The Faces of Ankylosing Spondylitis

Faces of Ankylosing Spondylitis is a website dedicated entirely to the stories of those with AS. Men, women, and children from numerous countries and continents have shared their stories and photos, and we will be sharing some of them here with you with our gratitude to all. You can read all of the stories (there are close to 2,000!) at

Face 101

Face 101

Tom Contrino

By Tom Contrino

I have AS, I deal with it. We all know the challenges, I promised I would never miss a day of work due to it, I have kept my promise to myself and still work actively as a fashion photographer in NYC and on location around the country everyday. Yes there is pain, I think it’s just become a baseline point of reference to me. I’m still standing tall.

Face 2067

Face 2067

M.J. Rowan

By M.J. Rowan

My experience with Rheumatologists wasn’t great. I remember one saying “we don’t know what causes it, 30% of people will have chronic RA, 30% of people will only have one flare, 30% of people will have it come and go and I don’t know which one you are”. 

Face 125

Face 125

Carrie Bonin

By Carrie Bonin

The first time I complained to my doctor about pain in the morning was around 16.  His response was “Most people wake up with some pain in the morning. It’s completely normal”. 

Face 2087

Face 2087

Jen Johnson-Crosby

By Jen Crosby

Many of you may or may not know about the medical issues that have been going on within my body. They have changed my life in so many ways.


Face 190

Face 190

Gillian & Albert

By Gillian

My name is Gillian and I have been living with Ankylosing Spondylitis all my life, one way or another. As a child, I was aware my dad wasn’t the same as other dads, he was bent right over, completely stiff and had trouble looking in a forward direction. All I was ever really told as a child was “your dad’s got a bad back”.

Face 2033

Face 2033

Kristen Ray

By Kristen Ray


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A Note from the creator of Faces of AS, Cookie Hopper

"It was important for me to do this, not for myself, but for each one of the Faces on this site and those who are still unknown. I wanted to show the reality of this disease and the courage it takes to live our lives. I wanted to honor those who have Ankylosing Spondylitis, who I admire and respect."

—Cookie Hopper
Creator of Faces of AS, SAA Member, and Face 0062

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