Hi, my name is Peggy Iverson and I would like to introduce myself as the Zemaira CareZ Program Manager.
I have had the privilege of working at AlphaNet since 2011. I became involved in the Alpha-1 community after attending my first Alpha-1 National Conference. It was such a wonderful experience to connect with other Alphas and it inspired me to start the Iowa Alpha-1 Support Group in 2007. I served as a Support Group Leader before beginning my work with AlphaNet.
I live in Johnston, Iowa, with my husband and have two grown sons who are both Alpha-1 carriers. My journey with Alpha-1 began in 1975 when my mother began having difficulty breathing doing everyday activities. She had never smoked and her small town Iowa doctor couldn’t understand why she had so much lung disease and referred her to the Mayo Clinic. She was correctly diagnosed with Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency. She was told to get her affairs in order and there was nothing available to help her. I lost my wonderful mom at the age of 54. I also lost an uncle, who was a smoker, at age 40. I was fortunate to be tested for Alpha-1 in 1975, after my mom’s diagnosis. Being diagnosed in my 20s has been powerful motivation for me to make healthy lifestyle choices and be proactive in my own healthcare. I participated in the National Institutes of Health study in 1985 and was fortunate to be connected with a wonderful Clinical Resource Center pulmonologist who has been my partner in keeping me as healthy as possible.
I retired early after a career in Information Technology as a network administrator. I attend regular Iowa support group meetings, volunteer for Alpha-1 research studies, chair a fundraiser for the Alpha-1 Foundation called “Iowa Get the Scoop on Alpha-1” to help fund the cure, volunteer for the American Lung Association in Iowa, and participate in board meetings of the Iowa Association of Respiratory Care.
I am passionate about helping other Alphas get the education and resources they need to live their best possible lives. I love serving Alphas as an AlphaNet Patient Services Coordinator and feel like I am talking to family every day. No Alpha need ever feel alone as we are here for you every day!