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Living Kidney Donation: Jim's Story

Jim's brother-in-law completed the desensitization process prior to receiving Jim's donated kidney.
 

UW Health living donation transplant: Jim's storyI have lived a full and rewarding life. I'm one of thousands of people who went to college at UW-Madison and never left Madison. I enjoyed school, and ended up with two degrees from the UW: a B.S. in Education (Natural Sciences) and a J.D.

 

I've been married to Kathy for 35 years, and we both recently retired, me after 30 years of service at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Kathy after 30 years as a nurse.

 

In 2008, when I learned that Kathy's brother needed a kidney, I stepped up to donate. The team at UW Hospital discovered that he and I were not a great match, so they offered him the option of going through the desensitization program.

 

We were only the second non-matched kidney transplant at UW Hospital and Clinics, so I think it is important to get the word out that non-matched transplants are possible and that they work. My brother-in-law, who has polycystic kidney disease, is now leading a much better life.

 

To improve awareness about organ donation, I serve as the living donor representative on the Donate Life Wisconsin collaborative. I also serve on several other boards, and enjoy a healthy, active lifestyle including biking, hiking, cross-country skiing, bird watching and hunting.