In 2007 Heidi McKenzie, founder of ALTER UR EGO, was in a traumatic car accident that left her a T4 paraplegic (meaning she can’t feel from the chest down) at the age of 21. She has always kept a positive attitude in regards to her injury and lives every day to the fullest with a smile on her face. She designs jeans for other people in wheelchairs that are both functional, and fashionable. Heidi wants to make it possible for those with disabilities to be able to express their “alter-ego” through fashion while breaking down social barriers.


Adaptable clothing is hard to find, especially if you want to look fashionable. Adaptable jeans are just the beginning of clothing that has all the fashion and all the function for someone in a wheelchair. People with disabilities should have just as many clothing options.


After her injury, Heidi graduated from Morehead State University in December 2011 with a Bachelor’s degree in Small Business Management and she was crowned Ms. Wheelchair Kentucky 2012 where she served as an advocate for those in wheelchairs traveling the US sharing her story.


Now, Heidi serves as a board member for both Build Inclusion, Inc. and the Kentucky Congress on Spinal Cord Injury (KCSCI); works part-time at her family’s business; peer mentor for new spinal cord injury patient at Cardinal Hill Rehabilitation Hospital/Easter Seals of the Bluegrass; and is a member of Kentucky Appalachian Rural Rehabilitation Network (KARRN).