Thank you for sharing your experience with lupus! We will be sharing one lupus story each day of Lupus Awareness Month.
I am a Biomedical scientist, a TEDx speaker, an adjunct professor, lupus & disability advocate. October 1999, I was told you have lupus. The diagnosis was a relief, for 3 years of constant doctors visit with symptoms of fatigue, loss of appetite, body aches, and hair loss that my doctor said was just anemia but I knew it was more going on with my extreme fatigue which had nothing to do with track & field. It shattered my dreams of being a beauty pageant queen, a modern dancer, and the next Flo-Jo. I was a big dreamer, still dreaming for a day that lupus would have better treatment and eventually a cure.
Lupus took away everything I knew without an apology. I contacted my local New Jersey chapter of the lupus foundation for support. I organized a leadership group I was a part of and the student government associations on campus. While earning a Bachelor in Biology at Montclair In 2003, she organized a team of walkers naming them Team MSU at Montclair State University, for a walk in efforts to educate the public about lupus with the Lupus Foundation for America (NJ) chapter which she gained recognition in the Herald News and The Record for her fight against Lupus. My vision was not only to help fight Lupus in America but also overseas.
A patient Advocate and a Speaker. I have been recognized as a key volunteer at The Lupus Foundation of America (New Jersey Chapter). Mills has been featured on online platforms such as Blackman Can, Rizzar, Scoop it, and others. I am the recipient of the 2012 Black Street "Black Celebration" Award winner for Non-Profit. K-hitz & affiliates for recognizing me for my selfless dedication & contributions to the betterment of Ghanaians & immigrants in the USA award. Uptown honors nomination and 2017 3rd Annual AEUSA winner of Best Community Award of the Year.
In 2017 I took a bold step, calling for a meeting with the US Ambassador to Ghana Robert P. Jackson, and USAID to ask for aid for the Lupus patients in Ghana pleading with him. Mills asked for Professor Edmund Delle a dermatologist and Dr. Dzifa Dey a Rheumatologist to voice their concerns and challenges in treating lupus patients. Ghana hasn't recognized the growing number of lupus diagnoses. In 2018 I was invited to the funeral of former Secretary-General of UN Kofi Annan where I met many world leaders that came down to Ghana to say their goodbye to Kofi Annan. After the funeral CCP vice invited me to have a conversation with His Excellency John Kufuor to talk about health in Ghana and how I can help. I drafted a letter to the Ghana Health Services director-general requesting for statistics for lupus patients in Ghana which was sent to hospitals and clinics. In 2018 I was chosen as a speaker for TEDx Osu to talk about patient rights advocacy. I advocate for lupus patients in DC on Capitol Hill to request for lupus funding for the National Institute (NIH) and Department of Defense (DOD) and they got the bills signed and it’s in process. In 2019 the mayor of East Orange, Newark, and Montclair recognized my amazing work and gave me a proclamation for raising awareness for lupus. Currently, I am working with Councilman David Cummings and PWD (People With Disability) committee to raise awareness in the town of Montclair. In 2020 I was featured on the patch, Yahoo News, and other platforms. In 2021 I was on the Lifetime Balancing Act TV show talking about lupus nephritis and as an artist in the Star-Ledger.