Q&A With Women of Influence NY Honoree Ruby Marchand

ruby marchand grammy FINALS-3The T.J. Martell Foundation is thrilled to honor Ruby Marchand at the 4th Annual Women of Influence Luncheon in New York. Ruby is the Vice President of International Repertoire Development at Warner Music Group, as well as the Vice Chair of the Recording Academy. Below, Ruby shares her feelings on being a “Woman of Influence,” as well as some pieces of advice for other women. You can learn more about the T.J. Martell Foundation’s Women of Influence luncheon in New York at www.tjmfwomenofinfluence.org.

  1. What does it mean to you to be chosen as a Woman of Influence by the T.J. Martell Foundation?

In the music industry, the T.J. Martell Foundation has always symbolized the pinnacle of personal achievement and a high level of caring for others. I believe that there are many forms of care, including mentoring, philanthropy, and personal service. I am sincerely touched and honored to be a Women Of Influence this year.

  1. What piece of advice would you give to young women today to inspire them to follow their dreams?

I always advise young women to remain true to themselves. Live freely, intuitively, and keep your antennae up so that you are aware of the opportunities that surround us all.

  1. What steps do you take to make health and wellness a priority in your life?

When you’re juggling family, friends, work, travel, and all the responsibilities that come with a full life, it is almost irresistible to put your own health last. Everything else seems to take priority. I made a decision many years ago to make self-care a top priority in my life. This means that I listen to my mind and my body. I eat well, take long walks, and see my circle of doctors regularly. I have checkups on time and work my schedule around them. I smile a lot and gravitate towards humor and positivity. While we can’t control what life brings to us, we can react with strength, balance, resilience and perspective.

Help us Celebrate our Volunteers!

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One of our favorite quotes is “To the world you may be one person but to one person you may be the world.”  April is National Volunteer Month.  As discussion among our staff began one name was unanimous as to who we should recognize as an outstanding volunteer.

Being a volunteer you give of yourself and share with others your life experiences, skills, compassion and humor.  You give of your time generously without any expectation of reward.  Pat Ford is the Mayor of the City of Pulaski, Tennessee, Instructor of Business at Martin Methodist College, Member of the Rotary Club of Pulaski, Deacon at First Baptist Church Pulaski and he is an outstanding volunteer.

Pat began volunteering for the T.J. Martell Foundation in 2008 at our Ride for a Cure events.  By 2010 he was volunteering at multiple events, and in 2014 not only did he give of his time as a volunteer but he generously opened the Nashville Honors Gala with the invocation, a tradition that has carried on for the past three Galas. Pat can be seen volunteering at events in Nashville, Atlanta and New York. We call him our security officer, photographer, artist escort, auctioneer, stage manager and more!  There is no one quite like Mayor Ford!

As Tony Martell would say with volunteers like Pat we are keeping alive the bold promise of the T.J. Martell Foundation which means we are keeping people alive!

Pat Ebony and  Rochelle 2015 Pat BCD 2014

Helping Cancer Patients Through Psycho-Oncology, by CEO Laura Heatherly

AAEAAQAAAAAAAAQvAAAAJDc2Nzc3ZWRmLWFjZTItNDRhNS1hYmUxLWE0YWMxOTg1YWE2ZgRecently in the New York Times, I read an article written by Susan Gubar regarding her bout with cancer and dealing with occupational therapy.  Basically, after eight years of physical therapy, she felt that she had not received any professional assistance for many of the issues that come with being diagnosed with cancer such as fear, weakness, fatigue, insomnia, etc.

Each year 12.7 million people discover they have cancer which is one of the most mysterious and terrifying diseases in our lifetime.  Thanks to research, scientists work round the clock to find new discoveries that will turn into clinical trials and new drug discoveries that will save lives.  However, patients are living daily with fear – the fear of dying, fear of coping with the disease while taking care of their families, fear of the unknown and more.

Thanks to Dr. Jimmie C. Holland who is the Wayne E. Chapman Chair in Psychiatric Oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, she pioneered ways in which counseling, psychosocial interventions, and medications can reduce the distress experienced by cancer patients and their families.  As a psychiatrist for more than 30 years, Dr. Holland has devoted her career to helping patients, their families, and medical staff as they cope with the psychological burden of cancer and its treatment.

