Welcome to Ken Kolaski's Personal Page
On March 11, 2008, at the age of 49, over 10 years ago, I was diagnosed with a variant of Early Onset Parkinson’s Disease called PSP and was told by the Neurologists that it was likely I would die within 2 years. The news stunned me. Happily the doctors were wrong because I am still here! By October 2008, seven long months later, I was told the "good news" that I had "plain old" Parkinson's disease. Then the doctors said I would probably live about 20 more years and the end of my life would be spent in a wheel chair. This disease drastically disrupted my personal and professional lives.
Initially, I was treated with a dopamine agonist drug called Mirapex. Unfortunately, Mirapex can often cause Impulse Control Disorder ("ICD") resulting in hypersexual activity, uncontrollable gambling and/or shopping and other damaging compulsive behaviors. In complete denial at the time, I had a severe case of ICH. Before I could be taken off this drug, my behavior almost destroyed my relationship with my wife Cindy and caused me to become estranged from my three daughters. I caused so much hurt to my wife, my daughters and my extended family and in-laws. It took a long road but I have been able to reconcile with Cindy and restore my relationships with my daughters.
I was a Partner at a very large international law firm working as a commercial litigation attorney. In March 2014, the slow but relentless progression of Parkinson’s, in combination with other serious medical problems, forced me to leave the practice of law.
Now, when I am not traveling to some place on my “bucket list”, I devote time to increasing awareness and to educating people about Parkinson’s, a neurodegenerative movement disorder, and how it affects those with the disease. I also help raise money to fund research for a cure in my lifetime. I am particularly proud of the fact that I serve as a mentor and life coach to others with a more recent Parkinson's diagnosis date.
To stave off the advance of the disease, I move and exercise as recommended by my Movement Disorder Specialist. I try to keep a positive attitude and maintain a sense of humor. Strangely, having Parkinson's has made me a better person as I have learned to not sweat the small stuff and to focus on the most important things in Life. Every day that I have a chance to love and to be loved is a great day!
I dedicate my particpation in the Walk to Cindy who loved and loves me in sickness and health.
This past March I fulfilled a life long dream. I did stand up comedy at the Punchline in Philadelphia. See photo.
I will not let Parkinson's define me. I live in defiance of this disease.
Please consider being a part of my team or sponsoring me and don’t forget to invite your friends, family and coworkers to be part of this inspiring day!
Why Get Involved
This is very personal annd means a lot to me. I need your emotional and financial support. Walk with me to Stamp Out Parkinson's!
The Parkinson Council is the premier local organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for people with Parkinson’s, their care partners, and families. The Council invests in research, education and programs provided by world-renowned institutions and innovative service organizations in the greater Delaware Valley area and strengthens their role in the Parkinson’s community by increasing the number of lives they touch each year.
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