Robert DeForde (he/him/his) brings firsthand lived experience as a member of the recovery community for over ten years in addition to having worked on the ground in treatment centers locally in Houston, Texas. The mission of Shatterproof and the Stigma Team are extremely significant and close to his heart after the loss of many friends to the disease of addiction. Advocacy work has been a part of Robert’s life for many years. After being diagnosed with a hereditary bleeding disorder as a young teen, Robert co-founded the Texas Bleeding Disorders Coalition at the age of 18, for the first time ever aligning the advocacy goals of the two bleeding disorder organizations in the State. Robert has continued his passion for advocacy assisting annually with the organization, strategy, and execution of Patient Services Incorporated's National Advocacy Day. Robert is a recent transplant from Texas to New York City where he resides with his partner (Amanda), Goldendoodle (Wally), and extremely overweight cat (Waffles). Robert completed his undergraduate degree in Health Disparities, Diversity, & Advocacy at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. He continues to play an integral role in the program as an adjunct faculty member. His education journey continues as he pursues as a Masters of Education in Healthcare Curriculum & Instruction from the University of Houston.