Your Diabetes Coach

About Me, the Coach

Hi, Im Joanna

There is a lot to share about me before I joined the T1D team in 2007, after giving birth to my second daughter when the gestational diabetes morphed into Type 1. At the time I was 35 years old and had an infant and a 4 year old, owned my own business, and was not expecting this to change my life as it did. 5 years later, my older daughter got diagnosed at age 9 and the roller coaster got even more extreme.

But, let me tell you about me B.D. (Before Diabetes). I grew up in Los Angeles, California and nobody that I knew of in my family ever had Type 1. I was a fierce tom boy and talented athlete and played most every sport available, soccer being my love. I also got to spend one month a summer at Skylake Yosemite Camp and fell in love with nature so deeply it led me to spend my adult life living in the deep mountains of Colorado. In highschool I went to the southern California beaches often, went to a rigorous private school, and played lots of soccer including on an Olympic Development team, as well as varsity track and tennis.

I was eventually recruited to play soccer at UC Berkeley where I studied Conservation Resource Studies. I did earn a National Championship title, not in soccer however, in Ultimate Frisbee, the sport most college athlete drop-outs switched over to as a way to stay in shape and competitive while having fun. I spent my junior year living abroad in Granada, Spain learning to become fluent in Spanish. I eventually earned a credential in elementary education and taught Spanish in the public school system in California and Colorado for some years. In the summers, I taught environmental education and guided backpacking trips for summer camps and outfitters. I also spent many miles traveling by bike and bike toured my way along the entire coast of California, around the Big Island of Hawaii (twice) and the road from Cairns to Sydney, in Australia. I also enjoyed adventure backpack traveling and explored many corners of the world like: Guatemala, Costa Rica, Mexico, Japan, Cambodia, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Chile, Argentina and the list goes on.

That takes me to my adult life. I met my husband guiding backpacking trips for teenagers in Northern California. We moved to Telluride, Colorado together for teaching jobs, and have been living in a small extreme mountain ski town ever since the year 2000, enjoying all the outdoor recreation once could imagine in the mountains: hiking, mountain biking, skiing, stand up paddle boarding, camping and all the rest. We successfully started a business of fix and flipping properties and green remodeling, which led us to start our own Green Building supply and design build business for 7 years, which included property management as well. We started a family and welcomed two awesome daughters 4 years apart, the center of our universe.

After my second pregnancy with Gestational Diabetes, I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes, as one of the lucky few (less than 1%) who gets full on T1D after gestational age. It was a shock, but I had two kids under 5 years old at that time and didn’t really have time to go down. So, I took it as, “Game On”, I decided I will do what I need to do to live my very best life and stay healthy for my family. I adopted a raw vegan diet, competed in 100 mile bike races, and delved into yoga and meditation to the next level, and focused on positive mindset and gratitude. I already ate well and exercised so I had to just learn the crazy managing blood sugar part. When I was diagnosed, my insurance didn't cover my “insulin” because somewhere in my 20’s I had checked the box that I only needed generic drugs (not planning to have to take any medications in my life ever, at that point.) I quickly learned how to fight my insurance company, take shots of insulin, figure out how to keep up all of my far flung sports without having to give anything up with this diagnosis, kept traveling, momming and running my own business. It was doable. This experience shaped my understanding of balancing life's demands and cultivating new habits.

The crusher, was 5 years later, my eldest daughter got dealt a Type 1 diagnosis of her own at the the sweet age of 9 years old half way through 3rd grade. This was the hardest thing I had ever had to deal with in my life. Our family was leveled and the rug was pulled out from under us, spinning our life on its head ... .until we found our balance again.  At least I spoke the language of Diabetesof what they were educating us on at the ER and Barbara Davis center once we raced to the other side of the state for specialists. The other mom’s in the room had never even heard of Type 1 or a pancreas and were supposed to be the at home doctor just days after diagnosis of their most loved human in the world. Even with my experience and understanding the complexities of diabetes in my own body, helping manage it in a kid, and keeping sane, was earth shattering and I, like you, went to a dark place. I understand all that you have been through, as I have been on the same journey: Sleepless nights, alarms, managing highs and lows, school nurses, field trips, sleep overs, sports, cooking for the family, insurance, supplies, devices etc.. All of it, I get it. It was hard, but we also made the best of it. I did eventually learn to sleep through the night again (with the help of LOOPING and some great technology) I chaperone on more than my share of school field trips as my daughter attended a travel and experiential education school that took them on one to two week long trips and adventures from Costa Rica to the Deep South to Bears Ears Wilderness. Yup, I was there, so she could be there.  I attended most every sports practice and game, I hovered…and then I learned to let her soar. She is now a Sophomore in College at the University Of Washington studying Global Health. She runs half marathons, rock climbs, is a fierce skier, and is currently studying abroad. She is also a counselor at Bearskin Meadows Diabetes camp in the Sequoias and even climbed Mt. Whitnesy with a group of all Diabetics. She is my greatest teacher on this topic and I want to share with others how to continue to enjoy raising amazing children, all the while dealing with Type 1. 

And so finally, I am ready to share my life coach services with those of you who need it most. These days, a side from managing diabetes, I help others through the journey, I run a non-profit organization, and I wrote a YA fiction novel, I am a regular DJ on our local radio station, I work in a pre-school, and continue to ski, hike, and bike around the mountains with my Omni pod, loop app, and dex 7!


My coaching style is motivational, empathetic, and non-judgmental. I meet you where you stand, using questions to uncover your true desires and the path you thrive to be on. . Throughout your transformative journey, I’m your dedicated ally, embracing your goals as my own. I possess a profound ability to listen and empower you to discern what’s next. I believe everyone can orchestrate their desired life and drive positive change. As your coach, I’m committed to empowering you, helping you visualize possibilities, create action plans, set timelines, and ensure you are moving in all the right ways forward.

Have more questions?

Reach out to Joanna




Po Box 4191, Telluride, Colorado 81435


📞 970-729 -2029



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