Melissa Parsons, MD
Melissa Parsons became interested in the Arthritis Foundation in 2011 when her husband, Jon, was diagnosed in October with ankylosing spondylitis. That year, Dr. Parsons surprised her husband by getting a team of 73 Friends and Family (the largest friends and family group – beat only by OhioHealth) signed up to walk and run in the 2011 Jingle Bell Run. Melissa raised over $7000 in about 6 weeks between Jon’s diagnosis and the 2nd weekend in December. Since 2011, Jon and Melissa have raised $51, 417.97 for the Arthritis Foundation, and continually have one of the largest Friends and Family teams. Last year, one of Melissa’s patients, Isabelle Moore, was diagnosed with juvenile idiopathic arthritis, and Melissa encouraged Izzy’s parents to participate in the Jingle Bell Run. This year, Izzy was chosen to be the pediatric patient honoree, and Mrs. Moore suggested Dr. Parsons be chosen as the medical honoree.