Isa’s Biography

Isabel Yuriko Stenzel Byrnes, MSW, MPH

Isabel Yuriko Stenzel Byrnes is an author, social worker, health educator, patient advocate, and public speaker. Working for more than a decade with organizations such as the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford University and Mission Hospice & Home Care, Isabel has supported patients of all ages and their families. She has lectured widely to diverse constituencies at hospitals, medical schools, and conferences about cystic fibrosis, organ donation and transplantation, writing for healing, and various other physical and mental health topics.

As a recognized leader in the cystic fibrosis community, Isabel chairs Cystic Fibrosis Research, Inc.’sannual Education Conference and writes a regular column in the United States Association of Cystic Fibrosis Adultsnewsletter Roundtable. She has served on the Patient Affairs and Ethics Committees for United Network for Organ Sharing, which administers the nation’s only organ procurement and transplantation network. Isabel was selected to ride the Donate Life Rose Parade float in 2008.

Isabel received her bachelor’s degree in human biology from Stanford University. She also earned two graduate degrees from the University of California, Berkeley: a master’s degree in public health in epidemiology and biostatistics and a master’s degree in social welfare with a health specialization. Isabel lives with her husband Andrew in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she enjoys hiking, swimming, jogging, playing the bagpipes, and spending time with friends.

Lectures & Workshops

Isabel Stenzel Byrnes is a medical professional, author, speaker, and workshop leader who skillfully uses her remarkable personal stories and extensive education and work experience to facilitate meaningful and revelatory discussions among individuals and groups.

Isabel has spoken at dozens of hospitals, medical schools, universities and professional conferences. She is available for motivational and inspirational lectures and workshops on a variety of topics, including  the following:

  • “A Reluctant Student: Wisdom That Illness Teaches”
  • “How Illness Inspires the Heroine’s Journey”
  • “The Psychosocial Aspects of Living Well with Cystic Fibrosis”
  • “Across the Lifespan: Living Well with Cystic Fibrosis Through Each Developmental Stage”
  • “Family Coping with Cystic Fibrosis and Transplant”
  • “Life in the Deathbed: End of Life from a Patient’s Perspective” (Isabel)
  • Various other topics related to specific audiences such as medical professionals, social workers, etc.

Exemplary Presentations & Interviews

Presentation, “The Art of Saying Goodbye,” TEDxStanford (2014)
Interview, VoiceAmerica (2015)
Interview, Stanford Medicine (2014)

Contact us to learn more about booking Isa for appearances, lectures, workshops and other events.