As we launch our work for 2023, the Metastatic Breast Cancer (MBC) Alliance is delighted to have welcomed more than a dozen new members to our coalition since last fall. As a dynamic collective of cancer nonprofits, pharmaceutical and biotech industry members and individual patient advocates, the Alliance is tackling the strategic goals of advocating to prioritize critical research and making clinical trials more patient-centric, removing barriers to standards of care, and integrating quality of life services and care into all treatment planning.
“We are excited to continue to expand our membership and increase our partnerships to better support the MBC community,” said Laurie Campbell, Executive Director of the Alliance. “We know that we are stronger together – and by growing the diversity, resources and knowledge of our coalition we can make an even greater impact to transform the lives of people with metastatic breast cancer.
NEW NONPROFIT MEMBERS
The Male Breast Cancer Global Alliance
The Male Breast Cancer Global Alliance brings men with breast cancer together with researchers, clinicians and oncologists around the world for the purpose of advancing research, clinical trials and treatments for men diagnosed with breast cancer. Its mission is to advocate for all men diagnosed with breast cancer to ensure they receive equal access to support and treatment; to serve as a source of support and resources for the men, their caregivers, and their families; to ensure that men are appropriately represented in research and clinical trials, and to recruit volunteer “ambassadors” to increase awareness of breast cancer in men on a global scale. Learn more.
A nonprofit dedicated to supporting women and men living with stage 4 metastatic breast cancer, METAvivor’s mission is to fund MBC research to transition the disease from terminal to survivable with a good quality of life. The organization also provides peer support to those living with metastatic breast cancer, along with education, advocacy training and opportunities, and disease awareness. Learn more.
The Pink Fund
As a 501(c)(3), the Pink Fund provides financial support to breast cancer patients in active treatment to help them meet basic needs, decrease stress levels, and allow them to focus on healing while improving survivorship outcomes. The organization’s 90-day grant program allows patients to meet their critical expenses for housing, transportation, utilities, and insurance. Learn more.
As an organization committed to breast health equity, Touch4Life’s mission is to increase the breast health IQ of BIPOC and underserved communities and eliminate breast cancer outcomes disparities. By providing this education and empowerment, Touch4Life’s goal is to decrease the incidence of late stage de novo (new) breast cancer diagnoses. Learn more.
NEW INDIVIDUAL MEMBERS
Barbara has had breast cancer for over 20 years, the last 8 as metastatic. Along the way she has also survived lung cancer and melanoma. Today she is the Vice President of Metavivor, committed to raising money to fund metastatic breast cancer research. An active participant in multiple patient-led initiatives across policy, fundraising, advocacy, and community service, she also blogs about her experiences using humor to inspire hope for others at The Cancer Chronicles. Learn more about Barbara and what she’s working on.
Diagnosed with Stage IV triple negative breast cancer in 2016, five years after an early-stage breast cancer diagnosis, Janice launched into patient advocacy in 2017. Her professional life as a Pediatric nurse (retired) and Pharmaceutical Sales Representative fuels her passion for scientific learning and dissemination of the most up to date disease-related information. As a trained peer support volunteer, Janice is founder of an international online peer support group for patients newly diagnosed with MBC. She serves on the Board of Directors for METAvivor Research and Support, Inc., and is an Advisory Board member for Project Life MBC. In October 2022, she was invited to serve as a lead patient advocate, representing PCDI, on a research study with ASCO. Learn more about Janice and what she’s working on.
Danielle File is a breast medical oncologist who is passionate about advancing care and improving patient experiences for people living with metastatic breast cancer. After her mother was diagnosed with MBC at age 40, she knew there was much more to be done to improve outcomes for people facing this disease. Danielle performs research using patient databases as a way to use knowledge from prior patient experiences to help define new research questions and identify optimal treatment approaches. She also helps lead clinical trials for patients with MBC in her area. She is enthusiastic about opportunities to collaborate and truly bring patient priorities to the forefront of research and patient care. Learn more about Danielle.
Sheila Godreau is a wife, a mom of two amazing young adults, a sister, a daughter, a full-time program manager in the corporate world, an entrepreneur, and a thriver and advocate who has been living with MBC for 7 1/2 years. She was diagnosed at age 44, de novo, and has been NEAD for a little over 6 years. Sheila is a Project Life mentor, a Living Beyond Breast Cancer Hear My Voice alumna, a board member at large for METAvivor, a METAvivor Stage IV Stampede captain for the state of Florida and a consumer reviewer for the Breast Cancer Research Program. Learn more about Sheila and what she’s working on.
Nancy is a mother, wife, former dancer/actress, teacher, therapist, and healer, who uses her various life experiences to empower and foster healing. In 2013 Nancy was diagnosed with DCIS and completed aggressive treatment. In 2020, she was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. Although navigating the diagnosis has proved to be challenging while wearing her many hats, Nancy has continued to show up for herself, her family, and her community. She is a Living Beyond Breast Cancer (LBBC) 2021 Hear My Voice MBC leadership alumna, a member of Komen’s MBC Steering Committee and a GRASP Advocate. She has spoken on panels in Susan G. Komen webinars regarding palliative care, as well as integrative & complementary therapies. Learn more about Nancy and what she’s working on.
Upon developing metastatic breast cancer 22 years after her primary lesion, Ellen began to research how this delayed invasion of her spine could occur, and chose to turn her anger and fear into activism. As a physician, she is getting more involved in research advocacy at her treatment institution, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. She has been a member of the Patient and Family Advisory Council for Quality and is the MSKCC Patient Advocate representative to the Translational Breast Cancer Research Consortium. She is a Team Leader with the National Breast Cancer Coalition which advocates for research and funding with the Department of Defense program. The most fun she has as an advocate living with MBC is her involvement with the Our MBC Life podcast sponsored by SHARE Cancer Support. Learn more about Ellen and what she’s working on.
Gwen was diagnosed at age 44 with stage 3C invasive lobular carcinoma. Following a bilateral mastectomy and completion of chemo protocol, her cancer was found to have metastasized to her brain. She wants to address the need for earlier brain scans with hopes of catching metastasis earlier on, avoiding the need for whole brain radiation and to preserve a longer and better quality of life for brain mets patients.Gwen is beginning her work in advocacy and hopes to also focus her efforts on ILC, pregnancy-associated breast cancer, and increasing access to clinical trials for patients with CNS metastases. Learn more about Gwen and what she’s working on.
In 2004, at 45 years old, Sheila was diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer. After being cancer-free for 10 years, she was diagnosed with MBC in her lungs in 2014. Sheila ‘retired’ from teaching to fight for her life, and became active in the breast cancer community. Passionate about patient advocacy, she has attended various conferences about metastatic breast cancer, and was honored to go to Capitol Hill in 2019 and virtually in 2020 to share her story with legislators to garner support for bills that would impact those living with Breast Cancer. Committed to the fight to increase diversity in clinical trials for MBC patients, Sheila volunteered with MBC Alliance’s BECOME Project in 2021 and participated in the Black Wo(Men) Speak Symposium in San Antonio in 2022. Learn more about Sheila and what she’s working on.
NEW INDUSTRY MEMBER
Stemline Therapeutics / Menarini Group
Stemline Therapeutics is part of the Menarini Group, a leading international pharmaceutical and diagnostics company, focused on therapeutic areas with high unmet needs with products for oncology, cardiology, pneumology, gastroenterology, infectious diseases, diabetology, inflammation, and analgesia. Stemline is focused on improving the lives of cancer patients by developing and commercializing novel first-in-class therapeutics. To learn more about their current breast cancer pipeline, visit menarini.com.