The T.J. Martell Foundation has been supporting psychiatric oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center for many years and has navigated patients to getting the help they need to be able to deal with their disease.  Our goal is to create positive energy in hopes that patients can overcome their fear and anxiety and tackle their disease.

Believe me, Dr. Jimmie Holland is a pioneer – she is from my home state of Texas and she is one of the best people that I know who are helping to change the world in the way we deal with cancer .

Q&A With Women Of Influence NY Honoree Debra Joester

Debra Joester HeadshotMeet another Women of Influence New York honoree: Debra Joester! Debra is President and CEO of The Joester Loria Group, which is the architect of dozens of award-winning strategic brand extension programs as well as licensing innovation in entertainment, emerging sectors and special events. We spoke with Debra about her involvement in this year’s luncheon and awards that will benefit the Foundation’s breast and ovarian cancer research programs. See what Debra has to say below, and learn more about the 4th Annual Women of Influence Luncheon at the Plaza Hotel in New York City by visiting www.tjmfwomenofinfluence.org.

  1. What does it mean to you to be chosen as a Woman of Influence by the T.J. Martell Foundation?

I was honored and humbled when I learned I was selected to be recognized as a Woman of Influence in 2016.The TJ Martell Foundation is important to me on a very personal level. As a parent, Tony Martell’s story and commitment to finding a cure is truly inspirational.  As a woman and mother of a daughter, I consider finding a cure for breast and ovarian cancer of the utmost importance. Over the years, I have lost dear friends to breast cancer and to AIDS, but I am hopeful as I watch friends winning their battle against those diseases every day.  Those victories and finding a cure are supported by funding the TJ Martell Foundation provides for research.  Beyond the work TJ Martell does, I am thrilled to reinforce the message of hope and empowerment that is the centerpiece of the TJ Martell’s Women of Influence luncheon.  Past honorees have truly inspired me and I hope I can use my story and experience to do the same.

  1. What piece of advice would you give to young women today to inspire them to follow their dreams?

Follow your passions:  Find something you are passionate about and do it as well as you can.

Celebrate being smart: Be confident in what you know and do well.  Take ownership of your accomplishments.

Curiosity keeps you relevant:  Never stop learning or asking questions, and stay informed about our complex and ever-changing world.

Develop People Skills:   Be a team player and a good collaborator.  Build relationships and trust with your peers, as well as those that are senior and junior.

Don’t forget your personal life:  Make time for family, friends, fitness and fun.  Balance is hard to find but it is important to make balance a priority.

Give Back:  Mentor, volunteer, and join in whenever you can. There are so many ways to participate in causes that are important to you!

  1. What steps do you take to make health and wellness a priority in your life?

I love my hectic New York lifestyle but it can make healthy choices more challenging.  Work and personal commitments fill my days, so creating healthy habits is really important to me. I am a foodie, but I find eating more fruit and vegetables makes me feel better and still gives me delicious food options. I have never smoked and don’t drink soda, don’t eat sugary foods or indulge in unhealthy lifestyle choices. I believe women cannot afford to miss their annual visits to their doctors, so I schedule my check-ups and doctor’s visits the way I would schedule any other important meeting or event.  I play tennis in the summer and walk all year around but I don’t make enough time to go to the gym.  I am challenging myself to make time for exercise but it’s not easy!

 

Q&A With Women of Influence NY Honoree Ariane Duarte

Ariane DuarteFans of Bravo TV’s “Top Chef” may recognize Ariane Duarte, who competed on the show’s 5th season. This past year, the chef also competed on the show “Beat Bobby Flay” and was victorious! Ariane is also the owner and chef of Ariane’s Kitchen & Bar in New Jersey. She, as well as six other outstanding women, will be honored and celebrated at the 4th Annual Women of Influence Luncheon in New York on May 13th.

Get to know a little more about Ariane:

  1. What does it mean to you to be chosen as a Woman of Influence by the T.J. Martell Foundation?

The question gives me pause. Without thinking that I am influencing anyone, I just carry on, doing what I love, doing what I care about for those I hope will enjoy what I create.

I am a chef. I try to feed the stomach and if I feed the soul, then I am doing more than I hoped.  If my attitude, my business, my food inspire others to follow their talent, how lucky am I!  

