Meet Joe Akmakjian

Joe graduated from CSU in 2013 with a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and technical communication. At 15 months old, he was diagnosed with a muscle-debilitating disease: spinal muscular atrophy. SMA is a progressive, potentially life threatening disease affecting the nervous system, causing muscle weakness in different parts of the body.

Joe has spent his life educating people on the realities of living with a physical disability. For the last two years, he held the title of the first adult National Ambassador in the history of the Muscular Dystrophy Association. As MDA’s most visible spokesman, Joe worked to deepen the organization’s reach among millennials while championing services for individuals living with neuromuscular disease.

Joe is a successful speaker focusing on breaking down barriers, diversity, inclusion and tolerance of all people, accepting change, and learning to adapt. A resident of Fort Collins, he spends time frequenting local breweries and listening to live music.