Unstoppable, award-winning advocate for the ankylosing spondylitis community since 2013, Charis is a professionally disabled writer, speaker and model living with Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS), Major Depressive Disorder, Anxiety and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Charis’ story has been featured in mainstream media and in a 2019 documentary (Becoming Incurable). *She/they have spoken about disability and chronic disease at numerous events including the Sacramento Women’s March and the Sacramento Changemakers TEDx series; and has additionally spoken on healthcare panels, press conferences, in legislative hearings, and with members of Congress on Capitol Hill. Charis has been instrumental in creating spondyloarthritis disease treatment guidelines; designing and conducting patient-centered rheumatological research; forming international criteria for disease treatment outcomes; and is consistently involved in multiple nationwide/worldwide advocacy, awareness, and legislative campaigns to improve spondylitis education, funding, and access to treatment. She/they have modeled in both Los Angeles Style Fashion Week and New York Fashion Week, and is on the cover of Féroce magazine in her/their wheelchair to raise awareness of rheumatic diseases and disability.
In 2014 Charis was awarded the Progress in Policy Award by the Arthritis Foundation, Pacific Region for efforts in statewide and national legislative advocacy efforts. She/they co-lead the Spondylitis Association of America patient educational support group in Sacramento, CA and is a volunteer member of the Spondylitis Association of America advocacy committee. Charis writes for various media outlets; with bylines at HealthCentral, Healthline, The Mighty, and This AS Life; including cover stories for both Arthritis Today and Spondylitis Plus magazine.
Charis graduated in 2009 from Meredith College, Magna Cum Laude, with a BA in Sociology and minors in Psychology and Women’s Studies. When able, she/they enjoy sewing, cooking, gardening, attending Burning Man, and loving two very furry Maine-coon mixed cats, Dora and Juno.
*Charis uses she/they/he pronouns, depending on the day or context. To learn more about non-binary pronouns, check out this link.
Charis is available for speaking engagements, awareness campaigns, press inquiries, and more.
Reach by email: Charis.Anna.Hill[at]gmail.com
To see Charis in the news, check out the News & Media Mentions page.