The seven members of our Advocates In Science (AIS) steering committee are experienced research advocates who’ve demonstrated their dedication and leadership in breast cancer advocacy. The steering committee works closely with Komen staff, locally and nationally, to develop the strategy for the AIS program, expand its community of members and leverage the benefits and outcomes of effective breast cancer research advocacy. They are also active members of either the Komen Scholars or the Scientific Advisory Board and dedicated to making sure the patient voice in heard. Read their stories below.
Komen Scholar Since 2013
Advocate in Science Since 2015
Bio Coming Soon
Scientific Advisory Board since 2018
Komen Scholar 2010-2018
Advocate in Science Since 2008
Costa Mesa, CA
Sandra Finestone, Psy.D., is a 30-year breast cancer survivor and research advocate, who has been a volunteer for Susan G. Komen for over 25 years. Dr. Finestone is a licensed marriage and family therapist. She is passionate about educating breast cancer patients about their disease and the importance of breast cancer research. Dr. Finestone opened the Hope Wellness Center to meet the needs of breast cancer survivors. As Executive Director, she facilitates support groups, meets individually with patients and their families and has created a peer support system where breast cancer mentors help newly diagnosed women with their journey. Sandy helped start the Orange County Komen Affiliate and has been president three times, as well as the Race chair. She is a Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) Ambassador and the President of the Inland Empire Komen Affiliate. In 2009, she went to Jordan to facilitate a meeting that taught healthcare providers about support groups for women with breast cancer, and later that year, trained women in Kuwait and Egypt about support groups. A Project Lead graduate, Dr. Finestone is an experienced grant reviewer for multiple organizations, including Komen.
Komen Scholar Since 2010
Kansas City, MO
Cheryl L. Jernigan, CPA, F.A.C.H.E., is a 20-year breast cancer
"thriver" and cancer research advocate. She was previously CEO
of the Kansas City Area Hospital Association, and has over 20
years of experience in health policy, advocacy and
community/national leadership on behalf of hospitals.
She is Chair of the Breast Cancer Prevention Center’s Advocate
Advisory Board for The University of Kansas Medical Center and
The University of Kansas Hospital, and she is the Lead Advocate
of Patient & Investigator Voices Organizing Together (PIVOT), a
new University of Kansas Cancer Center initiative. Ms. Jernigan is
a founding and current board member and Chair of the Strategic
Mission Committee of the Greater Kansas City Komen Affiliate,
and a member of the Steering Committee of Komen’s Advocates
In Science program.
An active research advocate, Ms. Jernigan is a member of many
clinical trial initiatives, including the National Cancer Institute’s
Central Institutional Review Board for Adult Late Phase Clinical
Trials. Ms. Jernigan chairs Komen's Advocate Research Mentor
(ARM) Taskforce, and she is also one of the experts involved with
Komen’s big data initiative.
Komen Scholar Since 2018
Advocate in Science Since 2010
Komen Scholar Since 2017
Anne M. Meyn, M.Ed., was diagnosed and treated for breast cancer in 1989 and throughout 1990. While in treatment, the Komen Houston Affiliate was founded, offering knowledge, support and long-lasting friendships. Ms. Meyn was compelled to be involved in an organization whose goal it was to eradicate breast cancer. She has served on the Komen Houston Affiliate Board of Directors since 2011, and she co-chairs the Komen Houston Medical Advisory Council Adjunct committee. Selected as M.D. Anderson Cancer Center’s patient advocate on the Komen-funded Translational Breast Cancer Research Consortium (TBCRC), she became the TBCRC Patient Advocate Working Group Co-Chair in 2016. As an AIS member, Ms. Meyn received scholarships to Komen-funded advocate programs at ASCO Breast Cancer Symposium. She was also introduced to the Komen Tissue Bank while she participated in Komen Promise Grant-funded advocate workshop at Indiana University, and she was instrumental in having Komen Houston host a tissue collection event in the most diverse city in the country. An experienced research grants reviewer, she is passionate about research, as she knows new treatments and cures will be the ultimate result.
Advocate in Science Since 2012
Advocate in Science Since 2016
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Bárbara Segarra-Vázquez, D.H.Sc., has been a faculty at the University of Puerto Rico for 29 years, and is currently the Dean of the School of Health Professions and the Director of the Post-Doctoral Master in Clinical and Translational Science. Dr. Segarra-Vázquez was diagnosed with breast cancer Stage IIB on December 2003 and was in remission for 13 years. On January 2017, she had a recurrence of metastatic breast cancer to the skin. A volunteer for Komen Puerto Rico since 2006, she was Board President for four years, during which they received the “Promise Award 2013” for their commitment to innovation and forward thinking in reducing overall breast cancer mortality. She is an active participant in the Puerto Rico Cancer Control Coalition. She has served several times as a consumer reviewer for research programs and traveled to Komen Global Initiative to meet with different groups that provided services to breast cancer patients and participate in a public activity of breast cancer awareness. Dr. Segarra-Vázquez is a medical technologist and she received her D.H.Sc. from Nova Southeastern University.
Advocate In Science Since 2019
Laguna Niguel, CA
Sandra Spivey is a breast cancer advocate and survivor. Spivey has served as Consumer Reviewer for DOD Breast Cancer Research Program and Susan G. Komen for the Cure multiple times and served as mentor for new consumer reviewers. She is also a peer helpline counselor for those diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer.
Advocate in Science Since 2013
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