Young Mentor and young patient

About Us

Marrow Mates is dedicated to supporting blood cancer patients throughout their marrow or stem cell transplant process.


Our Mission

Marrow Mates is dedicated to supporting blood cancer patients throughout the marrow/stem cell transplant process, and to diversifying the marrow donor registry for the benefit of blood cancer patients everywhere. For this purpose, we offer tailored donor recruitment support for patients of diverse racial ancestry searching for a stem cell donor, and provide information on peer support services for current patients, survivors, family members and caregivers. We also believe in the power of sharing firsthand experiences from marrow donors who have given, and blood cancer survivors who have received, a second chance at life through a stem cell transplant to give hope to all patients battling blood cancer.

Our Story

“Save this young girl’s life and I’ll be an advocate to the cause for the rest of mine.”
- Jeff Haertling
Jeff getting notice of match
Kim in hospital

“That was the prayer I bartered just before my bone marrow donation several years ago. With teenage kids of my own at the time, I wrote my recipient and her parents a letter. With respect to the anonymity for how this process works and without a name, I started my letter to her with the salutation of “Dear Marrow-Mate”.

My recipient is now a vibrant young woman living life to the fullest with my transplanted and adopted immune system.  Keeping up my end of the bargain, I advocate in just about every facet of the transplantation process.  As a non-profit organization, Marrow Mates was born on the belief that the best way to encourage more people to join a registry is to share stories from altruistic donors and the patients that have been given a second chance at life as a result of a marrow/stem cell transplant.”​ 

- Marrow Mates Founder and Chief People Connector, Jeff Haertling

Since donating in 2009, Jeff Haertling kept his promise to continue to advocate and volunteer on the behalf of blood cancer patients, and in 2018 established MarrowMates as a non-profit to recruit minorities as potential donors and to assist patients and caregivers who are currently going through the transplant process.

Jeff and Kim at Beach sunset
(Above: Donor Jeff & recipient Kim)


  Meet The Team  


Marlo Miller
Social Media and Content Creator

“Hi, my name is Marlo and I was born in Cape Town, South Africa. I graduated from USF in 2019 with a Bachelor's Degree in Mass Communications. I'm now the social media & content creator at Marrow Mates! I've been working here since February 2020 and it's been the most incredible experience that I wouldn't trade for anything. Not only do I get to do what I love, here at Marrow Mates, but I feel good being a part of such an incredible organization. In my free time, I'm a concert photographer and I absolutely love creating art!”


Morgan Mendoza
Media Team Director

“Hi, I’m Morgan! I have been a Florida resident my entire life and graduated from the University of South Florida in December of 2019 with a degree in Public Relations and Advertising. Social media and content creation are my career passions and I am honored to be able to do those things here at Marrow Mates. The mission of this organization is so incredible and I feel lucky to be a part of saving lives. In my free time, I love discovering new music and making various types of art!”


Lauren McClelland
Social Media and Content Creator

“Working everyday to provide a platform that spreads awareness about bone marrow transplants and how YOU can help save lives. I am a University of South Florida alum with a Bachelor’s in Public Relations and Advertising and a Master’s in Entrepreneurship. To stay active I play rec league volleyball and tennis. I also love to pass the time cuddling with my fur babies and spending time with family and friends. ”


Jeff Haertling
Marrow Mates Founder and Chief People Connector

Jeff is a marrow donor and long time advocate for the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) and for blood cancer patients everywhere. He currently serves as a Be The Match ambassador, Consumer Advocacy Member for the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research (C.I.B.M.T.R.), and as a volunteer NMDP stem cell courier. In 2019 he received the American Society for Transplantation and Cellular Therapy (ASTCT) public service award. When he is not working or battling blood cancer like a boss, kayaking, fishing, and beach yoga with his wife are some of his favorite pastimes.


Kimberly Christensen
EFDS Team Outreach Specialist and Hero Recruiter

“My name is Kim and I’ve been working with Marrow Mates since early 2020. In March of 2009 I was diagnosed with ALL Leukemia and later that year received a life-saving marrow transplant from my donor Jeff. I grew up in Washington state, graduated from Western Washington University, and have since been teaching ESL in various countries abroad. I would not have had the experiences I’ve had and the life I have today without Jeff’s kindness in donating stem cells to a complete stranger. I love my work here at Marrow Mates and continue my work here alongside traveling and teaching.”


Tammy Christensen
EFDS Hero Recruiter

“Hello, my name is Tammy. I first got involved with the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) when my daughter, Kim, was diagnosed with Leukemia in 2009 and needed a bone marrow transplant. I have been a strong advocate for NMDP since 2009 volunteering with walk/run events, marrow donor drives, blood drives, and being a volunteer Stem Cell Courier. I am honored to be a part of the Marrow Mates team to help find donor heroes for waiting patients so that they can live life. When not recruiting heros, I also enjoy cooking and experimenting with healthy whole foods recipes.”