Kentucky’s organ donation registry surpasses 2 million mark

Published 12:44 pm Thursday, May 23, 2019


Press Release

LEXINGTON — During a riveting and at times an emotional press conference held in Lexington on Tuesday, Trust For Life, the charitable arm of the Kentucky Association of Circuit Court Clerks, announced that the Commonwealth’s Organ Donation Registry now has over two million registrants. This is a major milestone for the nonprofit and its partner organizations, all of which support the lifesaving mission of organ, eye and tissue donation and education.

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“This is a monumental moment for Kentucky, and one made possible through the efforts of caring individuals in our office and generous supporters throughout the Commonwealth,” said Cortney Shewmaker, Boyle County Circuit Court Clerk. “Every person who says ‘yes’ at our office and registers as a donor offers immeasurable hope to patients on the transplant waiting list.”

Shewmaker said that 1,000 Kentucky children and adults are waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant, and nationally, 114,000 patients wait. “Tragically, each day, 22 people die waiting. It is our goal, as circuit clerks, to help end this wait and save and heal those in need.”

Tuesday’s announcement comes on the heels of the passage of Kentucky Senate Bill 77 that Gov. Matt Bevin signed into in March and which expands the state’s organ and tissue donor registration for its single sign-on system, starting next Jan. 1, 2020.

The first of its kind in the nation, the new system will give Kentuckians the option of registering as organ donors when they log on to the Kentucky Online Gateway website at KOG is a repository for state services, that will greatly be assisting the current Kentucky Circuit Court Clerks’ driver’s license program.

In attendance during Tuesday’s press conference was a very special guest, Mike Lutz, who is alive today thanks to a successful liver transplant in July of 2017.

“I am so thankful to have received a second chance at life through the selfless action of a stranger who donated the organ I now have within my body,” he said. “Tuesday’s announcement should give hope to the many others who anxiously wait for the second chance at life I was so fortunate to receive. Let’s get to three million!”

Everyone can register as a donor by saying “yes” at your Circuit Court Clerk’s office or going online to There are no age limits or health requirements, everyone can register as a donor.