Kelly Perkins, inventor HydraCoach
Kelly Perkins has expanded the possibilities of what a heart transplant recipient can do, climbing mountains that few thought possible. In 1992, Kelly and husband Craig were exercising their passion for travel and the outdoors by hiking in the Swiss Alps for their fifth wedding anniversary. A month later, Kelly’s heartbeat began racing and she was diagnosed with a potentially deadly virus in her heart. Three years later, she got a heart transplant at UCLA.Her next step? Back to mountain climbing, where she shocked the medical world by becoming the first ever heart transplant recipient to reach the peak some of the world’s most famous mountains, including one of the “Seven Summits,” Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa. Craig and Kelly continue to climb both for pure enjoyment as well in hopes of drawing attention to organ, blood, and tissue donation. In addition to continuing to climb, Kelly and Craig invented a new hydration monitoring product they market to runner and climbers, but which anyone can use, HydraCoach, Inc.