BHM Darlene Biera

February 6, 2019
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Darlene Biera was born and raised in Newark, New Jersey.  Darlene knew early on in life that her compassion for people would lead her to serving the community.  She started her career off working for the Essex County Prosecutors Office, Criminal Division, for seven years.  Followed by working for one of the top law firms, Carpenter, Bennett & Morrissey, as a Legal Office Specialist, before relocating to South Carolina.   Darlene has always believed in helping those who are hurting.  After relocating to South Carolina, she worked for New Horizon Health Services, Integrative Health and North Hills Medical Center.

In 2008, after being diagnosed with lupus, she did not feel sorry for herself but instead set out on a journey not only to improve her health, but to help advocate for those who are also suffering from lupus and other chronic illnesses.   She was motivated by the lack of education about lupus and Health Disparities within the community.  She started a local support group for patients with lupus and other auto-immune illnesses.  The main purpose of the support group is to provide comfort, encouragement, and support to the patients and their families, in a safe and caring environment.  She also formed a committee and was able to have the first Lupus Walk for the community, which drew over 400 attendees.  In 2015, Darlene founded the first Lupus Foundation for the Upstate and surrounding areas, “Candle In The Rain Lupus Foundation.”  She believes that through advocacy, education and patient awareness, someday we can find a cure for lupus.  Darlene also loves working with other lupus advocates in different States.  She is regularly featured as a guest speaker amongst lupus groups. 

Darlene has been married for 28 years.  With the support of her loving family, her mission is to be a voice for the lupus patient!  Her hope is that by providing education, support and awareness to the public about lupus, we can someday live a life without lupus!  She enjoys partnering with healthcare providers in the community and holding Lupus Health Fairs.  She believes that it is not only important for the patient to just survive in life with lupus but to thrive in life!  Darlene remind patients that living with a chronic illness such as lupus requires perseverance and grit.

Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that can damage any part of the body.  In lupus the body’s immune system becomes hyperactive and attacks normal, healthy tissue.  More than 16,000 new cases of lupus are reported annually across the country.  Research estimated that at least 1.5 million Americans have lupus. It is believed that 5 million people throughout the world have a form of lupus.  Lupus strikes mostly women of childbearing age.  However, men, children and teenagers develop lupus too.  Women of color are two to three times more likely to develop lupus than Caucasians. While there is no cure for lupus, current treatments focus on improving quality of life through controlling symptoms and minimizing flare-ups. 

For more information about lupus, contact The Lupus Research Alliance.  You can also follow her Facebook page Greenville SC ~ Lupus Support Group for more information.