  1. What piece of advice would you give to young women today to inspire them to follow their dreams?

Forget dreams.  Follow your talents. Young women – ask questions, Ask questions. Ask questions. It’s ok to hear “no”.  It’s the way you’ll grow.

  1. What steps do you take to make health and wellness a priority in your life?

Annual checks-ups and listen to your body!

Support Ariane and our other 6 honorees by making a tax-deductible donation or purchasing a ticket to the New York Women of Influence luncheon. Funds raised will benefit the T.J. Martell Foundation’s breast and ovarian cancer research programs. www.tjmfwomenofinfluence.org

 

Q&A With Women Of Influence NY Honoree Sue Phillips

We had the pleasure of chatting with Sue Phillips, President & CEO of Scenterprises. Sue is one of seven outstanding women being honored at the New York Women of Influence Luncheon on May 13th.

What does it mean to you to be chosen as a Woman of Influence by the T.J. Martell Foundation?

Sue PhillipsIt is such an honor to be chosen by an organization that is so altruistic, and which raises funds for such a worthy cause. Tony Martell is now retired from the music industry, but it was through Music that gave him the impetus to keep a promise to his son to find a cure for cancer, and today the T.J. Martell Foundation has raised over $270 million for leukemia, cancer and AIDS research. Music is so fundamental to my wellbeing, too, as it is one of the joys of life and I grew up in South Africa, surrounded by music and art, inspired by mother.  Imagine a world without Music? Imagine a life without any of the Senses? That is why I am so honored to be chosen as a Woman of Influence because it is through the Senses that we can help people bring about positive change; bring HAPPINESS to those in need of it, and also to find a cure through the Senses for these terrible diseases. It is humbling to be honored and to be in the company of so many other remarkable women, and it only makes me want to work even more effectively and strategically to strive to make a greater difference.

What piece of advice would you give to young women today to inspire them to follow their dreams?

Sue_10As Adjunct Professor at LIM College, I try to motivate and inspire my students to believe in themselves, and to explore their surroundings, as they are living in one of the greatest cities of the world. I tell them that it’s important to fuel their passions and to open themselves to all kinds of opportunities. “You’re living in New York City. Avail yourself of everything that is here; the museums and galleries, lectures and parks. When you go from class to class; look around you, look up at the spectacular New York city views and architecture…keep your eyes open!” There’s so much that can help them in their future endeavors. Many of them are obsessed with reality shows, so I try and broaden their horizons and to inspire them to think exponentially. And, if they fail in their endeavors, my motto is to ‘never give up’ and to keep going! Hopefully they remember my words and dream big!

What steps do you take to make health and wellness a priority in your life?

Having been witness to so many people who have been afflicted with cancer, leukemia, AIDS and Alzheimer’s, I try and live my life in as healthy a way as possible. Exercise and a wholesome diet are important to me, but also incorporating beauty and the joy of Art, Music, Fragrance and other Senses, are ways to enjoy a ‘scentsory’ life, to completely ensure my wellbeing. I believe in the doctrine that pleasure or happiness is the highest form of wellness!

Guest Blog Post: Update from our IronMan!

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Our friend Jan Swenson, a courageous cancer survivor, is training for this year’s IronMan and donating all proceeds to our foundation. Read on for an exciting update from Jan! 

Wooo-Hoo!! I just received the 6-month “All Clear!” from my Oncologist. It made me rethink where I am in my Journey to Ironman in July and the frustration I feel that I am not faster/ stronger at this point.

20150703_114059It was just about 6 months ago that I had chemicals designed to kill me coursing through by body, the steroids and anti-nausea medications that all have side effects. From the hair loss to weight gain, this was a very stressful time for my body.

 

 

But 6 months out from this and where am I?

12509180_10207967913811985_8773905894292326708_nI am a Disney Dopey Challenge finisher (48.6 miles of running over 4 days).

I am training 10-12 hours a week on top of maintaining my work schedule.

I am eating healthier than I ever have.

It is easy to let the frustrations of the moment cloud your mind with fear and impatience for a body that just went through chemotherapy. I have an ambitious personality and I have set some goals that I would like to hit for July. Finishing Ironman (hopefully faster than I did in 2013, but would be satisfied to finish strong) and raising at least $5,000 for The TJ Martell Foundation (if you don’t know who they are check them out, they are moving some big mountains in researching treatments and cures).

