These are the dedicated people behind the scenes.
Jim Coghlin Founder & Chief Volunteer
When I learned that cancer survival rates for 15 to 40 year olds had barely improved since 1975, I could not believe it. Later learning that delayed diagnosis played a critical role in this statistic was equally shocking. These are facts my family and I could not ignore. I truly believe that your health is a gift. It is part of everything you do. It is why founding and being a part of 15-40 Connection is one of the most important things I have ever done. Every one of us can help improve cancer survival rates by changing the cancer conversation and empowering earlier detection. If it is to be, it is up to us!
Tricia Scannell Laursen Executive Director
Let’s face it, cancer is a scary word. Being told “you have cancer” turns your world upside down. Learning “you have cancer, but we caught it early” is still scary, but it also gives you real hope. Earlier cancer detection saves lives. Talking about cancer symptoms and your role in your health care is a new conversation and one I wish we had started long ago. Giving hope and minimizing the impact cancer has on patients and their families is why I am so passionate about 15-40 Connection.
Susan Cyr Administrator & Director of the Ungerer Golf Tournament, Gala & Auction
I am involved with 15-40 Connection because I want to honor the memories of dear family members who could have been empowered by 15-40 Connection education. Having been involved from the very start, it is rewarding to see the progress we have made toward improving cancer survival rates, with the ultimate goal, of course, of putting ourselves out of business!
Jan Fountaine Donor Services Manager
Our lives and those of our family and friends are too precious not to take part in the 15-40 Connection conversation. Awareness of cancer symptoms and advocating for yourself are key skills to possess. Knowledge has the power to save lives. I don’t want anyone to have to say. “I wish I had known that”, after receiving a cancer diagnosis.
Ashley Emerson Education & Outreach Director
At age 19 I was diagnosed with Leukemia. As a cancer survivor, I know and appreciate the importance of early detection. I discovered 15-40 Connection in 2012 and was so impressed to learn that 15-40 is starting a new cancer conversation to empower people to be aware and take action for their health. I am passionate about the mission and work of 15-40 Connection because we have the opportunity to impact and save lives through education and early detection.
Ann Zelesky Outreach & Education Specialist
I have worked with students on the high school and college level throughout my career and I am also a breast cancer survivor. Joining 15-40 Connection at this stage in my life affords me the opportunity to continue to work with this age group in order to empower and educate them about the importance of early detection. As a survivor, I know that cancer can be treatable and beatable when found at its earliest stages. I am looking forward to spreading this message and making a difference in the fight against cancer.
Alicia Donovan Education & Outreach Manager
Cancer is something that affects the majority of people in one way or another – whether through personal experience, friends or family being diagnosed, or moving survival stories. 15-40 Connection has a unique viewpoint in starting a New Cancer Conversation to promote early detection and help save lives. Losing my father to cancer had a strong impact on me as a teenager, and inspired me to contribute to the fight against cancer. I am excited to be part of an organization that empowers people to give themselves the life-saving advantage of early detection, and a fighting chance against cancer.
Carl Setterlund Social Media and Website Communications Manager
The 15-40 Connection is in a unique position to teach people, especially those who don’t believe they’re at risk, how to identify cancer signals in the early stages and improve their odds of living a long, full and happy life. I’ve lost several family members to cancer, including two cousins that were only in their 30s. There’s a common adage that everybody knows somebody that’s battled cancer, so what can we collectively do to fight back? By starting a new cancer conversation, we can improve detection and survival rates. Let’s celebrate more birthdays!
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