#59: Maria Rose Belding | There Are No Words for this T1D Trailblazer

After a tip from my sister and a little friendly stalking, I scored a killer interview with CNN Heroes award recipient, Maria Rose Belding. Above and beyond her work providing food for people in need, she is surpassing her goals while juggling life with Type 1 diabetes. In this episode she shares her passion to serve others while not letting T1D slow her down.


Maria Rose Belding is the co-founder and executive director of the MEANS Database, a nonprofit tech company working to move food to those in need in 49 U.S. states and DC. MEANS, which Maria Rose has been working to build since she was 14, has been responsible for the recovery of more than 2 million pounds of food since 2015. Among other recognitions, Maria Rose has been named a L’Oreal Woman of Worth (2015), Starbucks Upstander (2016), Glamour College Woman of the Year (2018) and 2018 Top Ten CNN Hero of the Year, becoming the youngest woman ever to claim that honor at age 23. Maria Rose is a senior at American University studying public health on the premed track, with minors in power napping, caffeine studies and almost having her pump confiscated, mid-bolus, by professors who thought she is texting in class.

Photo Credit: Kate T. Parker Photography/Special K


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