Born in Richmond, VA but raised in Philadelphia, PA, I was never comfortable with sharing that I was diagnosed with Sickle Cell Disease (SC) at birth. Like most kids, I did not want to be different. I didn't want to feel pain in my joints to the point where it felt as if my legs were on fire and I couldn't move. I was tired of going to the hospital, taking medicine, and dealing with the complications of SCD. As I continue to grow older, it is frustrating to learn about new challenges I will experience because of SCD. Recently, my perspective has shifted.
I'm not an expert in sickle cell, but I have a passion for helping others understand the disease. I have met so many people that experience more severe crisis and challenges with sickle cell. Instead of viewing the disease as a burden, I choose to focus on using my voice as a platform to enhance awareness and advocate for research from a patient's perspective.
My hope is that you are inspired by my story through Sickle Cycle and become encouraged to get involved in the sickle cell community. Collectively, we can help those suffering from the disease.
Charlotte Flemmings Curtis
Founder of Sickle Cycle
Born in Richmond, VA. Raised in Philadelphia, PA. Residing in Washington, DC.
Charlotte Flemmings Curtis is an advocate and strategist with a passion for community engagement and policy. Mrs. Curtis created the for-profit organization, Sickle Cycle, in May 2017 to foster awareness about Sickle Cell Disease and to combat issues and inequalities impacting the sickle cell community. Since its inception, Sickle Cycle has raised thousands of dollars to support sickle cell research and programs.
Mrs. Curtis has served as a Presidential Appointee under President Barack Obama from 2014-2017. She was the Special Advisor for Public Engagement at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and later, she served as the Special Advisor for White House Initiatives at the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS). She coordinated and led activities and engagements for White House initiatives including Champions of Change, Social Innovation Fund, and My Brother’s Keeper. Through her efforts, she increased economic opportunities for underserved communities.
Prior to her roles in the Obama administration, Mrs. Curtis professional experience includes international policy at the U.S. Department of Energy, workforce development at Communities in Schools, Inc., policy and constituent services for local municipalities in Boston and Newton, MA, and humanitarian policy at the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) in Geneva, Switzerland.
Her academic credentials include a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies from Spelman College, Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Northeastern University, and Certificate of Strategic Management from Georgetown University.