Meet Our Board

megan.jpg

Founder/Executive Director

Megan Barker

In 2007, Megan began her career as a Respiratory Therapist.  Little did she know that fate would intervene shortly after that.  While performing her rounds at the hospital, Megan struck up a conversation with one of her patients about football.  Like her, Ty was a huge Peyton Manning fan.  Ty was in the hospital getting his Cystic Fibrosis tuned up and having already been there for two weeks, he was thankful to have a new friend to talk football with!  Before Ty was discharged from the hospital, he told Megan that once he was discharged, he planned on taking her on a date.  True to his word, the two went on their first date the day after he was discharged.  Like any good love story, they quickly fell in love and were married in 2008.  They completed their family in 2012, when they welcomed twin sons.  

After marrying Ty, Megan began to realize that not many people understood the life of a CF spouse.  She began to seek out other wives, whom she could share life experiences with.  Eventually, she established a group for other CF wives on Facebook.  While that group was a great starting point, ultimately, it wasn’t able to grow into what she initially envisioned for it, and was subsequently taken down because of this.  Still driven by her initial desire to connect with people who understand the ins and out of CF spousedom, Megan took the information and experiences from the initial wives group, along with some input from some CF husbands and from that, Project CF Spouse was born.  She wanted to create a place where CF spouses, old and new, could turn for resources, information or just a sympathetic shoulder from someone who understands.  It is her hope that Project CF Spouse will be a beacon of hope for those navigating the world of Cystic Fibrosis.

kelsey sue_edited.jpg

Director of Community Outreach

Kelsey Sue Stroop

Kelsey Sue Stroop was born in Orlando, Florida and raised outside of Chattanooga, Tennessee, where she fell in love with the city’s charm and diversity.  After moving with her family to Charlotte, North Carolina, she returned to Chattanooga where she met the love of her life, Taylor Stroop.  She soon learned of Taylor’s battle with Cystic Fibrosis and became passionate about finding a way to spread awareness and find a cure. 

In 2016, they decided to launch their clothing line, Sixty Five Apparel.  Kelsey Sue and Taylor were married in Chattanooga in May of 2017 and soon came to realize they could combine their passion for travel and adventure with their commitment to spreading awareness and finding a cure for CF.  Now, they live in their RV while vlogging their daily lives traveling the United States to explore and to spread awareness for Cystic Fibrosis.  Check out “Meet the Stroops” on YouTube to follow along with all of Kelsey Sue and Taylor’s adventures in the great wide open.

75429639_1212112062329634_76622365596005

Director of Strategic Planning and Development

Rob Ronnenberg

Born and raised in the town of Byron, Minnesota, Rob grew up loving the small-town life with fresh air to breathe where you can see fireflies at night and stars in the sky without the city lights hiding them. As an adult he met Jennifer through their daughters who were friends in elementary school and were just acquaintances for a few years. Later, both divorced, they began spending time together as friends when their kids played together. Eventually Jennifer fell madly in love with him (as Rob tells the story) and they began dating in 2013. Things were going well and even though he knew she had Cystic Fibrosis, he knew almost nothing about the disease other than she would probably have a shorter lifespan; essentially, he was clueless.

As things will in life, things started to change for them when Jennifer’s occasional hospital “tune-ups” went from once every 9 months or so to a couple of times a year with more troubles and appointments in between. By the end of 2016 thing had gotten bad enough Jennifer would be on oxygen full time in October and then in the hospital for the transplant workup and then getting listed for a lung transplant in June of 2017. Lucky for them, Byron is only about a 20-minute drive from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. By October of 2017 her PFT’s were below 11% and she was hospitalized until the call would come in and on one magical day it did! After many happy tears, and many sad tears for the donor and their family, it was time for the big step. Jennifer’s surgery to give her beautiful new lungs was a miraculous success!

After some bumps in the road, and a viral video, Jennifer is doing terrific and living each day to the fullest post-transplant. Now, with her new lungs and Rob’s realization that there is a whole world of Cystic Fibrosis and a community out there, they are on a mission to give back in honor of Lacey, Jennifer’s donor, by raising awareness and doing anything possible to make a difference in the world. Thanks to the video Rob shot of the moment when the breathing tube was removed and Jennifer took her first unobstructed breaths with her new lungs, the viral response has led to many avenues they are pursuing to further the cause.

 

They still live in the small town of Byron with their kids, but they are striving to do great things to make a difference for those with Cystic Fibrosis.

© 2018 by Project CF Spouse.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Instagram
  • YouTube
  • LinkedIn