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2023 Walk to Cure Arthritis Honorees


Sandesh Rao, MD
Washington Orthopaedics &
Sports Medicine
Medical Honoree

Dr. Sandesh Rao, a DC-area native, obtained his medical degree from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and completed residencies there in internal medicine and orthopedic surgery. He then completed a fellowship in adult reconstruction at Rush University.

Dr. Rao specializes in joint reconstruction and replacements of the hip and knee, orthopedic trauma and fracture care, and management of general orthopedic ailments and injuries, with a special interest in complex and revision replacements.

Dr. Rao values a patient-centric approach with shared decision making with patients. Outside of work, Dr. Rao enjoys spending time with his wife and three children, and playing tennis, basketball, and football.


Kia Booker Konde
Rheumatoid Arthritis
Adult Honoree

Kia Booker Konde is a native Philadelphian now residing in the DC Region. She is passionate about economic development and works for HUD. Kia enjoys international travel, stage theater and volunteering. She is a member of the Junior League of Washington and chairs both the By-laws and Legislative committees in her Federally Employed Women (FEW) Chapter. After having her life changed by rheumatoid arthritis in 2021, she immediately joined the Arthritis Foundation and began advocating and fundraising for a cure. She is newly married to her loving and supportive husband, Daniel Konde and helps him raise her bonus daughter, Naomi.

Join or support Kia on her personal fundraising page.


Carson Shurtz
Juvenile Ankylosing Spondylitis
Young Adult Honoree

Carson’s diagnosis of juvenile ankylosing spondylitis came as a complete surprise to not only his family but also the handful of doctors who had tried for 13 months to explain why a seemingly healthy 13-year-old lost the ability to stand or walk. However, thanks to the immediate medical care and the groundbreaking research pioneered by the Arthritis Foundation, Carson was able to enter remission before attending the University of Southern California. Now, as a young professional, Carson lives life on his own terms - complete with friends in a new city, recreational sports, and a job in government consulting.

Join or support Carson and team, Carson's Quest on their team fundraising page.