Holly Ahern, Ph.D. is an associate professor of microbiology at SUNY Adirondack who runs an undergraduate research lab. She first encountered Lyme disease when her daughter, a highly ranked competitive swimmer, became ill with “a weird set of symptoms” in her senior year of high school. When Holly Ahern found out that her daughter’s mysterious illness was Lyme disease, she quickly immersed herself in the subject. She soon learned about the controversies swirling around the disease and came to realize that many others were suffering like her daughter. Ahern has become an advocate for developing a broader understanding of Lyme disease – one aimed at treating the chronic symptoms commonly reported by patients who were misdiagnosed or received inadequate treatment in the disease’s early stages. Her goal is to change the official CDC case definition of Lyme disease, which could attract more attention and funding to Lyme disease.