April 12, 2018

CNN Heroes Honors Everyday People Changing the World


ASPEN, CO — April 12, 2018 — Bridging Bionics Foundation (BBF) is proud to announce that founder, executive director and bionic mobility pioneer Amanda Boxtel has been named a 2018 CNN Hero by CNN Worldwide. In its twelfth year, the CNN Heroes campaign is a year long initiative that honors everyday people for their selfless, creative efforts to help others.

The CNN Hero honor is in recognition of Boxtel’s legacy of helping individuals with neurological impairments regain mobility and, in some cases, stand up and walk, by means of advanced technologies including bionic exoskeleton suits and whole body vibration. Supported through ongoing fundraising efforts and generous donor contributions, the non-profit foundation provides free or low-cost therapeutic mobility sessions to clients of all ages at two fitness facilities near Aspen, Colorado. Paralyzed in a ski accident 26 years ago, Boxtel is the ultimate motivator. Her dedication to helping those with similar challenges to heal and thrive is evident in the example she sets and the determination she demonstrates each and every day.

Marking the honor, a CNN Hero video, titled “Bionic woman helps others thrive after paralysis,” has been posted on CNNHeroes.com. A companion article on Boxtel’s journey and the mission of Bridging Bionics Foundation, as well as a video chronicling a client’s personal journey from paralysis to mobility, may also be viewed on the website, or here:
(article) https://www.cnn.com/2018/04/12/health/cnnheroesamanda-boxtel-bridging-bionics/index.html,
(video) https://www.cnn.com/videos/health/2018/04/12/cnnheroes-boxtel-extra.cnn/video/playlists/2018-cnnheroes/. Beginning tonight, clips of Boxtel’s video will air on CNN and HLN. Donations to Bridging Bionics Foundation may be made on CNNHeroes.com.

About being named a 2018 CNN Hero, Boxtel shares, “I am humbled to be recognized with this honor, and am incredibly appreciative for the awareness that it will create about the mission and efforts of Bridging Bionics Foundation. The real heroes are our clients who show up weekly to push their limits and attain a better quality of life. Our success so far has been in witnessing improvements with our clients who have various neurological impairments, and maintaining wellness through the gift of mobility. Access to advanced technologies like bionic exoskeletons, and year-long therapy sessions is financially challenging. For most individuals it is cost-prohibitive and unavailable. Our program removes these barriers using charitable funding. As we continue to grow, this exposure will surely help us in our quest to expand our efforts and ensure that advanced technologies remain accessible and affordable for neurorecovery.”

Each year, CNN receives thousands of nominations from around the world. Each week, a CNN Hero is profiled on the global networks of CNN and on CNN.com. This fall, the 2018 Top 10 CNN Heroes will be announced. From the Top 10, viewers select the CNN Hero of the Year through an online vote. The CNN Hero of the Year will be revealed during “CNN Heroes: An All-Star Tribute” (date/time TBD). For more information about the CNN Heroes campaign, visit CNNHeroes.com, and follow CNN Heroes on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

About Amanda Boxtel – Bridging Bionics Foundation Founder & Executive Director
Since February 27, 1992, former Brisbane-ite Amanda Boxtel has dreamed of walking again. On that fateful date, a freak skiing accident in Aspen Snowmass, Colorado, rendered her with a permanent spinal cord injury from the pelvis down. She has since been involved in community and outreach projects that aim to improve the lives of individuals with disabilities in the United States. Amanda is the founding Executive Director for Bridging Bionics Foundation, demonstrating how bionic exoskeleton technology has a positive impact on quality of life. Amanda showcased the first partially 3D printed exoskeleton in the world for Singularity University’s European Summit in Budapest, Hungary, and then again at the Aspen Ideas Festival in Colorado. In November 2014, Amanda presented her forward thinking ideas about neuro-rehabilitation and humanizing technology at TEDCity2.0 in Chengdu China.

Amanda was the first person in the United States to own an EksoTM bionic exoskeleton suit manufactured by Ekso Bionics, which she acquired in June 2013. She has since donated her exoskeleton to the Bridging Bionics Foundation for use in the Aspen Community to help others who are paralyzed to walk. She lives with her golden retriever, Benson, in Basalt near Aspen, Colorado.

About Bridging Bionics Foundation – At Bridging Bionics Foundation (BBF), we believe all individuals with neurological mobility impairments can live better through the use of advance technology. We see a world using technology to optimize function and improve life for all individuals challenged with mobility impairments. This simple vision drives us to serve people through our unique programs. Our mission is to provide access to bionic rehabilitation technology for all individuals challenged with neurological mobility impairments. We serve individuals with neurological mobility impairments resulting from injury or disease, including spinal cord injuries (paraplegia, quadriplegia), multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, ALS, Cerebral Palsy and stroke. We work every day to be a bridge between advanced technology and those in need.

Bridging Bionics Foundation is an IRS designated 501(c)(3) public charity: EIN# 46-2182977, based out of Basalt near Aspen, Colorado. For more information, please visit www.bridgingbionics.org, or contact:

Amanda Boxtel, Executive Director
Business: + 1 (970) 379-0721
Email: Amanda@bridgingbionics.org
Bridging Bionics Foundation
PO Box 3767, Basalt, CO 81621, United States of America

Follow our journey on:
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bridgingbionics/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bridgingbionics/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/bridgingbionics
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9wcgE2TZJtW2KoGnXQWgmA/videos?pbjreload=10

About CNN Worldwide – CNN Worldwide is a portfolio of two dozen news and information services across cable, satellite, radio, wireless devices and the Internet in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide. Domestically, CNN reaches more individuals on television, the web and mobile devices than any other cable TV news organization in the United States; internationally, CNN is the most widely distributed news channel reaching more than 271 million households abroad; and CNN Digital is a top network for online news, mobile news and social media. Additionally, CNN Newsource is the world’s most extensively utilized news service partnering with hundreds of local and international news organizations around the world. CNN is division of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner Company. For more information, visit https://cnnpressroom.blogs.cnn.com/cnn-fact-sheet/.