Kate Berg, most recently an illustrious trendsetter in fashion and food in New York City, is an unstoppable force that people naturally gravitate to.
Though a native from Los Angeles, she quickly became Manhattan's go-to-foodie-source with a wide following at Blackboard Eats, an online restaurant guide. She has a New York edge after spending four years on Diane von Furstenberg's sales and marketing team, and as the daughter of Jeff Berg, CEO of International Creative Management, she has an innate drive and ambition.
Yet in January 2012, at just 27 years old, life halted for Kate when a stroke hit. She suffered from a severe, blinding headache that threw her off balance and stirred uncontrollable nausea. Her mother, Denny Luria, rushed her to UCLA. It was there they met Dr. Neil Martin, chairman of the UCLA Department of Neurosurgery. An international expert on neurovascular disorders, he immediately suspected an Arteriovenous Malformation (AVM) and explained to her parents that she needed surgery immediately. It appeared that the tangled blood vessels in her brain had burst, and he would need to relieve the pressure on her brain, and prevent further bleeding.
After a painstaking nine-hour procedure, and weeks of rehabilitation, Kate has come out on the other side with a new sense of what's important in life. Her parents and sister stayed by her side for weeks as she recovered at UCLA, and continued to support her once she returned to her parents' home in the Pacific Palisades. Recognizing that she was one of the youngest patients in the stroke unit at UCLA, Kate was determined to fight to return to normal so she could live a long, healthy life. "I'm convinced that the care at UCLA, matched with the love and support of my family, is what allowed me to recover and get back to normal so quickly," Kate said.
Today, Kate is back to normal, living on her own, traveling, and recently launched a fashion business with her sister. Her parents Denny and Jeff go on to say, "We were lucky to have found our way to UCLA that life altering afternoon. UCLA literally saved our daughter. For that, our family will be forever grateful."
UCLA recognizes Kate Berg with the Courage Award for her unwavering bravery and boundless hope as she charted her road to recovery.