MaKaylie Peterkin, M.Ed, CCLS, is a dedicated professional with a personal mission to positively impact families facing unique challenges. Raised in a small town in Georgia, her childhood was marked by the loss of her older sister, Ashley, to an undiagnosed rare disease. With her father as a high school football and wrestling coach, MaKaylie’s upbringing was deeply ingrained in sports.

Inspired by her sister’s story, MaKaylie earned a Bachelor’s degree in Education from the University of West Georgia and later pursued a Master’s in Therapeutic Recreation with a Child Life Specialization. For eight years, she worked as a Certified Child Life Specialist, providing invaluable support to families dealing with rare diseases and other unique health challenges both domestically and internationally.

MaKaylie’s connection to sports is profound—Ashley attended sports practices with their father, and when Ashley passed away, the athletes became her pallbearers. The local sports writer captured this powerful connection in a front-page article, highlighting the reciprocal impact of sports on Ashley’s life and the athletes she touched. Currently serving as the Uplifting Experience Coordinator at Uplifting Athletes, MaKaylie seamlessly combines her expertise in child life with her passion for sports. Residing in Atlanta with her husband and two sons, she cherishes family and enjoys traveling, with South Africa as her favorite destination. MaKaylie’s journey is a testament to her resilience, compassion, and commitment to making a meaningful impact on the lives of those facing rare diseases, all within the context of her deep connection to the transformative power of sports