Be The Face Of Change

The faces here represent the nearly 24 million Americans living with diabetes every day of their lives. Every person has their own story of how they have embraced change and taken charge of their diabetes and their life.


The faces on this web site represent the nearly 24 million children and adults in the United States living with diabetes every day of their lives. This showcase honors those who have successfully made changes to adapt and persevere while living with the disease.

Be the Face of Change is a traveling photo exhibit. Each photo here represents a person living with diabetes. All of them have their own story of how they have embraced change and taken charge of their diabetes and their life.

This exhibit is a way of sharing the stories of the faces in these portraits to highlight how people with diabetes can not only manage, but can continue living their lives to the fullest. The faces displayed here serve as an example of the challenges and triumphs of people living with diabetes, especially as the disease continues to affect an ever increasing number of Americans.

About Diabetes

Diabetes is a serious, chronic disease in which the body does not produce or properly use insulin, a hormone needed to convert sugar, starches, and other food into energy needed for daily life. People with type 1 diabetes do not produce insulin and must take it on a daily basis. People with type 2 diabetes either are unable to properly use the insulin their bodies produce or do not make enough to meet their body’s needs. Type 2 diabetes accounts for about 90 to 95 percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes.

While many people can control their type 2 diabetes with diet and exercise by losing excess weight and taking medication, the majority—even if they follow their treatment—will eventually need insulin therapy, and there are often fears of insulin treatment.

Why Change?

People with diabetes face constant change—whether transitioning to a healthy diet, starting or maintaining an exercise plan, or altering their medication as the diabetes progresses.

Be the Face of Change was originally produced by Rick Smolan, a former National Geographic photographer, to showcase everyday people with diabetes who have overcome barriers, providing an example that managing diabetes is both possible and practical. It is sponsored by the Novo Nordisk portfolio of insulins.

About Novo Nordisk

Novo Nordisk is a healthcare company with an 86-year history of innovation and achievement in diabetes care. The company has the broadest diabetes product portfolio in the industry, including the most advanced products within the area of insulin delivery systems. In addition to diabetes care, Novo Nordisk has a leading position within areas such as hemostasis management, growth hormone therapy, and hormone therapy for women. Novo Nordisk’s business is driven by the Triple Bottom Line: a commitment to economic success, environmental soundness, and social responsibility to employees and customers. With headquarters in Denmark, Novo Nordisk employs more than 27,000 employees in 81 countries, and markets its products in 179 countries. Novo Nordisk’s B shares are listed on the stock exchanges in Copenhagen and London.