VIProfile: Ashley Brindley




By Allison Razic

When Ashley Brindley sets her mind on a goal she does everything in her power to accomplish it. Originally from Franklin, Kentucky, she attended Western Kentucky University for her Bachelors in Marketing, graduating in 2005. She then went on to complete her MBA at WKU in 2010. Shortly after completing her Bachelors degree, she started at the Camping World corporate office in the Merchandising department, and has been working her way up the ladder there ever since. She is now the Divisional Merchandising Manager who oversees all Product Managers in the organization.

The most important thing to her, though, is her family. She has been married to her husband, Casey Brindley, for 12 years and they share a nine-year-old daughter, Hadley Jo. Their favorite thing to do in their free time is to go camping in their RV.

In 2016, when her daughter Hadley turned 2 ½, she received a diagnosis that would change their life. Hadley Jo was diagnosed with a rare genetic mitochondrial disorder that impacts one single gene - SLC25A46 and is called Hereditary Motor and Sensory Neuropathy, Type VIB. “There is currently no treatment or cure, and the disorder is also degenerative,” Ashley says. “Our genetic specialist told us there was a lack of funding for rare diseases.” Ashley refused to accept that for her daughter, and instead, the Hadley Jo Foundation was born in 2019. 100% of the funds that she raises go directly to her genetic specialist so that he can continue his work on finding a treatment, and ultimately a cure. 

With the disease being so rare, many people have asked Brindley how Hadley Jo is affected by it. “It impacts both her fine and gross motor skills. She needs 100% assistance with walking and standing. That can be holding someone’s hand, on to furniture, her walker or wheelchair. From the time she was diagnosed until now, we’ve seen a change in her balance. She used to be able to stand unassisted for short amount of times, now she cannot. And, she spends the majority of her time in her wheelchair to get around. But, those that know her knows she can fly around in her chair,” says Ashley, “Her vision is also impacted. The disease causes optic nerve atrophy. She can see, but we aren’t sure how well. The optic nerve runs from the back of the eye to your brain. When atrophy is present those signals are slowed.”

Ashley is blown away by the way that the community has come together to support her daughter. She recalls how when she was starting the organization the CPA asked her if she thought they would raise $50,000 in the first three years. “I told him that I had no idea, but would be so excited if we did” says Ashley. “As of December 2022, we have raised and donated $255,000! The support our family, friends and community have shown amazes me.” Ashley is proud of not only how much money they have raised, but also the awareness. When they received the diagnosis, she was unable to find any support because the disease is so rare. She has now had families reach out to her for help because they are facing similar situations and she is thankful that she has the reach now with the foundation to be able to support them. 

While she stays busy with her career, family and now running the foundation, she is thankful that Hadley reminds her to slow down. “Working with Hadley means you must slow down to allow her to process things, and to help her be as independent as she can be,” says Ashley. “Being a mom of a special needs child isn’t always easy, but it’s so fun to celebrate the wins along the way.”

For more information on the Hadley Jo Foundation, visit their website www.hadleyjofoundation.org.

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