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Lee Thomas Will Deliver Keynote at the Autoimmune Community Summit

Lee Thomas, news anchor and reporter at Fox 2 Detroit TV and national vitiligo advocate, will deliver the keynote address at the third annual Autoimmune Community Summit. This free, virtual event will take place Thursday, October 5 and Friday, October 6, 2023.

Lee Thomas
Lee Thomas

Thomas’ speech will be delivered on Thursday, October 5 at 11:30 a.m. EST.

Thomas has been diagnosed with vitiligo, an autoimmune disease that destroys the skin’s pigment. For a television reporter, this could be devastating. However, Thomas says the disease that could have ruined his career turned out to be the biggest challenge and blessing in his life. Since going public with his diagnosis, Thomas now travels the world sharing his story and techniques on overcoming insurmountable obstacles through the power of empathy.

“We are honored to have Lee Thomas share his very personal story of diagnosis, initial fear and sadness, and ultimately his triumph in battling this autoimmune disease,” said Molly Murray, Autoimmune Association president and CEO. “Lee’s uplifting story will serve as an inspiration to those joining our annual Community Summit, showing autoimmune disease patients the power of positive thinking and advocating for your own health care and treatment.”

Thomas, a four-time Emmy winner, is also the host of movie review show, “CriticLee Speaking,” a Global Ambassador for the Vitiligo Society of London, and a national speaker. His popular TED talk, “How I Help People Understand Vitiligo,” promotes self-acceptance and empathy, a topic he will expand upon at the Autoimmune Community Summit.

“I have had vitiligo for over 25 years. And people are always asking me about the struggle. And yes, there have been challenging moments, but they are moments. Life is a journey that is much bigger than moments,” Thomas said.

The Autoimmune Community Summit virtual two-day event is designed for patients and care partners and offers educational and empowering sessions led by autoimmune experts including scientists and researchers, physicians, mental health experts, policy leaders and patient advocates.

This year’s sessions include discussions on managing pain and fatigue; exploring complementary medicine and diet; understanding clinical trials; supporting care partners; understanding the autoimmune disease journey through patient stories; exploring autoimmune treatments on the horizon; understanding public policy; communicating effectively with your healthcare team; navigating insurance and caring for your mental health.

The Autoimmune Community Summit will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. EDT on Thursday, October 5 and Friday October 6. For more information or to register for this free, virtual event, please visit

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