Mary Baliker lives in Wisconsin and is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse in Public Health. Mary has been a healthcare advocate most of her life. Having been diagnosed with kidney disease at the age of nine, living with chronic disease, having dialysis and four kidney transplants has given her an opportunity to cherish life and given her a strong interest to help improve healthcare.
Mary has also written her story “Maria Never Gives Up” to help children and their families in their personal struggle with the emotional and physical rollercoaster that is brought on by a chronic illness. The books are in many transplant and dialysis centers across the country and available on Amazon.
She is honored to serve on NephCure Kidney International, Team Leader of Midwest Region. She is also a member of the National Kidney Foundation’s Peer Mentoring Program, Kidney Advocacy Committee & Region #6 Captain, Public Policy Committee and various workgroups; the American Association of Nephrology: Kidney Health Initiative's (KHI) Patient and Family Partnership Council; the National Forum of ESRD Networks’ Kidney Patient Advisory Council; American Association of Kidney Patients Field Ambassador; Chronic Disease Coalition Ambassador; Midwest Kidney Network (ESRD Network #11) Board of Directors and Consumer Committee; the National Patient/Family Engagement Learning & Action Network Health Services’ Legacy Advisory Group; the United Network for Organ Sharing Pediatric Kidney Advisor; UW (University of Wisconsin-Madison) Health Patient and Family Advisory Committee; and Friends of UW Heath Board of Directors.
Mary's professional work experience includes the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine & Public Health and Long Beach Memorial Hospital. Positions that she has held include Organ Procurement Coordinator, Clinical Research Transplant Coordinator, Outreach Transplant Education Coordinator, Transplant Ambassador, and Healthcare Administration in Asthma, Pulmonary Disease, and Cancer.