To provide CHD families with timely financial support through simple and accessible programs.

About Us

The 335 Heart Foundation, Inc. was founded by the Smith Family (Jeff & Kristina) of Mooresville, North Carolina. Their daughter, Morgan Avery, was born with a congenital heart defect, Truncus Arteriosis, on July 12, 2014. She received open heart surgery to correct the structure of her heart on July 16, 2014 at Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte. Morgan’s repair was VERY successful and she recovered extremely well. She was released from the hospital just 10 days post operation, on the same day she turned 2 weeks old. She thrived at home for a little over 2 months, gaining weight, hitting milestones and being loved.

The early morning of October 9th, 2014 Morgan passed away from Sudden Cardiac Arrest. The Smith Family was shocked, devastated and full of grief. However, in the wake of her passing, they became determined to create a positive legacy for their daughter by forming the 335 Heart Foundation (335HF). The mission of 335HF is to provide charitable support and services to other non-profit organizations who support families with children that have CHD, as well as to directly support families in hospitals going through the process of repair and recovery.

You can read more about Morgan’s story at www.MorganAvery.net.

Our Board

Jeff Smith – Co-Founder, Director & President

Jeff was thrown into the world of Congenital Heart Defects (CHDs) when his daughter, Morgan Avery, was born on July 12, 2014. The new life as a heart parent was filled with questions and scary. Over the course of Morgan’s short life, Jeff and his wife Kristina found there was much to learn about CHD.  Morgan, unfortunately, passed away from sudden cardiac arrest on October 9th, 2014 – 3 days shy of her 3 month birthday. While devastated, Jeff and his wife Kristina were determined to spread awareness of CHD and make a positive impact on families living within the CHD world.

Jeff is the father to five beautiful children, Gavin, Taylor, Brooklyn, Morgan and Danielle. Jeff is a real estate broker and General Contractor in the state of North Carolina as well as owner of Avery Homes, is an amateur photographer and loves to hunt, fish and ride dirt bikes

Kristina Smith – Co-Founder, Director, Treasurer & Secretary

Kristina, like Jeff, was suddenly thrown into the world of CHD on July 12, 2014 when Morgan Avery was born. She became fascinated with the issues regarding CHD. What she found is a huge gap between how common CHD’s are and the amount of awareness, programs and research funding that exists for CHDs. While there are many small programs and organizations nationwide, Kristina believes in the power of numbers. While the 335 Heart Foundation is starting out in the Charlotte area, she has visions of partnering with other organizations to coordinate efforts nationwide – to widen the footprint of CHD programs.

Kristina is the mother to five beautiful children, Gavin, Taylor, Brooklyn, Morgan and Danielle. Her professional background is in corporate finance and accounting management both domestically and internationally. She, Jeff and their children reside in Mooresville, NC.

Kathy Peterson – Director

Kathy brings more than 20 years of leadership experience in fundraising, communications, and operations in the non-profit sector, with positions in top leadership roles for the American Heart Association, JDRF and the American Cancer Society. She is excited to work with the 335 Heart Foundation to lend her exceptional background and experience and be a key partner in directing fundraising and awareness efforts.

Kathy currently works as Executive Director for JDRF’s Triangle/Eastern NC Chapter and also volunteers her time as a Leadership Committee member for Comfort Zone Camp, a bereavement camp serving children ages 7-17.

Diagnosed with a serious atrial septal defect at birth, Kathy’s condition was corrected 30 years later thanks to research advances in the treatment of CHD. Her hope is that continued research will help prevent CHD and provide new and more effective treatments for all heart kids. Kathy, her husband John and son Niko live in Apex, NC.

Bryon Mulligan – Director

Bryon Mulligan is the father of a child with hypoplastic right heart syndrome, which is a complex congenital heart defect. Bryon is passionate about improving the lives of children living with heart disease (a “heart kid”) and their families in two ways: first, by increasing awareness of congenital heart disease (as well as other types of heart disease in children), so that research dollars can be directed toward prevention and treatment; second, by helping to build support networks of families with heart kids and promoting activities that foster independence and physical activity.

Bryon currently is a member of the Board of Directors of Camp LUCK, Inc., a 501(c)(3) that offers a medically supervised sleep-away camp for heart kids and their siblings.  Bryon is also a senior attorney resident in the Charlotte, North Carolina office of Hunton & Williams LLP.  Bryon’s practice involves representing lenders, borrowers and other participants in complex commercial lending and other financing transactions.