of living with arthritis and how to live a life of Yes during the Conference of Champions. Other special guests include Murphy Huston, former Denver area morning radio personality, and Eric Farone, improvisational trainer and owner of the Bovine Metropolis Theater.

“This meeting brings together volunteers and local staff from across the country who are vital in helping to deliver impact to those living with arthritis,” said Ann M. Palmer, president and CEO of the Arthritis Foundation. “Our mission is to lead the fight for the arthritis community, and, by coming together as an organization, we are able to learn from each other, hear from dynamic speakers and leave feeling engaged and energized to make each day another stride towards a cure.”

Sessions and meeting highlights will include the following:

  • Plenary sessions that share the Foundation’s scientific discovery successes and future plans, strategic direction and approach to measuring and delivering mission impact;
  • Volunteer workshops about building stronger relationships with local community members including focusing on fundraising, advocacy and event participation; and
  • Recognizing outstanding volunteers and leaders who are dedicated to the Foundation and have moved the needle in the arthritis community from fundraising to event leadership.

In addition, the Foundation will recognize two people with its highest awards – the Charles B. Harding Award, the Foundation’s highest volunteer award, and the Lee C. Howley Prize for Research, which recognizes contributions during the previous year that has improved the treatment or prevention of arthritis and related diseases. Sponsors for the Conference of Champions include Eli Lilly and Company, Novartis, Pfizer, AbbVie, and Amgen.

To learn more about the Arthritis Foundation and its 2016 Conference of Champions, please visit: To join the Conference of Champions social conversation on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, use and search for #AFAchieves.

Arthritis Foundation

The Arthritis Foundation is the Champion of Yes. Leading the fight for the arthritis community, the Foundation helps conquer everyday battles through life-changing information and resources, access to optimal care, advancements in science and community connections. The Arthritis Foundation’s goal is to chart a winning course, guiding families in developing personalized plans for living a full life – and making each day another stride towards a cure. The Foundation also publishes Arthritis Today, the award-winning magazine that reaches 4 million readers per issue.