Donor Games Athlete Profile:
Cornelius Bornman

About Cornelius Bornman

Cornelius Bornman competed in his first Donor Games event, the Bonnyman Workout 2023 Open, in January 2023, less than a year after donating his kidney. In September 2023 he competed in the Donor Games Championship, placing third in the Donor Men category. Participating in the Donor Games has given him many opportunities to share his story and encourage others to donate. Cornelius started learning CrossFit to get in better shape for his donation surgery and fell in love with exercising. He now averages 4-5 days per week in the gym.

Donor Story: On March 15, 2022, Cornelius donated a kidney to his 10-year-old daughter, Jaelle. An unexpected trip to the emergency room led to a diagnosis of kidney and heart failure and the discovery that Jaelle’s kidneys had never fully developed. She was on dialysis for five months before receiving her transplant. The next year, she cheered her father on as he competed in the Donor Games Championship.

Personal: Cornelius lives in the small town of Vestaburg, MI, with his wife Cherri, and their three daughters Abigail, Rebecca, and Jaelle. He works as a Chief Operator for Wolverine Power Supply Cooperative at a small peaking powerplant near his home. In addition to exercising, he loves reading, juggling, hunting, and fishing. Cornelius serves on the board of a local chapter for Youth For Christ, an organization that exists to meet and build Christ sharing relationships with teens through after school programs.

Donor Games Competitions: Cornelius Bornman

Heavy Murph2024Open8th435 reps
Championship Overall2023Championship 3rd91 points
Burn & Bench2023Championship 7th195 pounds
Grace2023Championship 2nd4:13
Sprint Murph2023Championship 2nd25:06
Super Murph2023Open4th24:16
Bonnyman2023Open6thbench press max 195 pounds, 3-rep max deadlift 295 pounds

Founding Sponsors

  • National Kidney Foundation
  • National Kidney Registry
  • National Kidney Donation Organization