TUCSON, Ariz., April 7, 2014 — The Muscular Dystrophy Association’s National Youth Chairman Luke Christie, 20, was honored on Sunday, April 6 with the North-American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) Undergraduate Award of Distinction in Atlanta.
Christie received the award at a special dinner at the W. Atlanta Midtown. The award seeks to recognize the fraternity man who has found in his experience an outlet for developing as both a leader and a better man.
Luke, a communications major at Furman University in South Carolina, has served as MDA’s National Youth Chairman since 2006. In his role, Luke represents MDA by recruiting, energizing and motivating high school and college-age youth across America to get involved in the fight against muscle disease.
MDA’s National Youth Chairman also plays an important volunteer role all year round by helping to spread MDA’s story nationwide, at national youth conventions, participating in media interviews and hosting segments on the MDA Show of Strength Telethon.
“I can’t think of a better recipient for the Undergraduate Award of Distinction than our very own National Youth Chairman Luke Christie,” said MDA President and CEO Steven M. Derks. “Luke has been an MDA champion for many years, rallying communities across the U.S. and encouraging more people to engage with MDA to help save and improve lives of people fighting muscle disease. We couldn’t be more proud that Luke is receiving such an esteemed recognition for his inspirational leadership, education and service to others.”
Luke is affected by spinal muscular atrophy, a progressive neuromuscular disease that causes muscle weakness and atrophy. The biggest potential problems in SMA are respiratory muscle weakness, swallowing muscle weakness, and back muscle weakness with progressive spinal curvature. He relies on a power wheelchair for mobility.
The Muscular Dystrophy Association is the world’s leading nonprofit health agency dedicated to finding treatments and cures for muscular dystrophy, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and other neuromuscular diseases. It does so by funding worldwide research; by providing comprehensive health care services and support to MDA families nationwide; and by rallying communities to fight back through advocacy, fundraising and local engagement. Visit mda.org and follow us at facebook.com/MDAnational and @MDAnews.