Hello , my name is Kristie Lent . I was born on Christmas Day 1977 in Boise, ID. My parents did not know I would have Spina Bifida. They flew me straight to Primary Children's hospital in Salt Lake City. The nurses and doctors gave my parents the worst possible scenario that I would never be able to walk or talk and would have a below average IQ. They advised my parents to put me in an institution...well joke was on them because I started walking at like 18 months and obviously I can speak 😉 English and reading have always been my favorite subjects. I was actually reading at a college level but third grade. My IQ also wasn't affected. I graduated both high school and college with honors.
My parents advocated early on for my education and insisted I be mainstream in regular classes. Besides math, I always did really well in school.
I had started my Master's degree in vocational rehabilitation, but decided about halfway through I really wanted to do more in social work or the law. I had also met my husband while working on my Master's and well, let's just say I got distracted 😉 We met online while he was living in Montana. We got married in 2005!
I have always seen. Myself as a disability advocate. I spoke to Congress when I was 11 years old about the need for more universal accessible design and equality. About a year later the Americans with Disabilities Act was passed. I would like to think my Congressional testimony helped get it passed. I was the poster child for Easter Seals in Oklahoma when I was 5 and I was also the first person in a wheelchair to sit on a glacier on Denali ( MT McKinley)!