Return to Private Life Increases Volunteer Time to World’s Largest Breast Cancer Organization Founded in Her Sister’s Memory
Washington, D.C. - March 9, 2009 - Nancy G. Brinker ignited the global breast cancer movement 29 years ago by promising her sister, Susan G. Komen, who died at age 36 of the disease, that she would do everything in her power to end breast cancer. Now that her two-year tenure as U.S. Chief of Protocol has ended, Ambassador Brinker is able to increase the time she has available for the organization she founded in 1982 in her sister’s memory.
“It was a privilege to serve my country as U.S. Chief of Protocol, said Ambassador Brinker. “But I am thrilled to once again focus my time and energies to fulfilling my promise to my sister to end breast cancer forever.”
Ambassador Brinker has devoted her life to ensuring that everyone, from sitting United States presidents and members of Congress, to top medical experts and social leaders across the globe, understand and address the toll that breast cancer takes on society, families, the economy and the future. It is one reason she is globally known as a change agent, and was named one of TIME’s “100 Most Influential People” In 2008.
Ambassador Brinker’s tenure as a U.S. diplomat – first in 2001-2003 as U.S. Ambassador to Hungary and in 2007-2008 as Chief of Protocol – exposed her firsthand to the need for what she terms health diplomacy, creating alliances worldwide with non-governmental organizations, U.S. and foreign officials, the medical community and in-country experts.
“We’ve made tremendous strides here in the United States in bringing breast cancer out of the shadows, so that today in the United States, we have dramatically increased rates of survival and improved treatments,” said Ambassador Brinker. “Unfortunately, many nations are still where we were three decades ago. In many regions of the world, cancer rates are rising at alarming rates and there are significant economic and cultural barriers prevent even the most basic care. It’s a disease that is expected to kill 10 million people globally in 25 years without intervention.”
Ambassador Brinker will volunteer out of Susan G. Komen for the Cure’s new Washington, D.C. office, which will serve as the home to the organization’s global outreach efforts, as well as the home to its sister organization, the Susan G. Komen for the Cure® Advocacy Alliance, two areas where she hopes to lend her time, experience and vision.