Cindy's Story

“While it was a huge relief – I finally knew what was wrong with me and I could get treatment – the news that I had a chronic disease felt like a life sentence.” 

At age 27, Cindy Hughes Anliker was diagnosed with adult Still’s disease, a rare form of inflammatory arthritis. “Before I was diagnosed, I had crazy symptoms for years – salmon-colored rashes, high fevers, joint pain, muscle aches and extreme fatigue. I was even hospitalized for several days because I was so sick,” she said. “While it was a huge relief – I finally knew what was wrong with me and I could get treatment – the news that I had a chronic disease felt like a life sentence.” 

Although the symptoms of adult Still’s disease have persisted since she was diagnosed, Cindy refuses to let the disease defeat her spirit. Each day, she focuses on giving her best self to others and being a positive influence, especially to the young people in her life. Since 2004, Cindy has been a resident and marketing communications professional in the greater Des Moines metro, currently working as a marketing manager for UnitedHealthcare. She has been a board member for the Arthritis Foundation since 2010 and the team captain of Cindy’s Pickles for the Des Moines Walk to Cure Arthritis.  

Cindy is active in several community organizations and was honored in 2014 as one of the Des Moines Business Record’s Forty Under 40. She has a master’s in adult learning and organizational performance from Drake University and a bachelor’s in communication studies from the University of North Carolina, Wilmington. Cindy also graduated from the Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute’s community leadership program in 2012.   

Cindy has been happily married to Clark Anliker since 2007. They have two adorable pups, Lex and Mickey. Cindy’s loved ones, medical team and community, as well as her wish to cure arthritis for the millions who suffer from arthritic diseases, keep her motivated. 
I Want to Contribute
I Need Help
  • Donate


    Every gift to the Arthritis Foundation will help people with arthritis across the U.S. live their best life.

  • Volunteer


    Join us and become a Champion of Yes. There are many volunteer opportunities available.

  • Live Yes! INSIGHTS

    Live Yes! INSIGHTS

    Take part to be among those changing lives today and changing the future of arthritis.

  • Partner


    Proud Partners of the Arthritis Foundation make an annual commitment to directly support the Foundation’s mission.


Make a Donation

Help millions of people live with less pain and fund groundbreaking research to discover a cure for this devastating disease. Please, make your urgently-needed donation to the Arthritis Foundation now!

Become a Member

Become an Arthritis Foundation member today for just $20. You'll receive a year's worth of Arthritis Today magazine, access to helpful tools, resources, and more.

Make a Honor or Memorial Gift

Honor a loved one with a meaningful donation to the Arthritis Foundation. We'll send a handwritten card to the honoree or their family notifying them of your thoughtful gift.


Volunteer Opportunities

The Arthritis Foundation is focused on finding a cure and championing the fight against arthritis with life-changing information, advocacy, science and community. We can only achieve these goals with your help. Strong, outspoken and engaged volunteers will help us conquer arthritis. By getting involved, you become a leader in our organization and help make a difference in the lives of millions. Join us and become a Champion of Yes.

More About Volunteering


Give Just 10 Minutes.

Tell us what matters most to you. Change the future of arthritis.

By taking part in the Live Yes! INSIGHTS assessment, you’ll be among those changing lives today and changing the future of arthritis, for yourself and for 54 million others. And all it takes is just 10 minutes.

Your shared experiences will help:

- Lead to more effective treatments and outcomes
- Develop programs to meet the needs of you and your community
- Shape a powerful agenda that fights for you

Now is the time to make your voice count, for yourself and the entire arthritis community. 

Currently this program is for the adult arthritis community.  Since the needs of the juvenile arthritis (JA) community are unique, we are currently working with experts to develop a customized experience for JA families. 

How are you changing the future?

By sharing your experience, you’re showing decision-makers the realities of living with arthritis, paving the way for change. You’re helping break down barriers to care, inform research and create resources that make a difference in people’s lives, including your own.

Get Started



Meet Our Partners

As a partner, you will help the Arthritis Foundation provide life-changing resources, science, advocacy and community connections for people with arthritis, the nations leading cause of disability. Join us today and help lead the way as a Champion of Yes.


Our Trailblazers are committed partners ready to lead the way, take action and fight for everyday victories. They contribute $2,000,000 to $2,749,000


Our Visionary partners help us plan for a future that includes a cure for arthritis. These inspired and inventive champions have contributed $1,500,00 to $1,999,999.


Our Pioneers are always ready to explore and find new weapons in the fight against arthritis. They contribute $1,000,000 to $1,499,999.


Our Pacesetters ensure that we can chart the course for a cure for those who live with arthritis. They contribute $500,000 to $999,000.


Our Signature partners make their mark by helping us identify new and meaningful resources for people with arthritis. They contribute $250,000 to $499,999.


Our Supporting partners are active champions who provide encouragement and assistance to the arthritis community. They contribute $100,000 to $249,999.

More About Partnerships