The Illinois Heart & Lung Foundation’s 18th Annual Women’s Health Night was held on Tuesday, April 5 from 3:00-7:00 p.m. at the Illinois State University Bone Student Center in Normal, Illinois. The event was free of cost, open to the public, and a huge success! The night included over 70 healthcare vendors, free health screenings, bike valet parking, and childcare, a blood drive and Fun Run, and a motivating presentation by our keynote speaker, Nicole DeBoom.

WHN-keynoteBorn and raised in the Chicago suburbs, Nicole was a standout swimmer, qualifying for the 1988 Olympic Trials and later graduating from Yale University. She decided to pursue the sport of triathlon, and a lucky seat assignment introduced her to her future husband (future 2-time Ironman World Champion), Tim DeBoom, on a flight to the 1995 ITU World Championships.

Nicole started racing professionally in 1999, racking up countless podium finishes. Her triathlon career culminated in a win at the 2004 Ironman Wisconsin, wearing a prototype of the first-ever running skirt – a skirt that would launch a revolution in women’s fitness clothing just a few months later. Nicole founded Skirt Sports in September 2004 with the mission of helping women find inspiration, confidence and courage through the transformative power of running and fitness.

Today, Skirt Sports is a national women’s apparel brand offering a full line of products that fit real women’s bodies and support their busy running lives. Currently, Nicole resides in Boulder, Colorado as the CEO of Skirt Sports, the founder of non-profit organization Running Start, and mom to a 4-year-old girl, Wilder.

Nicole’s speech at Women’s Health Night inspired women to tackle their own “Ironman”, or daunting challenges, with self-confidence and positivity. It is through positivity that Nicole continuously draws her strength, determination, and passion for life.

As an estimated 2,000 individuals attended including vendors, event volunteers, and attendees, we would like to say THANK YOU! Be on the lookout for the announcement of next year’s Women’s Health Night keynote speaker.