I posted one time on this and with your help we raised about $2,500, and currently at $2,715!!! I want to thank all of the people who have generously donated so far and look forward to thanking everyone who will follow this link to donate. No amount is to big or small. And everything helps.https://donate.tjmartell.org/fundraise?fcid=570733

Tony Martell of Vicky Martell: ‘The world has lost a wonderful person’

Tony and Vicky JAzz“The world has lost a wonderful person.”

That was how Tony Martell of Madison, NJ summed up his deep loss following the death of his wife, Vicky Martell, on Saturday night, Feb. 20, at their home on Garfield Avenue following a long illness. Mrs. Martell was 88.

With her husband, Mrs. Martell was the co-founder of the T.J. Martell Foundation for Leukemia, Cancer and AIDS Research. She also served as the former longtime choirmaster at St. Vincent Martyr Church in Madison.

“She was always for the underdog,” Tony Martell said. “She always took the part of the weaker person. She loved people.

“She was my mentor, my lover, my friend. She was everything to me.”

Vicky and Tony Martell founded the T.J. Martell Foundation for Leukemia, Cancer and AIDS Research following the death of their son, T.J. Martell, of leukemia in 1975 at the age of 19.

Tony Martell said many people were unaware of his wife’s key role in the foundation. “She worked hard,” he remarked.

“I like to think that she and my son are together. If there’s a heaven — and I know there is — they’re there.”

Over the years, the foundation the couple named for their son has raised more than $270 million for leukemia, cancer and AIDS research — which has been successfully leveraged into several billion dollars in additional funding from larger funding sources.

Vicky and Tony Martell also have been closely connected with St. Vincent Martyr Church. Mrs. Martell, described as an “enormously talented singer,” served the church as choirmaster for some 25 years, leading four choirs.

But that was not the whole of Vicky Martell’s dedication to the church, Tony Martell remembered.

“She was so devoted to the church. She bought choir robes. She bought the church a Clavinova,” a digital piano that also is capable of imitating the sounds of a large array of instruments, such as strings.

St. Vincent Martyr School was “enthralled” by the church’s Clavinova, “so she bought them one,” Tony Martell said, adding, “She bought 1,000 hymnals for the church. She put a new sound system in the church.

“She did so much. Whatever the church needed, she was at the table to give.

“I used to call her a plainclothes nun.”

Mr. and Mrs. Martell knew one another for 66 years — and were married for 64 of them.

The couple both hailed from the Scranton, Pa., area. She was not only a remarkable singer, but a talented trumpet player in a big band, and she immediately captivated Tony Martell, who worked in those days at a radio station.

“The first night I had a date with her,” he said, “I told her I was going to marry her.”

Through the T.J. Martell Foundation, as well as private efforts, the couple labored for four decades to improve the lives of countless cancer patients and their families. As Mrs. Martell grew ill, it was not always easy, but “she never complained,” Tony Martell said.

“Thank God she died peacefully.”

Great news: update on our friend, Royce!

Many of you have read about our young friend, Royce, on our Patient Services page and social media. So we wanted to share this exciting news from his mother, Jess!

12528096_10207657708257278_1849552656_n“My son Royce just past his 1.5 year mark for being in remission from Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Thanks to T.J. Martell’s support along with our friends, family, and the incredible team at CHLA we felt supported and guided and encouraged every step of the way. It feels wonderful to have this milestone behind us and we look forward to many more years cancer free to appreciate life and for my son to enjoy a regular childhood!”

What an inspiration! Go, Royce, go!

Need some fitspiration?

134710-067-022Our #FitnessFriday inspiration comes from Stephanie Rubin and Laura Feidelson. They ran the Pinehurst, North Carolina Turkey Trot Half Marathon in 2 hours and 7 minutes, and ended up raising almost $12,500 for our research programs in honor of a loved one!

“When my father was diagnosed with prostate cancer, he was lucky enough to end up in the very competent hands of Dr. Mitchell Benson who got the situation under control.  I was so inspired by Dr. Benson and so grateful that I decided to run this half marathon and donate to the T.J. Martell Foundation prostate cancer research to hopefully help him continue to save lives.  I am just so honored to have contributed to such an incredible foundation and I hope to run many more races for T.J. Martell in the future,” says Stephanie.

Please join us in congratulating and thanking these inspiring young women!

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